Reed Smith Training Contract Application Model Answers
Identify your 3 key qualities that make you likely to succeed in a commercial law firm. For each quality, give an example of an experience or activity in which you have demonstrated that quality. (300 words max)*
- Teamwork. At [Law Firm Name] ([LAW FIRM INITIALS]) I was asked to accompany the partner and the clients to a Board of Directors (BoD) Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of a natural energy joint venture since the client spoke only [language]. At the pre and post EGM I was required to liaise with [language], Dutch and English solicitors and the client to address pressing problems. I was an active listener and saw from a commercial perspective. I tailored my communications to diverse audiences, talking with relevance and clarity at all times.
- Attention to Detail. At present, I am assisting [law firm]’s London team on [high-net-worth individual]’s defense to [high-net-worth individual]’s claim estimated at £[value] in a dispute arising from sale of the claimant’s shares in [natural resources company], one of Russia’s largest oil companies. I am working closely with [law firm]’s associates from [city] and London offices in conducting disclosure. I have confidently demonstrated immaculate attention to detail with a real focus on the problem when analysing documents for relevance to the disclosure request pursuant to the court’s order.
- Problem solving. During the trial in Amsterdam, the judge constantly required further factual clarification from the client (4 minority shareholders). The partner called me and asked me to get in touch with the client and get an immediate answer. This required me to think on my feet and see from a business perspective and align myself with client’s commercial objectives. I had to refer to documents in the bundle to refresh client’s memory and ensure that the client answered the question. I then instantly reported back to the partner and had to use my judgment in deciding what constituted relevant and sufficient information for the purpose.
Why at commercial law firm and why reed smith?
I would like to work at commercial law firm because it would place me in a very dynamic and truly competitive environment that is rapidly undergoing globalisation. This would demand the application of lateral thinking and strategic decision making. In turn, this would see me work in dedicated teams with a commercial focus on the problem in a quick-paced environment with approaching deadlines. At [LAW FIRM INITIALS], I especially enjoyed liaising with Dutch, English and [language] solicitors on a shareholder dispute within a joint venture. This produced more interesting work, greater variety and a wider group of experts to learn from. The cross-border nature of the dispute allowed me to build and apply my client management skills and commercial understanding through the application of my knowledge of [language] language and culture. A commercial law firm would facilitate the application of my commercial knowledge and language skills to real client problems and would allow me to form and maintain strong relationships with legal practitioners overseas. This would make my work commercially and professionally stimulating.
I would especially like to work at Reed Smith because it places relationships at the heart of its strategy and is structured in a way that encourages teamwork on an international platform. Working on cross-border deals requires strong and dedicated teams to deal with most complex problems. I would therefore gain an opportunity to form and maintain relationships with some of the best legal practitioners in multiple jurisdictions which would make my work both personally and professionally rewarding.
Reed Smith could offer me unparalleled personal development through its secondment and international opportunities. This would allow me to further expand my connections abroad and utilise my outstanding language skills to offer clients a superior service.
What sets Reed Smith apart from other firms is that it would encourage me to get involved with clients where I would be able to make a real contribution to the service and use my initiative. Early and unlimited responsibility would therefore give me a hands-on experience and allow me to challenge myself in a supportive and encouraging environment.