Reed Smith Training Contract Application Questions and Model Answers
A. 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)*
I am a very entrepreneurial individual with excellent leadership skills. I am the founding member and president of ‘[University] [Sport] Society’ (which had not been done for over fifty years) and am currently managing seven executive members and overseeing the overall operation of the society. These skills would not only translate into my ability to effectively manage my caseload but also my ability to present innovative and effective solutions to clients. In my capacity as a student-staff liaison committee member I have developed my communication skills at both a student and a more senior level. This skill would allow me to successfully communicate with clients and solicitors on two different but nonetheless professional levels. My ability to switch between [language], [language] and English languages highlights my flexibility which could prove to be invaluable when dealing with a diverse range of both national and international calibre clients as well as being an excellent team player within the firm. Last summer, I worked for [law firm] where I had to deal with predominantly international clients, namely [language] speakers. I was therefore required to tailor my research to a [language] context and present possible solutions to the client in [language]. This meant that whilst doing research on the common law jurisdiction in English I managed to switch into [language] when presenting solutions to the client, which illustrates my capability to deal with international clients successfully.
Why at commercial law firm and why reed smith?
I am interested in becoming a solicitor at a commercial law firm because it will allow me to assume the role of a project manager and will vest me with early responsibility. Having worked at [law firm], I found my interest in corporate and commercial law and realised that it would suit my energetic and convivial personality. Given that commercial law is both transactional and ongoing suggests that I will have to build a rapport with the client and apply strong communication skills coupled with high technical ability when forming a clear picture of the client’s needs and objectives and then explaining what may well be a complex area of law when advising on the best solution. This may require me to liaise with a number of legal departments thus making each day unique, enjoyable and fulfilling work experience.
Unlike other international firms, Reed Smith takes a multi-disciplinary approach to handling complex transactions and litigation and in advising clients on a wide array of legal issues. Together withered Smith’s depth and breadth of experience for building strong relationships with clients I will be exposed to multiple angles on clients’ problems both in terms of practice areas and jurisdictions. This will entail me with a prospect of comparing and contrasting multiple jurisdictions and practice areas concurrently thus fostering a steeper trajectory for growth in my capacity as a solicitor. Working alongside leading international institutions will allow me to interchange between different languages and jurisdictions which will make my work experience different, enjoyable and unique. I am attracted by the small number of trainee intake which I feel will give me a hands-on experience and allow me to perform more substantive legal tasks than Reed Smith’s counterparts, thus making the work personally and professionally rewarding.