Lydia Ashman Trainee Blog Part 3

As with my last blog, time has continued to march on quickly and I am now only four months away from qualifying. This is a very daunting yet exciting prospect which I am looking forward to very much… I think!


The reality of qualifying only hit me the evening before I started my fourth and final seat, in employment. The prospect of qualifying and the additional responsibility was something that I had pushed to the back of my mind until recently. However, I am now in my final seat and preparing to meet the reality of becoming a qualified solicitor.


Whilst I am keen to look forward, I have had a period of refection reviewing my experiences over the  previous six months and my time in the family team under the supervision of Graham Jones. I mentioned in  my last blog that Family was not something I particularly liked whilst at university, however, having been determined to keep an open mind, I found myself enjoying my time in the department and the work that I was involved in.


I learnt a great deal in those 6 months and have experienced a real growth and maturity in myself and my work. My professional skills have developed significantly having had the opportunity to undertake a variety of assignments and sit in on a number of different client meetings. I learnt quickly in Family that whilst the law does not allow scope for people to be emotional, more often than not, our clients are coming to us for guidance and help at what is often one of the most emotional and difficult times in their lives. In my previous seat within the Corporate team, I had learnt to transact matters in a business-like fashion. However I found Family to be the polar opposite requiring a very different style of communication.  I had to adapt my personal style and approach very quickly to engage with clients on such personal and emotional matters. I am hoping that this will put me in good stead for my final seat where a balance of styles is required.


At Whitehead Monckton, our fourth seat is typically the seat into which we would like to qualify. I have chosen to ‘return’ to Employment to gain a broader understanding of the practical complexities of the law in this area. My previous seat in the Co-Emp team whilst thoroughly enjoyable focussed more on corporate work and so I am keen to expand my knowledge with regard to the specific element of employment law.


I will be working across the Maidstone and Tenterden offices to learn as much as possible and spend time with my colleagues in the team. I am looking forward to this opportunity and the future ahead.