Trainee blog: thoughts on approaching my final seat as a trainee solicitor

Trainee blog: thoughts on approaching my final seat as a trainee solicitor

As a trainee you will be given the opportunity to be involved in many different departments at Michelmores. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Projects, Corporate, and my current seat in Employment.

Some trainees may find that as they edge towards the end of each seat, they have acquired the knowledge and confidence to succeed within their team. However, this is sometimes replaced by apprehension and uncertainty as they approach a new seat. Each seat brings with it new challenges as well as the opportunity to develop your skillset. As I approach my final seat in my training contract, I have started to reflect upon what I have learnt and what my goals are as I approach qualification.


  • Communication skills

In each seat, I have learnt the value of communication skills. This applies both to clients and colleagues. Many clients will be busy with their day-to-day jobs, and it is helpful to give them clear information or questions to ensure they can prioritise urgent queries relating to current transactions or matters.

To work well with others, it is necessary to be able to communicate effectively. Many of your colleagues will be busy with their own workload, so you should aim to ask any questions clearly and be conscious of their time. You should be able to articulate any problems you may have. During my training, I tried to consider solutions rather than solely noticing a problem.

  • Networking, networking, networking

I have attended various events at the Firm. Some notable highlights include attending a client site visit, the Litigators’ Conference in Bristol with other members of the Firm, and the business department away day at Kenton Park Estate, sampling different cakes, scones, and wine.

As a trainee you should start to build these networks internally and externally. I have found that the nervousness of changing seats has been reduced by getting to know colleagues in different teams at events around the Firm. At Michelmores, you will be trained in building your personal brand which will help with your progression towards becoming a qualified solicitor.

  • Collaboration

I have enjoyed working in different teams on projects. I have also enjoyed working with colleagues in support of internal events. Last year, I worked with a fellow trainee to organise the Michelmores Wellbeing Spectacular to encourage everyone to get outside and be active. Recently, I organised the Trainee Winter Social with another trainee where we will be meeting up to attend a cocktail and mocktail masterclass. I look forward to future events, as these are a great way to get to know other members of the Firm.

  • Wellbeing

Michelmores is very supportive of wellbeing in the workplace. The Firm’s charity of the year is the Charlie Waller Trust, and we recently hosted the Michelmores 5k Charity Run raising over £22,000. The Firm also organised an internal charity football sweep stake for the Charlie Waller Trust. I have attended training on mental health and wellbeing and workshops on building resilience in the workplace. Michelmores recently received accreditation for the City Mental Health Alliance Thriving at Work framework. This will underpin and inform the Firm’s wellbeing strategy to create a healthy workplace.

I find exercise helps me manage my wellbeing. There are some beautiful walks and runs outside of the Exeter office, and I find getting outside during my lunch break or after work invigorates me for the rest of the day. The Exeter office also provides free exercise classes and has an on-site gym.