My name is Sophie and I am a first year Trainee Solicitor at Gilson Gray, currently undertaking my first seat in the Edinburgh Private Client team.
It feels like only yesterday that I was nervously waiting with my fellow trainees at reception, for the trainee induction programme to begin. However, I am now over 2 months into my traineeship and can’t believe how much I have learned in such a short amount of time.
I thought that it would be helpful to reflect upon my experience thus far and for prospective trainees to find out more about what can be expected from a traineeship at GG. I have also outlined some of my top tips for those commencing a traineeship.
What have you enjoyed most about being a trainee at GG?
- Interesting work and real responsibility
After hearing from some friends and Diploma tutors that not all trainees are given “real” work, it became extremely important to me that I train with a firm that gives its trainees real responsibility and meaningful work from the outset of the traineeship.
Since my very first week in the department, I have been involved in interesting, varied and meaningful work that directly impacts our clients. This has included attending client meetings, directly communicating with clients, and drafting wills and powers of attorney. I have also assisted with trust registrations, Guardianship work, and executry cases.
Recently, I have been assigned files in which I am the primary fee earner, although all of my work is reviewed by my supervisor. This level of responsibility really excites me and I believe this will be invaluable to my training.
- The friendly and supportive culture
It was clear from the outset of my traineeship that Gilson Gray has a friendly and collaborative culture, where its staff genuinely support each other. This was initially clear to me through the week-long induction programme organised by the firm, which allowed me to learn more about the firm, its people and meet my new colleagues.
Moreover, there is a genuine sense of teamwork at Gilson Gray and I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of that. I feel comfortable approaching any of my colleagues for advice and guidance and I am so grateful for all of the support and guidance I have received from my colleagues in the Private Client department.
- The fun and social side of the firm
Gilson Gray is also a fun and sociable firm. Before I had even started as a trainee, I was welcomed to the Gilson Gray summer BBQ at Musselburgh racecourse, and within my first two weeks as a trainee, I was given the opportunity to help with the annual Gilson Gray Grace Gala. As well as this, the firm hosts “end-of-month drinks” to reward everyone’s hard work. I am really attracted to this culture, as I believe it motivates the team and helps to form solid working relationships with your colleagues.
What has been your biggest challenge as a trainee thus far?
As someone who has mostly worked in a hospitality environment, the transition to an office job took me a while to get used to. However, everyone around me was extremely helpful and you would be surprised at how fast you can pick certain things up – including how to scan a document for the first time!
Another thing that was completely new to me, and to most trainees, is time recording. My best piece of advice for new trainees is to try and get into a habit of recording every task as you go, instead of leaving it until the end of the day. I would also recommend having an open conversation with your supervisor and finding out if there is any time recording guidance available.
For full details about our traineeship offer and to apply click here .