Let’s be honest, at university, there’s never any rush. Sure, there may be the odd lecture you should probably turn up to, or the occasional deadline you have to meet. But by and large, you won’t be too pressed for time, and if you want to spend a full day watching a gravel-voiced super-agent save the world (in real time), chances are you can fit your essays around that.
Once you start work, it’s very different. Most seats at Morton Fraser will immediately involve you in a range of different types of work. You’ll usually be juggling several different matters at once, as you wait to hear back from a client, or the other side in a transaction. It’s when you’re working on a variety of different things, all with their own deadlines, that it becomes so important to be organised and stay on top of things.
One of the great elements of a Morton Fraser traineeship is that you will get to manage your own matters and have some real responsibility, and so you’ll get the chance to figure out how best to manage your workload. It will be up to you to ensure that the right papers are lodged with court on time, that your client gets the draft Will when you promised it, and the terrorists don’t get access to the nuclear codes. (The last one hasn’t come up yet for me, though I can’t speak for the other trainees).
Morton Fraser is a busy place, and there’s always plenty to do. Developing your own way to make sure that you can get through it is one of the great challenges of your traineeship. Of course, unlike my near-namesake, you’re not on your own. You have your case management system, which may not be as glamorous as Jack’s support team at CTU, but which will remind you of deadlines, and is far less likely to betray you to a foreign power. And more importantly, you have your colleagues, who will be there to instruct and help you every step of the way.
In case the tenuous parallels I’ve drawn between working at Morton Fraser and saving the world have anyone worried that a traineeship might be a bit intense, I should make it clear that it’s really not that bad. Since I’ve started, I’ve always been struck by the positive, supportive, and just generally friendly atmosphere at the Firm. You’re never overwhelmed, and there’s always someone to ask.
No one expects you to be the legal equivalent of Jack Bauer (or, thankfully, to match his chargeable hours). Instead, you’ll be part of a team that works hard, and works together, to provide the best we can for our clients. And if you manage your time well enough, you should even make it out the door at 5pm on a Friday, in time to join the rest of the team in the pub.