Whilst beginning a training contract is undoubtedly one of the most exciting times in a budding lawyer’s early career, marking that all their hard work up to that point has been worthwhile, it is important to remember that it is okay to be worried about the challenges that are to come.

A group of 5 people working around a desk

I joined B P Collins as a trainee, having worked as a paralegal in a number of firms in various areas of law but always in the realm of dispute resolution. I am currently in my first seat in the private client team and although I had experience working in a law firm this was my first non-contentious role and I was certainly nervous about starting a new role in a new firm.

“Training contracts are often described as job interviews that last two years, and although that can sound overwhelming it means you have two years to perfect your skills and show them off, demonstrating exactly why your chosen firm were right to offer you the training contract in the first place!”

Before you embark on your training contract it is important you are in the right mindset for the challenges that lay ahead of you and there are a few things to consider:


Even if you haven’t worked in a law firm prior to starting your training contract the chances are from your studies alone will have identified which areas of law are interesting to you. Whilst it is important to know what interests you, during your training contract you will rotate through four different seats, experiencing different areas of law, and even if you do not think it is the area for you, you should always go in with an open mind and remember every team will give you the chance to improve different skills to make you a better, more well rounded lawyer.

“Often the practice area of law is very different to the study of it, so be prepared to be surprised and embrace it.”


Before you start your training contract make sure you know what you need to succeed. As a trainee you will be given a lot of autonomy over organising your diary and your workload, so it is important to make sure you know how to tackle this. Everyone has a different way of organising their inbox to maximise productivity, find yours! As a trainee you will often be doing work for multiple fee earners so learning how to juggle, prioritise and manage others’ expectations of you is crucial. You will have already developed organisational skills from your studies and other jobs you may have had in the past, even if you didn’t hone these skills in a law firm, they will be transferable, and you should use them where possible.

Own it

Although two years may sound like a long time, your training contract will fly by. You meet so many new people, and learn so many new skills, restarting in a new area of law every rotation. Your training contract is a great time to work out where your passion truly lies. You will be given opportunities to represent you and your firm and to join in social activities, which I would urge any trainee to get involved in.

“Your training contract gives you the chance to ask as many questions as possible, with dedicated supervision, it is an opportunity to be relished and enjoyed to its full potential.”

Heather began her training contract with B P Collins in 2022.

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