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Link Network Winter Newsletter - Vol 3

29 November 2023

Link, DWF's early careers networking group, welcomes you to their winter 2023 newsletter. We hope you enjoy this month's edition which is packed full of blogs, interview’s and educational content.

This month we were delighted to speak to Trudy Lindblade, Chief Executive Officer at 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships about her experience in delivering such a significant and unique first-time major event that will create a blueprint for future editions, plus we speak with Alasdair Peacock, Partner at DWF, who along with his team Douglas Jeffries, Orla Kerr and Charlotte Hampson  have been working closely with Trudy and the teams at UCI, Glasgow City Council and Event Scotland for the past 5 years from initial concept to event delivery.  

This Volume also features an 'Inspire Interview' with UK&I Managing Partner, Hilary Ross, and a round up of our 2023 events and activities.

Also, look out for the recording of the latest Career Development Lab session with Zing365.

Inspire Interview with Hilary Ross

Inspire Interview with Hilary Ross
  1. What was your journey to becoming UK & Ireland Regional Managing Partner?
    • A long one. I went to a comprehensive school in the west coast of Scotland (which was recently ranked in the bottom 50 performing academies in Scotland). I spent 5 years not going to the loo in fear of being beaten up, worked my backside off and went to Glasgow Uni at 17 to study law. I came to London in the early 90s when I was 23 to work as a pharma lawyer with what is now Cameron McKenna. I become a partner in BCLP when I was 31. After 8 years, I joined DWF in 2011 and was the third commercial services lawyer in the London office. I have held various roles – Head of Retail Sector, Managing Partner for London, member of the Strategy Board when we floated, Global Head of Clients and Markets and now the UK&I Country Managing Partner role.
  2. What is the best thing about your job? 
    • Letting clients know just how good DWF is!
  3. What was the biggest challenge you faced at the beginning of your career?
    • Being taken seriously. It is a challenge which has plagued me all my career not just the beginning. Being small, female and friendly often results in me being dismissed.
  4. Who is your biggest inspiration?
    • I started my legal career in the early 90s when there were few senior women to emulate. My inspiration was Professor Sheila Mclean who pioneered law and medical ethics. She was fiercely intelligent, humorous and ultimately her own authentic self. I was, and remain, in awe of her. In my career, I have been inspired by many of my female peers as we have created a path which I hope others feel they can follow. More recently I have learned a huge amount from our Chief Executive, Sir Nigel Knowles, which I know sounds very obsequious but is genuinely true. We have a pioneer at our helm who built the biggest law firm in the world. He is simply remarkable and everyone should take the opportunity to learn as much as they can from him.
  5. What is your biggest tip for staying on top of market trends and changes?
    • It is a struggle at the start of your career to get on top of the law but true success only comes when you know how to apply in a useful way for the client. Understanding the client's industry sector is the only way to be a truly good lawyer. If you do not then you become one of those lawyers who just parrot the law with little strategic use to the client.
  6. If you could go back in time to the start of your career and change one thing, what would it be?
    • I would have qualified and worked in the US.
  7. Where do you get your motivation from?
    • I have a very strong sense of justice so my motivation is to do the right thing. I need to be able to look myself in the mirror each morning.
  8. What does success look like to you?
    • On a work level, success is allowing our people to flourish and delighting our clients. At a personal level it's walking along a beach in Cornwall with my husband, son and dog.
  9. What is your top tip to an aspiring Managing Partner?
    • Get as close as you can to your clients: understand their needs, keep to deadlines, cost estimates, answer every call and email as if you have been sitting waiting for it.
  10. What's the best piece of advice you have ever received?
    • It's hardest to do the right thing when everyone else is doing the wrong thing but that should never stop you.

2023 Event Round-Up

2023 Event Round-Up

Thank you to everyone who attended our events and activities this year! We can't wait for 2024... get in touch if you want to collaborate!

Wine Tasting

We hosted a wine tasting and networking event, in conjunction with Made from Grapes at our DWF Glasgow office. Made from Grapes are an independent wine shop based in the Southside of Glasgow, specialising in wines from small European producers. It was a brilliant evening sampling and learning about different wines, nibbling on charcuterie boards and catching up with our peers!

Jungle Rumble Mini Golf

A team in Bristol put their putting skills to the test and took part in a crazy golf challenge social at 'Jungle Rumble' golf.

Pub Quiz Night

DWF Link Leeds hosted our very own Pub Quiz and it was amazing to see a wonderful mix of DWF members and valued external clients.

Pottery & Prosecco

We hosted colleagues, clients and contacts for a night of pottery and prosecco at our Belfast office. Thank you to all who attended and well done on some amazing artistic creations!

Pub Quiz Night

Great to see so many new and familiar faces at our annual DWF Link London pub quiz night! Thank you to everyone who came along.

Jingle & Mingle

We hosted our annual Networking Winter Mixer hosted at Common Market, Belfast. It was lovely to see in the festive period and express our thanks to our Link cohort for another successful year.

Mulled Wine & Mince Pies Social

The Birmingham Link committee hosted a fun and festive charity evening full of mulled wine and mince pies followed by a trip to Birmingham Christmas Markets. The committee also collected food bank donations as part of the Birmingham office's Christmas charity drive.

Coffee Tasting

We had a fantastic time hosting a coffee tasting and light networking breakfast at our Edinburgh office. We were joined by Sorley Richardson from Obadiah Coffee to sample some of their latest coffees which are all roasted locally in Edinburgh, taking our taste buds to Peru, Columbia and Ethiopia.

Watch the Recording! Session 3 - Career Development Lab Series

Everybody wants the best slice of the pie when it comes to making a deal. Sometimes, it can be difficult to work through a negotiation, especially if the other party isn’t willing to work with you.

View the recording here.


Further Reading