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A Day in the Life of….

By 26 May 2021August 13th, 2021No Comments

Prisca Wharton.

Associate at PRIME member firm, CMS and Law Society Social Mobility Ambassador.

How do you start your day?

Usually with a big coffee! I also like to listen to a podcast or maybe an audiobook, it somehow helps to tune my brain in ready for the working day.

What’s the first thing you do when you arrive at the office (switch on your work computer!)

Probably not the “correct” answer but I am afraid I do check my emails first and write a “to do” list (old school, pen and paper for me still!) – I try to highlight the absolute “must do today” tasks. I’m not sure I could survive without lists and I think there is a certain satisfaction in crossing items off.

What does a typical morning of work involve?

I try to get through my more time heavy tasks in the morning. I always think it’s best to get those tasks done around mid-morning when energy levels are highest if possible.

What’s for lunch?

Well – again, not the “correct” answer I’m sure, but whilst working from home I tend to combine lunch with breakfast and go for more of a brunch. I typically have fruit toast which I’m obsessed with and another coffee. Not the healthiest I am afraid.

What does a typical afternoon of work involve?

I will use the afternoon for less intellectually demanding tasks as this works best for me and respond to emails, calls etc. and close off ant admin I need to sort out.

Which three words best describe your experience of working in the law?

Varied, challenging and rewarding.

What advice do you have to students from less privileged backgrounds who aspire to a career in the law?

You must believe in yourself and stay determined and motivated in your mindset.

Depending on where you are up to on your career path I highly recommend looking up local groups/societies for law students etc as this can keep you feeling on the right path and you can start to grow your network early.

I also recommend looking up scholarships and bursaries available at each stage. There are more than you think, and you have nothing to lose!

Look at mentoring programmes – there are lots available for aspiring law students with some focussed on students from less privileged backgrounds.

Last, but not least, do not be afraid to say you are from a less privileged background – be proud of this and how far you have come.

Is working as a solicitor what you expected?

It isn’t quite as glamorous as some of those TV shows out there I must say but for the most part, yes.

I always loved the idea that you worked in a role where you were constantly learning, and I definitely feel that this is the case.

What do you find the most challenging about your role?

I think managing expectations is a key challenge in the role of most solicitors. Never over promise and under deliver as a general rule and don’t be pressured into committing to finishing a task sooner than you think you can do so. Being able to say “no” to tasks is very important when you are already at capacity in terms of your workloads. It is better to do 6 tasks very well than juggle 10 tasks not so well and burn yourself out. Do not be afraid of the word “no”!

Who do you go to for support for a tricky task?

It would really depend on the task but if it was work-related I would probably put some time in the diary with a partner to chat through or if possible I will always have a go at a particularly tricky task and then send it to a partner to supervise and then chat through. I always think it is better to just have a go first and then talk through as it helps you learn more effectively.

Prisca is a Law Society Social Mobility Ambassador. This scheme promotes role models from non-traditional backgrounds who have achieved their ambitions and are willing to support their peers within the profession and prospective solicitors. Find out more here.