Mid-seat mid-winter

“Mid seat review” – words to strike fear into the heart of a trainee at any stage but particularly those of us facing it for the first time …

The expectation – this is my first formal feedback session as a trainee: approach with trepidation, this could be the end of my legal career.

The reality – surprisingly encouraging.

The process itself –

The effect of reviewing my trainee diary and composing the necessary records and checklists in preparation for the review, enabled me to see with clarity the work I had done since starting my training contract in October. In turn, this illustrated the progress I have made. This aspect of the review process was particularly helpful. It can be difficult, in the heat of the seat (for want of a better expression), to see any self-development at all. By taking a different perspective, the sometimes small, but nonetheless significant achievements come into focus.

“Trainees are closely supervised but also trusted with a level of responsibility and given considerable autonomy.”

Appraising the work I have done also served to underline one of the main reasons I applied to B P Collins. Trainees are closely supervised but also trusted with a level of responsibility and given considerable autonomy. I noticed this when considering matters I had worked on included exchanging and completing the sale and purchase of properties, and negotiating with solicitors on the other side.

My fears of an interrogation were unfounded. The review itself was more like a directed conversation than an assessment. In fact, the entire process was productive; from reflecting on work done prior to the meeting, to the constructive feedback received in the review itself, and the renewed focus this encouraged.

 Posted by Olivia Duncan


Olivia joined B P Collins as a paralegal in the property team before
her training contract with the firm in October 2018. Her role is to assist
partners and other lawyers throughout the firm. 

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