Financial & Legal News

We Never Stop Learning

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Learning never stops even after you get that job at Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers.  Due to the nature of our business our staff have a variety of backgrounds and join the firm with varying qualifications.

Joanne Ormston, Practice Manager says,”Learning takes place in different guises from training contracts, day release at college, to self-study at home and professional exams. We regularly discuss training needs with our staff and actively encourage them to continue with their professional development and do our utmost to support them in that.”

Why it helps to have supportive employer

Here is the experience of some of our staff:-

Sarah Major – Chartered Legal Executive, Residential Team

Sarah joined the firm with extensive conveyancing experience having worked at previous practices.  Her previous career in house building had given her a taste for property law so she was ideally placed specialise in conveyancing and has fitted well into the team.

She retrained as a lawyer, attended night school and studied for the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEX exams).  She is now a Fellow of CILEX.

“When I first moved to Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers I began with a small caseload and assisting other solicitors. I have been mentored and supported to take on more work and now run a full caseload of my own files whilst supporting junior members of the team.

Throughout my time with Pearson I have been given the opportunity to grow, gain more experience and work on a wide range of property matters and now I am competent at dealing with more complex legal issues.

Throughout my studies, Pearson supported me and allowed me to work in a managed way. My case load has increased gradually – and always in the knowledge that ready support was available. They responded to my queries, recommended suitable courses and provided opportunities for professional development. I have been given feedback on ways in which I could improve and have always been given me credit when deserved.“

Joshua McConnell – Trainee Solicitor

Currently Josh is a trainee solicitor in our family team.  He has been with Pearson since March 2016 where he worked as a Paralegal in the Litigation department for 12 months.  He was then offered a training contract where he has been able to spend time in different departments to gain wide ranging experience.

“The support I have received has been unbelievable!  I was thrown in at the deep end when I worked in Litigation but with appropriate guidance.  I then worked in Commercial Property and gained really good exposure to commercial contracts and the property sector generally”.

Now Josh is working with the family department assisting in private child and care proceedings, representing clients at hearings in Court where he’s really improved his advocacy skills. He will take his final seat in the Private Client department until he qualifies as a fully-fledged solicitor.

“I have been lucky to have such a wide ranging training contract which has developed my wider understanding of the law, in comparison to some of my university peers who have not had perhaps as much exposure as I have nor the court advocacy experience.  

Commercial Property interests me the most and my plan would be to qualify in that area, develop my understanding in that area of the law further, then develop my own network to eventually start bringing in my own clients.”

Kimberley Sykes - Client Manager, Financial Services

Kim joined the firm as a junior secretary straight from college and has worked her way up to her current position.  She is studying towards Level 4 Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning and has just sat her first exam.

“I have felt very supported and encouraged to start studying towards my exam even when I was unsure what to do, due to lacking confidence following coming back from maternity leave. I study at home using the textbook that was purchased through the exam body and was allowed a day’s study leave the day before the exam and then obviously the actually time for the exam.

“I’ve not been under any pressure to pass the exams and I am able to decide which order I sit them in depending how comfortable I feel about it.”

Amy Dransfield – Client Manager, Financial Services

Amy joined the team in with a 1st Class Law Degree and Masters in Legal Practice.  Just months later she started the Financial Services exams.  Starting at diploma level she recently passed the sixth exam in order to gain Level 4 in Regulated Financial Planning.

“The firm is very supportive with our studying. There is absolutely no pressure as to which exams we choose to do – it’s entirely our own choice. We are given study leave the day before an exam and they will pay for extra study material if we feel it is needed. Also in one of my exams where I was given a case study before the exam, my manager organised for the entire department to sit in the boardroom and brain storm possible answers in preparation.

Lastly, I was awarded extra credits for recognition of prior learning for my law degree and the firm kindly offered to pay for these credits.”

Emily GardnerApprentice

Emily Gardner, Office Administration Assistant in our Family Team, has just completed Level 2 Office Administration at Oldham College and has been recognised for her hard work and presented with an award for being an outstanding student.

Emily attended The Blue Coat Sixth Form prior to joining Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers where she was studying for four A Levels.  However, she saw the apprenticeship role on a government website and decided to apply for it.

“I’ve always wanted to work in Law, says Emily, “and was very surprised to be nominated for this award.  I’m now planning on starting a Paralegal course in June and would like to progress further by studying for law qualifications."



Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

This blog was posted some time ago and its contents may now be out of date. For the latest legal position relating to these issues, get in touch with the author - or make an enquiry now.

Written by Joanne Ormston


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