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Informal Training & Mentoring

7.8 / 10

(based on 24 ratings in 2016)

2016

"My supervisor is great and gets me to focus on my general career development, both in and out of the firm."
First year trainee, London
"There is a mentoring programme but I think it is more natural to find your own mentor. The performance management process is good if you get a good supervisor. Some are better at it than others."
Second year trainee, London
"Partners are incredibly accessible and relatable. You get assigned a mentor but tend to pick up informal mentors along the way as well."
Second year trainee, London
"I was paired with a partner to act as my mentor through the mentoring programme set up by HR. My partner has been very enthusiastic, a good listener, and keen to share his knowledge with me. It is a good asset I am keen to take advantage of."
First year trainee, London
"I think it varies by department but my experience has been that partners and associates are very approachable. There is definitely a sense that what you put in you get out and the firm encourages you to make your own informal networks."
First year trainee, London
"There is a mentoring programme where we get to select who we would like to be our mentors. My mentor (who is a partner) is very supportive and has played a key role in helping me to make decisions, such as which departments I should sit in etc."
First year trainee, London
"The firm has a mentor scheme and I meet up with mine every few months. She's absolutely great. She's not in my department so she is able to be objective. I also have a number of different people who I would consider informal mentors. I go to them for advice such as where to go for my next seat. We are given appraisals mid-seat and end-of-seat. These are taken really seriously. At the start of the seat we set objectives, and at the meeting we discuss whether we have achieved them or, if not, how we can try to."
First year trainee, London
"There is a formal mentorship programme at the firm for trainees but commitment differs between mentors. I have found that partners and senior fee-earners are extremely accessible and I still consult people that I've worked with in previous seats regularly for career advice etc. We have a pretty strict performance feedback process, with a mid- and end-of-seat review. Your supervisor will gather feedback from all the people you've worked with (you'll be able to view this at end-of-seat on an online system) and trainees are graded (outstanding, excellent, good, requires improvement). Grades are moderated according to department and intake. Apart from this, feedback is important in the firm and fee-earners will give frequent feedback as you work with them. However, you are also encouraged to seek it if you feel you are not getting enough."
Second year trainee, Hong Kong
"The partners and solicitors are very accessible. The only slight issue would be trying to speak to people in other departments if you don't usually interact with them."
First year trainee, London

2015

"There's a partner mentorship program but I don't see my mentor that frequently - I find most people end up with 'informal' mentors with partners that they get on with. It's good to have mentors at different levels - partners obviously have more career experience so can help you with mapping out career goals, but associates remember what it was like being a trainee and give you a look into the near future!"
First year trainee, London
"Feedback is quite informal for trainees, but people are generally forthcoming with it."
First year trainee, London
"The firm has a trainee buddy scheme and a partner mentor scheme. We also have trainee representatives in each department. Generally, the partner mentors are approachable and friendly."
First year trainee, London
"People are generally good at providing feedback but ultimately it is the responsibility of the trainee to ensure they get a good amount of feedback. There are formal mentoring programmes which are less effective, however there are many networks within Simmons that allow you to organically grow mentoring relationships."
Second year trainee, London
"The firm partners each trainee with a mentor; this system can be hit and miss but in my experience it has worked very well. We encourage feedback in the firm and we have a mid-seat review which is useful. You have to be prepared to act on constructive criticism."
First year trainee, London

2014

"Quality of mentoring very much depends on the individual, but my mentor has given me some very impartial and helpful advice since starting my training contract, helping me think about my strategy and what my career goals are later on."
Second year trainee, London
"I have had some excellent mentors in my two seats, they make time to provide elaborate feedback and support, even after I had left the department."
First year trainee, London
"All supervisors, including partners, will generally thank you for your work. The firm organises a mentoring scheme (if desired)."
First year trainee, London
"There is a formal mentor programme, which the firm really promotes. The solicitors are very approachable and friendly but the partners are busier and more business-focused. In general, the firm is pushing for everyone giving greater feedback so that should introduce a better level of communication across the firm."
First year trainee, London
"There is a mentoring system in place where trainees are assigned mentors to go to for advice. The frequency/tone of meetings is left to mentors and mentees to decide together. Generally individual associates are good at giving recognition for help but this varies dramatically across departments. Partners are notably less aware of trainee contributions. Praise is passed on which is encouraging and there is a new push for a high performance culture which is promoting the giving of feedback."
Second year trainee, London
"Feedback is good in my experience, well established mentoring process in place."
First year trainee, London
Our 'Inside Buzz' reviews are the comments and views of recent graduate recruits, giving you a view of what it may be like to work for an organisation. Copyright of all TARGETjobs Inside Buzz material lies solely with GTI Media.
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