A day in the life of a trainee
9:00am: I start the day by grabbing breakfast from the staff restaurant and head to my desk in one of the firm’s three financing groups. I skim the Financial Times, check the to-do list which I made the evening before and start work on the most pressing task.
9:30am: I am a member of the firm’s Innovation Network and we are given access to the various legal tech start-ups taking part in the firm’s incubator programme. One of the start-ups is providing a demonstration of their collaboration tool which will make our work more efficient. The founder of this particular start-up was previously an associate at the firm and I looking forward to seeing the tool in action during the scheduled demonstration.
10:45am: Once the demonstration finishes, I return to my desk. My supervisor and I have a call scheduled with our client as well as the other side and their lawyers regarding several legal and commercial points in a facility agreement currently being drafted. We are acting on behalf of the lender, and we received the borrower’s mark-up of the agreement yesterday.
11:30am: I write-up the minutes of the call and the relevant action points for both sides and then send this to my supervisor.
12.00pm: I start working on the next task on my to-do list, which is to continue my review of several documents as part of a due diligence exercise, and coordinate with local counsel in various jurisdictions.
12.30am: There is a lunch time training session on tax issues in practice, given by two associates in the Tax team. Although this is not related to my current seat, it is vital understanding how the different parts of the transaction interact and knowing when to reach out to one of the specialist teams so I am keen to attend this.
1.45pm: Once back from the training session, I call the client to discuss how they would like to proceed with the due diligence exercise. I am given with go-ahead to extend the original scope of the due diligence to be carried out by local counsel. Following the call, I continue my review of the documents.
3.30pm: I answer an urgent trainee capacity request from one of the associates in my group. I am asked to help with some post-closing work in relation to an acquisition by a client. I produce the relevant forms and notices, and send them back to the associate. After the associate has reviewed it, she sends it on to the client for final sign-off.
5.30pm: Another associate in the group asked if I can help with the first draft of a secured facility agreement. This task involves taking the base facility agreement which we have previously negotiated and turning it from a multi-tranche term loan into a single tranche loan. This was my first time drafting a facility agreement. As such, the associate broke down the steps which I would need to take and the key terms to be aware of, after which I asked a few questions to clarify what was required. I then perused the precedent facility agreement to ensure the new agreement would work as intended. In this scenario, our client is the borrower. The role of a trainee is varied and you need to be able to juggle tasks according to the needs of your clients.
8.00pm: I have made good progress with the facility agreement and I am sure I will meet the deadline comfortably. As such, I decide to continue in the morning, with a fresh pair of eyes. I ask my supervisor if there’s anything else I can do today, make a to-do list for tomorrow, record my time for the day and then head home.