CASE STUDY: Helen Briant, Partner, Birmingham, UK
Why did you want to be a lawyer?
Being a lawyer was something I always wanted to be from a very young age. I loved the idea of using my brain to solve problems and help people. That concept still motivates me now. Fortunately I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to achieve my goal of becoming a lawyer.
What was the best piece of advice given to you during your career?
Being a commercial litigator, my first supervisor told me that we are only dealing with money and we have an insurance policy. He meant for me to keep things in perspective which is important in what can be a stressful job at times.
What’s your best piece of advice to other women wanting a legal career?
Get all the experience you can get and take all the opportunities on offer. Believe in yourself and that will take you a long way.
What has been your career highlight?
I have some great wins for clients over the years, and some losses which, whilst difficult at the time, taught me a lot. One of the best moments for me was when a leading QC (now a high Court judge) took time out to write to my senior partner to set out what a fantastic job I had done on getting a long and difficult case to a conclusion. It really gave me the self belief to push on and develop.
What are your future goals?
I'm driven by doing the best for my clients and developing the the people in my team. I want to continue to do that and progress my own career. There is always something to improve on or experience. One day when I have finished practising , the idea of being a judge is very appealing.