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Lessons from the field: sweat the small stuff

Lessons from the field: sweat the small stuff

Diana Biscoe

Young lawyers may not have extensive work experience, but immersing yourself in the details can help you become invaluable.

Lawyers Weekly asked the winners of the 30 Under 30 awards for their top tips for standing out from their peers.

Diana Biscoe from Webb Henderson, who won in the dispute resolution category, suggested a mantra – “master the little things”.

“Be the person who knows the details of the matters, and who is the most organised,” she said.

“You might not have years of experience, but you can add real value by having good attention to detail, nailing every task you’re asked to do – no matter how small it might seem – being reliable and available, and knowing your way around the details of a matter.”

In particular, she suggested that newcomers should not hesitate to show initiative and volunteer to take the lead on portions of a matter.

“It’s never too early to start taking responsibility for parts of matters, and by mastering the little things you’re building the foundations to take on more responsibility,” she said.

“You’ll also quickly find that the little things often become the big things and can make a real difference in the outcome of a matter.”

In a similar vein, intellectual property winner Jessica Norgard from Ashurst suggested staying on the cutting edge of changes in the law or their practice area.

“By keeping tabs on new developments across the industry you will be able to anticipate further new trends and developments and can be at the forefront of providing advice in emerging areas,” she suggested.

However, Philippa Macaskill from King & Wood Mallesons – recognised for her pro bono work – also offered a reminder about the importance of passion.

“If you enjoy what you do, you will naturally want to do it well and that will motivate you to succeed,” she said.

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