Spotlight on women in LAW

December 6, 2017

Phillipa Phillips

What made you want to become a lawyer?

As a child I used to watch LA Law on TV.  This was one of the things that influenced my choices of what I wanted to be when I had grown up but I also wanted to become an air hostess because that would allow me to travel.  Becoming a lawyer then prevailed!

Could you describe one of your typical workdays?

My typical workday generally starts at 9.00am unless I have a court attendance earlier.  I am then mostly in the office attending to consultations or various paperwork.  On some days I have meetings to attend outside the office.  There is always someone who comes by without an appointment and we make time for those as well because we are there to service.  The day goes by very quickly and before you know it, it is 5.00pm.  I will usually work until 6:30pm.

What skills are required in your position on a day-to-day basis?

You definitely must be able to focus because there is a lot that happens in a day to distract you.  If your permit yourself to be distracted, you will not be able to complete anything. Other very important daily skills are the ability to communicate, to be able to work as a team with others and also to solve problems.

What parts of your job do you find most challenging?

The most challenging thing for me is being available for everyone.

What do you find most enjoyable?

I enjoy engaging with my clients and being able to provide them with a solution to their problem.

How many hours do you work in a typical week?

I work an average of 50-60 hours in a week.

The law is always changing with different rulings. How you do and how much time do you spend on research of the latest “case law” or whatever else changes in the legal system?

I make efforts to stay ahead of my line of work and invest in continuous development.   I will usually attend two or three continuing legal education courses a year, and read up on what may be the latest position in various areas of the law every month.

Do you find the job pressures are too great to have the ability to balance a healthy lifestyle between pleasure and work?

No, because I love what I do I do not find the job pressures too burdensome.  I have learnt to take a break and enjoy some weekends.  Some weekends do require me to put in some work but I mostly spend time with family over the weekend.

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