Does size really matter?

Lawyer2B.com’s mole Chris Snell has down sized to a small West London boutique for his final vacation scheme. But as he discovers size isn’t everything.


Does size really matter?Week six Inside a Small West London Boutique

Small: Adjective. Not large or big. Not great in importance, amount, number, strength or power. Insignificant and unimportant.

True, on reflection this weeks firm wasnt large, nor was it big. Indeed, now I come to think it over, it was neither great in number, nor in amount. Yet, this is where the firms conformity to the blandness of a dictionary definition comes to an abrupt end. For to describe it as: not great in importance, strength or power would be a grave misrepresentation of fact. The firm I visited this week has a long history of punching well above its weight. Indeed, it ranks alongside some of the Citys top heavyweights in many of its practice areas. However, despite packing such a powerful punch, the firm is more like a light heavyweight in size, with more partners than solicitors. At the weigh in, does size matter?

Whether you choose to believe it or not, being small does have its advantages. For the entire week I was greeted by the same welcoming faces no matter where in the office I went. True, I didnt go very far. But this was more down to the fact that the entire office resembled the size of a football pitch. Another positive, its hard to get lost. Well, at least you wouldve thought so. I did seem to manage it on more than one occasion. In retrospect there is a down side to compactness theres nowhere to run, and most certainly nowhere to hide. Consider yourself warned.

Given the scale of the firm its perhaps unsurprising that I was the only vacation student of the week. Thus, if youre looking for scandal Im afraid I cannot indulge you. Perhaps a glance at the recent Sherman & Sterling press coverage may be more down your street. Still, I did meet a few characters. Of note, a lawyer who I wouldnt be surprised to see in a feature of Trinny and Susannah in the coming weeks. If theres any kind hearted sole out there, please tell the old boy that black suit trousers do not sit well with a pair of white Nike Air (how could I miss it!) trainers. But taking the positives from a bad situation, jeans and a shirt are the normal work attire. So ditch the power suit now.

Perhaps the most enjoyable day was spent not with the solicitors, but with the clerk. A young Cockney bloke with an eye for all things expensive, including suits, aftershave and women – think Jason Statham in Snatch. Whilst listing certain matters for court hearings I happened to overhear the lady next to me enquiring of the court officer why she was here. She proceeded to state that she couldnt remember if she had a court hearing today or not. I cant help but think only she could answer these two paradoxical questions. The clerks comment? What is this, bring the kids to work day? owing to the fact that the ladys children were now terrorising the listings office. I challenge even Peter Kay to make me chuckle more than I did that day. Life, its a funny old game.

This week likened to a drink? A Malt Whiskey well matured, naturally. Well established, uncomplicated and powerful in small quantities.

This week in a word? Enlightening

This weeks most embarrassing moment? Being unable to stop staring at the lawyers white Nike Air (cant forget that bit!) trainers.

Thats me done for the summer! (I hear cheers of delight!) I hope I havent bored you all too much. It has been fun. Ciao.


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