Before starting my first trainee secondment in July this year, I had already researched the client and met my future boss. However, not knowing exactly what was to come on my first secondment to a client still proved a little daunting. Nevertheless, I was chomping at the bit to start my training contract and so I was eager to get started.
A big part of my time on secondment so far has been spent working on preparations for MiFID II implementation. My first few weeks here were mostly spent attending numerous meetings with the various heads of internal teams affected by the implementation of MiFID II. Whilst I had previous experience in the financial sector from being engaged in a large corporate restructuring, I was a complete novice to the investment sector and indeed the stock market industry. Therefore, I was grateful for these meetings as they acted as a good introduction to how the client’s business operates within its group and the wider financial market.
The volume of wide-reaching changes that MiFID II is bringing to the market means that I am constantly learning and I am still getting to grips with how the industry landscape will change. Staying organised has been key to keeping on top of things and to allow me the time to reflect on what work I’ve been exposed to. Fortunately, I have found the client to be full of friendly, helpful (and most importantly patient!) people who have given me the time to find my feet and have taken an active interest in ensuring that I understand every decision from the business’ perspective.
What has been really exciting about my experience so far is that I can see just how much more knowledgeable I have become from both a commercial standpoint and in terms of the legal practice skills I am developing. On top of my work for the MiFID II project, I have been involved in a wide range of tasks, from taking attendance notes and minutes at meetings with external counsel, to drafting internal agreements necessary for the day-to-day functioning of the business. I really have been exposed to so much in such a short space of time.
The next few months will be tough as we fast approach the implementation deadline for MiFID II. We will need complete focus and all hands on deck to ensure that we keep up momentum and hit our target date. As always, I’m looking forward to the challenge and I can’t wait to see what the rest of my Accutrainee training contract will have in store.