Head of Shareholding Disclosure - aosphere
What attracted you to move from a fee-earning role to join aosphere (www.aosphere.com)?
aosphere offers a totally different way to provide legal expertise to clients and I was attracted by the idea of doing something a bit unconventional. aosphere creates and maintains online databases of complex legal information, presented in a user-friendly way, and sells access to them on a subscription basis. It’s very different to A&O’s traditional work of bespoke transactions for individual clients. When I joined aosphere it was developing a new database called Rulefinder Shareholding Disclosure, offering the exciting opportunity to play a key role in developing this brand new service and to be involved in A&O’s vision of providing legal expertise in innovative ways..
Describe aosphere in 3 words.
Innovative. Dynamic. Flexible.
What is the most exciting thing you have worked on and why?
I’ve been at A&O since 2004 and have worked on some really interesting deals. Since I joined aosphere in 2008, launching the Rulefinder Shareholding Disclosure service has been an exciting and dynamic process. By listening to our clients and always being prepared to adapt and evolve what we do, we’ve created a market leading service used by almost 200 clients worldwide.
What is the best thing about the team you work in?
The team is open, friendly and supportive, which makes my job so much easier and more enjoyable.
What is the toughest aspect of your job?
Managing an ever increasing and diverse client base and making sure that the generic service we provide continues to meet all of their needs.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time, outside the office?
I go to the gym, go running and often talk myself into doing mud run events as a bit of light relief.
What was your first ever job?
Working on the fish counter at Waitrose. I learnt how to fillet fish, but if I'd ticked "vegetarian" on the application form I would have ended up on the patisserie counter, which would've been a much nicer experience.
What has been your proudest professional moment?
When a client told A&O’s then senior partner that the Rulefinder service had "saved their life". That’s a great quote from a client! It shows how aosphere’s online services play a valuable role in our clients’ businesses, alongside the traditional legal advice provided by A&O, and I feel proud to be a part of it.
If you could invite any three people to a dinner party, who would you choose and why?
Clive James: I'm a great admirer of his writing and reckon we’d have lots to talk about. Katharine Graham: publisher of the Washington Post through the crises of the Pentagon Papers and Watergate, which is a period of history I’m interested in. She was the first female CEO of a Fortune 500 company in 1972. Jamie Oliver: I’d need someone to cook dinner (I’m rubbish in the kitchen) and he could teach me a few of his 30 minute meals, which always take me three times as long.
What advice would you give to someone aspiring to become a Lawyer?
Try to get as much work experience as you can as this will help you to focus your career choices and find an area of law that really interests you.