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Burch&Co is made up of brilliant, caring and unique individuals. Each member of the team brings their own perspective and passions to their role. Collectively, we are united in our human-centred approach to law.

The Meet the Team series aims to shine a light on the wonderful humans that make up Burch&Co. In this instalment, get to know Grace, a lawyer within our Corporate team.

What made you want to get into practising law? Is there an industry sector or area you’re passionate about?

When I started thinking about my future towards the end of high school, I wanted to do something that would challenge me and be “left field” to what others may have expected – and that was becoming a lawyer. 

After my first year of university, it was obvious that I had made the right decision. I loved diving into complex concepts, so I was hooked once I started learning about the principles of law. Throughout my study and early career, I was also fortunate to have some incredible mentors including teachers and team leaders who have inspired me and made me fall in love with the law. 

I also completed a global studies degree at university alongside my law degree, and I have really enjoyed seeing how that weaves into my understanding of law, whether that’s in political studies or international law. I also believe that this background also gives me a more balanced perspective and a deeper understanding of everything I do. 

How did you end up in corporate practice?

I started at Burch&Co as a paralegal straight out of university. At that stage, we were only a firm of 6 or 7 people, so I was exposed to all the different practice areas. 

I really found my niche in M&A however in the last couple of years. I enjoy the role we play as almost a pseudo-project manager for all the different things that occur before a transaction can settle, together with the drafting the long form sale contracts and anything else that comes up along the way! 

What do you do day to day?

I predominantly work in the corporate team on M&A transactions. Recently, I’ve been doing a lot of work to build out a suite of documents to support our low-value transaction offering.  We’re committed to tailoring how we service those clients to make sure they feel empowered to work through the transaction process.

Outside of M&A , I also work with Nich on wills and estates, a supplementary service that we have for our clients. Drafting a will can be quite a sensitive thing, so while it’s not a core part of our practice, we find our clients are more comfortable working within our established relationship than having to approach a new lawyer. 

I enjoy having that kind of variety in my work, so it’s interesting to work across these different practice areas. However, it also means that I need to stay really on top of my day. No two days look the same, so I find that staying organised with time blocking and clear priorities helps me stay on top of the different tasks and challenges that come up in my day-to-day work.

What do you love most about working at Burch&Co?

I came to Burch&Co straight out of university, so I was a paralegal for the first year, and then was admitted as a lawyer. At the time, the thought of working in a law firm was incredibly intimidating and daunting, but my first day at Burch&Co was nothing like that – everyone was incredibly warm and welcoming. 

Coming in as a junior  lawyer, the most important thing for me to be in an environment where I was given the opportunity to learn new things every day with the support and guidance from a senior lawyer. The team at Burch&Co has fostered my learning throughout my career, and given me every opportunity to challenge myself and support me on that journey. . 

Every leader in the firm always takes the time to give valuable feedback. As a junior lawyer, Burch&Co is an incredible place because you can be openly curious and ask questions.

You’re encouraged at Burch&Co to be your authentic self every day you rock up to work, which translates into our relationships with clients. Our leadership team set the example to do that every day, which is really critical in building that culture and confidence to do the same across our team.

What do you love to do outside of work? How does that play into your practice? 

I have a great group of friends that I enjoy going camping with and hanging out with on the weekends.

As far as my inspiration, I can’t say that it comes from any single thing or famous people. I’m surrounded by amazing friends and family who inspire me every day, particularly my mum. She’s incredibly caring and empathetic and goes out of her way to help everyone in her life, even if it means putting herself to the side. 

Growing up with a mother like that translates to my care for my clients. I see the value in knowing that you’re being appreciated, listened to, and supported because that’s how I was fortunate enough to feel growing up.

How has Burch&Co supported your development throughout your early career?

Something that probably sets us apart from other law firms is that even as a junior lawyer, I’ve had the opportunity to build relationships with my clients. This includes face-to-face meetings and picking up the phone to talk clients through anything that I can help them with at that time. 

As a junior lawyer, I’m also fortunate that because of how our firm is structured, I see matters from start to finish. I’m there for the whole journey, which means that I learn so much more. It helps me understand my clients’ needs and history, which helps me build the confidence to work more closely with them and build those relationships.

Author: Grace Cairns, Lawyer, Corporate Team

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