Secondments are an incredible way to understand different areas of business, structure and work ethic. In this mini-podcast series, Africa Legal’s Tom Pearson chats to Amaarah Mayet from Webber Wentzel who is currently on secondment at Linklaters London.
A law firm that offered international exposure was top of mind for Amaarah Mayet when deciding on a company to join after graduating from law school. Webber Wentzel stood out for her, head and shoulders, because of their alliance with Linklaters.
“I don't think any other firms at that time had such an established alliance, and I think Webber Wentzel really was pioneering this type of arrangement. It was also something that I was very interested in, in terms of just expanding my skill set and enhancing the different legal aspects of my career. It was something that played quite a huge role in me deciding where I would want to sort of invest my time,” Mayet explained.
Mayet was the first junior lawyer at Webber Wentzel to go on secondment, and she says the experience has been fulfilling and enjoyable.
“One of the most important things for me is that because I come from a litigation background, I had this misconception that if I was qualified in litigation in South Africa, I didn't think that it would be something that I could do in another jurisdiction. Dispelling the misconception has been so eye-opening because I've realised that the skills that you learn are actually quite transferable. It’s not as limiting as I had initially thought.”
Mayet says there are many opportunities that can be gained from an international secondment, and one of them is thinking at a global level.
“Being exposed to the complexity and the variety of work that is out there definitely inspires me to want to reach to do more cross- and multi-jurisdictional work. I think for me personally, being on a secondment made me feel a little bit more comfortable in my role in terms of adding value to a team at any level,” she said.
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