Name: Mark Corran
Degree and university: Undergraduate law at Sheffield University, Master’s in International Business Law at Liverpool University. Currently doing the LPC at John Moores University.
Job title: I’m an Adviser at Shipley Solicitors in Liverpool.
Why did you decide on a career in law? I didn’t, it was an accident. I’d decided I never wanted to practice because of the hours you were expected to work – I didn’t want to work for someone who would work me to death.
What did the application process involve? A week’s work experience. I turned up on my first day and Mark, my boss, gave me the details of a potential complaint under the ICANN UDRP. He asked me to draft the complaint and to let me know if I needed any help. I finished the week and he offered me a job!
Can you describe what you actually do? Most of my work is general commercial with IT/Ipaspects and is overseen by the senior lawyers. I handled a lot of our clients’ domain name complaints initially. More recently, I’ve looked after website design and hosting contracts, exclusive distribution agreements, R&D agreements, outsourcing agreements, and I’m now starting to have a hand in some of our contentious matters.
What do you like most about what you do and are there any downsides? I like the atmosphere. I know "being a team" is a cliché but we really are – I can always rely on my colleagues if I need advice or a hand on one of my matters. Plus, they’re a diverse bunch which makes for a really interesting and exciting group. On the work side it’s enriching. Shipley’s constantly raise the bar, always ensuring I develop. I don’t think there are any downsides – I’m very happy here.
What skills do you think you ned to make a success of law? As Mark told me on my first day of work experience, "the devil’s in the detail" – I think that a crucial skill is ensuring that every single aspect of any piece of work, even the most minor, is thoroughly considered. Related to this, I believe finding original points of view is essential. If you try to consider each and every angle, then you’ll find novel perspectives which you can then turn to your client’s advantage. Finally, in my mind, the most important skill is to find ways of delivering more than your client expects – most of our clients require legal advice; I look to give them business advice, providing ways for them to use the law to their best advantage.
What advice would you give to graduates wishing to enter the law sector? Consider what you want from life and whether a career in law will help you get there.