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When Leicester City FC were promoted to the Premier League in 2014 did anyone think that they would ever be league leaders, especially after they narrowly avoided relegation last season? Although I am a Manchester United fan I would love to see Leicester win the league because if nothing else it could serve as proof that magic is real and dreams do come true. In all seriousness, how amazing would it be to see anyone other than the “big four” win the Premier League?! There have only been five teams in the 24 year history of the league to actually lift the coveted trophy, wouldn’t you just love to see the Leicester City fairy tale come true as the sixth? I would! I want it to happen! I want to see proof that despite all the money in the world there is nothing that compares to true grit, passion, team work, desire and a love for what you do. We have to accept that money is a big factor in the game these days and we also have to accept that even the smaller investments are still pretty substantial which many consider to have ruined football. Even as a Manchester United fan I have to admit that money has made football more about the transaction in the board room than the action on the pitch and this makes me sad. But Leicester City FC isn’t a wealthy club. Yes, they have had investment and yes they have bought players, but they bought Jamie Vardy from the Conference Premier’s Fleetwood Town for a mere £1million back in 2012 and now he’s the current holder of the Premier League’s consecutive goals record, previously held by Ruud Van Nistlerooy who was at one point the highest rated striker in the world. This story is the stuff of legend and something we may never see happen again and serves as proof that money isn’t everything.
You may be reading this thinking I am talking utter rubbish, or wondering where I’m going with it. Stay with me, there is a point to be made other than the ramblings of a part-time football fan…
Year after year across the country we see NQ solicitors all fighting for their opportunity to join either an international practice or a leading national practice, a legal 500 ranked practice or a well known and respected regional practice to undertake a high calibre of work, complex and challenging work, big ticket and high value work to establish their career and become an expert in their field. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this ambition and as a legal recruiter specialising in commercial property I fully support it. But, as a legal recruiter specialising in commercial property I will always offer you my honest and professional opinion; you might be surprised at the opportunities you can find outside of the “big four”. At the same time we also get asked the question, “how much do they pay?” Now, the money varies from firm to firm and the money varies amongst different disciplines, but as an NQ it is important to understand two things: 1) the NQ rate is usually set and you usually cannot negotiate it; and, 2) money isn’t everything.
At this stage of your career it is important to keep an open mind if you are looking to leave the firm you have trained with. A step up doesn’t always mean joining a practice that is considered to be a household name. Likewise, moving for more money at this point in your career may not lead to the glamourous lifestyle you might be imagining. Opportunities are lurking around every corner, with firms across the country ranging from smaller regional practices to major internationals seeking talented and ambitious NQ solicitors to join them. What matters most is that you make the right choice and consider all the factors like location, type of work, progression, support, training, and so on and so on. BCL Legal is here to help you with that, offering free and impartial advice with a range of NQ seminars around the country.
Just like Leicester’s, your story could be a fairy tale and while we’re not sure what the ending will be just yet, it’s a pretty exciting journey so far.