Career spotlight: dispute resolution solicitor

In this career spotlight, solicitor Mark Gwilt talks about his career background and what attracted him to Burges Salmon

03 August 2022

1. Why did you join Burges Salmon at this stage in your career?

I wanted to work in contentious practice as a solicitor and the opportunity to join Burges Salmon’s exciting and expanding Dispute Resolution team was one which I was keen to take. 

Burges Salmon is a firm with a reputation for high-quality City mandates coming from a varied and diverse portfolio of national and international clients. As a solicitor at Burges Salmon, you are afforded a unique opportunity to enjoy a Bristol quality of life whilst working for a highly regarded firm on interesting and news-worthy cases, partnering with counsel from some of the top sets in London.

The work you do as a junior lawyer is where you set the foundations for the rest of your professional life. I wanted to work on a variety of different matters across several specialisms so I could gain a breadth of experience at an early stage of my career. I also wanted to be part of a friendly and collegiate firm where I could really develop as a lawyer, sharpening my technical knowledge and skills and where I would be afforded with real opportunities for career progression.

2. What is your career background?

I studied history at King’s College London to post-graduate level. Following my conversion to law via the GDL and LPC, I trained in the London office of a leading US firm and completed seats with their corporate, contentious and advisory teams. I moved on qualification to the Dispute Resolution team at Burges Salmon and I have been with the firm as an NQ for the last 8 months. 

3. What attracted you to Burges Salmon?

Burges Salmon has a reputation for being a firm which is highly capable in terms of the matters it is instructed on and the calibre of people it attracts. It also has ambitions to continue its trajectory of expansion and growth, which provides opportunities for junior lawyers that are not always present at other firms. 

I was also attracted to the firm’s collegiate ethos and reputation for friendliness and the collaborative, teams-based approach with which it conducts its matters. I wanted to be part of a large and dynamic team, where there are opportunities to practice a wide-range of specialisms, whilst being in an environment where I am not just a number. Burges Salmon has long prided itself on its culture and this was an important factor which attracted me to the firm. It is also a firm which takes well-being seriously and prioritises its wider ethical and social-value commitments to be a positive change-maker in society, empowering its lawyers to play their part.

4. What do you enjoy most about your role?

My work has so far been focused on procurement, healthcare, technology and financial services matters. The Disputes team is active in many other interesting specialisms which I look forward to engaging with as a junior lawyer in future. The opportunity to keep learning and developing my skills across different areas means that I do not feel pigeon-holed as a junior lawyer and will enable me to continue to experience new areas of law as my career progresses.

I am working on matters of various sizes, whether that be a cutting-edge, technically complex and high-value technology dispute operating in a fast paced environment as part of a large team of lawyers, to more discrete matters where I enjoy a leading role, plenty of client contact and the opportunity to engage substantively in strategy decisions on the case. 

It is this mix of stimulating client work, in a collaborative and friendly team, as part of an expanding and ambitious firm that retains an excellent culture which makes each day at Burges Salmon a rewarding one.

Key contact

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Chris Jenkinson Resourcing Business Partner

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