Clare Good, social mobility ambassador

Social mobility ambassador Clare Good shares her experience of entering the profession, including the challenges she faced and how she overcame them.
Clare is a blonde white woman perched on a black bicycle wearing a sporty tshirt and skinny jeans with black and white trainers. She is holding a black bicycle helmet, and sits in front of a chartreuse shutter door.
Photograph: Alice Mutasa

What inspired you to study law?

I originally did a media and journalism degree, as I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do.

In my second year at university, I did media law and loved it. I had not really considered law before – to be honest, I probably thought of law as boring when I was in school!

But this opened my eyes to how interesting it was. I loved applying the case law and legislation to real life scenarios.

Did you receive encouragement to pursue your ambitions?

My media law lecturer took time to outline the law conversion course and persuaded me that was the right profession for me. I think my parents were encouraging but worried it was a big financial commitment to make before having any practical experience.

Where did you study law?

I did my GLD and LPC at the University of Law in Bristol but stayed living in Cardiff, where I took my first degree. 

Did you encounter any challenges studying law?

I had to work two jobs both in my final year of university and during my GDL/LPC. I was lucky to get a scholarship for my GDL/LPC as I got first class honours, but I still needed to work to cover rent and food.

At one point I was doing my GLD three days a week as well as working in a children’s play centre in the evenings and weekends and as a paralegal on the other two weekdays! It was intense and made it hard to find time to study.

What type of law do you specialise in?

I work in disputes – both public and commercial. My interest is in property disputes and I have a particular specialism in healthcare sector-related property issues.

Why did you want to become a Law Society social mobility ambassador?

I believe that the profession could be far more inclusive than it is.

Many people will look at those in the profession and think they cannot make it purely because their background doesn’t fit, or because of the area they grew up in. I want to help drive the message that that isn’t true.

What is the best advice you’ve ever been given regarding your career?

To get some practical experience before fully committing to pursuing a career in this profession.

Working practically in law is so different from studying it and I don’t think you really know if it’s right for you for until you get some practical experience. It’s also important to try out different areas.

You may try one area and hate it, but don’t be put off as you may love the next thing you try!

Has your idea of success changed over time in your career?

Yes – originally, I saw success as quick promotion, working on and winning big cases and billing big numbers.

I still see those as successes but I now take much more pleasure in ‘smaller’ successes – building relationships with clients, getting a favourable result for a client even if the value is not huge, helping colleagues (especially trainees) to progress and enjoy their seat with my team and receiving a draft letter back with no amendments!

Do people have misconceptions about becoming a solicitor?

I think people think it is like it is on TV!

They also think it is elitist and full of a certain ‘type’ of person. I think that certain pockets of that still exist, but ultimately it is not like that. I mostly get judged on my knowledge and skills now and not my background.

What skills would you say are essential for the job?

There are many skills which are essential but I think empathy is a key one.

If you don’t understand your client’s position and can’t put yourself in their shoes then it is impossible to build a relationship with them and get them the right outcome.

You will come across many different clients in different positions – and learning to empathise with them is vital.

Contact the ambassadors

If you want to ask an ambassador a question about their career or route into law, email using the address below and include their name in the subject line.

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