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    Hi guys

    The title's pretty self explanatory but I'll give you a bit of background.

    I've just completed my law degree, I have achieved a first which I'm absolutely over the moon about and I'm doing the LPC in September.

    My CV is pretty good - lowest degree mark is 67, highest is 88. I have a good range of experience from work shadowing placements to court experience to being a student advisor in a law clinic. I also have a placement over the summer with a solicitor where I'll be working 3 days a week with her helping her to research for cases, draft documents like witness statements and help with mediation sessions.

    I've been applying for TCs and I've been managing to get the ACs and interviews etc but the main feedback I'm being given is to work on my commercial awareness.

    I'm planning on reapplying to my dream firm direct for a TC for the 2019 intake so I want to make sure I'm getting everything right this time (I got to the AC for the VS and missed out, but from the feedback given, I didn't feel like I was a million miles away).

    So my question is does anyone have creative ways that I can keep on top of my commercial awareness throughout the year?
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    It isn't necessarily creative, but my advice is always to start following stories that interest you (might be a particular area of law, jurisdiction, industry sector). Then read around that topic - look at how the press present it, then look at the company's news page on the website and how the present it. Whenever you come across a topic/phrase you don't understand, read up on that. Whenever something sounds interesting, read more about it.

    You'll absorb and retain more information that you have some affiliation with.

    You could also blog as well (something more creative), but a lot of people don't want to put themselves out there like that.


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    (Original post by J-SP)
    It isn't necessarily creative, but my advice is always to start following stories that interest you (might be a particular area of law, jurisdiction, industry sector). Then read around that topic - look at how the press present it, then look at the company's news page on the website and how the present it. Whenever you come across a topic/phrase you don't understand, read up on that. Whenever something sounds interesting, read more about it.

    You'll absorb and retain more information that you have some affiliation with.

    You could also blog as well (something more creative), but a lot of people don't want to put themselves out there like that.


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    Thank you J-SP. I think a blog is a fantastic idea!
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    Commercial awareness is a big topic. Go onto the Law Society's website and read their report on the challenges in the legal sector. That was an enormous help for me and I think it scored me a big plus in my last AC.

    Other ways I looked at it was looking at job adverts for solicitors in the local area. If the similar vacancies come up again and again saying 'due to growth in X sector' then it tells you which sectors are demanding extra legal work.
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    (Original post by wannabelaw124)
    Commercial awareness is a big topic. Go onto the Law Society's website and read their report on the challenges in the legal sector. That was an enormous help for me and I think it scored me a big plus in my last AC.

    Other ways I looked at it was looking at job adverts for solicitors in the local area. If the similar vacancies come up again and again saying 'due to growth in X sector' then it tells you which sectors are demanding extra legal work.
    Great advice, I'll definitely try this! Thank you
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    Following on somewhat from J-SP's post, but the best way to generate commercial awareness is to generate genuine interest. It's a difficult thing to work on artificially. Keeping up to date with current events is a basic requirement, but reading headlines will only help you to identify things that you should then be reading around. My advice for a more novel way to keep up with commercial awareness is Twitter. Now I will accept that there is an awful lot of rubbish of Twitter at the best of times, and cutting through that rubbish is probably the biggest barrier to using it. However, you'd be amazed at the number of active solicitors, barristers, legal journalists and commentators, legal bloggers, firms, Chambers, companies, and everything in between on Twitter. If you hop in and start following some obvious and high profile accounts, you'll quickly identify other accounts and individuals that you can rely on for information and insight. Twitter will never give you the whole picture, but you will often be quickly pointed towards issues (and often articles) that will serve to point you in the right direction for further reading.

    I will clarify that I use Twitter pretty sparingly; I mostly do case law updates and get involved in some discussion that is relevant to the areas of the law that I practise in. But if I was an LPC/BPTC student now, I would certainly be using Twitter regularly to keep up with things.
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    Just a sideline, I am looking to apply for vacation schemes for next summer and fro my commercial preparation work I've set up Google Alerts for the firms, economist and Financial Times then go through that everyday. I also listen to Wake Up to Money every morning on BBC Radio 5 which has been really helpful in terms of Mergers and Acquisitions as well as a business outlook for cases such as Brexit. Its all about slowly building up your understanding. Hope this was of some help!
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    (Original post by Crazy Jamie)
    Following on somewhat from J-SP's post, but the best way to generate commercial awareness is to generate genuine interest. It's a difficult thing to work on artificially. Keeping up to date with current events is a basic requirement, but reading headlines will only help you to identify things that you should then be reading around. My advice for a more novel way to keep up with commercial awareness is Twitter. Now I will accept that there is an awful lot of rubbish of Twitter at the best of times, and cutting through that rubbish is probably the biggest barrier to using it. However, you'd be amazed at the number of active solicitors, barristers, legal journalists and commentators, legal bloggers, firms, Chambers, companies, and everything in between on Twitter. If you hop in and start following some obvious and high profile accounts, you'll quickly identify other accounts and individuals that you can rely on for information and insight. Twitter will never give you the whole picture, but you will often be quickly pointed towards issues (and often articles) that will serve to point you in the right direction for further reading.

    I will clarify that I use Twitter pretty sparingly; I mostly do case law updates and get involved in some discussion that is relevant to the areas of the law that I practise in. But if I was an LPC/BPTC student now, I would certainly be using Twitter regularly to keep up with things.
    Thanks for your advice. I've been using Twitter a little to keep on top of cases of firms I'm interested in so I'll definitely try to find more useful accounts
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    (Original post by nc24)
    Just a sideline, I am looking to apply for vacation schemes for next summer and fro my commercial preparation work I've set up Google Alerts for the firms, economist and Financial Times then go through that everyday. I also listen to Wake Up to Money every morning on BBC Radio 5 which has been really helpful in terms of Mergers and Acquisitions as well as a business outlook for cases such as Brexit. Its all about slowly building up your understanding. Hope this was of some help!
    Ahh yeah I was told about BBC Radio 5 at a conference last year but forgot about it. Thanks for the reminder!
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    Unless you have actually had jobs which you are not mentioning them just get some paid work of some description, this will be in some sort of business. Then apply your own working experiences within this workplace and show how this has taught you x and y about commercial awareness in a legal setting.

    You also need to make sure you know what commercial awareness actually is. I think Legal Cheek has a feature somewhere that might help you with this.

    I think you have great academics and law experience and you sound like a fab candidate I'm sure you'll be fine.


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    Also every time you make an application think hoe the current landscape might affect the firm and its clients and make sure you reflect that in your answer


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