Q&A with Pádraig Walsh – Corporate and Commercial Partner17May2018
Pádraig Walsh recently joined us as Partner in our Corporate and Commercial practice. Born and raised in Hong Kong, Pádraig qualified in Ireland in 1998 and Hong Kong in 2000. This week we had a chance to chat with Pádraig to find out why he chose to become a lawyer, what he finds most satisfying and one piece of advice he would pass onto young adults who are considering a career in law.
Why did you choose to become a lawyer?
My secondary school in Ireland was beside the local District Court. I could catch the last half hour’s entertainment if I rushed out at the end of the day. I remember one enterprising solicitor argued that his client could not have been speeding because he, the lawyer, had measured the length of the skid marks and that length equated to a speed below the speed limit. The judge was not impressed… but I was. I thought it was really creative and logical. That gave me the bug.
Describe a typical day at work.
Up early doors, usually 5:30 am. Thirty minutes exercise at home. Then, spend an hour reading, learning and writing before the family rises and the madness starts. Then, in to the office by 9:00 am, after I have dropped my son to school. Put on music to avoid the silence distracting me. No meetings in the morning. Look at my prioritised to do list from the end of the previous day. Don’t lift my head up to check emails or anything else until one, and ideally two, of those items are completed. Process emails. Lunch, afternoons and early evening for client meetings and business development. Home to see my son before bed time. Then chill with a nice book or half a movie, until the matchsticks can’t keep the eyelids open. And all along the way, be open to the experience and the fun of working with others.
What part of being a lawyer do you personally find most satisfying? Most challenging?
The challenge and the satisfaction can come together. I am always excited to take on a piece of complex work that I have not done before but I know is within my capability. It gets the wheels turning, the oil burning, and the stomach churning all at the same time!
I really enjoy training, learning and development. I have got a lot of satisfaction in recent years from passing on my crumbs of knowledge to others. You have never truly understood something until you can explain it clearly and simply to others. So, that’s challenging too!
Being a lawyer can be stressful at times. How do you maintain a good work-life balance?
It helps that I am a laid back person. Also, goju ryu karate works wonders for stress. Ous!
What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received during your legal career?
In my early days as a law firm partner, a more experienced owl said the best policy was to work with those who wanted to work with you, and not worry too much about others. That has helped me a lot.
If you had not become a lawyer, what other professions would you have considered?
Writing would have been involved. I like playing with words. I have a strong interest in movies. I do not have the wit for sharp dialogue, so I could not be a screenwriter. Perhaps a movie critic? I would leave no turn unstoned.
Give one piece of advice to young adults who are considering the legal profession.
Add another discipline to your skill set. Quite shortly, a knowledge of law alone will not be enough to succeed or excel in the legal profession. Add technology or economics and you are better prepared for the changes that lie ahead.
Give one piece of advice to your younger self.
Lighten up. Forget about smelling the coffee; smell the roses.
Find out more about Pádraig here.