12 January 2016
2015 was another busy year for us. Our team continued to expand at pace, now totalling 34 fee earners (compared to 20 in December 2014) and six operational staff. This year looks set to continue in that vein, with four new team members joining us in January.
It was not just in terms of people that we have continued to grow. In 2015 we were engaged on over 20 new cases, including taking instruction on the largest damages claim any of us has seen at over $10 billion. We were also involved in two of the “Top 20 cases of 2015” as compiled by “The Lawyer” (both of which settled before trial) and have a number of significant cases heading to the courts early this year. Our partners also continued to provide their services in the witness box, giving evidence a total of four times between them. Then in November, for the second year running, Who’s Who Legal named Phil the “Most Highly Regarded Individual” Expert Witness in international arbitration proceedings.
Last year also saw us hosting a number of successful events with members of the legal community, including a tennis and Pimms themed Associates evening, and an evening taking in a watercolour exhibition on the banks of the River Thames as part of our Women’s Network. These evenings, as well as being fun for us, allowed staff across the firm to make and develop relationships across the legal world. We are looking forward to organising more events in 2016.
At Haberman Ilett we are very proud of our team spirit and we celebrated a number of promotions in the family last year. In April, Liz Perks and Bruno Augustin were both made partner, and are now joining Phil, Frank and Val in successfully gaining appointments in their own names. We also implemented a new style of promotion focused on when individuals are ready to take on additional responsibility rather than at a single point in the year. The continued growth of the firm has meant the opportunity to progress internally for a number of staff, and last year saw five team members achieve promotion to senior associate.
But the year wasn’t just about work. In June we hosted the second of our firm-wide strategy days, part of which saw everyone in the firm trying to control their feet in a line-dancing class! Not content with showing off our prowess on the dance floor, we also got together to go bowling, play indoor golf, and spent an evening learning about (and more importantly, tasting) chocolate. And so, whilst the year was a busy one work-wise, we also spent time with each other away from the office, developing the friendships that make Haberman Ilett such a great place to work.
Whilst none of us knows what 2016 will hold, we are all working towards another successful year, filled with interesting and challenging cases, and are already planning our next strategy day – although this time we may give the dancing a miss!
By Vicki Kirk, senior associate