Andrew Mclean

Andrew has spent much of his time at Vario on assignment with a major bank. Quite a change from his previous life as in-house counsel for a whiskey manufacturer!

Apr 6, 2017

‘After 20+ years in the drinks industry I decided it was time to broaden my legal experience and work in other fields. Freelancing is a fantastic path to new industries as assignments are often relatively short term but still long enough to gain knowledge and understanding of the sector. For me, based in Scotland where Financial Services are a big part of the economy, I was really keen to explore this particular opportunity.

 

 

Pinsent Masons had been the lead law firm for my previous company and so I was introduced to Vario in 2014. After a couple of other contracts, I’ve now been with a major international bank for 18 months, working on a high-priority project to create a new ring-fenced bank. I come down to the London head office every other week for a few days — it’s a great balance between staying connected to the people I work with, and not travelling unnecessarily.

When you’ve been in a particular job or industry for a long time, it is good to confirm that your skills and experience are relevant in other roles, and it’s been amazing to see how transferable my experience is. By nature I’m hugely inquisitive (I think it’s a prerequisite of a good lawyer!), and I love figuring out how new companies and new teams work, why they do what they do and how I can help them achieve it. Freelancing works for me because I believe in the value that my experience brings to assignments. You need to be able to see different aspects of a situation, think creatively about a solution and have the confidence to influence new colleagues.

It’s been an interesting change not having to navigate the office politics and being able to focus completely on delivering the work. But I absolutely feel part of the team at the bank — at Christmas, the permanent employees chose to allocate their entertainment budget across all team members, so that freelancers and FTEs could all attend the party! As freelancing becomes a more and more established resource model, there are fewer and fewer barriers to integration.’

 

If you’d like to learn more about freelancing with Vario, apply to join our hub of likeminded legal professionals today .

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Andrew McLean

Vario within the Financial Services sector

Andrew has been a Vario for almost three years and has spent much of that time on assignment with a major bank. Quite a change from his previous life as in-house counsel for a whiskey manufacturer!

Read Andrew’s Story

Andrew McLean

Elaine Quinn

Vario and founder of The Conscious Lawyer

Elaine joined Vario in 2013 and has experience of both in-house and Pinsent Masons’ internal assignments. Alongside her three-day week as a lawyer, she has launched theconsciouslawyer.co.uk, a publication exploring a more mindful approach to law.

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Elaine Quinn

Kate Halliwell

Vario within Banking and Finance

Having been a Vario for four years, Kate enjoys the flexibility that comes with being a freelance lawyer. In her current full-time role, she works from home one day a week, allowing her to stay involved in family life and achieve the balance that matters to her.

Read Kate’s Story

Kate Halliwell

Doris Woo

Vario specialising in IP law

After graduating with a degree in computer science, Doris began working in the IT sector. A colleague then suggested one day that she should consider pursuing a career within IP Law as she would be best placed for it with her existing technical knowledge.

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Doris Woo

Meg Berlin

Vario and founder of Dancing Vine

A natural-born multipotentialite with a true portfolio career, Meg continues to work in-house for leading international companies whilst completing a Psychotherapy degree, establishing a private therapy practice, and running a ‘mindful wine’ company, www.dancingvine.co.uk.

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Meg Berlin

Rose Johnstone

Belfast-based Vario

Based in Belfast, Rose joined the Vario community early on in her career, and has already worked on a variety of assignments. Rose shares with us her philosophy on life and work, and how Vario has given her the independence and control she desires.

Read Rose’s Story

Rose Johnstone

Ross McAlister

Paralegal Vario

Ross is a paralegal based in Edinburgh who signed up to Vario to gain further exposure and experience in law ahead of commencing his training contract.

Watch Ross’ Story

Ross McAlister

Samantha Byrne

Paralegal Vario

Samantha is a paralegal soon to start her training contract. She joined Vario to gain a greater understanding of work and the legal industry while enjoying a flexible work-life balance.

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Samantha Byrne

Alan Blinder

Family, friends, fitness, food and fun.

Freelancing as a Vario allows Alan to have more time for what he values most in life.

Read Alan’s Story

Alan Blinder

Lisa Akinrele

Passions for travel, fashion and foreign languages.

Becoming a freelancing Vario allows Lisa to dedicate time to following her passions but also work on high-quality assignments.

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Lisa Akinrele

Jaimie Hunter

Training for a Traineeship.

Ahead of commencing her training contract, Jaimie is gaining experience and skills as a Vario.

Read Jaimie’s Story

Jaimie Hunter

Zoe Harris

A Class Act.

Working as a Vario, Zoe is able to pursue her passion for acting as well as a career as a lawyer.

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Zoe Harris

Lola Dawson

Smelling the Sweet Roses of Life.

Junior Lawyer Lola decided to forego the traditional career in law and became a freelancer instead. She’s now reaping the rewards.

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Lola Dawson

Rachel Wood

From practising solicitor to project management. Rachel found a permanent position through Vario.

Rachel originally qualified as a solicitor in corporate law, moving from a fee earning solicitor role at 5 PQE into a PSL position at McGrigors LLP in their corporate team as one of the firm’s first PSL lawyers.

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Rachel Wood

Michael Thomas

Growing up, Michael actually dreamed of studying architecture and design, but it was his traditionally-minded father that persuaded him to become a lawyer.

After working 8 years at a firm, Michael decided it was time to make a new start and launch his own firm in October 2017, he then discovered Vario.

Read Michaels’s Story

Michael Thomas

Will Buswell

From Lab to Law

After years studying life sciences, Paralegal Will Buswell is now seeking new challenges in the legal world.

Read Will’s Story

Will Buswell

Nicola Allan

Nicola always had a passion for illustration, but her professional career steered her towards law. Working as a Vario, she can now enjoy both

Nicola enjoys seeing more of the world and her lifestyle needs a flexible career to support it. Working as a freelance lawyer through Vario allows her to do just that.

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Nicola Allan

Jenny Wilson

Employment Law to Musical Score.

From employment law to jazz; to Canada and back; to part-time working; to psychotherapy and coaching; Jenny Wilson is bringing as much colour as possible to her life as a Vario.

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Jenny Wilson

Emma Sinclair

Seeking balance within a career path.

Significant travel, tight deadlines, demanding clients and a continually changing industry was keeping Emma away from quality time with her children. Joining Vario allowed her to

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Emma Sinclair

Jacinta Bayard

From Merino Life to Marine Life.

After a successful career working in a combination of in-house and private practice roles in the city, Jacinta moved to the coast for a more relaxed pace of life but finds work which suits her through Vario.

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Jacinta Bayard

Ian Barrie

Vario living in Italy and the UK

Ian works on Vario assignments predominately during the summer months, allowing him to fund and run his own independent ski travel business, www.glaciustravel.com, the rest of the year.

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Ian Barrie

Ruth Chapman

Vario living in Italy and the UK

Ruth is a senior property lawyer and has worked as a Vario for five years, primarily within Pinsent Masons’ teams. She lives across Italy and the UK, and works almost exclusively from home.

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Ruth Chapman

Kara McLaren

Returning to legal work after raising children

Not many people can boast a stint in Toronto, a successful legal career and raising four children all born within four years of each other, but Kara McLaren has managed it.

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Kara McLaren

Jack Hamilton

From Placement to Paralegal

Jack gained invaluable experience ahead of his training contract through Vario, and also learned that Vario enables legal professionals to enjoy a better work-life balance than traditional employees.

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Jack Hamilton

Henry Burkitt

Vario and MD of Kraken Travel

Henry has been a member of the Vario community for four years, balancing freelance legal work in Financial Services alongside running his own adventure sailing business.

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Henry Burkitt

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