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October 10th, 2017 marked an important date in the diary for Parfitt Cresswell.
After a decade of providing legal services to people across London, the Thames Valley, Kent and Sussex, 95 staff from nine different offices came together under one roof for the very first time.
Our time spent together was proof that creating camaraderie can be achieved without hurtling across the countryside on quad-bikes or decorating cupcakes. Shutting shop for the day to be reminded of our why, our purpose, our raison d’être, well and truly did the trick.
The day began with our managing partner, Teresa Payne, sharing her backstory. What drove her to become a lawyer and subsequently acquire a law firm? Her own divorce! The solicitors she used at the time charged substantial fees for a poor service and little practical advice, and she felt sure she could do better herself.
Fast-forward 12 years to 2007 and Parfitt Cresswell is acquired. And so our journey began.
It hasn’t all been plain sailing of course. From putting up with leaky roofs and the recession in our first office in Fulham to driving a staggering 500,000 miles up and down the M25 to ensure enough face-to-face contact with the people that matter, our CEO Nigel Harper gave a refreshingly candid account of the trials and tribulations we’ve overcome to get us to where we are today.
We were also encouraged to think differently about our job roles. “We don’t just provide legal services”, said Nigel. Audience scratch their heads. “We provide solutions to people’s problems during times of extreme trauma.” The penny starts to drop. Of course, when you really think about it, our Family Law solicitors apply their knowledge and expertise to deal with the break-down of relationships. Our Private Client solicitors help those having to contemplate, or often deal with the consequences of, death. Our Property Solicitors play an instrumental role in the buying and selling of a home, one of life’s most stressful events.
The benefits of the away day now we’re all back in the office are already visible. The team mentality is refreshed and invigorated. There is a general feeling of helpfulness and positivity between all departments.
Same time next year then.