This interview was conducted in 2016 when Tracy Wu was a Trainee Solicitor of Davis Polk & Wardwell
Q : Why did you join a law firm and why are you interested in corporate practice?
A : One of the reasons I decided to join the financial legal practice is the exposure that I can receive in this career. Hong Kong is an international financial centre. Being here in Hong Kong, we have plenty of opportunities to work on cross-border deals with parties from different jurisdictions. It’s also an interesting time because we see that since the financial crisis, there have been increasing regulatory concerns surrounding the financial sphere. I believe having that experience and exposure would be a good start of career for fresh graduates, and the skills are very transferable.
Q : What is your goal?
A : In a few years’ time, I hope to take on a leadership role in different projects. Currently as a junior, we usually only get to work on a small piece in a transaction, and more often than not, we work on the execution end in a problem solving process. As I accumulate more experience and gradually take on a leadership role, I hope to be more able to appreciate the bigger picture and more involved in tailoring solutions for clients.
Q : What is your routine work?
A : Our role as a lawyer is to help clients solve their legal problems. As a junior, I have been involved in IPOs, M&As and bond issue deals, where I do drafting work, for example memos to present our solutions to the clients, and announcements and circulars to help clients satisfy the requirements of the regulators. I also do legal research to help the clients navigate through the rules and regulations that they might not be able to understand themselves.
Q : Any challenges you have come across?
A : One of the very first challenges that I encountered when I first started at the firm was client interaction. I was on a bond deal where my role required me to work closely with the client. There were a bit of pressure for me at the beginning, because I would want to represent my firm well in front of the client, but at the same time I might not be experienced enough to handle the clients’ queries when they asked me on the spot, especially when the answers to those questions require a judgment call. That’s when experience comes in. But I’m very fortunate to have seniors who gave me good guidance and walked me through the legal issues that I’m dealing with. Eventually I got the hang of it and became more able to handle those situations and to interact with clients in a more professional manner.
Education Background: LL.B, University College London, 2014 PCLL, 2015