Meet Rebecca Hayes, one of our pilot cohort who has accepted a permanent role in the Employment team at CMS.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you were doing before the Reignite Academy came along.

I am an employment lawyer.  I trained at Barlow Lyde & Gilbert before moving to Linklaters at 3 years qualified.  I worked as a Managing Associate at Linklaters, returning after both  of my maternity leaves.  Shortly after returning from my second maternity leave I decided to take a career break and retrain as an interior designer.  I wanted to try something completely different and work around my young family.  After retraining at KLC design school, I set up and ran my own interior design practice.

What made you decide to return to private practice?.

If it had not been for Reignite I would not have returned to private practice: I did not think that it was an option for me, given the length of time I had been out of it.  However, I believe that it is the best place to upskill and retrain if you have had a significant career break, because of the training opportunities, ability to learn from others and opportunities to broaden your network.  CMS have been amazing and I can not thank the Employment Team enough for giving me the opportunity.

What are you enjoying the most?

Regaining financial independence, being intellectually challenged and working in a corporate environment.

What’s been the most surprising/challenging thing about being back?

I have been surprised by how it is much more acceptable to work in a more agile and flexible way. The most challenging element is simply time pressure. Juggling family and work life is definitely a challenge, even though my children are older.

What advice would you give to anyone thinking about returning to private practice?

Go for it!  It will be a challenge, but so, so rewarding.  I’m gradually beginning to feel like the old me.

Best box set/book/film recommendation. 

Box set:  Pose (I’ve watched it twice). Book:  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Film: Has to be Grease!

Reignite Academy Summer Roadshow

We are excited to announce that the Reignite Academy will be on the road in May, offering you the chance to join us in person to explore ways to relaunch or pivot your legal career.

The Reignite Academy team will be joined by other women who have successfully returned to law after a career hiatus. They will share their stories, experience and advice.

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