A day in the life of a Jersey entrepreneur – Vicky Milner
Advocate Vicky Milner, Callington Chambers
What makes you spring out of bed in the morning?
Knowing that I’ll be working with great people, doing interesting work, and that what I do has an impact on people’s lives and the success of businesses – my role is to help people fix problems.
What does your normal day look like?
- Get in around 8.30am with the dog; check my daily task list; say hello to my colleagues and catch up on any staff news
- Meetings, calls and correspondence with clients about workplace problems (such as redundancy, discrimination, confidentiality breaches, conduct and workplace stress)
- Catch up with contacts over coffee or by email
- Carry out research for a seminar or panel discussion on employment law or technology and the workplace
- Liaise with my colleagues in relation to new instructions; meet with Advocate Davida Blackmore to discuss business development
- Consider action points for the next day, leave the office around 6.45pm
How did you get to where you are today?
It was rather round the houses! I did an English literature degree, then the law conversion course followed by Bar Finals and pupillage at the London Bar. I worked in London for about 8 years before coming back to Jersey in 2004. I worked in two of Jersey’s larger law firms before setting up Callington Chambers in 2013.
What couldn’t you live your life without?
The support of colleagues, friends and family. You can’t do this on your own – every successful person I know has a “back up team”, consisting of different people for different issues. And obviously my dog Alfie.
Which outsiders (professional services, investors, mentors, family etc.) have been most important to the success of your business?
Jersey has numerous smaller law firms with up to, say, 20 people. I am eternally grateful to the founders of other small firms who have provided me with encouragement and support throughout. In addition, other business contacts such as Alexsis Wintour, Kris Le Feuvre, Eliot Lincoln and Chris Clark have been very inspiring and have always been willing to give me their views and guidance. The advice of my accountant, Carl Gouldson, has been key in terms of managing the business as it has developed.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The change from being part of an international law firm to being a one-man-band, and realising that I had to decide what sort of paper clips to buy! All of a sudden you need to know a bit about everything (or who to ask) – it is a strange leap into the dark – thrilling and terrifying.
What advice would you give to your younger self before embarking on your business journey?
You can do it. It will be tough but so is what you are doing now. You will need to have a plan and build yourself an “off-line” team – not to advise you on the technical aspects of your work, but on everything else. Go for it!
Website: Callington Chambers
Twitter: Callington Chambers