In this series, we introduce some of the people that make up Stephens Scown. We learn about their expertise, what drew them to join the legal profession and find out a little bit about who they are outside of work.

Here we introduce Laura McFadyen, Partner in our Employment team.

Can you share with us a little bit about your role and a typical day?

As a Partner in the employment team, I am involved in developing the business and have strong relationships with clients. Day to day work includes advising clients and liaising with colleagues, in particular, the corporate lawyers in our Healthcare sector team. Also, supervising work within the employment team to support and progress our trainees and paralegals.

I am in the Healthcare sector team  so take particular interest in talking with care homes owners, healthcare managers and medical professionals about employment and HR issues.

I often work closely with clients who are selling their business, such as a care home, or where there is a reorganisation involving employees, for example, in a primary care network or when there is a transfer of staff from one medical practice to another.

Why did you choose to specialise in employment law?

I did a completely different subject at university before studying Law, towards the end of studying for my professional qualifications as a lawyer, I chose Employment Law as an option and was immediately drawn to it. I enjoyed the intellectual challenge of solving legal problems and the people focussed element. I went onto train inhouse at a FTSE 100 company and leading London law firm, where I was fortunate to be able to specialise in employment law and employment litigation. Now, I could not imagine doing anything else.

What’s the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is helping clients reach the positive outcome that they deserve. I love to apply the law in a pragmatic and commercial way to solve problems and reach solutions. Often negotiating is involved, and this requires a lot of back and forth, and teamwork. I really enjoy working with other legal teams across the firm. I love being based in the South West and the business community in the South West is fantastic.

If you weren’t a lawyer, what would you be and why?

I really like art and history so if I wasn’t a lawyer I would enjoy being a curator, or working for a charity in the arts. I’ve recently become a trustee of the RAMM Development Trust, which supports the Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery in Exeter, by raising its profile and securing funds for its development. This gives me an opportunity to do some interesting voluntary work, which means I am involved in the creative arts. I’m very grateful that Stephens Scown gives all employees three days off a year to be used for volunteer leave, which is a great opportunity for me to get involved in the local community.

How do you spend your time outside of work?

Well first and foremost I’m a mum, which I absolutely love. I spend a lot of time with my son and one of our favourite activities is playing tennis together, and we also go skiing, so he certainly helps keep me active and it’s a great social thing to do as well. I like reading, and visiting museums and art galleries when I can find the time. I also love travelling and soaking up the culture of different cities.

What does it mean to work for Stephens Scown, what makes us different?

It is such a privilege to work with people who are passionate about providing great client service. In the 15 years I have worked here the firm has not stood still; it continues to be very dynamic and forward thinking. During that time it’s been great to play an active part in the development of our thriving Healthcare sector team, which is going from strength to strength.

We have a culture which attracts people who are friendly, personable, and driven to do a good job, which means coming to work every day is a genuine pleasure.

I believe that a lot of employers want to go over and above their minimum legal requirements with employment law, and are interested in working ethically, and that is how we operate at Stephens Scown. The ethos of the firm is very supportive and employee friendly, and now that we are a B Corp as well as being employee owned this aligns well with the ethical aspect of HR support that I enjoy providing to clients.