Life at Reddie & Grose – Tom Sharman
Tom Sharman – Partner
In my final year at the University of Birmingham, I spotted the Inside Careers Guide to becoming a patent attorney on a table in a café. I read the profile on Reddie & Grose and liked what I read. I had been looking for a job as a mechanical engineer but nothing was really catching my eye. It seemed that as a patent attorney, I would be working with a broad range of mechanical products and systems and learning about the fruits of other people’s design work and helping them to put some protection in place, which certainly appealed to me.
I found the training at Reddie & Grose very rewarding. There is a clear desire among the partners to devote substantial effort to training new entrants to the rm and ensure they become competent and commercially aware patent and trade mark attorneys. I enjoyed being a part of a group of trainees at the same and different stages of their training and there were any number of opportunities to socialise with each other and with trainees from other firms.
During the first few years of my training, I spent a considerable amount of time working with several of the partners who would review my work, talk me through cases they were working on and generally showing me the ropes and building my experience.
Having got through the exams and qualified as a patent attorney and a trade mark attorney, I became an associate and spent 4-5 years working hard at putting into practice everything I’d learned during my training. This involved everything from developing my skills, building relationships with clients, expanding my network of contacts to getting involved in business development initiatives and helping with pitches to win new work.
In 2015 and a little over nine years into my career I was made a partner and am developing a better understanding of the responsibilities of this challenging new role. I’m enjoying learning a new set of skills and am becoming much more involved in the running of the business. This responsibility comes with much greater access to information and the chance to provide input on how we should expand and develop the firm and deal with new challenges.
I continue to work hard at expanding my network, regularly attending networking and industry events and keeping in regular contact with existing and potential new clients to identify and bring in new work for the firm, with a particular focus on working with UK based engineering businesses. I’ve also become involved in training new recruits to pass on the skills I learned and help them to develop their skills and contribute to the success of the firm.