Joy Kingsley, Senior Partner, JMW Solicitors Manchester

16 April 2019

Following the announcement of their London office opening, Interlink caught up with Joy Kingsley, Senior Partner of JMW Solicitors Manchester to find out more about the new office, growing the team in London and laying the foundations for its success.   

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q:  
Thank you for taking the time to have a chat with us about the new JMW office in London. While it’s a very exciting time, you must have a lot going on right now?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
Yes, the new office is due to open on the 1st May – it’s currently undergoing fitting out, which is scheduled to be finished before Easter.  We have four people currently working from London, they started on the 1st April and throughout May others are joining.  We have 26 people joining us already, including 13 partners.   

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q:  
The new office is on King Street in the Bank area of the City.  What made you choose this location in the end?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
The location fits our requirements very well.  It’s an up and coming commercial area, a great place for people to work.  It’s a convenient location for those visiting from Manchester too, being only ten minutes on the Northern Line from Euston station.  It’s also only two stops away from the courts, on the Tube, which is important for us.  People in JMW Manchester are very happy with our choice, as are those joining the London office.  The office will have a full-service offering, and with that in mind Bank is a good place to be.

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
You managed to open the office within four months from the time of having the initial idea.  How have you managed to achieve it all so quickly and what would you say has contributed to your success?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
Events took on a life of their own to some extent, but we do like to implement things quite quickly when we have an idea.  We have a good relationship between our recruitment partner and ourselves, and once the recruitment process started, we had some good Partners to interview.  We were quite surprised by the level of interest in joining our firm in London.  Some people who weren’t really looking to move became keen on the project very quickly.

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
You’ve hired a number of Partners to get the full-service offering underway – will these areas form your core focus, or will you also consider niche markets?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
Yes, we have most areas covered already including Corporate, Banking, Commercial Litigation, Real Estate Commercial, Insolvency, Employment, Family, Business Crime, Real Estate Residential.  In some instances, we have more than one Partner already. 

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
It must be unusual, for a law firm with a headquarters in Manchester to open a second office in London. How will JMW combat the competition in the Capital?   

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
We tend to not worry about what everyone else is doing or thinks, be that in Manchester or London.  We set out what we want to do and do it.  A lot of our success has been achieved through lateral hires who introduce clients to each other. That’s how we’ve grown the business in Manchester and we will do the same in London.  There are many firms prospering in London, but at the same time there is plenty of work for us to be doing in the capital.

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
Catherine Thomas and Lee Adams shall be heading up your London office – what strengths do they bring individually and collectively?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
Lee, who joins us as Business Crime and Regulatory Partner started on 1st April and has been very useful in helping us find our new offices.  He has excellent people skills and will be a real asset to our team.  Catherine, who joins us as Family Partner was previously Managing Director of Vardags, so she has great experience in terms of heading up a firm.  Together they make a great team.

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q:  What qualities do you look for in individuals when you bring people on board at JMW – is there anything specific?

[Joy Kingsley]
A:  No, there isn’t one type of person.  However, we can recognise who will be happy here and who will want to stay.  London is a different area and environment to work in and people may have different abilities. What we have made sure of is that the personalities we bring to the team are a fit within the office, and with those in Manchester.  All those who will be working at our new London office have come to Manchester to meet the different teams.  Getting the culture right is very important. 

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
For you personally, how does the opening of the London office make you feel?  Is it up there as one of your proudest moments?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
It’s too early to say, to be honest.  It could be a great achievement, but on the other hand it might not be.  It’s early days.  But all the signs are very positive for now.  The quality of work we’ve had in the first week of operating has been excellent.  We shared information about the work with the team in Manchester to get a feel for its quality, and they were all surprised by the quality and quantity of new work coming in.

[Interlink Recruitment]
Q: 
JMW in Manchester has gone from strength to strength over the last few years.  How will you look to emulate the same success in London?

[Joy Kingsley]
A: 
Certain attributes will lead to the success of the office.  From the start it’s been about finding the right people, which we’ve done.  We have Partners joining us with clients and we have recruited excellent Associates and solicitors to support them. 
Many of our Manchester teams have clients in London already, for example Business Crime, Family and Commercial Litigation. We will look to build on this existing client base, but I am sure work will all pass between the two offices.  In addition, Business Development and PR have been key to our success in JMW Manchester and will clearly be equally important in London.


© 2019 Interlink Recruitment. All Rights Reserved.
Web Design by Web Best Practice.