Number of lawyers in team: 26
Legal directory rankings: 4
Q&A with family and divorce lawyer Zoe Bloom, who joined in 2010 from McGuire Woods
What was your main reason for joining Keystone?
The main driving factor behind my move to Keystone was the fact that I was already doing everything for myself, despite the fact that I was in an American firm with 5,000 lawyers. I just thought it would work so much better, with better rewards, if I took my practice to somewhere like Keystone where I could drive it forward as I wanted.
Did you consider any other options when changing firm?
When leaving the last firm there were lots of other ways I could be working, one of them was to become a sole practitioner and that’s something I really looked at. It looked like a great option, but I didn’t like the time it was going to take to set up and I didn’t think that I was ready at that time to do everything that was needed to be a sole practitioner. The Keystone model looked like something I could immediately get running and get going. And that’s what I wanted to do.
How has Keystone adapted to your needs as a lawyer and your clients’ needs?
Keystone has always evolved and always been agile to what is being asked of it, partly by the lawyers and also by the clients, which is as important because if we’re not developing as lawyers, our clients won’t be attracted to instructing us.
Have you been able to recruit your own team members?
The way things have developed, there is now an ability to take on additional members in what has become known as a pod, which is just fantastic. There are only so many hours in the day, and there is only so much work that you can do. With the additional number of people working with you, you’re suddenly able to double it, triple it or whatever you need to do. The clients are better serviced and there’s more support within the group to make sure we can deal with whatever is thrown at us.
How do you run your pod when you are all based in different locations?
I’m often asked how we do this. Firstly we use the Keystone lawyer centre, so that means we’ve great access to London and the courts when we need it. The rest of us live in and around central London and travel in as much as we need to. We see each other frequently, probably once every two weeks. We have email groups and we have telephone conversations probably several times a day. We also have an incredible WhatsApp group that is constantly active and busy.
Do you feel like you have enough support from Keystone?
I think there is a feeling that you will be left alone in your study, house or garage if you’re working for Keystone and it isn’t like that. Keystone is there to use and access as much as you want it and there is a huge number of people sitting in London whenever you need them. I’ve never felt under-supported. I’ve never felt there was something that I asked for that I cannot achieve. It may not be exactly what I thought I wanted but because of the way Keystone works and is so adaptable, I realise that actually what I wanted was something slightly different and better.
To watch a video interview with Zoe Bloom, please click on the image to the left.