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Travers Smith's corporate department is creating its first formal body to improve communication between associates and partners.
The idea of a 'liaison committee' emerged on a corporate away-day on 7 September. The committee will consist of two partners and four associates and will be a "conduit of information" from associates to the partnership, said managing partner Chris Carroll.
Corporate is Travers' biggest team, contributing around 55 per cent of total turnover, which last year stood at £78.5m. The team is split into private equity and corporate finance so the two partners on the committee will represent each group. Corporate finance partner Philip Cheveley and private equity partner Edmund Reed will be the first partners on the committee.
Cheveley told The Lawyer: "The assistants can give us their views not only on work-life balance issues, but also on the business - on how the corporate department is run. They have some fresh ideas that we otherwise wouldn't get to hear."
Until now, Travers enjoyed "the luxury of not having a hierarchical culture and assistants have never hesitated in conveying their views," explained Cheveley. "But as we grow, it's important to continue that communication and to formalise it into a forum."
The corporate associates voted for four of their number to sit on the committee: Lucie Bowman, James Moon, Toby Newman and Jarlath Pratt.