Name: Stella Wong

Organisation: Hogan Lovells

Role: Partner, patent litigation

Based: London

Trained at: Hogan Lovells

Year qualified: 2007

What’s your most vivid memory from being a trainee?

Someone more senior than me came into my office, looked over his shoulder and shut the door. My first thought was that I must be in big trouble. Turns out he’d heard I work as a doctor at the weekend and wanted medical advice – so he proceeded to take his shoe and sock off and show me his foot. I now know that when someone shuts the door to my office I’m not necessarily about to be fired.

Tell us about a sliding doors moment when your career could have gone in an entirely different direction?

When my third child was born there were lots of complications and we both ended up in intensive care. When I woke up the doctor that saved me welled up as I shook his hand (not sure if this was because I was shaking his hand so hard in gratitude). He said to me that this was my second chance. Those words resonated with me and I questioned whether I was doing what I really wanted to do. The complications from the delivery left me deaf in one ear and I wasn’t sure how I’d manage in either of my professions – so I thought about giving up.  In the end I concluded there was nothing else I’d rather be doing. It was a wake-up call that I’m grateful for in so many ways. That’s when I really started to take control of what I wanted to do.

What’s the hardest question you’ve ever been asked at interview, and how did you answer?

Not me but when I was applying for medical school I heard that someone was asked by the interviewer to “make me laugh”. Sounds like a tricky question under the circumstances. I’m not sure what answer was given or whether they got the place.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to get to where you are/do the job you do?

I wouldn’t be where I am today without my husband, Davide. I can’t give him to someone else so instead I’ll give you his words: “believe in it.”

Tell us about ONE former colleague who you miss, and why? (It doesn’t have to be a lawyer)

I worked in paediatrics with another doctor called Priti. We liked to try to add a bit of glamour to our environment so became known as “Gucci and Prada” by the A&E department. I miss being part of that duo and sharing in the highs and low of that job. Thankfully I don’t have to miss her too much as we are still great friends.