Work Life Quiz: Ross Bryson, Mishcon de Reya

Work/Life quiz: Ross Bryson, <a class=Mishcon de Reya” class=”inline_image inline_image_left” src=”/pictures/web/images/15988_15_rossbryson.gif” />What was your first-ever job?
A grouse-beater on the Glenlivet Estate in Scotland – it’s legal to do that there.

What was your worst experience as a trainee?
Travelling to a holiday resort in the far reaches of the South West to mediate between warring mini cab companies over collection and drop-off protocols. They were all much bigger and angrier than me – wearing the pinstripe wasn’t my brightest idea.

Where’s the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office?
Behind the bike sheds with the cigarette smokers.

What time do you usually leave the office?
Around 7.30pm. (Let’s see what happens in 2009.)

What do you do at weekends?
Watch my children playing on the Wii.

What’s your favourite restaurant?
Kaslik mezze bar on Greek Street – and they do great fresh fruit hookah pipes to finish off with. Not necessarily one to take clients to.

If you weren’t a lawyer what would you have been?
I had jobs in accountancy and marketing before eventually stumbling across law. If that hadn’t happened I had a job with an insurance company in Sussex lined up. What I wanted to be is another matter.

Who’s your hero and why?
It has changed over time: Obelix, Horatio Hornblower, Richard Sharpe. The only real one would be my father.

What’s the best thing about your job?
That I still find it interesting.

What’s the toughest thing about your job?
Its demands on your time (sometimes).

What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it?
I probably haven’t made it yet – which might mean that I’ve made it and I didn’t learn a thing.

What car do you drive?
My wife’s – a Subaru Forester.

What book are you reading?
Engleby by Sebastian Faulks and René Goscinny’s Nicholas Again with the kids.

What’s on your iPod at the moment?
Bon Iver, MGMT and some holiday pictures.

What’s your favourite children’s book?
Asterix and Cleopatra by René Goscinny.

What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on and why?
The acquisition of a large hotel portfolio that was run on an auction basis by the listed French seller and involved frequent trips to Paris (once by private jet) and some eye-opening Gallic negotiating tactics.

If you were stranded on a desert island what two luxury items would you take?
My iPod (you can get a solar charger) and a cow (I like milk).

What’s the worst partner conference location you’ve attended and why?
Any location where we play It’s a Knockout-style games.

What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?
Fifty hours on the RBS/Direct Line acquisition of Green Flag nearly ten years ago (I’m quicker now). We finished with a greasy spoon breakfast and I fell asleep in my eggs.

If a movie was being made about your life, which actor would play you and why?
Kevin Costner (an obvious lookalike), apparently with voice dubbing from Lloyd Grossman.

Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?
Somebody smelly.


Name: Ross Bryson
Firm: Mishcon de Reya
Title: Corporate partner
Lives: Epsom, Surrey
1987-91: Economics, Edinburgh University
Work history:
1996-2000: Trainee and assistant, Richards Butler
2001-03: Assistant, Gouldens
2003-05: Assistant, Mishcon de Reya
2005-present: Partner, Mishcon de Reya