Work Life Quiz: Tony Hadden, Brodies

Tony Hadden

What was your first ever job?

Tennis coach with Perth and Kinross Council.

What was your worst experience as a trainee?

Not realising that the photocopier could sort and staple documents. I spread out more than 200 documents on the floor in front of two very bemused corporate partners. I couldn’t understand how anyone ever produced stapled bundles without having a lot of floor space.

Where is the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office?

In the car park with the smokers.

What do you do at weekends?

Play sport (usually golf or football), meet friends for food and beers and take the dog for long walks with my other half.

If you weren’t a lawyer what would you have been?

A teacher.

What is your favourite film?

A Few Good Men.

What was the first record you ever bought?

Wild Boys by Duran Duran.

Who’s your hero and why?

Anyone who stands up for what they believe in.

What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it?

Splitting my only pair of suit trousers when lifting documents into a tribunal room on day one of a five-day hearing in Bury St Edmunds. I had to cross-examine the claimant from a very undignified position and then had to ask my hotel to arrange an emergency tailor to fit a new suit overnight. I learned not to lift boxes of documents in tight-fitting suit trousers and to have a backup pair of trousers at any multi-day tribunal hearing.

What’s your favourite children’s book?

Any of the Hardy Boys books – I was addicted.

What’s the most exciting deal/case you have worked on and why?

Computershare v Amanda Jackson because it was the first time one of my cases went to the Court of Appeal and the position I tried (unsuccessfully) to argue at the Bristol Tribunal was found to be correct.

If you were stranded on a desert island what two luxury items would you take?

A radio and my saxophone.

What is the worst partner conference location you’ve attended and why?

I’ve only been to two (Amsterdam and Turnberry, Ayrshire) and they were both brilliant. The worst work trip I have ever had involved a tribunal hearing in Stockton-on-Tees. I stayed in a very dodgy hotel with thin walls and what I think was an adult movie being made next door.

What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep?

I don’t think I’ve ever pulled an all-nighter but I did recently complete the charity event Maggie’s Bike and Hike with one of my colleagues, which involved setting off on a bike in Fort William at 7am on a Saturday, travelling the length of Scotland by bike and on foot, and then walking into a sports hall in Inverness at 5am the following Sunday.

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

A friend of a friend who says: “Oh, you’re an employment lawyer. Can I just speak to you for five minutes about… ”

Tell us two truths and one lie about yourself (in any order)…

I always wanted to be a lawyer. I can open a beer bottle with the back of a spoon. I was once in a folk-rock band in Spain called “the Dog’s B****cks”.


Name: Tony Hadden

Firm: Brodies

Title: Partner, employment

Lives: Edinburgh


1992-97: LLB (Hons), Dip LP University of Edinburgh

1993-94: Erasmus Exchange, Universität Göttingen, Germany

Work history

1993-94: PR officer with the Stadtsparkasse München, Germany

1997-99: Trainee, Maclay Murray & Spens

1999: Litigation solicitor, Maclay Murray & Spens

2000: TEFL teacher, Ribadeo, Galicia, Spain

2000: Tour guide with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office at the British Pavilion at Expo 2000 in Hannover, Germany

2001-03: Employment solicitor, Paull & Williamsons, Aberdeen

2003-06: Employment solicitor/associate, Brodies

2006-present: Employment partner, Brodies