Associate Juho Aaltonen

From Trainee to Lawyer: Valuable Lessons for Working Life

Juho Aaltonen joined Castrén & Snellman as an associate in May 2015. He had already worked at C&S as a senior trainee and as a Knowledge Management trainee for a year. Juho thinks his time as a trainee gave him a head start on his path as a lawyer.

Being a KM trainee was very useful. I developed a good routine for information retrieval, which is one of the building blocks of working as a lawyer. I’m sure it’s a skill that will come in handy later in my career. Another advantage with my traineeship was that it lasted a year, and I was able to really get into the work and the work community’, Juho says.

A senior trainee’s work was a step harder, but Juho feels that his duties offered the right amount of challenge as well as opportunities for development. As a senior trainee, he also got an up-close view of what life is like for a young lawyer in a large law firm.

‘Senior trainees get more involved in client assignments and get a better overall picture. KM trainees get smaller pieces of assignments to work on. As a senior trainee, I got to draft text myself and got involved in longer projects. For example, I helped prepare many annual general meetings and assisted lawyers in M&A projects.

In addition to challenging and interesting assignments, Juho’s learning process was supported by a thorough orientation programme and a personal tutor, who gave him feedback and career tips throughout his trainee period.

Juho has enjoyed his time at C&S and praises the firm’s atmosphere.

‘The firm’s values can be seen in a strong spirit of mutual respect. People trust the work that even trainees do. I find that very motivating, because I want to earn that trust and do the best job I can. The firm also has a low hierarchy, which makes it straightforward to work with anyone.’

Juho has a M.Sc. (Econ.) degree, so working at a law firm specialised in business law was a natural career option for him, but his two traineeships helped him to see clearly which field of law appealed to him the most.

‘While I was studying, I was interested in many different branches of law, I had no clear favourite. As a senior trainee, I worked on corporate law cases a great deal, and grew more interested in that field. I also felt I’d like to work in a large law firm, and C&S suited me to the bones both as a workplace and as a community. So of course I was interested in continuing with the firm after finishing my studies.’

After his graduation, Juho was hired as an associate in our Tax & Corporate service.