February 8th, 2011

Rob Bratby

International telecoms and technology lawyer

Partner at Olswang LLP, London

Author of Watching the Connectives legal blog

Today we’re tweeting w/ international telecoms and tech lawyer and recent convert to legal blogging @rbratby

  1. @rbratby, thank you for joining us on Twitter. Tell us, who is @rbratby?
    I am a partner in the London office of the international TMT law firm Olswang
  2. Tell us about your law practice.
    My practice is a mix of corporate and commercial deals with some regulatory advice
  3. What type of clients do you represent?
    Mainly telecoms and technology companies
  4. And what would you say is the single most important legal issue affecting those clients?
    It differs – for some investment and growth, for others cost-reduction and for some regulation
  5. What do you tell every new client before you start working for them?
    I will do everything I can to ensure that at the end of this project you want to instruct me on the next one
  6. Tell us about one of the more significant client representations you’ve had.
    I helped a UK mobile network outsource its fixed voice and broadband business
  7. That must have been a complex deal. Why do your clients hire you?
    yes – challenging, but great team here and at the client….
    …Expertise, experience, enthusiasm, communication, cost-control (and modesty)
  8. :-) What’s the most active area of your practice at the current time? Is that typical?
    A mix of M&A, commercial (e.g.outsourcing) and regulatory / advisory work. Yes
  9. You’re on the board of the Communications Management Association. Tell us about that organization and its objectives.
    ‘best practice, knowledge networks and government representation in communications, collaboration and cloud services.’…
    now part of British Computer Society
  10. You’ve written about the Digital Economy Act 2010 on your blog. What is it? What does it mean for your clients?
    It is the front line between telecoms networks and rights owners: who takes responsibility for stopping IP piracy
  11. How did your experience as a commander in the British Army influence your legal practice? Does it make you a better lawyer?
    Staying cool and calm under pressure with little or no sleep is remarkably good training for law
  12. Indeed! How do you describe what you do to people you meet at a cocktail party?
    International telecoms and technology lawyer
  13. You recently began blogging on telecom and tech issues (http://bit.ly/grkaGi). What led you to start? Who do you write for?
    I set up a blog for my wife www.lisabratby.wordpress.com, and thought I should keep her company. Still finding audience
  14. What does your firm’s leadership think of your active social media presence?
    Olswang encourages innovation, so watching with interest.
  15. Nice. Have your Web 2.0 activities led to any additional referrals or client engagements?
    It seems to me to be much more about contact and (re) engagement.
  16. What is the most significant issue currently facing the legal profession?
    How to deliver greater value at a lower cost
  17. What will the legal landscape look like in 10 years?
    I wish I knew. But I predict that the global top ten law firms will include at least one from each of India and China
  18. What would you do if you weren’t a lawyer?
  19. How do you want to be remembered?
    As decent, kind and fair.
  20. What do you do when you’re not working?
    Spend time with my wife, family, friends and dog. Cycle, ski, garden, travel and go to the theatre
  21. What advice can you pass along to lawyers currently under- or unemployed due to the economic crisis?
    Explore all opportunities. After the dot.com crash I got an MBA – there is always a silver lining
  22. That brings us to our final question for you: What advice do you have for people going to law school today?
    Work hard, but remember to make good friends and enjoy life.

That’s useful advice. Thanks very much for tweeting with us today, and telling us about you and your practice

thank you

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