Heriot Brown

In this week’s In-House Scoop we chat to GC of Wyelands Capital, Parminder Nahl on the importance of networking, good manners, John Major & Hazelnuts!

How did you land your first role in-house?

A former colleague, who is a good friend and had previously moved in-house, reached out to me and suggested I apply for a role at an emerging market bank. I interviewed and was offered the role. I am now similarly pro-active in forwarding roles, I become aware of, to former colleagues or contacts who may be suitable or interested in moving in-house or changing roles.

How did you get to General Counsel – was it a leap or climb?

Definitely a climb, I was a deputy General Counsel for a number of years which definitely gave me the opportunity to hone my in-house skills whilst better understanding what is required of an effective in-house lawyer.

What is the most interesting piece of information you have realised you didn’t know you didn’t know about FBN Bank?

In respect of my previous employer, I hadn’t realised that former prime minister Sir John Major had worked there at the start of his career.

As General Counsel, is there anything wish you didn’t have so much knowledge about?

I like to learn so most things can hopefully be viewed as an opportunity but I suspect most in-house lawyers are probably overwhelmed by the amount of unsolicited marketing that is directed at them.

What piece of advice has stuck with you since your TC days?

I learnt from Matthew Puhar (now at Akin Gump) that you don’t need an ego to do the job very well and being a professional is just as much about being courteous and respectful.

What advice would you give to someone looking to make the jump now?

Give yourself the best chance to succeed: invest in your professional network as you will often rely on others to provide you support, fine tune your understanding or just give you a different perspective.

What do you miss about private practice?

That old fashioned esprit de corps which allowed for individuals to bond over the challenges and pressures of the job but still retain their own personality and quirkiness.

Do you have a work-life balance?

I definitely would say yes and much more so than when I was in private practice (but for context I should state that I was a leverage finance lawyer).

And finally, what is your favourite ice cream?

Nocciola (which always sounds better than hazelnut) is a firm favourite.