In our 60 second interview series, Citywealth speaks to Richard Jordan who recently joined Gateley Plc, to establish its private client offering in London.
Tell me about your role.
My role is to establish a world class private client team in the Gateley Plc London office. In doing so, I will seek to bind together into one offering, the various service lines which Gateley Plc already offers to international and domestic HNWIs.
How has the private client industry changed?
The industry has become more concentrated over the last ten years. Fewer firms are genuinely specialising in this space. This is partly due to industry consolidation, stemming from financial pressures on mid to small sized firms (generally where you find private client teams) and partly due to the need for specialist advice given the increased breadth and complexity of the law.
What lessons have you learnt?
I learned a couple of valuable lessons early on in my career. The first was to give advice which is commercial, not just a legal opinion with no solution. The second was not to assume that so called "experts" knew the law better than you.
More recently my roles have been leading and building teams. The lessons I learned there have been to remain open minded, be honest, to challenge but support your team and to take ownership of your decisions.
Tell us about interesting client instructions.
I have applied for the probate of a member of the royal family. It was an interesting discussion with the registry as technically probate was not required. I have also acted as an expert witness on a matter involving celebrities who had engaged in a well-known film scheme. Both were good fun.
What challenges do your clients face?
Geo political uncertainty. Whether they are domestic clients in fear of changes in government and exchange controls, or they are foreign clients looking to escape an unstable regime in Russia, Africa or the Gulf. All clients crave is a place of political certainty.
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your role?
That is difficult. I like the variety of work, I love the people I work with, but the best rewards probably come from the opportunity for high levels of philanthropic giving on behalf of clients.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?
What was the last book you’ve read?
The Making of an Immigration Judge by James Hanratty
Where was the last place you travelled to for work or pleasure?
I am answering this on a train to St Anton, Austria for a weekend with five close friends.
How do you relax after a long day?
A G&T or a run. Never both.