How to create your own job

Author: | Published: 1 Dec 2006

When Patrick Buckingham moved from Clifford Chance's financial services regulatory group to Lehman Brothers in 2004, he was excited at the role. Having been seconded to Morgan Stanley in 2002 for six months, he had got a taste of working at a bank and was keen to get on with working on Lehman's trading floor among the other transactional lawyers.

But the work he found most interesting was always related specifically to regulation, hence his position at Clifford Chance. When a space became available in central compliance, he was able not only to shift departments but to actually create a role for himself that hadn't existed before – that of regulatory counsel.

It's something many lawyers dream of, particularly those stuck in a rigid hierarchy. Although there was spare headcount in the compliance department, Buckingham felt that the bank really needed a central regulatory counsel to deal with the flood of...