John Turner, consulting principle at Nexus Lawyers, tells Australasian Lawyer why there’s nothing he’d change about his job.
What made you decide to become a lawyer?
When I was finishing school, my dad wanted me to be a pharmacist (as he was), which means you have to pass basic chemistry - which I didn’t. At that point, I decided to try law as a few of my friends were doing.
How long have you worked at Nexus Lawyers and what brought you to this position?
I’ve been at Nexus for about 18 months. I was attracted to Nexus because of the flexibility - both of the firm and the style of practice.
What’s the strangest case you’ve ever worked on/been involved with?
I once acted for a plaintiff in a personal injuries claim with two defendants. The real fight was between the defendants as to who was going to be liable to us. As such, we said little during the hearing (including my Counsel who went on to become an eminent Supreme Court Judge) and a verdict far exceeding our expectations was awarded - with costs. The plaintiff thereupon berated us for not saying enough during the hearing! In fact, so distressed was the plaintiff at this perceived slight that on the next occasion I saw her, I was playing football against a team she was following and she exhorted her team to ‘GET HIM’ - i.e. me! Imagine if we had lost the case…
If you could invite three people for dinner, dead or alive and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
Winston Churchill - to listen to how he inspired a nation during a terrible conflict.
Adam Gilchrist - to acknowledge what a fair and a fine player he was during his cricket career.
Mick Jagger - not only is he a legend in the rock industry, he has a longevity in the industry and has strong business acumen.
You’re based in Sydney – where’s the best place to go for a drink and/or dinner after work?
I am there less often these days, but an old favourite has always been the Norton Street precinct at Leichhardt.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given (work or personal)?
If you are your own boss, be a tough one!
Do you have any hobbies/interests outside of work?
Golf, fishing and reading.
Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t a lawyer, I would be…
A rock singer (in my dreams). Most likely somewhere in the commercial world, although my careers adviser at school said I was suited to be a forest ranger!
What do you think will be single biggest issue facing your practice area in Australia in 2015?
The credibility of lawyers as a profession.
If you had Tony Abbott’s job for one day, what would you do?
Introduce a constitutional reform inquiry into the duplication of State and Federal services.
What do you love about your job?
What would you change about your job right now if you could?
Nothing. Flexible hours and work practices have allowed me to tone down my work load a bit, and I am quite content.