International law event arrives in Australia

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An international law event has arrived in Sydney for the first time this week, attracting over 100 attendees from across the profession.

Featuring a variety of high-profile speakers and gender-focussed topics, the Women in Law Summit includes sessions on championing change, navigating pay discussions and incorporating flexible working practices into a demanding career.

Claire Bibby, non-executive director with Marist 180 and Australian Property Circles, was first to the stage and offered opening remarks,noting that the profession has made significant strides since the days of the old boys' club.

Emma Curtis, group senior manager of insurance at ASIC, also took to the stage, offering insight into how women can think strategically about their career and look beyond traditional legal roles.

Having moved from a corporate law role into a senior position as a regulator, Curtis revealed the invaluable skills that are transferrable across industries and professions.

"I really encourage you to be inquisitive in your careers, be courageous and foster relationships," she told the audience.

"Look into areas that interest you, try new things and if it doesn't work out, it's not the end of the world," she continued.

"You might have to take a pay cut to try new roles but that could really be worth it if you end up in a more challenging, satisfying role and you enjoy going to work every day."

Curtis drew particular attention to the skill lawyers develop in terms of considering the ethics behind their advice - something very few professions are as heavily involve in.

"Ultimately one of the most rewarding aspects of being a lawyer, no matter where we work, is considering the ethical aspects of what we advise on, we're in a unique position to be able to do this," she said.

"It's a relevant skill you can take into other roles - whether you hone it as a lawyer, a leader in law, into business or other roles - I encourage you to build on this strength and leverage it in your career."

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