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Tauranga Welcomes You!

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Meet the Next Generation of Holland Beckett Law
1 September 2020
Meet the Next Generation of Holland Beckett Law

Meila Wilkins, Tom Lawson and Ruby Mills are among the next generation of Tauranga Moana’s workforce. All three talented young people are working at Holland Beckett Law. Priority One caught up with them to hear their thoughts on living and working in Tauranga Moana. 


Meila is originally from Motueka and moved to Tauranga in November 2019 after finishing her degrees and landing a summer clerking position in Tauranga. The sun, beaches, events, people, and lifestyle were too hard to leave so she stayed. Tom who is originally from the Cayman Islands moved back to New Zealand with his family when he was nine years old. After spending a summer in Tauranga with an internship at Hollister-Jones Lellman. Tom decided Mount Maunganui was the place that he wanted to live. Ruby is a Tauranga local she attended Otumoetai College and came home to the Bay after completing her degree at Otago University.

What is it like as a young professional working in Tauranga?

Meila: Well COVID-19 has put a spanner in the works for this. But with things going somewhat back to normal in the last few months I have had a small taste tester of what it could be like. There is a great bunch of other young professionals around Tauranga that are always keen for a good time and can be a huge source of support for each other.

Tom: It’s great, you get to have a good lifestyle and still work for a big law firm. The chamber of commerce also run an initiative called LinkT which hosts monthly networking events amongst young professionals. These are a good opportunity to meet people from around town. 

Ruby: I love it, it really is the best of both worlds. I am fortunate enough to pursue my career as well as live a relaxed, healthy lifestyle.


What would you say to local businesses about hiring and supporting young people who are starting their career journey?

Meila: They should acknowledge that starting a new job no matter what level you are can be tough and people feel a lot of pressure during this time. I think it’s really important for businesses to understand that and offer support, particularly with regards to mental health.

Tom: Value each employee, have a long term vision and pathway for their professional development and create a positive and supportive workplace for them to progress their careers.

Ruby: Support the transition to a smaller city and involve them in the community. I am a board member of LinkT and a big advocate for young professionals connecting, both for networking and social reasons. Supporting young people helps them to establish a close network and really enjoy their time in Tauranga.


What do you think Holland Beckett do best to support the next generation of their workforce?

Meila: Holland Beckett has a huge focus on the wellness of their staff which I think is awesome. They promote wellness with lunchtime yoga classes and social events, which is handy when you are new to the area and need to meet people. They also have a strong internal support network.

Tom: Holland Beckett encourages participation in social sport and local club memberships which is a nice support for those moving from other city’s (like me) and getting settled in Tauranga.  

Ruby: The work environment itself is very open and staff are supported by the partners to join a range of outside of the office events. In my view, the people and the environment are integral to happiness in a workplace, and Holland Beckett do an excellent job of supporting staff to achieve this.

Priority Ones Instep Manager Andy Howells says “Over a number of years Holland Beckett have partnered with Instep/Priority One to run their Introduction to Law Seminars. These events invite local secondary students and their parents to learn what a career in law can look like; a spin-free, ‘warts n all’ presentation which typically draws huge interest. This year alone, 2 events were held for approximately 50 people each and there were still people on a waitlist that unfortunately missed out. Just one example of the community focus Holland Becket brings to their work and to the community of Tauranga Moana”.

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