Cross-border collaboration: Son of UK member gets taste of working life at German firm audalis
Alex Marmor, son of the Head of Litigation at UK member law firm, Sherrards Solicitors, enjoyed a short internship at German accounting firm, audalis, thanks to a working relationship fostered by Alliott Group. Read about one of the less publicised benefits of membership.
17-year-old English high-school student Alex Marmor, recently completed an internship at audalis and has learned a lot about the differences between German and British culture.
For example, the German breakfast - that's what Alex was particularly enthusiastic about! He is not used to so much choice at home: "In England there is usually a bowl of Kelloggs in the morning - that's it," he quips. Alex was audalis' guest in Germany for one week as part of an internship, during which he got a real taste of working life in the firm.
The young Brit has close connections to Germany: his mother and grandmother are from Germany and his father (Paul) is a partner in the law firm Sherrards Solicitors which enjoys close ties to audalis via Alliott Group. Reason enough for Alex to gain professional experience abroad.
He noticed many things that are different in German working life than in Great Britain. In Germany, there is less small talk in the hallway with colleagues and less dropping by for a quick chat in someone’s office. "The work ethic is very strong" he says. Coworkers concentrate on the job in hand, rarely getting distracted by their smartphones or private matters. "And if it's somebody’s birthday, after a short break and a piece of cake, everybody goes straight back to work", the young Brit explains. The diligence of the Germans - apparently more a reality than a cliché.
On the other hand, the dress code in the tax and finance industry in England is much stricter: it is unthinkable that a tax consultant or lawyer would come to work more casually dressed, even on days without client contact. "Everyone wears a suit," comments Alexander. Especially in the hot summer months, this is sometimes almost unbearable.
On such days, only a cool drink helps. Nevertheless, the empty bottle ends up directly in the rubbish. A deposit system for plastic bottles along the lines of the German model does not exist in Great Britain. For Alex, it felt unusual to store empty drinks containers. Just as unusual was the passion of many Germans for football. "It`s really like a religion in Germany", Alex says with a laugh. Especially here in Dortmund.
Despite the many differences, Alex is very fond of Germany. After graduating from high school, he would like to study German and German history at university, preferably with a minor in Economics. "Germany has a really good economy," says Alex. The "flow of money", the paths that money takes within a society, has always interested him.
The young Brit was offered a deeper insight into economic interconnections during his internship. In order to get to know the broad spectrum provided by audalis, he worked in various tax and legal departments within the firm. He enjoyed it very much, sharing at the end of the week that he had learned a lot, met nice employees and had many interesting experiences, which he will remember fondly when he’s back home.
Can we help you to organise an internship or secondment?
If so, please get in contact with Giles at the Executive Office.