In an exclusive interview with Sarah Malik, granted Bayo Speaks as a face of the week. She revealed her background, career, way of life and achievements.
May we get to meet you, Who really is Sarah Malik?
Sarah Malik is a regular, fun loving girl who has a passion for law and has always enjoyed her profession. From a young age, she has loved public speaking and debating. The real Sarah Malik likes to travel, go to the gym, is social, outspoken speaks her mind, confident, stylish and has a great set of friends.
Can you tell us about your background?
I was born in Scotland in the United Kingdom and grew up in Manchester, then moved to London at the age of 19. I come from a large, close- knit entrepreneurial family who are all still in Manchester.
Briefly tell us about your educational background?
I went to small local private school where I lived, and then a girls-school until sixth form. I went to University at the age of 17. I was the youngest Barrister in the UK to be called in 1998. I started work as a Barrister at the age of 21. I undertook my Bar Vocational Course at BPP.
What do you do for a living?
I run my own law firm SOL , acts as Counsel, sits as Arbitrator, lectures at universities, and speaks internationally.
When did you know you wanted this job?
From the age of about 5. I knew i wanted to be a lawyer.
How do you prepare before defending a case?
By going through every single document, preparing a chronology and preparation, preparation, preparation, preparation.
What career mistake has given you the biggest lesson?
Marrying another lawyer (lol)
What dream did you have growing up?
I just wanted to be at the top of my game as a lawyer and travel and have a happy family.
Have you ever lost a case? If so, how did you feel?
I very rarely lose. But as long as I’ve given it 100%, I don’t feel bad.
What was your first win that made you confident that made you feel you were doing the right thing?
I won a case where everybody said there’s no way that’s winnable. People had wagers on it. It was a difficult discrimination case. I won even though the odds were against me and it was then when I knew good Counsel could turn an argument around in their favor if they were prepared.
Who is your mentor and why?
The first black judge, Ruth Wilkin because she broke barriers. I like people who don’t follow the rules, who are disruptive, who challenge authority.
What do you like doing in your spare time?
I like hanging out with my kids, working out, travelling, socializing, reading, and shopping.
Can you please tell us about the people you admire?
I admire people who are able to stand their ground even if they stand alone. I admire people who have conviction and stand up for what they believe in. I admire people who are not afraid to speak up while others may not. People who don’t follow the pack and who lead on their own. I admire people who are authentic and real.
Are you in a relationship, if yes what advice would you give to young couples out there?
No, and no advice.
How do you manage your relationship and profession?
We all strike a work life balance at different stages of your life. You have different priorities so you’ll never have everything the same at once. What you want at say, 20 or 30 all changes. At some stage, building your career is the most important, at some stage your family life is, at some stage personal grow is. You find that balance with knowing your priorities and making sure you give as much as you can but you don’t feel guilty when juggling.
Are you ever depressed and why?
No, I am generally a positive, happy person. We have all have ups and downs but I don’t get depressed. Tomorrow is another day.
Where do you hope to be in the next 4 years?
On an island, retired.
What are some of your achievements?
Youngest barrister to be called in 1998, CEO of an Award winning law firm within 6 months of opening. Establishing a law firm that has become a brand within the first year. Above all my children are my greatest achievement.
To know more about Sarah Malik, Kindly follow her on Instagram @sol.international.ltd