Career Stories | Saga Rekonen, Associate, M&A, Helsinki
24 January 2024
Saga Rekonen works as an associate in our Mergers & Acquisitions Team. Saga began her Hannes journey back in 2018 as a trainee, and she was appointed as an associate in November 2023. Saga holds a master’s degree in laws from the University of Helsinki.
You have worked in different trainee positions at Hannes before your appointment to the position of an associate. Could you tell us about your Hannes journey?
Gladly! My Hannes journey began back in 2018. I had a good feeling about the firm, so I applied for the position of an office support trainee. This role was the perfect complement to my law studies, providing me with practical experience and exposure to the legal field. At that point, what mattered the most to me was learning in a law firm whose vision and values resonated with me. Working at Hannes offered me a glimpse into the world of business law, sparking an interest that gradually grew over time.
After my traineeship at Hannes, I gained some experience at other law firms, and in 2022 I studied abroad as well. As my studies were drawing to a close, I was exploring potential career paths for post-graduation. Since my first traineeship had been such a great experience, I decided to test my wings at M&A and apply to Hannes as an associate trainee. I was instantly impressed by the driven, talented, and super friendly colleagues in my team and the interesting projects we worked with. During my traineeship, M&A emerged as a field I could commit to for the long haul. It was an easy decision for me to join Hannes as a thesis trainee and later as an associate.
What have been the greatest take-aways or learnings from the traineeships or from your studies?
The traineeships I’ve been privileged to undertake during my studies have provided me with invaluable practical exposure to the field of law as well as to grasping the interconnectedness of different fields of law. While law studies are predominantly theoretical and often focus on one area of law at a time, these traineeships have allowed me to apply this theoretical knowledge in a real-world context. In real life, legal problems are usually not as straightforward as the textbook examples we see in law school, and when it comes to M&A, it is crucial to understand that it’s not solely about law; business strategy plays a significant role as well. Understanding the client’s business objectives is therefore also important if you want to become a great M&A lawyer.
You are also actively involved in our Corporate Citizenship Team. What does the team do and how can Hannes’s employees influence the corporate citizenship work?
The Corporate Citizenship Team at Hannes plays a vital role in realising the firm’s professional values through practical actions. The team is involved in a wide array of initiatives that leverage the firm’s expertise and resources to benefit the community. Anyone interested can join the team. When I joined during my traineeship, I got to work with interesting initiatives such as drafting our Supplier Policy.
Hannes’s employees have a significant influence on the corporate citizenship work. Staff suggestions form the basis of the initiatives, allowing employees to directly contribute to the firm’s corporate citizenship efforts. This year we have been doing everything from planting trees with our bare hands to donating directly to charities. A particularly memorable event for me was Hannes’s participation in #1000tekoa in November. This charity event brought together organisations with a shared goal: to provide immediate help to those in need. Together, we distributed thousand bags of food and offered five hundred free lunches. It was just heart-warming to see everyone come together and really make a difference in people’s daily life. I experienced so many lovely human encounters that day.
What are you mostly looking forward to in your career as a lawyer?
I’m a big people person. One of my favourite things in the world is meeting interesting people with stories, so I look forward to meeting, working with, and learning from all the amazing colleagues and clients I’ll encounter. For me, teamwork is dream work!
One theme that currently stands out in working life discussions is that of purpose. To conclude this interview, we would like to ask you what are the things that keep you going and motivated at work. What is your purpose?
It is important for me to continually learn and grow as a human being, make a meaningful impact through work, and contribute positively to society in any way I can. I get inspiration from many amazing, kind, and talented people in my life. Making my parents proud is also important to me.
FAVOURITE | Book: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen Lunch: My favourites range from a salad from Pupu to a pizza from Putte’s — there are too many great options Podcast: I usually call a friend rather than listen to a podcast (: Work Equipment: (Many) big screens Afternoon Routine: Coffee and cuddles with the office dogs Mobile Application: Spotify Relaxation Method: Being in nature Work Outfit: A colourful one Social Media Channel: Instagram Drink: Coca-Cola Zero (but won’t say no to a good espresso martini either) Weekday: Saturday! Leisure Activity: Sports with friends