In the spotlight – Samantha Knowles, Director of Research
One of the greatest parts of being a specialist legal, compliance, IP and legal operations search firm, partnering with businesses across the world to find the best talent, is that we also have the best talent inhouse at Laurence Simons Search.
The Laurence Simons Search team interviews continue, this time we place Samantha Knowles, Director of Research, in the spotlight to discuss being a Brit living in France, her competitive nature in tennis, and her surprising love of Grime music.
Laurence Simons Search (LSS): Please tell us a bit about yourself?
Samantha Knowles (SK): Keeping it short - I am a Brit who has been living with my family in France for the last 17 years. I have two children, two dogs and cat and a husband (not in that order!). I grew up in the North of England, moved to London to qualify as a solicitor, practised in a law firm for 2 years and then moved into recruitment over 20 years ago.
LSS: How long have you been working for Laurence Simons Search and what does your role involve?
SK: I think I win the award for being the longest serving “boomerang employee”. I joined in 1997 and my role has developed and grown over the years. I’ve been a consultant and recruited associate lawyers and partners into law firms in London and offshore and for the last decade or so have been a senior member of LSS’ research function, supporting on our business transactions, engaging with our candidates and clients. It is such a fun role, and you can really own it. I speak to so many lovely people, everybody has story to tell.
LSS: What was your very first job?
SK: Between the ages of 11 to14, I worked in our family run restaurant in Lancashire for four evenings a week, pot washing and general cleaning. Looking back, I cannot imagine how I managed to get up for school the next day.
LSS: What inspires you?
SK: Mostly song lyrics. It may be strange to some, but, when I listen to music, I only hear the lyrics and the message in those lyrics. I do not necessarily appreciate the quality of the music or the instrumentals – it drives my husband (who is an ex-chorister) potty. My focus zones in on the lyrics and the lyrics alone…. and it may be stranger to know I rarely listen to anything other than Grime.
LSS: Please share some great advice you have been given.
SK: “Don’t make assumptions”, and “your gut feeling tells you what your head hasn’t worked out yet”.
LSS: How do you relax?
SK: I work out. I love going to the gym (now closed in France for lockdown #2) and I am long distance runner. I love setting myself targets and competitive goals and doing all I can to meet them. Yes, this means I am competitive by nature, I started out life as a tennis player and played the circuit until I was 18. Once you have that drive and determination it is hard to be anything but competitive. If I miss a day of working out I get cold turkey, and then I am not nice to be around…
LSS: What book are you currently reading?
SK: Me before You by JoJo Moyes. I have just finished David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell which was more of a page turner. Really got me thinking about the advantages of disadvantages and the disadvantages of advantages.
LSS: What would your autobiography be called?
SK: “Northern Grit” pulled from the lyrics of my favourite Grime artist, Bugsy Malone.
LSS: If you had an extra hour in the day how would you spend it?
SK: I would sleep. I love sleeping.
LSS: If you had a superpower, what it be and why?
SK: I would fly. In fact, I regularly have dreams where I am flying, either alone or with somebody. During these flying dreams I also dance so beautifully, with such flexibility, grace and poise that when I wake, I KNOW it’s been a dream.
LSS: And finally, please share with us your favourite inspirational quote.
SK: ‘’Actions speak louder than words”. I learned this phrase during my days playing tennis.