Meet the Team – Nkolika Oraka
Welcome to the fourth in our series of team interviews. Each month, we’ll be asking a member of our team to tell us more about them and their involvement with rradar. This month, it’s time to hear about rradar station advisor, Nkolika Oraka.
When did you first become involved with rradar?
I started working for Rradar in August 2015.
Who/what was the biggest influence on your decision to work at rradar?
Having carried out my research into the firm, prior to my interview, what struck me was the calibre of people that already worked here and the fact that it prided itself on being a law firm with a difference. I was excited about the possibility and opportunity to be part of a team from such diverse backgrounds and experiences. I liked the fact that people didn’t necessarily seem to fit in to the stereotypical view of being a solicitor or working for a solicitors’ firm.
Also coming back to my roots was an influence. Having been brought up in Hull and family still living here, the opportunity to work for rradar just felt right.
What was your first impression of the company?
All positive. I slotted into place straight away. Although I have only been here since August, it feels like I have been here a lot longer, which I owe very much to the warm welcome I have received from everyone at Rradar.
What have you found to be the most surprising/challenging aspect of working for rradar?
The most surprising thing I found was the number of people who commute in every day and we are not just talking a couple of miles. That to me shows dedication and the only reason for that dedication is a good employer. No-one would make that effort if it was not worth it. I think what also is very pleasantly surprising is the growth of rradar in such a short space of time, especially given the current economic climate where you constantly hear of funding cuts, lay offs and redundancies.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about working for rradar?
I would tell them without hesitation to do it.
How do you see rradar developing over the next five years?
I see big things for rradar in the future. With people like Gary at the helm, it is difficult not to.
If you weren’t working for rradar, what would you be doing instead?
I probably would go back to university and study child psychology. I have always fancied myself as being the next ‘Robert Winston’. I find it fascinating how we develop as children into adulthood. I absolutely loved the documentary ‘Child of Our Time’ and ‘The Secret Life of 4,5,6-Year-Olds’ on Channel 4 is excellent. In fact I think studying behaviour in general, why people do the things they do, what inherent traits we have as humans and animals is extremely interesting.
When I was at school I actually wanted to be a social worker and did not really see law as an option until I found out that I couldn’t go to uni to study social work until I was 21. I had planned on going back to college, but my mum told me to think about doing law and the rest, as they say, is history.
How would someone describe you?
I think they would say that I am laid back, patient and like to talk.
Surprise us with a little-known fact about you and your profession
Not really sure about my profession, but a little-known fact is that I am partially sighted. I have had Glaucoma since I was a baby and after numerous operations at Moorfields eye hospital, I have been blessed with having sight in at least one eye, hence the nickname one-eyed willy at school when I had to wear an eye patch on my bad eye.
What inspires you that you think other people should know?
It may sound cheesy but my mum inspires me and she is someone I think everyone should know because she is amazing. It is because of her that both my brother and I think nothing is impossible, despite only being able to see out of one eye and coming up against racist abuse. She remains a constant in our lives and the force is definitely strong with her (sorry, I like Star Wars!)
What do you do when you aren’t working?
My guilty pleasure is reality TV, so Keeping up with the Kardashians, Real Housewives of Atlanta, etc. I also love music, so any opportunity I get to go to a gig or a concert, I am there. Most of all, though, I spend time with friends and family, the usual.
You’re on a desert island and you can take one album, one book and one film with you. What do you take?
My album would be ‘Parachutes’ by Coldplay. I love this band to the moon and back. And every song on this album is sublime and it always has a place in my heart because it reminds me of my uni days which were hands down some of the best days of my life.
My book, ooooo, this is a really hard one!!! But one that I never get tired of again and again is Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden.
The Film, again this is a really hard one – if we were talking boxsets then hands down Sex and the City (my friends and family will tell you I know every line in every single episode). A film, though – oooooo, this one is really hard – The Goonies – it reminds me of my youth and having a sense of adventure, haha.