With a hunger to succeed bequeathed to him by his parents, Gule grew up in a family that took education seriously. As one of the country’s greatest legal assets today, he shares his story.

“Growing up, I was very reserved and shy. I identified that weakness and worked on overcoming it. The secret to reducing anxiety, I found, is being fully prepared.

“My career has exposed me to a variety of law firms over the years. From small to big, across different specialisms, these collective experiences taught me the many nuances involved in successfully running a law firm.

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“My appointment as Norton Rose Fulbright SA’s Chairman gave me access to global counterparts and expanded my knowledge of how law firms are run globally. My subsequent Global Chairman appointment acquainted me with practitioners from across our 52 offices globally.

“To be a good lawyer, you also need to understand your clients. As Global Chairman, I interacted with clients and senior executives of major companies around the world.

“My technical expertise lies in labour law, a passion I discovered when I became involved in employment and labour law, during my articles. I went on to join Mathe & Zondo (then owned by current Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo), a recognised labour lawyer who represented trade unions. I learnt a great deal of my labour law from him.

“The trade union movement was instrumental in using the workplace to enforce human rights. My interest lay not only in assisting the unions with labour and employment matters but also in contributing to the liberation struggle by promoting the rights of the workers.

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“I have a very well developed EQ and am able to transcend all barriers when dealing with different people.

“What I truly enjoy about what I do is taking on a challenge. I derive a great deal of satisfaction from achieving results, especially through teamwork. I subscribe to Nelson Mandela’s notion that ‘something always seems impossible until it’s done’.

“I’d like to make Norton Rose Fulbright SA a place that creates opportunities for those wanting to enter the legal fraternity and enables them to join large law firms such as ours so that they can become internationally renowned legal practitioners.

“To progress, you need a supportive family to help you achieve your aspirations. Most importantly, though, you need to be your own person. Shape your life in accordance with your strengths and personal attributes. If you do these things, success is inevitable.”