Barclays has been in the midst of a two-year programme of change, focused on introducing transparency to the legal function regarding its costs and commercial performance for the business. GC caught up with general counsel Bob Hoyt’s chief of staff, Alison Gaskins, at the bank’s headquarters in London to learn how this process has played out and where to from here.
In the Autumn issue of GC Magazine, our feature Act Like A Leader, Think Like A Leader considered the work of INSEAD professor Herminia Ibarra – reflecting on leadership in relation to the experiences of general counsel. In this follow up, we speak to Professor Ibarra for her views on how leadership and the GC role intersect.
Leading the legal function for French headquartered Airbus, group general counsel John Harrison sits down with GC to discuss the intricacies involved with cross-border defence work and the unique challenges inherent for a company with an order book topping €900 billion.
Equal parts detective and lawyer, James Ratcliffe sits down with GC to explain how a passion for archaeology and a degree in law spawned a career hunting down plundered art from around the world.
In a future where change and acceleration are seemingly the sole constant, how gcs adapt and lead will be essential to the success of the in-house legal function.
The relationship between in-house legal and procurement has too often been far from productive. GC finds out how getting everyone on the same page can generate new efficiencies and a more effective method of purchasing legal services.
Ton van den Bosch heads the legal team for Manila-headquartered cargo container terminals owner ICTSI. He gives GC his thoughts on successfully managing a global team present across often volatile, frontier markets.
Can in-house lawyers effectively manage enterprise risk? GC investigates.
GC talks to in-house leaders about coping with a far-flung legal team.
If you’ve been catapulted from the safety of a legal silo into the realm of department management, you’ll know that managing an in-house legal team can be a huge learning curve. But what if your department (and your remit) suddenly get a lot bigger?
Case and matter management software specialists Iken talk us through some of the dos and don’ts when it comes to finding the right case management system.
So, your business has acquired another business. What now? Peter Wexler is senior vice president and general counsel for the highly acquisitive global energy management company Schneider Electric. In 2013 it bought Invensys for £3.4bn. He talks GC through integrating legal departments, pre-merger strategy and what needs to be actioned post-merger.
‘It’s time for compliance training!’ – the phrase that strikes dread into many hearts. But at Pernod Ricard, general counsel Ian FitzSimons and his legal team have pioneered an online training programme and a series of videos that might possibly make compliance training fun...
Given the transactions costs incurred by private equity funds, fund managers and portfolio companies are often leanly staffed - or even not staffed at all - by in-house legal teams. The over-reliance on external counsel can be hugely inefficient. Steve Yoost, general counsel of cloud hosting service HOSTING, argues that in-house counsel can increase the value of private equity investments by effectively managing and mitigating risk.
‘Every individual is now an entrepreneur, whether they recognise it or not.’ So said Reid Hoffman, one of the founders of LinkedIn. In such a culture of innovation, what does the ideal legal department and in-house lawyer look like? GC Caught Up with Mike Callahan, LinkedIn’s GC, to discuss the risks and rewards of working At the Law’s new frontiers and how to find lawyers who are up to that challenge.
GC talks to founders of legal departments in Asia about the risks and rewards of drawing up the blueprint for an uncharted legal function.
In the Middle Ages, map makers would often depict a place where ships could sail off the end of the world. The dangerous straits of uncharted territory were marked by pictures of ferocious sea monsters, vividly suggesting the terrible fate in store for the unwary sailor who tried to go where there were no instructions for the journey.
HBO Europe’s central Europe-based general counsel, Gordon Finlayson, talks to Catherine Rodgers about creating a “team” from “teams”, unifying processes and rolling out a bespoke IT system across ten countries.
GC: When you joined HBO Europe in 2011, you undertook a review of the company’s legal systems. Could you tell us a little bit about that process?
It’s mid-December when I pay a visit to John Lewis, and as I’m waiting in the foyer of the aptly named Partnership House, I notice that most head office staff are sporting Christmas jumpers. When senior commercial lawyer Amy Holt arrives to greet me, she too is decked out in festive knitwear – putting paid to any notions of stuffiness in the retail chain’s commercial legal team.
In the first of a series profiling legal departments that are pioneering innovative Ways to meld legal with business, GC meets with UK rail infrastructure company Network Rail’s Natalie Jobling, Cathy Crick and Dan Kayne.
An objective eye is obviously vital for lawyers, but it is also expected that GCs will deliver a legal function that is aligned with business needs. So how can you go about transforming your relationship with business partners so that you see them less as ‘clients’, and more as ‘colleagues?’
Robert Robinson, GC of insurer Amlin, recently restructured and unified a collection of disparate legal teams. He explains the operational advantages, and challenges, of such a move to GC’s Catherine McGregor.