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The Legal 500 Latin America Event Series: The Dominican Republic

Panel discussion: The challenges of In-House Team management

Having held two highly successful roundtables in the Dominican Republic with sponsor firm Pellerano & Herrera over the last 12 months, it was decided to change format for the local event celebrating the launch of the 2017 GC Powerlist Central America. The result was a panel discussion which tackled the issue of in-house team management and its challenges.

We were fortunate enough to count on a suitable diverse and –in the best possible sense–opinionated panel, consisting of Adelaida Adames, Legal Director of Philip Morris International for the Dominican Republic; Omair Barain, Legal vice-president of the Banco Dominicano del Progreso; Giselle Leger, the General Counsel of AES Dominicana; and Odette Pereyra, the Legal Director at Scotiabank in the Dominican Republic. In addition, Pellerano & Herrera’s senior partner, Ricardo Pellerano was on hand to give a private practice perspective.

The opening salvoes of this discussion asked what the panellists consider the greatest challenges in terms of the construction and maintenance of an in-house legal team, ranging from issues around motivation and remuneration to that of the fostering of a culture that encourages team cohesion and staff retention. It then moved on to assess the attributes sought in potential recruits to a team –curiosity and a willingness to learn, indications of strategic vision, etc.– and indeed, considered where GC’s look to recruit new staff, including the teams of his/her external counsel.

The conversation grew considerably more animated, however, when it turned to discuss the issue of the so-called ‘millennial’ generation and its management, with clear differences emerging between the perspectives of panellists of differing generations as to the admissibility of “Generation Y’s” sometimes unconventional demands and perspectives. This in turn gave way to an enthused exchange regarding the increasing –and indeed, in the Dominican Republic, predominant role of women in in-house positions–; diversity and inclusion, and the development of a healthy and open in-house culture.

Please scroll down to see pictures of the event: