Career Options For In-House Counsel

2y ago
1.34 MB
50 Pages
Last View : 1d ago
Last Download : 3m ago
Upload by : Averie Goad

By in-housein-house counsel,counsel, forfor in-housein-house counsel.counsel. ByInfoPAKSMCareer Options for In-House CounselSponsored by:Association of Corporate CounselAssociation of Corporate Counsel1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 2001025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 200Washington, DC 20036 USAWashington, DC 20036 USAtel 1 202.293.4103, fax 1 202.293.4701tel 1 202.293.4103, fax 1

Career Options for In-House CounselUpdated September 2013Provided by the Association of Corporate Counsel1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 200Washington, DC 20036 USAtel 1 202.293.4103fax 1 202.293.4107www.acc.comFinding a new, rewarding position in the legal field is never a quick and easy task. ThisInfoPAKSM will present key techniques for pursuing new positions, as well as strategies forsuccessfully managing your career.The information in this InfoPAKSM should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion onspecific facts, and should not be considered representative of the views of Robert Half Legal orof ACC or any of its lawyers, unless so stated. Further, this InfoPAK is not intended as adefinitive statement on the subject and should not be construed as legal advice. Rather, thisInfoPAK is intended to serve as a tool for readers, providing practical information to the in-housepractitioner.This material was compiled by Robert Half Legal. For more information on Robert Half Legal, visittheir web site at or see the “About the Author” section of this document.Copyright 2013 Robert Half Legal and Association of Corporate Counsel

ContentsI.II.Introduction . 5A.The Evolving Legal Marketplace – and Emerging Career Opportunities . 5B.Taking Charge of Your Career . 5How to Strategically Manage a Career Transition . 6A.Navigating Your Career Crossroads . 6B.Map a Plan for Success. 7C.Define Your “Ideal” Position . 72.A Final Word About Career Plans . 10Decide Your Course . 101.Lateral Moves . 102.Same Company, New Role . 113.Project-Based Work . 124.Alternative Legal Careers . 135.What’s the Best Fit for You? . 14D.Establish Meaningful Goals . 14E.Factor Reality into Your Career Transition Plans. 15F.Audit Current Skills: Do They Need Reinforcement? . 15G.H.III.1.1.Identify Transferable Skills . 162.Law Degree as a Vehicle . 163.Assess Essential Soft Skills . 164.Tech Savvy with Current Legal Software? . 165.Bolster Gaps in Capabilities . 17Understand the Value of Mentors in a Career Transition . 181.Find a Mentor . 182.Become a Mentor . 20Reassess and Refresh Goals Periodically . 21Job Search Strategies . 22A.The Resume: A Vital Tool . 22For more ACC InfoPAKs, please visit

1.Prepare a Winning Resume . 222.Resume Formats . 233.Send Your Resume Electronically . 244.The Cover Letter – Not to be Forgotten . 25B.Sample Resumes . 27C.Networking: An Essential Resource . 31D.E.F.1.Get Started Strategically . 312.Expand Your Network . 313.Associations: The “Off-Hours Impact” . 324.Hone Your Elevator Pitch . 325.Add Recruiters to the Mix . 336.Take Advantage of Online Social Networking . 337.Keep in Touch . 35Now that I’ve Secured an Interview . 351.How to Prepare for the Interview . 352.Plan Questions to Ask . 373.Tips for Success at the Interview . 37The Art of Successful Salary Negotiation . 391.Assess Your Personal Market Value . 392.What to Negotiate Beyond Salary . 413.The Final Decision . 41Career Transition Success . 42IV.About Robert Half Legal . 43V.Additional Resources . 44A.VI.Job Search and Career Resources . 441.Additional Job Search Tips . 442.Job Search Sites on the Internet . 453.Additional Career Management Resources . 474.ACC Resources . 49Endnotes . 50Copyright 2013 Robert Half Legal and Association of Corporate Counsel

I.IntroductionA.The Evolving Legal Marketplace – and Emerging Career OpportunitiesThe legal profession has undergone a transformation during recent years to enhance the deliveryof client services within today’s increasingly competitive, technology-driven and global businessenvironment. And as the legal marketplace continues to change, new career opportunities fortalented legal professionals are emerging.Alternative staffing models are being created, as legal organizations acknowledge that specializedexpertise and cost-efficiencies can be realized when consultants or project-based attorneys arebrought in for specific cases to meet higher-than usual workload demands. Increasingly, law firmsand corporate legal departments are looking for talent with in-depth knowledge not only intargeted specialties but also within particular industry sectors. And a new skill set for legalprofessionals is surfacing with a focus on team collaboration, business acumen, technicalproficiency and soft skills.As a result, new career opportunities have been identified within the legal field. And unlike therelatively predictable path lawyers followed in years past, many 21st-century practitioners arechoosing to avail themselves of these options and make changes in their careers for a variety ofprofessional and lifestyle reasons.Some may be discontent or unfulfilled with their current career direction, while others may belooking for new challenges within emerging practice areas. Still others may want to takeadvantage of and ”test” a new field or industry sector on a contract basis before making a longterm career commitment.No matter what the impetus, making such a career change is typically easier said than done,particularly in light of today’s competitive job market. Whether you’ve reached a crisis stage that isleading toward burnout or you’re primarily satisfied but want to take advantage of newopportunities to move into a new role, you’ll need a strategy to help make a successful transition.B.Taking Charge of Your CareerJust as your ability to finish law school and pass the bar exam was driven by your own initiative,fulfilling your career aspirations requires the same kind of focus. You need to research all of youroptions thoroughly and strategically, from the type and size of law firm or company where you’dprefer working, to how you can best present your credentials. You’ll also need well-written andinformative materials to reinforce your “case.” By taking control of your career, you can attaingreater advancement potential and higher job satisfaction.But you’ll need to first be proactive in realistically defining your expectations and identifying thesteps required to achieve them. Even the most experienced attorneys can benefit from revisitingand learning new approaches to career management and conducting a job search.For more ACC InfoPAKs, please visit

Section II of this InfoPAK covers guidelines for planning a career transition, including some of theoptions available to in-house counsel. Section III presents key techniques for pursuing newpositions and achieving your goals – from preparing an effective resume and networking tointerviewing and negotiating compensation. Sections V and VI offer job search tips and additionalcareer management resources.II. How to Strategically Manage a CareerTransitionA.Navigating Your Career CrossroadsAmong in-house counsel, the sense of urgency for making a career change can vary significantly.Some attorneys rarely give it a thought while others, relatively happy in their positions, maysimply reach a point when they wonder what it would be like to do something else – perhapsnothing drastically different, but if the right opportunity came along, they would seize it.Some recognize how the legal profession has changed during recent years and want to moreeffectively prepare themselves for the future by gaining experience in one of the emerging legalspecialty practice areas. And for others, the stakes are higher: they understand that they havealready arrived at a professional plateau. Following years of hard work, they suddenly findthemselves at a crossroads, unclear of the direction their career is taking, but strongly want tomake a change.Take the example of Emily. Ten years ago, she took a position as full-time legal counsel with astart-up software development company. As the firm’s only in-house attorney, she enjoyed thechallenge and autonomy the position offered, as well as the camaraderie of working with a smallgroup of people. Two years ago, however, the firm was purchased by a large corporation. Thelegal department has since expanded to 15 people, and the intimate environment of the companythat first attracted her is no longer there. Increasingly, Emily feels dissatisfied with her job. Herprojects have become less diverse, since each attorney has been given a specific area ofspecialization, and she misses the independence and sense of entrepreneurship she enjoyed in herprevious role.In simple terms, Emily has reached a career crossroads. She considers her professional life asunfulfilling; she’s frequently frustrated and bored, with no new challenges on the horizon and noclear picture of the future.Perhaps you’ve reached a turning point in your career similar to Emily’s. Instead, maybe you’restill largely satisfied with your work, but a shift in your professional goals or personal life hascaused you to contemplate a change. This section offers some guidelines and considerations forcorporate counsel who, for a variety of reasons, are considering making a career transition.Copyright 2013 Robert Half Legal and Association of Corporate Counsel

B.Map a Plan for SuccessAs an attorney, you know how critical strategy is to your success on the job: It enables you to wincases and maximize your company’s business opportunities. The same is true when it comes tomanaging your career. Having a well-thought-out plan can make all the difference in your abilityto create realistic, yet attainable, professional objectives and pursue the changes necessary toachieve them.A career plan is a valuable tool – whether you’re an experienced in-house counsel or in the earlyyears of your career in law. While it requires an investment of your time, carefully mapping out acareer move or series of moves allows you to achieve goals earlier in life and, in the process, avoidreaching a mid-career plateau.To create a blueprint for any professional transition, there are three basic factors to consider:1. What you’re doing now;2. What you want to do instead;3. And what is required to get you there.A proactive plan to address these factors involves an honest assessment of what really drives youand how prepared you are to make a change. The rest of this section outlines steps attorneys cantake to establish an effective career transition plan, make it work and ensure its continuedrelevance over the long-term.1.Define Your “Ideal” PositionThe underpinning of any effective career plan is a thorough understanding of your values – thosethat transcend what you do for a living. Unfortunately, too many people who want to make achange try to set career objectives without first considering what their real behavioral drivers are.Or worse, they accept a new position without even pausing to consider them. An impendingtransition should be viewed as an opportunity for soul-searching, a time to step back from theoften furious pace of being a lawyer to understand what really motivates you.a.What are Your Real Priorities?Many methods have been developed to help people align their career choices with their personalvalues. Most of these approaches are variations on the same theme, but all have the goal of helpingyou identify your core values.You may have participated in a number of such assessments during your school years to help youdefine your values, personality traits, and other indicators that can guide you toward appropriateand fulfilling career choices. These can also be helpful later in life as you consider a careertransition.Testing tools range in sophistication and specificity, but if you haven’t gone through a selfevaluation in years, just ranking your basic preferences and motivators can be a big help inFor more ACC InfoPAKs, please visit

launching a career plan. The following is a very simple example. To get the most out of it, keep anopen mind and don’t try to reconcile your answers with your current work situation. You can alsoadd values of your own if they’re not listed here:1.Read each of the value statements below, then assign a number to each based on the followingscale:Very important:. 4Somewhat important:. 3Little importance:. 2Not important at all: . 1Getting ahead quickly in my professionWorking with an organization strongly focused on ethicsHaving the chance to work in areas in which I have a great interestSpending more time with my family and/or friendsMaking a great deal of moneyParticipating in something bigger than myselfWorking with people whom I like and admireExpressing myself creativelyMaking my own decisionsInfluencing peopleHaving more time to devote to my hobbies or leisure activitiesBelieving my work is making a real differenceLearning and experiencing new thingsBelonging to an organization where my contributions are valuedOtherContinuedCopyright 2013 Robert Half Legal and Association of Corporate Counsel

2.Look at only those values in Step 1 that you’ve rated as a “4” and rank them in order ofpriority.As you focus on the values you listed as “very important,” ask yourself whether your currentcareer direction is consistent with those values. If it isn’t, you may want to consider making achange.b.Why Did You Take the Job?Besides tests, there are some other simple ways to uncover what you really want from your work.Two of the key questions recruiters always ask job candidates are: “What attracted you to yourcurrent job?” and “Why are you looking to make a move?” Before you can attach a set of realisticgoals to your plan, you’ll need to carefully evaluate what you originally sought in your current joband what is now prompting you to seek a change.Identify which factors contributed most to your personal sense of achievement. Was it theintellectual challenge or interaction with others? Was it the opportunity to work on a high-stakesproject? Consider also growth potential, job security and compensation.Revisit projects and cases that gave you a strong sense of accomplishment. Did serving as the leadcounsel on a particular case, for example, give you a sense of pride? Or was it securing a patent fora new engineering concept? Perhaps it was participating on a project team to proactively develop aplan to meet a request for discovery. Answering these questions can help you better assess thefactors that drive you – and, in turn, determine how you might more frequently perform suchactivities that provide you with satisfaction in your work.c.Prioritize Work Style IssuesThis is also a good time to think about your preferred working style and evaluate whether you’vebeen able to operate in that manner in your current position. You might thrive on marshaling thetalents of others. Or you may enjoy approaching projects under tight deadline pressures, duringwhich you focus on developing a precise plan of action. Or your preference could be to adopt amore methodical approach, with a view toward the long-term. Each of these styles is effective.What’s important is to identify which one you personally prefer and whether you’ve been able toapply it in your current position.In addition, it may be helpful to evaluate what you like and dislike most about the legal professionin general, and your role as an attorney. Do you enjoy managing and mentoring? Do you preferindependent research or working with others? Do you like new challenges and work that isconstantly changing? This critical step will help you avoid making decisions solely for otherreasons, such as money, status or ease of transition. You may discover characteristics aboutyourself that you didn’t know existed. For example, you may find working as a project attorney ismore desirable than climbing the traditional corporate ladder.For more ACC InfoPAKs, please visit

d.What’s Your Motivation to Change?Also ask yourself why you are looking for a change. The answer is painfully obvious to attorneyswho are involuntarily downsized. Those deciding on their own to make a move, however, canbenefit from some introspective exercises. If you’re considering a change, take a close look ateverything from job security and compensation to intrinsic rewards. Does your current job fail toprovide these benefits, or have your preferences since changed? Perhaps you want to spend moretime with family and seek relief from a law office that has turned into a 24/7 operation in order tomanage cases that straddle international time zones.Again, not everyone arrives at a new chapter in his or her professional life out of dissatisfaction.Some just want a fresh start or to work on something new. And some attorneys who end upmaking a transition were not originally even looking for a change. An unexpected opportunitymay reinvigorate old ideas of career alternatives in lawyers who are quite satisfied with theircurrent positions.The bottom line: Get to know yourself. And be honest and objective about your preferences. Forexample, if you are not a detail-oriented person, you could be miserable as a tax attorney.Knowing your values and preferences will help you determine whether opportunities that comealong are worth pursuing and consistent with your career plan.2.A Final Word About Career Plans C.Many professionals fail to create a career plan because they are concerned it will taketoo much time. But that’s a misconception. You can create a sound career plan relativelyquickly once you have established a framework and have done an adequate amount ofbrainstorming.Avoid striving to create a “perfect” plan. Recognize that perfection is an unlikely goal.Remember that creating a career plan is a dynamic process, not a one-time activity.You’ll likely make modifications to it as time goes on. You may find that certain goalsare unrealistic within your predetermined time horizons, or that you possess certainskills and strengths you didn’t even know you had.Get started as soon as possible. The sooner you launch your career plan, the sooneryou’ll be on your way to working toward your true career goals.Decide Your CourseOnce you’ve identified what truly inspires you, you can begin to define your options. Examine thegeneral direction you want to take as an in-house attorney or avenues you might pursue to useyour skills in other ways. What are your basic options?1.Lateral MovesIt’s not uncommon today for attorneys to make one or more lateral moves over the course of theircareers – either from one corporation or industry to another, from a law firm to the corporateCopyright 2013 Robert Half Legal and Association of Corporate Counsel

world, or from one law firm to another. A number of factors have helped make this a viableprofessional strategy.A lateral move can provide an opportunity to gain experience in new practices areas or industrysectors, serving as a stepping stone to achieving your long-term career objective. It can also offermore interesting, challenging and diverse work that can help you define long-range careeraspirations. Those who opt for lateral moves also have a chance to enhance their legal capabilitiesin particular areas that will ultimately make them more marketable for in-house prospects downthe road. Still others may decide to explore lateral options due to company closures, mergers oracquisitions.Regardless of your motivation, if you feel you have absorbed all that your current job andcompany have to offer, you may want to consider a lateral position with another organization. Doyou have latitude to make key decisions affecting your areas of responsibility, or do you feel leftout of the department’s strategic planning efforts? Have you initiated discussions about goalsyou’d like to pursue and received little response? If so, it could be time to consider making achange.The possibilities for in-house counsel are as varied as the thousands of businesses seeking lawyers.Many firms need attorneys with experience in contract negotiations, trademark issues, andmergers and acquisitions. Legal professionals with expertise in e-discovery, for example, also arein demand as the amount of electronic data continues to grow exponentially. Acknowledging thisanticipated growth, nearly one-third (33 percent) of lawyers who participated in Robert Half Legalresearch said they planned to increase their spending on e-discovery services.1Legal experts in certain practice specialties, such as corporate litigation, general business andcommercial law, healthcare, and labor/employment, continue to be in strong demand amongbusinesses. Also, industries such as biotechnology and life sciences are hiring in-house counsel atan accelerated rate. These companies seek attorneys with industry experience and the ability tocommunicate legal concepts in laypersons’ terms for scientists and other non-legal professionals.2.Same Company, New RoleBefore you decide to move to another company, make sure you aren’t closing the door on potentialopportunities with your current employer. Another choice is to remain with your current companyand assume new responsibilities.Within corporate law, there are many new emerging opportunities to expand traditional roles.Besides dealing with duties such as contract preparation or trademark issues, in-house counselalso serve as the primary legal advisors for other departments in the company, such as humanresources, marketing, investor relations, or government affairs. Others are moving into executiveor management positions, becoming more involved in overall operations and giving strategicbusiness and legal advice.Some lawyers with a technical background are crossing over into knowledge management. Therole of a Chief Knowledge Officer requires technical savvy to implement and oversee a system ofinformation management within a department or law firm.For more ACC InfoPAKs, please visit

Corporate accounting legislation introduced during the past decade has given rise to a host ofregulatory challenges. Today, corporations look to their in-house counsel for direction regardingthese issues and compliance mandates as well. At public companies, some attorneys are serving ascorporate governance officers to direct the people, operational procedures, and systems requiredto ensure responsible and ethical governance of their firms. Other organizations, typically in moreheavily regulated sectors such as financial services and healthcare, have assigned in-house counselto the position of corporate compliance officers, whose role is to design, implement, and maintaininternal controls, policies, and procedures to assure compliance with local, state, and federal lawsand regulations.A transition may be as simple as asking your general counsel if you can take on new projects andbegin learning about a different area in your department.3.Project-Based WorkAnother option, especially beneficial for experienced attorneys looking for more flexibility in theircareers and balance in their lives, is project-based work.Increasingly, legal departments are striking a balance between the need for additional staff andmodest hiring budgets by engaging legal professionals on a project basis, particularly whenimmediate access to specialized expertise is required for unexpected workloads or complexinitiatives, such as litigation or e-discovery.This trend is supported by research conduct

Association of Corporate Counsel 1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 200 Washington, DC 20036 USA tel 1 202.293.4103, fax 1 202.293.4701 By in-house counsel, for in-house counsel. Association of Corporate Counsel 1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 200 Washington, DC 20036 USA tel 1 202.293.4

Related Documents:

Bruksanvisning för bilstereo . Bruksanvisning for bilstereo . Instrukcja obsługi samochodowego odtwarzacza stereo . Operating Instructions for Car Stereo . 610-104 . SV . Bruksanvisning i original

10 tips och tricks för att lyckas med ert sap-projekt 20 SAPSANYTT 2/2015 De flesta projektledare känner säkert till Cobb’s paradox. Martin Cobb verkade som CIO för sekretariatet för Treasury Board of Canada 1995 då han ställde frågan

service i Norge och Finland drivs inom ramen för ett enskilt företag (NRK. 1 och Yleisradio), fin ns det i Sverige tre: Ett för tv (Sveriges Television , SVT ), ett för radio (Sveriges Radio , SR ) och ett för utbildnings program (Sveriges Utbildningsradio, UR, vilket till följd av sin begränsade storlek inte återfinns bland de 25 största

Hotell För hotell anges de tre klasserna A/B, C och D. Det betyder att den "normala" standarden C är acceptabel men att motiven för en högre standard är starka. Ljudklass C motsvarar de tidigare normkraven för hotell, ljudklass A/B motsvarar kraven för moderna hotell med hög standard och ljudklass D kan användas vid

LÄS NOGGRANT FÖLJANDE VILLKOR FÖR APPLE DEVELOPER PROGRAM LICENCE . Apple Developer Program License Agreement Syfte Du vill använda Apple-mjukvara (enligt definitionen nedan) för att utveckla en eller flera Applikationer (enligt definitionen nedan) för Apple-märkta produkter. . Applikationer som utvecklas för iOS-produkter, Apple .

Aug 24, 2018 · State House 38 Brian McGee state House 40 Pamela Jean Howard State House 41 Emily Anne Marcum State House 43 Carin Mayo State House 45 Jenn Gray state House 46 Felicia Stewart State House 4 7 1Jim Toomey State House 48 IAlli Summerford State House 51 Veronica R. Johnson State House 52 John W. Rogers, Jr. State House 53 Anthony Daniels

och krav. Maskinerna skriver ut upp till fyra tum breda etiketter med direkt termoteknik och termotransferteknik och är lämpliga för en lång rad användningsområden på vertikala marknader. TD-seriens professionella etikettskrivare för . skrivbordet. Brothers nya avancerade 4-tums etikettskrivare för skrivbordet är effektiva och enkla att

Den kanadensiska språkvetaren Jim Cummins har visat i sin forskning från år 1979 att det kan ta 1 till 3 år för att lära sig ett vardagsspråk och mellan 5 till 7 år för att behärska ett akademiskt språk.4 Han införde två begrepp för att beskriva elevernas språkliga kompetens: BI