Chief Legal Officers: paving the way for a cohesive and high performing legal department

Chief Legal Officers: paving the way for a cohesive and high performing legal department

ext (9)Last week LexisNexis facilitated a forum for Chief Legal Officers which focused on two key issues faced by those who manage legal operations: how to manage a global legal team and how to retain talent in a flat structure.



Communication is the key to a cohesive and high performing legal team

There was all round agreement that ensuring effective collaboration and a consistent level of service across locations is a key priority for legal teams. Having managed legal teams spread across the world the forum members shared their insight on how to manage a global team:

  • Get the team together
    On the whole team meetings were found to be the most effective method of increasing communication and the sharing of know-how. However, meetings are not without their pitfalls. Maintaining engagement over calls can be difficult and face to face meetings are a drain on the budget where travelling is involved.


    Whilst, weekly meetings for regional leads and direct reports were found to be effective in ensuring consistency, when it comes to global meetings with the wider team the experience of the forum participants was that monthly calls are more effective.  When teams are spread over different continents having a regular connection with the US, Europe and Asia is difficult - inevitably the US teams will need to have the meeting early in the morning and Asia teams late in the evening.This issue, combined with the typical laissez-faire nature of weekly meetings, meant that weekly meetings for the wider global team resulted in lost engagement.

    The experience is that it is much better practice to have less frequent (typically monthly) meetings which have a tighter agenda and a defined purpose. In addition, engagement can be increased by structuring the meetings so that they are hosted and chaired by different teams each tim

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