Personal development for in-house lawyers—building business leaders
Personal development for in-house lawyers—building business leaders

The following In-house Advisor practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Personal development for in-house lawyers—building business leaders
  • Personal development for in-house lawyers
  • Who is responsible for the development of in-house lawyers?
  • Developing a structured training programme
  • Identifying new joiners with the capability for development

Personal development for in-house lawyers

On 6 June 2013, the LexisNexis In-house Advisory Board met to discuss personal development and its application in the world of in-house lawyers. The meeting was facilitated by Jonathan Smith, director at LBC Wise Counsel and former general counsel at Fujitsu and of the Managed Legal Service of Berwin Leighton Paisner. The following note reviews some of the key practical takeaways that emerged from the conversation.

Why do in-house lawyers need personal development?

  1. to help bolster the business case for a pay rise?

  2. to satisfy the necessary criteria for a practising certificate?

  3. to ensure the optimal delivery of legal advice to the internal client?

  4. to develop individuals and maximise their contribution to the business?

Recent research conducted by LBC Wise Counsel shows that while in-house lawyers consider legal advice to be their most important contribution to their organisation, their business colleagues disagree.

In fact, many business colleagues thought that in terms of quality the best legal advice comes from external lawyers. Despite this, the research showed that in-house lawyers are hugely valued by their clients, but for attributes that went far beyond legal advice. Their value is perceived to come not solely or predominantly from the application of their technical legal skills, but rather from their non-legal business skills and commercial understanding.

At the same time, the legal market is undergoing fundamental and comprehensive

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