There’s a couple of different things that we’re doing. The People Committee programme is a way to identify opportunities and give people opportunities to contribute, show leadership and improve the processes and the day-to-day lives of people in the department.

We also have two other programmes that we do. One is called Global Legal, where people will apply once a year and say, ‘I’d like to spend a couple of weeks in another office. Here’s the case for why I’m going to do that and what I’m going to contribute when I’m there, what I hope to gain.’ Then, budgets permitting, we will do that. So you might have, say, a paralegal from Ireland who spends a week or two in Singapore educating them on some of the law enforcement processes that they have developed in Ireland and taking what he or she has learned in the other direction. That has been a much more successful programme even than I would have anticipated. It has created this sense of global ownership for many of the issues that we face, as well as a recognition of what the differences are, more cultural understanding. It’s been really successful in helping people have the right mind-set for the future.

The second thing we do is, we meet – my senior leadership team meets at least once a quarter for about a day and half to discuss the talent in the organisation. Who is doing really well, what do they need to succeed, to take them to the next level? Who might need some more help? What we try to do is both to look at the talent on the team on a team level, but also globally, how are we cultivating talent? Who’s strong? What’s working, what’s not working, what is one manager doing that might be something we can scale to others on the team? So really taking a collaborative ownership view of building the company of the future.

Which in-house team has made the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


“The goal for everyone, myself included, is to be a strategic adviser. To serve in that role, you need good judgment. In addition, I encourage all of my colleagues, and also strive myself, to develop three core substantive skills.

1. Communication skills. Business leaders and executives in general tend to be over scheduled. Accordingly, when you have their attention, you need to be able to deliver your message crisply and succinctly.

2. Project management skills – most lawyers are not trained in project management. Yet, this is a crucial skill in large institutions. Time and again, management teams identify an important initiative and look for the individual who can lead the project to completion. To map out a project plan. Develop a timetable. Exhibit the emotional intelligence needed to persuade 100 people or 10,000 employees to help implement the initiative. There are various approaches that range from six sigma to ‘lean’ to continuous improvement. We operate on the premise that every single aspect of our operations can be improved. A current focus for us is our management of the client contracting process. Roughly 100,000 contracts come into our department each year. How can we make this process more efficient? It is critical to start with data. So, we have begun tracking data regarding the regions or lines of business where the greatest volume is being managed. Lawyers who develop strong project management skills will thrive in large corporations.

3. Financial acumen. Many lawyers do not have broad financial expertise, particularly around accounting or corporate finance matters. Yet, this is lexicon that our business colleagues use and rely upon every day. Accordingly, if you are going to be a strategic adviser, you need to understand the language – margin, IRR, amortization, DCF – that your business colleagues employ.”

Which in-house team has made the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


The legal team at the property management company is co-ordinated globally via its legal executive group which comprises leadership for each major region and its major business groups. Overall the team is 120 lawyers spread around 20 countries but with operations spread over 80 countries, lawyers will often take responsibility for more locations than just their home base. Significant achievements for the legal team include the development and implementation of its Ethics Everywhere programme, which provides joined up thinking and training for ethics around all of the company’s global operations. A team of ethics officers, who are generally also functioning as the regional general counsel, maintains the ethics code. Aspects of the programme have included on investigations manual for the company, in person training programmes, banner advertising and email campaigns. This focus is paying off as the company has been named one of the world’s most ethical companies eight years in a row.

Which in-house team has made the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


With around 250 lawyers overseeing a diverse product line in a number of markets globally, the ********* legal team faces formidable challenges in keeping on top of things. Not least of these is managing legal spend. In an effort to control costs and encourage innovation amongst its suppliers, the ********* legal team has recently turned to reverse e-auctions to help it find the best counsel at the best rate. Under this system firms must bid against each other to offer a fixed price, even for highly specialized tenders.

Which in-house team has made the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


In recent years, assistant general counsel B****** T********** has gained significant recognition for creating, developing and integrating two best-in-class legal programs for the global legal team: MASTER (maximizing aavings through early resolution) and NESTOR (negotiation excellence skills training for optimal results). These programs are designed to develop its lawyers’ commercial thinking, helping to focus legal solutions on business problems. With over 85% of all the company’s lawyers having completed MASTER, the legal team makes huge cost savings through early case settlements by training lawyers to make informed and expedited decisions at the earliest possible stage in disputes.

Which in-house team has made the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


In these and many other transactions, the legal team has shown the breadth of its expertise and played an integral role in delivering value by realizing the company’s strategy of returning to its industrial and manufacturing roots.

Find out which other in-house teams have made the GC Powerlist at The Legal 500's booth #920


There are two types of companies: a company that's been breached and one that's been breached and doesn't know it.

The Legal 500 gathered together 14 in-house counsel to discuss the critical issues surrounding cyber security

Read the full transcript at:

Particpants included

Mark Schildkraut Assistant General Counsel-IP, Worldwide Cybersecurity Counsel, BD

Mary Krayesk Senior Attorney, Consolidated Edison Company of New York

Antonious Porch Vice President, Senior Counsel – Technology & Kids, Viacom

Shai Mehani Associate Counsel, Americas, Powa Technologies, Inc.

Richard Nohe General Counsel, Americas Region, BT

Gino Tonetti VP Legal, North America, Powa Techologies, Inc.

Roman Streitberger Assistant General Counsel, Technology and Operations, Honeywell

David Herman Privacy Counsel, Bloomberg

David Biester General Counsel, WTC Captive Ins. Co., Inc

Darren Bowie Chief Privacy Officer and Associate General Counsel, AIG

Adam Ratner President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, New York And Company

Samantha Himelman ‎Vice President, Intellectual Property, Privacy & Cybersecurity, BNP Paribas

"I have always viewed talent as our competitive advantage and talent management and career development are areas where we have adopted many best practices. Every member of our legal team has an individual development plan, holds quarterly coaching meetings with their manager, and has access to a variety of training programs within our department and at the corporate level. We have many formal policies, practices and processes around people, including annual succession planning, defined competencies for success, and written career paths. Our department mentoring program recruits mentors from within legal but also from within the broader business, so our team members are able to develop skills such as business and financial acumen."

Which GC is talking about her team in the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920


In June 2015, The Legal 500 gathered together the law firm leaders of the global elite in Manhattan to discuss some of the issues facing firms today, and in the future. The topics included:

1. The challenges to law firm leadership

2. Profits vs client service – can you have both?

3. Effective lateral recruitment – where it works and where it doesn’t

4. Succession planning

5. Client surprises – how to project manage

6. How technology and alternate service providers change the game

Participants included Cadawalader, DLA Piper, Dechert, Weil, Shearman & Sterling, Latham & Watkins and Sullivan & Cromwell.

Read the full transcript at

Q. Can lawyers do more to be strategically involved in their companies?

A. The problem with any individual is that we look at things through our own prism. If you’re a lawyer, you will often look at things via the prism of a lawyer. But if you’re put in a position where it’s recognised that you have a lot more to add, then you can go beyond being just a lawyer. In my case, the three CEOs were very much putting me in a position of providing strategic advice. To me, it was frankly a much more comfortable role, because law is just one element of a decision.

Which GC is interviewed as his team makes the GC Powerlist? Find out at The Legal 500’s booth #920

Driven by a passion to solve problems and a desire to position their clients for success, the Pennsylvania-based team faces the challenging task of providing full legal support to the largest broadcasting and largest cable company in the world by revenue. Widely recognized for its exceptional quality of service and collaborative culture, the legal department supports the company’s operating activities across its two major subsidiaries

Find out which other in-house teams have made the GC Powerlist at The Legal 500's booth #920

GC Magazine: Many law firms have become international superbrands, but are these huge, scattered organisations really adding value? We ask GCs if multinational brands really are all that. 

For your free subscription to GC Magazine, please visit us at Booth #920

Link to article:

The key aim of our latest research initiative, The Client Intelligence Report, has been to highlight the challenges and opportunities that exist for in-house legal teams in the current environment. In 2015 The Client Intelligence report gained feedback from over 4,700 legal professionals and clients, to provide a comprehensive picture of the legal market. With feedback from over 600 professionals responsible for legal spend and decision making, across the full spectrum of industries, The Client Intelligence Report offers insights into the US in-house legal market.

Visit us at booth #920 to find out more and how you can get free access to the fully interactive data report 

For 28 years, The Legal 500 has been analysing the capabilities of law firms across the world. The GC Powerlist is the latest publication from The Legal 500, turning its attention to the in-house function, and recognising those corporate counsel who are driving the legal business forward. The latest edition is the GC Powerlist: US Teams, which identifies an array of the most influential and innovative in-house teams working in the United States.


Lynda Ait Kaci is executive counsel for North Africa at General Electric International, based in Algeria. She spoke to GC about her career highlights and what she has learnt from the journey so far.