Rapid technological change, rising globalization, and an increasingly intense and far-reaching regulatory environment continue to disrupt business models and impact organizations. The associated enterprise risks—including vulnerability to cyber assaults, a patchwork of privacy and anti-corruption mandates, and an infinite variety of industry-specific regulation—have elevated the role of the corporate general counsel (GC) in virtually every strategic initiative.
What differentiates GCs who will succeed in today’s unpredictable business climate from those who will not? In addition to the traditional considerations of skill set and motivation, five personality factors will decide whether your next GC can influence strategy, steer the ship through crisis situations, and ultimately have a positive impact on your company’s bottom line.
Of course, the first consideration in selecting the ideal GC is whether the individual has the right skill set for the company’s strategy, as well as specific industry issues, regulatory environment, and scope and scale of the legal function. This decision can’t be just about how things are today. With the average Fortune 500 GC tenure at six to seven years, companies should be looking to hire a GC who can navigate the next decade of business challenges.
I had the pleasure of assisting Cynthia Dow with this article, which was published in Corporate Counsel.