Monday, September 29, 2008

Revolutionary Change vs. Evolutionary Change

Are these competing forces or can we implement both, resulting in a long
need change in the in-house/outside counsel relationship? We have a 20th
century structure trying to hold up a 21st century market. The seams are
giving way and cracks are in the foundation. We can no longer patch it
along the way with small concessions. ACC is calling for a monumental

Get rid of the skyboxes! Get rid of the fancy recruiting of new attorneys!
And, get rid of those plush offices! This is the first step in reaching a
new structure, according to some leading in-house counsel.

Communicate! Communicate! Communicate better to the outside counsel your
needs, goals, and corporate values! This is the cry from the outside
counsel to reduce the friction between the parties.

In the end, I think it would be best to start with the premise that most
lawyers do not have a business background/education and we need to stop
trying to function as we do...and get some help from sound business minds.
It is sort of like the premise that only a fool for a lawyer represents
him/herself. May we begin the process today.

Learn more about the ACC Value Challenge at

-Ellen Zavian, Associate General Counsel, ACC