Blogs

When I went to law school way back when there were two topics I swore I had no interest in Tax law and Anti-Trust law.  I avoided those classes like a high school third-period ballroom dancing.  Ironically, as General Counsel, the two biggest pieces of litigation I have worked on were, of course, multiple tax […]

One of the most frequent questions I get from in-house lawyers is how to deal with difficult bosses. I have been very fortunate because – while practicing law for almost 30 years – I can count on a couple of fingers the times I was stuck with a boss who was a real asshole.   After […]

A long time ago, most in-house legal departments were based in one location (or, at worst, one country).  Over the past twenty years, this dynamic has dramatically changed for many companies.  While a majority of smaller company legal departments still operate out of one location, not all do.  Moreover, many medium and large companies have […]

As I mentioned last year, I always look forward to the first part of the year as general counsel. Basically, it is a fresh start for me and for the Legal Department, a time to close out the past year’s issues and move on to next year’s problems.  Though, realistically, a lot of last year’s […]

I was working my way through a contract recently and, like I always do, I flipped to the last several pages.  This is where you find the real action in any commercial agreement.  That’s right, the “boilerplate” clauses are where I like to spend a lot my time.  Why? Because if you get it wrong […]

I have been on the road good bit lately.  I spoke on Artificial Intelligence and ethics at the South Carolina Law Review 2018 Symposium a couple of weeks ago.  Last week, I presented at the Winston & Strawn 2018 VISION Conference in Dallas on how to be more productive.  Down the road, I will be […]

I have always been impressed by those who seem to come to “leadership” effortlessly.  For some, it’s charisma and likeability.  For others, it’s the aura of gravitas that emanates from them.  Many become leaders because they survive the crucible of a crisis and their leadership skills simply emerge.  Whatever it is, I think most in-house […]

“One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever do. Two can be as bad as one, it’s the loneliest number since the number one.”  “One” Three Dog Night I appreciate everyone who writes to me about the blog.  In particular, I enjoy your suggestions for future blog posts and I always add them to my […]

Somewhere in my first few months or so of blogs is one I wrote about what to do when your company has been sued.  In it, I set out a lot of important things to do when you first get served with a complaint.  There’s a lot of useful information in there, but I left […]

This will be my last post of 2017.  The year has certainly flown by!  Thank you all once again for continuing to read the blog (going on four years now!), for sharing it with your friends and colleagues, and for your great notes and suggestions.  I wanted to end the year with a discussion about […]

When I first started writing this blog back in November 2014, I had no idea what I was doing.  While some might say I still don’t (thanks, Mom!), I have gotten better at it.  This blog now has over 2,400 followers – which still amazes me – and I sometimes pause for a moment to […]

I was looking back on my past blogs recently and I realized that it has been a while since I discussed issues related to intellectual property (“IP”).  This week, I’ll try to remedy that oversight.  For just about any company, IP is an important part of its assets be it trademarks, trade secrets, copyrights, or […]

[“Ten Things” has been nominated for a “Best Blog” award.  You can vote by clicking here.] Most of my friends know that I really enjoy Halloween.  While the free candy part is pretty good, I have always liked a good scare.  And this time of the year is full of them.  Horror movies are a […]

[Ten Things has been nominated for a “Best Blog” award.  You can vote by clicking here.] Fall is my favorite time of the year.  The weather’s cooler, the trees change color, and football (American style) permeates the airwaves.  If you’re big into Halloween (and I am) you get to decorate the yard with zombies and […]

This past week I was honored to be the keynote speaker at the 2017 ACC Alberta Annual Conference in Calgary.  First, let me say that Calgary is a wonderful city and a great place to visit (and the people are awesome too).  Second, a big “thank you” to ACC Alberta for inviting me and hosting […]

I have been an in-house lawyer for almost 25 years, with a large chunk of that time spent as the general counsel. During my time, I have seen my peers and people who worked for me do some really great things and some really foolish things. I certainly did my share of both. As a […]

I was a panelist at the 16th Annual Advanced In-House Counsel Course in San Antonio, Texas on August 18, 2017.  I was joined once again by Jason Smith of Apttus and Jane McBride of Optimus Legal to discuss ways lawyers can work smarter and not harder – a worthy goal if ever there was one!  […]

[Note: this is a summary version of a four-part series I wrote for Thomson Reuters earlier this year with some key updates and new sections.  You can find the full series by clicking here] Some of the best scenes in the television show Star Trek (the original version) involve the crew members asking the computer […]

Managing a legal project is not an easy task.  Not for in-house counsel or for outside counsel.  There are simply too many ways for a project to “come off the rails” and turn into a disaster.  Usually, the disaster has to do with cost/budget.  While blowing the budget is definitely not good, a worse scenario […]

Almost all in-house lawyers have dealt with mediation at some point.  If you haven’t to date, you will. Mediation is a process to resolve disputes between parties where a neutral third party helps facilitate the discussions, negotiation, and (hopefully) ultimate settlement of the dispute.  Unlike arbitration, mediation is generally voluntary and non-binding.  Meaning, in addition […]

I realized the other day that it has been a while since I posted an index to all of the blog posts – November 2016 to be exact.  Since the last time I did this the blog has grown to well over 2,000 direct subscribers and the American Bar Association has published my book (based […]

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: All mimsy were the borogoves,  And the mome raths outgrabe.  “Jabberwocky” – Lewis Carroll I am a fan of Monty Python’s Flying Circus.  So, instead of titling my article slaying the email “beast”- which would be the more conventional path – I […]

One of the great benefits of being an in-house lawyer is that you do not have to spend time chasing clients and developing business.  All the work you will ever need is typically right in front of you – 24/7.  And you don’t have to worry about collections, your client always pays on time.  One […]

Unless you’ve been living under a rock (and that may not be such a bad idea these days), you know that “social media” is everywhere.  President Trump has certainly underscored this fact through his near daily use of Twitter.  It seems like almost everyone has a personal Twitter, Snapchat, or Facebook account.  In addition, most […]

There are an amazing number of issues, trends, and headaches to keep track of as in-house counsel.  So much, that it can be difficult to know what to focus on.  When I was General Counsel I made time each year to step back and try to take a look at the big picture, i.e., given […]

I know I took an Accounting 101 class in college.  But, I remember very little about it other than I somehow managed to pull a “B” in it and something about the “accounting equation.”  When I got to law school, there was no math (unless you count student loans).  Even when I began working at a […]

At the end of every blog, I always ask my readers to please let me know if they have any topics they would like me to write about.  While I don’t get a huge number of “requests,” I do get some – though I am still trying to figure out what to do with “My […]