CHAPTERS  

Get the PDF

General Counsel in the Age of Disruption

Global upheavals are having a profound impact on the role of the general counsel within the manufacturing sector. Today’s GC must be equipped to steer their companies through the risks associated with these changes –– while taking full advantage of the opportunities they offer.
Read More
INTRODUCTION

New Legal Risks in Manufacturing

A Multitude of Risks

Technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence are reinventing factory floors, replacing human coworkers with fast, collaborative robots. Worldwide political turbulence and events like Brexit are shifting global economic, trade and political alliances. Many of Europe’s top manufacturing companies are expanding to new geographical markets in search of fresh business models and revenue streams. And climate change frameworks like the Paris Agreement are affecting how businesses use and store energy.

Together, these global upheavals have a profound impact on the role of the general counsel within the manufacturing sector. Today’s GC must be equipped to steer their companies through a multitude of risks associated with these changes while taking full advantage of the opportunities they offer.

The specific tasks and responsibilities [of a general counsel] have changed substantially over recent years. The multitude and complexity of the regulatory environment, combined with increased business speed and deeper impact of these respective decisions, have substantially increased the requirements placed on a general counsel.”

— Thomas Laubert, Group GC and Legal Department Head, Daimler AG

What Makes a Great General Counsel?

In this new and challenging climate, the most important job characteristics for GC are:

  • International and geopolitical acumen

  • Understanding of collaboration and alliances

  • Ability to handle technology-related risks

GC will also have to work hard to ensure that legal risks are factored into critical decisions about growth strategies, technology investments and strategic partnerships.

In this interactive white paper, we’ll explore the role that the general counsel plays, as well as their future expectations. Based on findings by Forbes Insights and K&L Gates from interviews conducted with some of today’s brightest legal minds, we outline the trends reshaping the GC's world and the strategies that manufacturers are embracing to ensure success in this age of disruption.