Avoiding a Two-Tier System of Distinctions (Lawyers vs Other Professionals)

It is a challenge having compliance staff, or any non-lawyer function such as contracts management or internal audit, reporting to the general counsel, because those staff may be viewed by the lawyers as second-class citizens.  If deep down the lawyers in charge believe that lawyers stand at the top of the professional ladder, they will create or allow to grow an atmosphere of unequals.  I have seen this most commonly when compliance and law are housed in one department.   

If you have lawyers inter-mixed with non-lawyer professionals, make special efforts to treat the groups equally.  The efforts could include direct reporting, title equality, special recognitions, and countering overt or covert distinctions. rwmorrison@hildebrandt.com

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