Dueling support groups (bureaucratic challenges to internal change)

No general counsel is an island. Each general counsel is connected to and relies on heads of other support groups, and those peer groups have a say in many law department initiatives. If you want to choose a document management system, you must come to terms with Information Systems and its protections, prices and policies. If you want to change how you evaluate lawyers, Human Resources will have a view on content, consistency, scales, levels and timing. If you need different data captured about legal spend, Finance may or may not be able to comply. Internal Audit may have something to say about your hoped-for e-billing system. Despite your protests, you may find that Facilities imposes or prohibits cubicles for paralegals.

Even if one of these so-called support groups functions does not block your progress, they can certainly slow it down.

Of course, you wouldn’t want to hear what they say about the law department!

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