Three observations based on Cytec Industries and its legal services meetings and staff

Cytec Industries, a $3 billion company that produces engineered materials and specialty chemicals, has a legal team of “16 lawyers, four paralegals, an export compliance manager and a government relations manager.” The entire team met for four days in Seattle and according to a profile in the ACC Docket, March 2011 at 70, “Monetary costs of the meeting included accommodations for all staff, meals and travel expenses. The total was approximately $40,000.” Since team members flew in from California, Arizona and Shanghai, that was bargain-basement!. If 22 people could fly and sleep and eat for less than $2,000 each, Cytec has a sharp eye for value.

As a second observation, no administrative staff are mentioned. I have to believe that 20 paralegals and lawyers, not to mention the other two managers, have some secretarial support. By normal benchmarks the lawyers, alone, would have 3-5 secretaries.

Lastly, note the two specialists: government relations and export compliance. Several other law departments included experts on import and export regulations (See my post of Aug. 5, 2005: a “pre-law” group; June 11, 2008 #5: export compliance software at GM; Oct. 21, 2009: online decision tree software for import/export; June 29, 2010: Polaris Industries and its export compliance; Sept. 9, 2010: Sony Ericsson has export experts in the legal function; and Jan. 11, 2011: Northrop Grumman lawyer’s newsletter.).

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