John Donohue, profiled in InsideCounsel, July 2007 at 96, is the general counsel of Rhodia, Inc. He “rotates lawyers through various business units to keep their professional relationships fresh.” Who knows what that quote means; it seems like the argument for changing auditors periodically, so that the relationship between a business unit lawyer and his or her clients does not get too cozy.
A change of job scenery can also be professionally invigorating (See my post of Feb. 16, 2007 about three references opportunities for job rotations in position-open ad.). Lawyers like variety and challenges.
I don’t think Donohue’s quote it means that Rhodia’s lawyers do tours of duty outside the law department, such as McDonald’s general counsel, Jeffrey Kriendler, ran Boston Markets (See my posts of Jan. 25, 2007 about UPS paying for operations employees to go to night law school and then join the law department; April 8, 2005 about Manulife and its low success rate when lawyers move out of the law department; Aug. 14, 2006 where a new deputy general counsel had most recently been the chief auditor; Nov. 6, 2005 about Telstra; Dec. 15, 2005 on Merrill Lynch’s general counsel and MetLife’s general counsel; and Nov. 6, 2005 on David Krasnostein of the Bank of Australia, who ran its strategy group for a while.).