In the US, probably a dozen conferences a year devote one or more sessions to topics in legal department management. Think of ACC’s annual meeting, Corporate Legal Time’s SuperConference, ALM’s two or three conferences, LegalTech, Northstar, the Texas GC Forum, Northwestern Law School’s gatherings, George Washington’s Law School conference, ALA Corporate/Government Fall Forum, industry legal group gatherings, GC groups (about which I have written previously) and many other conferences I have overlooked or forgotten.
The quality of speakers may disappoint. My impression is that many conference organizers choose speakers based on factors other than the speaker’s deep experience with the topic — such as PC representativeness, funding, or activity in the organizing group — and that often speakers trundle out basic observations and platitudes. Vendors who pay sponsorship fees get to pick topics and speakers. Frequently, too many speakers crowd the dais, leaving no time for questions and answers, let alone debate among the presenters.
My biases are showing, as is my consulting career, in these criticisms. To be fair, general counsel have ample conference opportunities to hear about management practices and issues.
What the world needs is a digest of those conferences’ proceedings on management. This blog welcomes materials from conferences and will post summaries of the useful points.