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Recent data on the chain of command for law department operation heads

The Third Annual Law Department Operations Survey asked its respondents to check off to whom do they report. The report that resulted, at 14, states that 44.1 percent report directly to the general counsel as compared to 37 percent in 2009. The writer touts the improvement in the “chain of command.” But two years before the percentage had been much higher (See my post of Dec. 21, 2008: three out of four of the 50 respondents report to the general counsel.).

Another 27.1 percent in the latest survey report to a deputy/associate or assistant general counsel.

What surprised me is that “10 percent report directly to the CEO.” How can that be? I asked Brad Blickstein, one of the coordinators of the survey, who would be pleased to send you the report if you email him. He explained: “Regarding the six CEO responses, we ask people to fill out this survey if they are the person in their law department most responsible for operations. In a few cases, that’s the GC himself or herself.”

Finally, the totals come to 82 percent so almost one out of five of the respondents report to someone other than the top lawyer group (or CEO). Who else is a candidate? Again, Brad filled in the missing information. Among the other reports were the CFO, Chief IP Counsel, COO, Sr. VP of HR, and the SVP Corporate Affairs.

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