Editor's Note: We're officially in between our two favorite events of the year. So what's a legal professional to do in the meantime? Originally published in April 2017, this list of groups offers some great options to keep the ideas and conversations flowing.
In-house counsel is required to foresee possible disasters, provide guidance when the worst-case scenario occurs, and translate legal situations and implications for executives. On top of these responsibilities, in-house counsel is now expected to learn new technology and help manage their organization’s data. It’s a lot.
With this unique set of challenges, it’s important to connect with others who are in the same boat.
While there are countless legal professional organizations to connect lawyers with one another, there are limited options for seeking advice and knowledge from other in-house counsel. We’ve compiled a few networking groups and opportunities specifically for you. Each offering differs, so take a look to find out which groups are best for your needs.
1. A Large Network to Connect with at Any Time: LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn is the professional social network, but with more than 467 million members, it can be challenging to find your peers and valuable groups. One group to check out is the Corporate Lawyer Network. With more than 105,000 members, the unlisted group aims to go further than networking to act as a resource for in-house counsel.
The group includes various subgroups, so you can find discussions related to specific topics. There’s also an In House Counsel subgroup to connect with other lawyers on the administration and management of in-house legal departments.
Another LinkedIn group to consider is In House Legal. Designed to help in-house legal professionals keep up with the latest in-house trends and issues, the group has more than 69,000 members.
2. Opportunities to Learn About the Latest in Law and Technology: EDI
The Electronic Discovery Institute (EDI) focuses on the intersection of law and technology, offering education and research on emerging issues in the space. This group is especially helpful for in-house counsel wanting to get a better handle on e-discovery and keep up with the technology.
While the EDI is open to more than in-house counsel, it’s a great resource for attorneys to learn about the latest in information governance, cybersecurity, litigation, and big data management. Anyone can become a member to receive publications, Summit proceedings and materials, news and updates, and notifications about events. Additionally, the annual EDI Leadership Summit offers in-house counsel the chance to network and learn about how technology is changing the practice of law.
3. Wisdom from Fellow Business Leaders: Argyle Executive Forum
The Argyle Executive Forum is an exclusive community for business leaders. General counsel is one of eight executive functions represented. The forum connects legal leadership from large organizations to discuss topics related to the changing legal landscape, such as compliance, M&A, efficiency during litigation, and legal implications of new technology.
While the Argyle Executive Forum is primarily for larger organizations and it’s not a group for all in-house counsel, anyone can access their online publication, the Argyle Journal, which provides articles from thought leaders in the space.
4. Networking and Career Development: In The House
The general counsel networking group In The House boasts itself as the “fastest growing community for in-house professionals.” It was founded in 2011 and currently has more than 23,000 members, with 85 percent of its member base coming from Fortune 500 legal departments.
The community offers national and regional events, online networking, a LinkedIn group, legal news and research, and a career center to help in-house counsel advance in their professional paths.
5. The Whole Corporate Counsel Enchilada: ACC
The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is a global community of more than 40,000 in-house counsel. Founded over 30 years ago, it’s certainly the most common group to join, offering support for members in four areas, including information, education, networking, and advocacy.
ACC is a good organization for any level of in-house legal professional, providing a range of resources from online education, job listings, and webcasts to networking opportunities and discounted admission to in-person events and training, and more.
Additionally, ACC has a variety of local chapters—including chapters in North America, Europe, South America, Middle East, Asia, and Australia—making it easy for in-house counsel around the world to attend regular events and connect with peers.
6. A Go-To Network for e-Discovery Solutions: Relativity Community
The Relativity Community site is an online e-discovery community giving you the chance to connect with other members, hear about news and events, and get answers to your Relativity questions. With members from across the e-discovery universe—from attorneys to litigation support professionals, developers, and IT professionals—the Community is the place to gain a wide range of perspectives.
Anyone can create an account in the Community to join conversations and ask questions. Jump in today to get started, share knowledge, and contribute to Relativity's product roadmap.
Keely McKee was a member of the marketing team at Relativity, specializing in content development.