Congratulations Robyn Martin

Congratulations to Robyn Martin, who recently joined Potbelly. A 2000 law school graduate from Michigan, Robyn’s experience profile includes successful tenures with Winston & Strawn and DeVry. We thank Robyn for her long-term Evers Legal secondment with our client Tenneco, where she handled a wide variety of commercial contract and transactional matters.

Every company needs its own Jeff Carr

JWCarr-HBJAs I read about a United States Senator calling for the firing of Michael Milliken, GM’s general counsel, I am not thinking about Milliken. I don’t know Milliken and I’m not qualified to judge his performance. Instead, my friend Jeff Carr came immediately to mind. Jeff retires on Aug. 1 from FMC Technologies after 21 years with the company. And what I am thinking is that GM needed its own Jeff Carr.

To in-house counsel who read the trade press and to us legal consulting types who follow innovation within “law world,” Jeff was a “thought leader” long before that term became fashionable. And most of us expect Jeff to re-emerge in a unique way within law world after taking some personal time. More 

4 Best practices for giving feedback

feedback 2What are the goals of your feedback system and are you meeting them? According to Douglas Stone, co-author with Sheila Heen of “Thanks for the Feedback,” this is the first question companies should be asking themselves when it’s time to sit down for those annual reviews.

Feedback consists of two equally important elements—giving and receiving. Last month, I discussed some of the best practices with receiving feedback. This column will address giving it.

Stone contends that the success of delivering effective feedback, favorable or otherwise, has more to do with the receiver than the giver.  As the example cited in last month’s column illustrated: The same feedback given simultaneously to two different people may result in widely divergent conclusions. More 

Your Unaverage Joe: Cummins Deputy GC discusses his successful legal career

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Joe Perkins, Deputy GC and Legal Quality Champion, Cummins

Growing up in Richmond, Ind., to hard-working parents, Joe Perkins may initially come off as your average … well … Joe.

But Perkins’ life took shape in a way most Midwesterners—or anyone, for that matter—would only dream of. With parents who always encouraged him to do well in anything he worked on, Perkins excelled in high school. So much so, in fact, his academic achievements caught the attention of one of his teachers who encouraged Perkins to apply to Ivy League colleges.

After high school, Perkins found himself packing his bags and heading to New Jersey to begin his freshman year at Princeton University. “The day I got accepted was really exciting for my family,” Perkins says. “My parents, although hard-working folks, never went to a four-year college, and here I had the chance to do that—and at such a well-respected school.” Particularly fond of issues around public policy, Perkins studied politics at Princeton, and took some classes at its acclaimed Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs. More 

Principal Financial Group (’40 Act)

National search, complete relocation package offered.  Principal Financial Group in Des Moines, Iowa, seeks a veteran ’40 Act attorney.  Details:

Attorney with a minimum of ten years of experience serving a mutual fund complex and having significant expertise relating to the Investment Company Act, the Investment Advisers Act, the Commodity Exchange Act, FINRA rules, broker-dealers, transfer agents and related regulatory filings (including registration statements, proxy statements, periodic reports, exemptive applications and no-action letters); working with and communicating clearly, promptly and authoritatively with the Securities and Exchange Commission, FINRA, CFTC and state insurance reviewers and examiners as well as mutual fund and variable contract accountants, compliance administrators, portfolio managers, operations staff, distribution staff, shareholder servicing staff and other members of fund management; advising the board of directors of mutual funds and ETFs; leading a team of lawyers that serves as the legal resource for a mutual fund complex.

Nominations sought for IC: women poised to become GC

Inside Counsel has asked for our recommendations again on this year’s “R3-100″ list, a compilation of senior level women in-house counsel who are poised to become a General Counsel within the next three years.  It’s a really nice recognition.  If you wish to recommend a colleague, or put yourself up for consideration, please give us a call or email mike@everslegal.com.  Here is the link to last year’s list:  R3-100 for 2013

The Dating Game: 4 Tips for law department hiring

iStock_000005195854SmallSince I consider our readers part of the family, I’m going to write this month’s column as if we are all sitting around the dining room table together. Enjoy.

Over a year into post-divorce dating, I have enough material for a stand-up comedy routine. But I’ll stick with my clean stuff here. Here are four best practices tips for hiring the right candidate into your law department, inspired by my adventures in courtship.

1. Stay closed minded on the important stuff. I really enjoy Chicago.  My social life is here.  Most of my charitable work is done here, and although our traditional recruiting practice is national, our firm’s growing insourcing business is Chicago focused.  So, should I date someone who does not like it here, or someone who is non-local with very little interest in moving here?  It’s a formula for frustration and even heartache.  More 

Same feedback, different response: receiving feedback “well” is a learned skill

feedback 2In the business context, giving and receiving feedback is all around us. We’ve participated in feedback sessions, either formal or informal, day-in and day-out since the first day we launched our careers. But being well-versed in the idea of feedback as a form of communication doesn’t mean we all give it or receive it in the same way—or that we’re particularly good at it.

In the legal profession, a better understanding of giving and receiving feedback is critical to your own success, that of your colleagues, your departments, and the professional growth of people you train and manage.

Enter Douglas Stone. He and his co-author, Sheila Heen, recently published “Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well,” which explores highly useful insights to givers and receivers of feedback—that is, everyone. More