Special invitation and updates

EversInviteTime flies. We are already into Q2 and now our fourth issue of eNews. Thus far, I have focused on single issue columns such as best practices for hiring and insourcing.  This month I extend a special invitation to you, and touch base quickly on a few topics that I hope will interest you.

As a panel moderator at this year’s InsideCounsel “SuperConference,” I get a few guest passes to offer for in-house attorneys. If you are not already registered and wish to attend, please shoot me a note accordingly.

I am thrilled to be moderating the May 14 panel, “Beyond Diversity: Creating Corporate Culture.” The panelists are Maria Green with Illinois Tool Works, David Rawlinson with Grainger and Martin Montes with Exelon.  Please read my InsideCounsel column previewing that discussion. More 

FMC Technologies, position filled

Congratulations to Philip Kief, who starts April 21 at FMC Technologies in Houston as Counsel.  After cutting his teeth in the energy practices at Akin Gump and Locke Lord, Phil made the move in-house with Aker Solutions, a global oilfield services company.

At FMC Technologies, Phil will handle a broad range of responsibilities as a commercial generalist.

We thank Jeff Carr and Mark Wolf at FMC Technologies for continuing to partner with our firm.

Cbeyond’s Bill Weber discusses his path from the Marines to the GC seat

Weber Headshot 2012-3 - Version 2

During his junior year of high school in 1982, Bill Weber had a bright academic future ahead of him. The Decatur, Ga., native planned to apply to three prestigious colleges, the University of Virginia, the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University, but he had a problem: he had no idea how his family would be able to pay for any of them.

Then, during a trip with the Valley Forge Freedom Foundation late that school year, the course of his academic future and life would make a sharp turn. Traveling back toward Georgia, the group of students on the trip stopped off in Annapolis, Md., to visit the Naval Academy—the United States Navy’s service academy and, at the time, the most difficult school in the country to get into. Weber learned that, if he were among the fortunate few to get into the academy, his entire college tuition would be paid in full with his commitment of five years active duty post graduation. Facing exorbitant tuition bills from the other schools, Weber took a leap of faith, secured an appointment to Navy from Senator Sam Nunn and began his military career in summer 1983. More 

Essential tip for career advancement: seek critics

March image (MH)Even the most self-aware and self-motivated professionals get lulled into set behaviors and hit ceilings. Often, “self-improvement” really starts when someone criticizes or challenges us.

The word criticism has gotten a bad rap. There is a generational shift away from negative feedback of any kind and toward total cheerleading. When did we all get so soft? Receiving input that can help us improve is a gift that we should embrace. More 

Flex time: the pros of secondments and implementing them successfully

March image (ME)Although we are primarily known for our traditional search work (since 1997), Evers Legal is now in its third year of also providing secondment services for our law department clients. We have enjoyed several successes, learned from a few mistakes, and now I feel ready to write with some confidence on how best to incorporate “flex-talent” into your law department.

But first, I wish to thank our clients who said “yes” to this service early in the roll-out, my friends at companies such as CNH, Exelon, Tenneco, CareerBuilder, DeVry and others. Your trust in our ability to get it right humbles me. More 

Chicago: commercial contracts experience sought

Although we are known primarily for our national executive search service for law departments, our complementary and lesser known offering is growing significantly.  Specifically, we have several experienced in-house attorneys on secondment to law departments. These are primarily in-house commercial generalists filling operational roles during client staffing shortages, and occasionally on what are known as “temp to perm” option assignments. See more details.

Our need here is primarily in the Chicago area. You would be on our payroll (not the client’s, not a 1099). We pay well versus the lower end document review shops, but we generally pay a bit below Axiom. We believe we have found the correct “sweet spot” pricing for secondment services and that our combination of talent quality and fair billing rates is largely responsible for the growth of this service line. You will earn (either hourly or fixed fee, depending upon the assignment) well above six figures annualized.

If you wish to be considered for assignment work, please email Meredith at mhaydon@everslegal.com. Consider this a call for attorneys at all levels of experience (other than entry level), as we try to have as many options as possible available for our clients as needs arise. Thank you.

Terrific panel assembled for corporate culture discussion

Mark your calendars for Superconference in Chicago, May 13 – 14.  I’ll have more to say about this panel in my April “Evers eNews” column, but for now here are the details (it’s a cut and paste from the conference web site):

EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT – Beyond Diversity: Creating Your Department’s Culture

  • May 14, 2014: 11:30 am12:45 pm

Too often, companies think of diversity only within the confines of strategic hiring practices — versus creating a culture of inclusion. This session will dig deeper into the unique benefits of a multicultural workforce within a globalized economy; overcoming barriers that hinder inclusion; attracting diverse talent and how best to promote long term success. Join this session for a very candid conversation.

Moderator: Mike EversEvers Legal

Alex Green discusses his path to the GC seat at CareerBuilder

Alex GreenAlex Green always knew he wanted to be a lawyer. In fact, he always knew he wanted to be a general counsel. Since high school, he recalls, becoming a lawyer was his goal—and nothing was going to get in the way.

But his path to the GC seat wasn’t exactly a typical one. Green graduated from Indiana University with a degree in business in 1987. But before jumping into a suit and tie, he donned a different uniform—that of a Dallas Cowboys football player. Green signed as a free agent, played for half a season, then headed to his hometown of Chicago.

In the Windy City, Green landed a job at American National Bank and began preparing for the LSAT. The next year, he headed to Northwestern University Law School and started down the path that would ultimately lead to the top legal spot at CareerBuilder, the largest online employment website in the United States. More 

4 tips to help lawyers get the full value LinkedIn offers

linkedinLinkedIn is no longer an optional platform. It crossed the tipping point long ago and is now a core tool used by third party recruiters and employers alike to identify and research candidates. And if you are actively interviewing, expect every interviewer to check out your LinkedIn profile.

Putting your best foot forward on LinkedIn is not time-consuming, but you should do it thoughtfully and purposefully. Here are four key tips for getting it right.

1. The photo matters. Like it or not, your headshot is your first impression. Choose your LinkedIn photo accordingly. Go with a simple business look, preferably with a smile included. If you don’t have an appropriate public relations shot on file, spend time and money to have one taken. More 

Interview checklist: 3 attributes of the ideal candidate

CheckMany logic driven attempts have been made to assess culture fit objectively: personality tests, skills based tests, and situational interviewing strategies. Such exercises can be useful, and I’ll address them in future columns. No matter the process, however, I believe that hiring is far more art than science. Trusting your gut is the correct approach. And in my opinion, that gut check should include a checklist of three essential attributes.

1. Hire people pleasers. Your nightmare as a general counsel is the professional who does not enjoy providing customer service. Many outstanding lawyers lack good bedside manner, and they are most effective as outside counsel. More