General Counsel Executive Search – Found Legal

In-House GC being a vital role for any business, it’s safe to say that Executive Search for General Counsel should be carried out by a niche firm specialising in hiring for senior legal roles in your industry.

General Counsel Executive Search process

General Counsel Executive Search projects are run in a structured and efficient manner making sure that the search team engages with senior lawyers who have the most relevant experience to your business.

1. Client Research

Before we meet with you we carry out research to understand your business. We research your market offering, company history, employer brand, culture, key leadership, products and services, competitors, business strategy and any publicity.

2. Client Meeting

We then meet your hiring stakeholders to discuss the role and gather the required information. Most importantly, this allows us directly observe the culture of the business as well as the leadership styles and dynamics, which will help define what will make your future General Counsel successful at the company.

3. The Brief

The retained search consultant then drafts and agrees with you a document made of two parts:

  1. The description of the position, outlining its objectives, reporting and responsibilities;
  2. The candidate specification, including requirements to experience, core competencies, soft skills and cultural fit.

This document serves as a basis for creating a strategy for General Counsel executive search and informs communication with candidates.

4. General Counsel Search Strategy

Your legal search consultant develops a GC search strategy based on:

  • Our niche understanding of the relevant technology sector and the senior legal executives within it;
  • Research of target companies that are most likely to yield a GC with the required experience and skill set;
  • Key senior lawyers in the sector that meet the requirements of your role.

We also draw a list of companies that you would not like us to target.

5. Research

Using the legal executive search strategy as a blueprint, we conduct research to identify and profile suitable candidates. The result of this step is a ‘long list’ of candidates who could be a potential match to your role.

The search team further qualifies the lawyers on the log list to determine if they indeed meet the requirements of the role. We also gather understanding of the candidates’ motivations and seek to determine the likelihood of them accepting an offer if one was extended.

6. Qualifying Top General Counsel Candidates

The long list is reviewed and narrowed down into a list of most suitable candidates to be interviewed in depth.

The search consultant interviews and evaluates top prospective candidates in an interview that walks through the candidate’s career history.

Preserving candidate confidentiality, we attempt to pre-reference candidates whenever possible to verify past performance and cultural fit.

The result of this process is a ‘short list’ of finalists most closely meeting the client’s requirements.

7. Candidate Reports

For those senior lawyers the consultant presents to the client, a written Candidate Report is prepared which describes: 

  • candidate’s education, skills, career history and sector experience;
  • how this person matches the unique challenges of your role;
  • appraisal of the candidate’s strengths, weaknesses and appropriateness for the position;
  • key motivators, issues and deal-making details essential to closing the candidate.

With the client’s input, the list is refined to a selection of 3 to 5 contenders for the client to meet.

8. Interviews With Stakeholders

Client team interviews the strongest 3-5 candidates and selects the finalist who then meets the key stakeholders across the business.
The unsuccessful candidates are updated by the search consultant.

9. Offer

Once a final candidate is selected, the search consultant works closely with the client and candidate to best position the offer and to negotiate a package that is agreeable to both parties.

10. Close of Search. GC’s Transition

The search is complete when the finalist accepts the offer and serves notice to the current employer.

Your legal executive search consultant will continue to stay in touch with the candidate for the first few months in their new senior legal position to ensure a smooth transition.

…That’s a lot of steps! How long is it going to take?

Whilst a highly structured process, executive search does not need to take long.

As a niche Search Firm specialising in In-house Legal roles in Technology companies, at Found Legal we already have most of the work done.

We have already mapped out and built relationships with 93% of high caliber lawyers with experience in various technology industries.

This cuts down the search time by 65-70% and guarantees that you get access to the most suitable candidates for your GC role.

To discuss how we can help you find your General Counsel, please get in touch with Mila Read, Director of Found Legal

Found Legal is a specialist recruitment agency for legal counsel roles in tech.

Start-ups, larger technology companies and Fortune 100 multinationals use us to hire their in-house lawyers quickly and cost-effectively.

Benefit from our niche expertise. Get access to the Top 10% of legal talent at all levels – from junior in-house lawyer to Head of Legal and General Counsel.

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