Gartner Research

The Evolving Role of the General Counsel

Published: 03 April 2019

ID: G00708015

Analyst(s): Legal and Compliance Research Team


As companies change, so too must the work of the general counsel. This article categorizes the distinct roles that general counsel are asked to play and offers advice and guidance for balancing competing corporate priorities.

Table Of Contents

5 Roles of the General Counsel

Role 1: The General Counsel as Board Advisor

Role-Specific Management Considerations

Role 2: The General Counsel as Corporate Executive

Role-Specific Management Considerations

Role 3: The General Counsel as Chief Assurance Executive

Role-Specific Management Considerations

Role 4: The General Counsel as Corporate Ethics and Responsibility Officer

Role-Specific Management Considerations

Role 5: The General Counsel as Leader of the Legal Department

Role-Specific Management Considerations

Prioritization Is Destiny

Strategic Priority Focus

Comparative Advantage Focus

Administrative Task Focus


Recommended by the Authors


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