6 Valuable Lessons You’ll Learn at the 2021 ACC Annual Meeting

There are a lot of reasons to attend the 2021 ACC Annual Meeting. The most important? The lessons you’ll learn to make you a better in-house counsel and trusted business partner for your company. With so many virtual panels to attend, ACC Docket asked some of the panelists to share the most valuable insights that attendees will gain from their sessions. From investigations via Zoom to ESG philosophies, here are a few things you can expect from this year’s meeting.

1. Investigations via Zoom

Session: 604 - Investigations from Afar: Pointers & Pitfalls for Remote Investigations

Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Time: 11:15 am - 12:15 pm EST

“You can conduct a full and fair investigation over a video conference, but you do need to approach the process differently.”

– Lori Middlehurst, Senior Director, Global Employment Law (ANZ, ASEAN, Japan and India) at Salesforce

“Very well said, Lori — that’s the best lesson people will learn. Being remote does not impair the investigation in any way but it does have challenges and we can help organizations overcome that by adopting a right approach and process.”

– Amit Anand, Global GDS Employment Legal Counsel, General Counsel's Office at EYGBS (India) LLP

“A number of additional elements should be considered, none of which are insurmountable.”

– James Yule, Director, Investigations (APJ and EEMEA) at Merck Sharpe & Dohme (MSD)

2. The pandemic’s effect on women’s careers

Session: 500 - Two Steps Forward & One Step Back-Exploring the Pandemic’s Effect on Women in the Workplace

Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Time: 10-11 am EST

“Consistently, across geographies, industries, institutions, and roles, women are facing significant challenges as a result of the pandemic. Hear the steps you can take within your own institutions and teams to help address these challenges”

– Lucy Lopez, Head of Legal for the Americas & Deputy General Counsel at McKinsey & Company, Inc

“While WFH gave many working women greater flexibility to manage their family responsibilities within their homes, it meant less demarcation between work and personal time. Given women typically assume more of the responsibility for looking after children (arghh home school!) and managing the household — the pandemic significantly increased pressure on women to work even more. Hence the feeling so many of us feel that we are ‘always on.’

As women are significantly more likely than men at the same level to hold themselves to higher performance standards, workplaces need to go the extra mile for their women employees and be proactive in finding creative ways to give them extra support. This may be as simple as having a conversation to check in on their wellbeing and providing the permission many of us women feel we may need to take some time off.”

– Maree Myerscough, General Counsel at Asia Pacific at Aquila Capital

3. Pro bono opportunities

Session: 1001 - The Chief Legal Officer’s Point of View: Sustainability, Racial Justice, and In-House Pro Bono

Date: Thursday, October 21, 2021

Time: 11:15 am - 12:15 pm EST

“The panel will offer valuable tips for increasing in-house participation in remote pro bono opportunities. They will also offer a real-world perspective on how GCs align a corporation’s ESG philosophy and objectives with legal department goals, including with regard to DEI and pro bono.”

– Alyssa Saunders, Director, Corporate Pro Bono at Pro Bono Institute

4. Shifting mindsets

Session: LLDS3 - Leading Law Department Insights: Accenture | Legal Inclusion & Diversity: Shifting Mindsets Internally and Externally

Date: Thursday, October 21, 2021

Time: 9:30-10:30 am EST

“There is no one single action that can drive culture and mindset change, a multi-pronged approach is required. We will share our stories and ideas to help get you started.”

– Annabel Dumbell, Managing Director, Litigation and Dispute Management, Global I&D Lead at Accenture Legal

5. Digital transformations

Session: 804 - Digitizing your Business for a Post-COVID World

Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Time: 4-5 pm EST

“Adequate staffing and incremental project launch goals are two examples of ways to facilitate a successful contract lifecycle management (CLM) digital transformation.”

– Jennee DeVore, Head of Legal at Inflammatix, Inc.

“Understanding what your ultimate goals are, (what do you want to improve or in what area do you need to increase productivity the most) is the most important aspect of business transformation. Using a CLM and automating processes will make dramatic changes in how you contract and how you keep track of what you have agreed to with your clients.”

– Teresa Waller, Senior Director, Contract Management at Cerner Corporation

6. Delivering exceptional legal experiences and value

Session: LLDS1 - Leading Law Department Insights: Accenture | The Renaissance of Legal Customer Experience

Date: Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Time: 8:15-9:15 am EST

Legal teams have the opportunity to forge new perceptions about the value they bring. What drives new worth? “The answer lies in creating exceptional user experiences — using the power of human ingenuity and technology,” says Gerry Amann, General Counsel, North America at Accenture. This session provides insight about paths to building a client-first service model, including using different delivery channels and tech innovation in contract digitization and analysis to better serve legal partners and clients.

There's still time to join us for the ACC 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting. Register today!