A Global General Counsel’s Thoughts on Organizations and Excellence | Pierre Gentin, McKinsey & Company
The Strategy Sphere podcast — brought to you by Intapp — features interviews with leading experts in academia, innovation, and business. Our hosts are Lavinia Calvert, who leads the global marketing and business development solutions business at Intapp, and Deborah Farone, a marketing strategy consultant and author. In each episode, Calvert and Farone explore today’s world of professional services marketing, leadership, innovation, and education.
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In episode 13 of Strategy Sphere Season One, Calvert and Farone spoke with Pierre Gentin, Global General Counsel at McKinsey & Company, one of the world’s most revered consulting firms.
Gentin leads a global team of lawyers across the 65 countries in which the firm operates. In this episode, Gentin threaded together his ideas about running a best-in-class legal department during a time of disruption, and shared how he’s been influenced by philosophy and music. He also discussed growing up in South Africa, and explained how small, precious moments in life may provide us with lessons that affect us in the largest way.
Gentin covered the three elements he believes are vital to operating a well-run legal department: organizing the right structure, empowering talent to grow, and having great clarity around the legal function and its objectives. He also pointed out, “I think there’s a baseline of professional excellence required without which you can’t get anywhere — those are the must-dos.”
Gentin also shared words of wisdom on professional fulfillment, leadership, and success:
- If you try to over-program your life or your career, you won’t have novel experiences or pick up new things that could take you in wonderful directions.
- Much of good leadership involves helping individuals achieve their greatest potential and allowing them to bring their special talents and whole self to work.
- Your experiences will become lessons that give context to life.
Following his time as a partner at the law firm Cahill Gordon & Reindel, a managing director at Credit Suisse in senior legal and risk positions, and an assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, Gentin’s experiences have given him a unique prism of the client-provider ecosystem. Download the episode to hear Gentin’s insights — and to hear him play guitar!
Sources in this Episode
- Creative Geniuses and Continuous Creativity in Advertising | David Lubars, BBDO
- Leadership, Design Thinking, Hiring, and the Future of the Professions | Scott Westfahl, Harvard Law
- Finding a Company’s Purpose and Defining Personal Joy | Patrice Tanaka, Joyful Planet
- Innovative Leadership and Accelerating Change | Ralph Baxter, Intapp
- Using Empathy Interviewing Techniques to Get to the Heart of the Matter | Lisa Leong, ABC Radio National
- Corporate Identity and Design to Define a Brand with Michael Bierut, Pentagram
- Human-Centered Design, Social Media, and Creating Connections in the Time of COVID-19 | Cat Moon, Vanderbilt University
- Leadership, Learning, and Managing in the Era of Zoom I Natalie Loeb, Loeb Leadership Development
- Breaking Down the Professional Services Sales Myths Using Time-Tested Research I Tom McMakin and Jacob Parks, PIE
- Mentoring, Leading, and Pulling the Right Levers to Build a Highly Creative Firm I Dale Bornstein, M Booth