Nowhere but Asia are the cultural and language differences more significant to the role of
corporate counsel’s work than Europe. There are 23 official languages within the European Union,
and an estimated 200+ total languages spoken (regional variations of languages, such as Swiss
German, and dialects). There are the official and working languages of governments of the European
European Commission Multilingualism. ( 24 November 2010). European Commission - EU Languages
and Language Policy. Retrieved from: http://ec.europa.eu/education/languages/languages-of-europe/
As you craft your plan to derive more value from external and internal resources in Europe,
think about the potential obstacles and opportunities in implementation, for each market where
you are active. Consider ways to tailor your approach to adapt to the local legal system, culture and
common practices. Address the obstacles or resistance that you expect you may encounter in some
jurisdictions, based on common local practice.
The following questions can be adapted to your Value Challenge exercise. These are taken
from a longer checklist on “Instructing Overseas Lawyers,” published by Practical Law Company
in February 2012, and written by Paul Hodges and Craig Tevendale of Herbert Smith LLP. These
practical questions may help facilitate a constructive dialog about improving value.
Your external providers
•;Where are your external lawyers qualified to practice law?
•;Which professional rules apply to your advisers?