"If I wasn’t a lawyer I’d be a better musician"
Member in the Spotlight allows us to get up-close and personal with some of our ACC Australia members. Recently, we spoke with Nick Galloway, Regional Counsel (ANZ and South East Asia) for PPG Industries, a committee member of ACC Australia and a regular speaker at ACC Australia events.
Tell us about your current role.
I am the Regional Counsel (ANZ and South East Asia) for PPG Industries, a global coatings manufacturer. We paint buildings, cars, aeroplanes, beer cans, ships, computers. (If it moves we paint it. If it doesn’t move …. )
What do you believe is the most important skill an in-house lawyer needs?
The ability to build relationships.
What led you to pursue an in-house legal role?
I was always attracted to the practical application of the law. Being involved in the decisions and accepting responsibility for the outcomes.
What advice would you offer to in-house counsel in building relationships with their organisations.
Listen. Every client is different. Sometimes very different from you and the last person in your office. Work out what they want even if it’s so you can steer them in a different direction.
What is the one thing a law degree doesn’t teach you about being an in-house lawyer?
What, I have to narrow it to just one thing?…. The basic skills are extremely important but they’re just the beginning.
What are the biggest changes you’ve witnessed across the legal sector since you joined the profession?
The increase in influence of the in house counsel, for sure. There is disruption everywhere but a major shift is that the GC plays a more prominent role. The rise of “New Law” firms with lower overhead, better technology and efficient work practices is huge. That didn’t exist when I started out .... but then the major firms only had 20 partners and couldn’t operate outside their home state. Massive change when you think about it.
Finish this sentence…. If I wasn’t a lawyer I’d be….
A better musician.
I like being a part of the ACC Australia community because …….
It’s a fabulous, warm generous community of people. (I’ll often come away from an ACC event feeling great. Not because all my problems are solved but it’s reassuring to spend time with people who face the same challenges as me).