The Architecture of Business: Developing Commercial Acumen & Strategic Thinking for Lawyers

The Architecture of Business: Developing Commercial Acumen & Strategic Thinking for Lawyers
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Booking Closed

Venue : 30 Merchant Road #02-01 Riverside Point Singapore 058282

Last Date Of Registration : Monday 18 June 2018 12:00 am

Start Date : Thursday 28 June 2018

End Date : Thursday 28 June 2018

Event Start Time : 09:00 am

Event End Time : 06:00 pm

Only 18% of GCs are doing work which they believe has the greatest strategic value to the business – but over half expect to be doing so within five years . . . The majority of GCs think they are influential within their organisations – but fewer than one in five think they are ‘very influential’. And many are not in their organisations’ leadership teams.”

“Some people are desktop lawyers who hide behind the law rather than develop business skills”.[1]

Leadership requires more than stellar legal skills and an ability to work with others. In-house lawyers who aspire to leadership positions must demonstrate deep “business” knowledge, strong commercial acumen, and an ability to be a strategic problem solver. In addition, in-house lawyers who are leaders must have the ability to design and operate a legal services organization that both deliver value to clients and is sustainable.

What skills are necessary to play these complex roles, and how do you develop them?

This workshop introduces lawyers to four models and tools that can be deployed to help in-house counsels think and act with the kind of business and strategic acumen that organizations seek in their legal advisors and future leaders.

[1] CMS & Singapore Corporate Counsel Association, Survey & Discussion Paper, General Counsel in Singapore: Setting the Pace (April 2018).


Learning Objectives:


  •        Understand and apply the two basic business models (Volume Operations and Complex Solutions) and how they apply to both business organizations and legal services organizations (e.g., implications for strategy, client engagement, delivery, branding or marketing, investments, innovation, pricing etc.)


  •        Understand and apply the choice of “value disciplines” framework, which helps businesses to understand what creates differentiation and investment decisions on operations.


  •        Understand and apply the three key components of a successful strategic and organisational design model (Strategy, Offerings and Infrastructure), and underlying subcomponents, and how they can be used to help to design and operate successful legal services organization, such as an in-house legal department.


  •        Understanding different types of “innovation”, and the considerations in choosing which innovation category to pursue in order to differentiate from competitors.




“Duc’s Architecture of Business course is ground-breaking in the way that it trains lawyers to think about the practice of corporate/commercial law as a business. The in-house legal team and external advisers must work together to make the practice of law less transactional and more directed towards building long term value for the business they serve and advise.”

Catherine Dickson, Vice President, Regional General Counsel APAC, Sealed Air



Duc Trang recently conducted his signature Entrepreneurial Lawyering, Architecture of Business workshop for the participants of Singapore Academy of Law’s Future Law Innovation Programme.

The audience was varied, with lawyers and non-lawyers alike. Yet, the sessions offered everyone some really useful and practical tools to explain our and our clients’ businesses, enabling us to have deeper conversations with our clients because we have a better understanding of the world around us.

We often hear that lawyers need to think more strategically and demonstrate sharper commercial acumen. Duc’s "Architecture of Business" model helps address that point very concretely, while being relevant to any type of business.”

*Noemi Alintissar-Mooney, Manager, Future Law Innovation Program, Singapore Academy of Law



“Duc recently delivered a fascinating, and important, session on Commercial Acumen – the Architecture of Business for our Singapore lawyers. He made the point very clearly that the delivery of legal services is rapidly changing and that “business as usual” is no longer going to be sustainable for the legal profession.  Duc’s former experience as a GC gave him considerable credibility with our partners at all levels when he talked about business models and value principles and what, from a GC’s perspective, differentiates one law firm from another.  Duc’s style is engaging and authoritative, the content of his talk was thought-provoking and informative. I would strongly recommend Duc’s session to any professional interested in taking their business “to the next level”.”

Helen Jenkins, Head of Knowledge Development, Asia, Berwin Leighton Paisner


Trainer Profile

Duc V. Trang
Managing Director
Landon Advisory Services

DUC V. TRANG is the Managing Director of Landon Advisory Services, and previously served as Adjunct Professor of Law at the National University of Singapore (and formerly at the Central European University). Duc’s work ranges from providing legal and commercial advice on complex transactions to strategy and human capital consulting for legal services organization. Duc also coaches senior counsels and law firm partners on developing leadership and strategic thinking skills to enhance their careers.

Duc previously was Vice President, Legal & Government Affairs at Motorola Solutions, Inc., and served as general counsel for the Asia Pacific & Middle East region and global general counsel of Motorola's Solutions & Services business division. Duc has also worked in-house as senior counsel for IBM and in private practice with White & Case and DLA Piper. He is a former Executive Director of the Constitutional and Legal Policy Institute in Budapest. 

Duc lectures frequently in the following areas: the business of law, strategy, leadership,compliance, anti-corruption, leadership, transformation and change management, and has published in the areas of constitutional courts, human rights, corruption, telecommunication regulations, and foreign investments in Vietnam. Duc currently is writing a book, The Architecture of Transactions: Rethinking the Training of Lawyers, scheduled to be published in 2018. Duc is a graduate of Columbia University School of Law, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and Editor-in-Chief of the Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, and of the University of California, Berkeley, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.


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