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LexTalk World Talk Show with Amit Kumar, Head of Legal at Tejas Networks Limited



Amit Kumar, Head of Legal, Tejas Networks Limited (a Tata Group of Companies) is a 2010 law graduate from Gujarat National Law University, Gandhi nagar, Gujarat, India and is qualified to practice law in India.


Having started as a full time General Corporate and Commercial Lawyer, Amit Kumar is now a seasoned legal professional with over 13 years of versatile legal experience. His practice areas include Mergers & Acquisition, Private Equity & Debt Transactions, AIF, Fintech and Payment & Settlement Laws, IPR, Telecom Laws, Cab Aggregator Laws, Dispute Resolution and day to day Regulatory Advisories.


He has handled a significant number of M&As and general corporate & commercial law matters, advised on high-stake deals and disputes across several judicial and quasi-judicial forums in India as well as Internationally.


Amit’s deals experience cuts across sectors to include Telecoms, Fintech, EduTech, Real Estate Funding, Information technology, e-commerce. He regularly advises and counsels the senior management on corporate governance, policies and strategy initiatives.


As a corporate and commercial disputes lawyer, he has advised various companies across diverse forums including the Supreme Court of India, High Courts, National Company Law Tribunals, Arbitrational Tribunal on complex disputes pertaining to commercial contracts, shareholders’ agreements, company affairs, intellectual property rights etc.


He has implemented comprehensive compliance management programs for top listed & unlisted public companies by leveraging technology thereby ensuring enhanced IP Protection & Corporate Governance Practices.


As a professional negotiator for commercial contracts, he was instrumental in forging many cross border business transactions for large companies engaged in Telecom, Fintech, EduTech, E-commerce etc.


Interview:


Host: What do you think regarding the use of technology and how much of impact is it going to create in terms of the industry and future businesses?


Amit: We, as human being, are moving forward with a speed which is hit herto undreamt of. Today, I can practically do anything and everything on a smartphone. Even build a business. Technology has helped to create a platform where any person, regardless of their gender, social status, race, or any other criterion of discrimination, can create a new business.


The legal industry has been significantly impacted by technology in recent years. With the introduction of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other technological advancements, the legal profession is undergoing a massive transformation. Here are some of the ways technology has impacted the legal industry:


  • Automation of Legal Processes: With the help of technology, many legal processes can now be automated, leading to increased efficiency and reduced costs. For example, contract review and analysis can now be done using machine learning, which significantly reduces the time it takes to review contracts.

  • Electronic Discovery: Electronic discovery is the process of collecting, reviewing, and producing electronically stored information in response to a legal request. Technology has made it easier to collect, search, and organize electronic documents, reducing the time and cost of the discovery process.

  • Improved Collaboration: Technology has made it easier for lawyers to collaborate with each other and with clients. Cloud-based collaboration tools allow lawyers to work together on documents and communicate with clients from anywhere in the world.

  • Enhanced Security: The legal industry deals with sensitive and confidential information. Technology has made it possible to secure this information through encryption, firewalls, and other security measures.

The way forward for the legal industry is to continue to embrace technology and use it to improve efficiency and reduce cost. Lawyers should also focus on developing their technological skills and knowledge to keep up with the rapid pace of change in the industry. At the same time, it's important to balance the benefits of technology with ethical and legal considerations to ensure that technology is being used in a responsible and ethical way.


Host: Looking at the scale of developments in the field of business, how and in what terms would you consider the use of technology and how would you like to use it?


Amit: When it comes to law, my approach is to create a healthy balance between new technology and traditional practices. We are at a nascent stage when it comes to technology in the legal sector. The world is yet to see many developments and refinements.


Some of the technologies and tools that I would like to use in future are:

  • Implementing Legal Operations Management Software: Legal operations management software can help GCs streamline their department's workflows, automate manual tasks, and increase visibility into legal spend and performance metrics. By using such software, GCs can focus on more strategic tasks while ensuring that their legal team's day-to-day operations run smoothly.

  • Leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI can be used to automate routine legal tasks, such as contract review and analysis, legal research, and due diligence. By leveraging AI, GCs can save time and increase accuracy, allowing them to focus on higher-value work

  • Using Collaboration and Communication Tools: Collaboration and communication tools can help GCs manage their legal team more efficiently. Tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams, and Asana can help GCs track tasks, collaborate on documents, and communicate with team members in real-time, regardless of their location.

  • Adopting E-Discovery Tools: E-discovery tools can help GCs manage large volumes of data efficiently and cost-effectively. These tools can help GCs identify relevant information quickly, reducing the time and cost associated with traditional manual review processes.

  • Utilizing Data Analytics: GCs can use data analytics to gain insights into their legal department's performance and identify areas for improvement. Analytics tools can help GCs track legal spend, analyze case outcomes, and identify trends, enabling them to make data-driven decisions and improve their department's efficiency over time.

Host: With the daily developments that are taking place, how and what efforts would you plan for ensuring the same standard of pace from your end?


Amit: I firmly believe in upskilling myself and match mine and team’s skills to take up all the new challenges that this rapidly changing environment brings along with it.


My approach to being future-ready can be summed up in the following points:


  1. Embracing Technology: The legal profession is being transformed by technology, and it is crucial that I stay up-to-date with the latest software and tools, be open to learning new software programs and technologies that can streamline my work and improve efficiency.

  2. Developing new skills: I believe in continually learn and develop new skills to remain relevant in this rapidly changing profession.

  3. Staying informed: I try to keep up with the latest developments in my field by attending conferences, joining professional associations, and subscribing to industry publications. It’s also important to stay informed about changes in the law, so I can provide the best advice to my organization.

  4. Networking: I actively try to build relationship with other legal professionals who help me stay connected industry trends and opportunities. I attend networking events and reach out to colleagues and mentors to build my network.

  5. Focusing on providing exceptional legal services: I focus on building strong relationships with the senior management, understand business needs and provide high quality legal advice and representation.


Host: Time is money in any profession and in legal it's most of all. How do you ensure to make the best of your time as a lawyer?


Amit: As a Legal Head, I have a lot of diversified responsibilities including managing the business stakeholders. Therefore, I cannot afford to waste time. In order to be efficient, I try to stick to the basic principles of time management, giving practical solution within the legal framework and following are some of the rules that I like to follow:

  1. Prioritize: I try to Identify the most important tasks and focus on completing them first. This helps me to stay organized and avoid wasting time on less important tasks.

  2. Schedule your day: I like to plan my day in advance and allocate specific time slots for each task. This helps me to stay on track and avoid getting side-tracked.

  3. Delegate: I delegate tasks that can be handled by someone else. My team helps me by taking up tasks that can be managed by them without supervision which frees up my time to focus on more important tasks.

  4. Stay organized and focussed: I like to keep myself organised and focussed in order to deliver best legal advice.

 

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