April 24, 2024
How do you a general counsel of a corporation? Zippia


Becoming a corporate counsel is an exciting and rewarding career path for those interested in the legal field. As a corporate counsel, you will play a crucial role in advising companies on legal matters, ensuring compliance with regulations, and protecting the organization’s interests. This article will outline the steps and qualifications required to become a successful corporate counsel.

Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

The first step towards becoming a corporate counsel is completing a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field. While a specific major is not required, studying subjects such as business, economics, or political science can provide a strong foundation for your legal career. It is important to maintain a high GPA during your undergraduate studies, as it can significantly impact your chances of getting into law school.

Take the LSAT

After earning your bachelor’s degree, you will need to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). This standardized test assesses your critical thinking, analytical reasoning, and reading comprehension skills. Your LSAT score, along with your undergraduate GPA, will play a crucial role in determining your admission into law school.

Attend Law School

Once you have successfully completed the LSAT, the next step is to attend law school. Law school typically takes three years to complete, during which you will study various legal subjects, including contracts, torts, constitutional law, and more. It is important to choose a law school with a strong reputation and a focus on corporate law.

Pass the Bar Exam

After graduating from law school, you will need to pass the bar exam in the state where you wish to practice as a corporate counsel. The bar exam is a comprehensive test that assesses your knowledge of the law and your ability to apply legal principles. Passing the bar exam is a requirement to become a licensed attorney.

Gain Experience

Once you have passed the bar exam and obtained your law license, it is essential to gain practical experience in the field of corporate law. You can start by working at a law firm that specializes in corporate law or by seeking internships or clerkship opportunities at corporate legal departments. This experience will provide you with valuable insights into the day-to-day responsibilities of a corporate counsel.

Develop Specialization

As you gain experience in the field, it is beneficial to develop a specialization within corporate law. This could include areas such as mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, employment law, or compliance. Having a specialization will make you a valuable asset to companies and increase your chances of advancement in your career.


Networking is essential in any profession, and becoming a corporate counsel is no exception. Attend legal conferences, join professional organizations, and connect with other legal professionals to expand your network. Building relationships can lead to job opportunities and mentorship, helping you excel in your career as a corporate counsel.

Continuing Education

As laws and regulations constantly evolve, it is crucial for corporate counsels to stay updated on the latest legal developments. Engage in continuing education programs, attend seminars, and pursue certifications to enhance your knowledge and skills. This continuous learning will make you a trusted advisor to the companies you represent.

Demonstrate Leadership

A successful corporate counsel not only possesses legal expertise but also demonstrates strong leadership skills. Take on leadership roles within your organization, contribute to legal publications, and actively participate in industry events. Your ability to lead and inspire others will set you apart in the field of corporate law.


Becoming a corporate counsel requires dedication, hard work, and continuous learning. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can embark on a fulfilling career as a corporate counsel, advising companies and making a significant impact in the business world.