By RaeAnne Marsh | InBusiness Phoenix
The upheaval of the past couple of years has required businesses to adapt and adopt a lot of change to survive. Some of this comes from social pressures as attitudes and habits change, and some comes from new regulatory guidelines and requirements. Attorneys bring businesses expertise to help them navigate the changing landscape and, where needed, can be the anchor that keeps them from getting pulled off their moorings and into trouble.
For this cover story, In Business Magazine reached out to some of the law firms that serve our community for their legal perspective on key topics impacting business. These are only a few of the practice areas in which they offer specialized knowledge and expertise; our 2022 Legal Guide for Business Owners in this June edition contains a listing of local firms and their practice specialties.
Need to Know: Workforce
Addressing workforce issues, attorney Laurent Badoux, a shareholder at Buchalter, suggests, “Let’s set aside the law for a second,” and starts his discussion with an overview of the situation. “We are still in the middle of what has been labeled the ‘great resignation.’ We like to use labels when something strikes us as an unusual occurrence, but we should be clear that the pandemic likely only exacerbated trends already years in the making, which means this great resignation trend is not the advent of a new trend as much as the wider recognition of a change long in the making.
Need to Know: Cybersecurity
“Businesses should know that for every new cybersecurity technology that’s implemented, hackers are actively looking for ways to circumvent it,” says Omar Abdallah, an attorney at Rose Law Group, noting, “It’s only a matter of time until they’re successful.” For that reason, he says business leaders need to always be diligent and up to date on common and new security risks. “This is particularly important now, as many businesses’ work models have changed with remote or hybrid work models.” For remote workers, he suggests businesses consider implementing multiple layers of defense that include procedures and policies, data loss prevention software, multi-factor authentication and other risk-management approaches. “And certainly,” he says, “all employees should be regularly informed of the most current security best practices.”
Need to Know: Environmental Issues
Environmental concern is on the upswing, according to Court Rich, co-founder, senior partner and director renewable energy and regulatory law departments at Rose Law Group. He has experienced increased interest by businesses regarding what they can and should do to reduce their impact on the environment. Observing that some do it because they have a genuine desire to be better stewards of our environment and others do it because their customers are increasingly demanding they do it, he notes that many business owners are not aware that many of the steps a business can take to lower its impact on the environment can actually double as smart business decisions that are not just additive to the bottom line.
“For example,” he says, “investments in certain energy-efficiency upgrades or rooftop solar and battery backup can have a quick payback for some businesses, thereby lowering their impact on the environment while saving them money. Also, solar investments can come with significant tax credits that can be monetized to benefit the business.”