Greg Ramsay

How to Make the Best of Your Legal Team w. Greg Ramsay – Ep. 54



SUMMARY

Greg Ramsay is a corporate mergers and acquisitions lawyer, as well as an entrepreneur and founder of Made it Legal. He comes across as a low-key kind of guy, but truth is he has been in boardrooms with some of the global elites in business.

There is no doubt that lawyers can be very expensive. It may feel at times like your business is not getting enough value out of the legal fees. In our conversation, Greg truly opens up our eyes to the importance of finding the right legal team who will do the due diligence with a business mindset. The last thing you want is having to pay later the [likely higher] cost of using a cheap service.

Greg has been counsel on numerous deals that are measured well into the hundreds of millions of dollars. He developed the skills of navigating highly complex deal structures, as well as managing the personalities of the executives and investors at the table. In executing these deals, he has a unique vantage point in seeing negotiation tactics, and how the ultra-rich think and execute their strategies. He speaks about the day two deals as part of the chess game they’re playing. He explains how management teams can make better use of the relationships with their legal team.

“There is opportunities out there, and when executing on them, don’t forget about your lawyer!” — Greg Ramsay [0:40:30]

Greg has global legal experience in M&A, but he’s passionate about helping small businesses succeed by making solid legal counsel more accessible to cash-strapped entrepreneurs.

As we transition from talking big league to small business, we talk about how to approach buying a business. A key point is the importance of performing thorough due diligence in going through the buying process.

“The disciplined business leaders that I came to know and respect… wouldn’t let [deal timelines] be the driving force behind their decision-making.” — Greg Ramsay [0:15:35]

Given recent events and the recession crunch many business owners are facing, this episode is very timely. For some great advice on marrying a business mindset with a legal mindset, tune into today’s episode!

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Key Points From This Episode:

  • Greg introduces himself and how he got into law.
  • The senior legal counsel position Greg held at Brookfield and his responsibilities, including credit facilities, governance, and corporate structures.
  • The multimillion-dollar deals that Greg has facilitated, factoring in personalities and insight.
  • The conversations that Greg has had in the boardroom and the timelines of these deals.
  • The impact of deal timelines, strategy, and execution on annual or quarterly financial reports.
  • What is misunderstood about lawyers and the role that they play in these deals.
  • Marrying legal requirements with business strategy and why it’s helpful to bring your legal team into deals from the beginning.
  • Why lawyers should be seen more as partners from an innovation perspective rather than just useful for drafting documents.
  • Advice for those buying businesses and managing legal matters, starting with due diligence.
  • Negotiating high severity, low probability purchase agreements, and when your lawyers should dig in their heels.
  • Dialogue between business leaders and the value of a written due diligence report.
  • Greg talks a bit about Made It Legal and why he is so passionate about small businesses.
  • Transform legal costs into an investment, save time and money, and get legal counsel.
  • What areas Greg sees small businesses making mistakes in, like financing and development.

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