Sr Director, Employment Legal
Discovery CommunicationsNew York, NY
Full Time Job
Discovery is the global leader in real life entertainment, serving passionate fans around the world with content that inspires, informs, and entertains. Discovery delivers over 8,000 hours of original programming each year across deeply loved content genres.
Available in 220 countries and territories and 50 languages, Discovery is a platform innovator, reaching viewers on all screens and services, from linear, free-to-air, and pay–TV channels, to digital products and streaming services, to social and mobile-first content and formats. Discovery's portfolio of premium brands includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, Food Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Travel Channel, Motortrend, Animal Planet, Science Channel, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, and discovery , a premium streaming service providing a well-loved content from many of Discovery's beloved brands.
The Corporate Legal department is responsible for all legal matters related to Discovery's businesses and operations, worldwide. The legal department provides pragmatic advice and counsel on broad range of areas including employment, retail, technology, advertising, marketing, mergers and acquisitions, commercial joint ventures, licensing, trademarks, patents, corporate operations and litigation. This department negotiates and drafts a wide array of contracts including employment agreements, independent contractor agreements, software licenses, bank loans and asset/stock purchase agreements.
Ideally based in New York, the Senior Director of Employment Legal will work closely with People & Culture, the internal legal team and the business to provide day-to-day advice and subject matter expertise. The incumbent will advise on the full range of employee relations and other labor and employment issues across our US footprint. The Senior Director of Employment Legal will interpret the latest employment legislation and case law into practical, straight forward language to deliver workable solutions for the business.
1. Act as the subject matter expert on employment legal issues by providing ongoing day-to-day advice and guidance to People & Culture (P&C) partners on the full range of initiatives with legal implications, e.g. employee relations issues, internal complaints of harassment or discrimination, organizational restructuring, grievances/internal complaints, administrative charges, redundancies, new legal requirements etc.
2. Work independently on complex issues with limited direction or oversight.
3. Supervise, manage and evaluate outside counsel on employment related matters including responding to demand letters and EEOC charges and handling litigation.
4. Manage administration of 100 US employment contracts. Draft and negotiate employment contracts and other P&C related contracts using clear, practical and straight forward language. Provide guidance and training to P&C Partners on the same.
5. Work with SVP Global Employment Legal to contribute towards the US Employment legal strategy
6. Build and maintain strong internal relationships across a matrix structure: Legal, business, Finance, P&C Partners and Operations and other key stakeholders.
7. Understand and research solutions, looking beyond existing methodologies where required on recurring employee relations themes within Discovery and implement effective solutions and share the learning to prevent these issues from happening again.
8. Manage a portfolio of complex employee relations cases through to conclusion.
9. Interpret the latest employment legislation and case law into practical, straight forward language to deliver workable solutions for the business and provide training to P&C and business on critical employment legislation and/or P&C legal processes.
10. Support a number of projects related to Employment Legal, from M&A support as needed through to crisis management and business continuity planning
11. Proactively network with employment law professionals externally. Take up opportunities to attend network groups, seminars etc and share the learning.
12. Be familiar with navigating employee benefits issues, such as leave of absences, COBRA, and retirement plans, ERISA knowledge a plus.
* A minimum of 5-10 years of experience as in-house employment legal, ideally in a comparable industry or global multicultural organization; law firm experience a plus.
* Top academic credentials from an ABA-accredited law school and bar admission.
* Excellent negotiation and drafting skills.
* Strong interpersonal skills – ability to work effectively at all levels within a matrixed company.
* A good sense of business judgement and ability to make difficult decisions while keeping key stakeholders informed
* Clear and concise communicator (both orally and written) – ability to present and distil legally complex issues into legally compliant but practical and commercial solutions, in a way that engages the key stakeholders.
* Strong interpersonal skills in dealing with a wide range of clients, and ability to prioritize while handling multiple responsibilities.
* A solid work ethic and an interest in building a team committed to quality and excellence.
* Strong attention to detail and organizational skills.
* Calm under pressure, clear thinking, well organized, proactive and grasps concepts quickly.
* Emotionally intelligent outlook – must have the ability to diffuse and calm others.
* Inclusive behavior – ensuring that all key stakeholders are consistently kept in the loop.
* Should excel in a fast-paced environment with minimal supervision.
* Ability to manage own time judiciously and deal effectively with competing interests.
* Some limited travel may be required once current Covid-19 measures are removed
* Must have the legal right to work in the United States.