The Future of Remote Working – Does it have one?

Jeffery Tan, Group General Counsel, Jardine Cycle & Carriage Limited

In July 2021, Morgan Stanley’s chief legal officer, Eric Grossman, indicated in a memo to law firms his organisation instructed, that those who maintain remote working practices instead of returning to the office, will be at a disadvantage. In issuing this warning, Grossman cited his personal experience, “as we are already largely back in the office at Morgan Stanley, it is now clear to me that a hybrid meeting of live participants and Zoom participants is challenging at best.” In the memo Grossmann stated that as a 'general rule' Morgan Stanley would not facilitate the use of Zoom for ‘critical’ meetings, with a minor concession that it would deploy some technology innovations. Perhaps the most financially pertinent point in the memo to outside counsel was contained in these sentences: “We choose to hire you all because of the quality of your lawyers and the product they deliver. I strongly believe that firms that return to the office will have a significant performance advantage over those that do not.”

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Management General April 2022 Vol.15, No. 59, Spring 2022

Jeffery Tan


Jeffery is the Group General Counsel; Chief Sustainability Officer, Director, Group Corporate Affairs; and Group Company Secretary of Jardine Cycle & Carriage Ltd. He is responsible for legal, compliance, company secretarial, communications and public affairs at the Group level. Before joining Jardine Cycle & Carriage, he was the Group General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Board Secretary for UTAC Holdings Ltd. Prior to that, he has over 20 years of private practice and in-house legal experience with international law firms and multinational companies such as Allen & Gledhill, DLA Piper, Siemens and Motorola. He also served in a business capacity as President of Motorola Singapore for five years. Jeffery has an LLB (HONS) from the National University of Singapore. He is a senior Advocate & Solicitor of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Singapore and a Solicitor of England & Wales. He has completed the Senior Executive Management Program, at Northwestern University – Kellogg School of Management and the Driving Strategic Innovation Program at MIT Sloan School of Management. Jeffery serves on the board of the Singapore International Chamber of Commerce.

Management General April 2022 Vol.15, No. 59, Spring 2022