Narcissistic Entitlement Syndrome among Attorneys: Why Narcissism Destroys Young Attorney Careers

Summary: The seriousness of this topic is far greater than I am even letting on. While this topic has gone unexplored in the legal profession, it is very real and something that affects countless attorneys, especially the ones who appear strongest on paper coming out of law school..


  • Many young attorneys can suffer from a conceited belief of themselves.
  • They in fact become narcissists.
  • While confidence and a demand for respect are much-needed attributes in law, self-congratulatory behavior is not welcomed.
  • Such behavior, in fact, can destroy a young attorney’s career.

The word narcissism comes from the character made famous by the Greek poet Ovid, Narcissus, who fell in love with his own reflection. In the story, Echo falls in love with Narcissus and gets rejected. The story makes clear that Narcissus is only able to love himself and not others. Conversely, Echo completely loses herself in her love for Narcissus and has no sense of self at all. At the end of the story, Narcissus tells Echo, “I would die before I give you power over me.” Echo responds, “I give you power over me.” Both Narcissus and Echo die because their love is unattainable. Many of us cannot find a balance between ourselves and others.

One of the greatest problems facing young associates inside law firms is what I call Narcissistic Entitlement Syndrome (“NES”). Attorneys who suffer from NES often very quickly find themselves out of jobs, whether they quit, are fired, or simply move among employers to deal with the false sense of entitlement that accompanies this disorder. I need to be clear that this narcissistic personality, in my opinion, is an extremely serious subject and something I believe probably at least 10% of the associates in large and prestigious law firms suffer from NES. This is a disorder that causes a sense of entitlement, and I see it virtually every week in my conversations with attorneys. These symptoms of narcissism will cause problems in your career.

Narcissism Entitlement Syndrome (NES) Definition

NES, in its shortest form, can be defined as an attorney being inwardly focused and oblivious to the people and organizations around him/her that he/she is supposed to serve. I link the concepts of narcissism and entitlement in this syndrome because the sense of entitlement most often has narcissistic undertones. Attorneys with NES see themselves as special, believe they should have whatever they want regardless of the feelings of others, and continually inflate themselves while putting others down. You might be wondering what a narcissistic personality disorder is or what some of the narcissistic personality disorder symptoms are. There are five major characteristics that attorneys with NES often have.

First, because they have a narcissist personality, they are generally preoccupied with fantasies of limitless brilliance, power, and success. While this may be something that many attorneys have, the attorney with NES will generally be quite consumed with these fantasies. Advancement and achievement are extremely important to them, and they envision the environment around them as one where they should be the center of others’ attention due to their achievements.

Second, attorneys with NES generally have an exaggerated sense of self-importance that is not commensurate with their actual level of achievement. They expect to be recognized as superior to others without a corresponding level of achievement. An attorney with NES will also generally exaggerate his/her achievements to others. Indeed, attorneys with NES like to speak about their achievements (and do) quite frequently. As a product of these fantasies, the attorney will often show a very arrogant attitude. The attorney with NES believes he/she is special and should only associate and work for other high-status people and institutions.

This article first appeared “
Narcissistic Entitlement Syndrome among Attorneys: Why Narcissism Destroys Young Attorney Careers “ on BCG Attorney Search also on Powershow.

Welcome to BCG Attorney Search — a legal recruitment firm that has built its reputation on maintaining high standards across the board. BCG Attorney Search is the America’s Premier Legal Placement Firm For Law Firm Attorneys.


A Comprehensive Guide to Bar Reciprocity: What States Have Reciprocity for Lawyers and Allow You to Waive into the Bar

Summary: Have you passed the bar in one state and want to work in another? Find out what your options are in this article.


One of the biggest mistakes attorneys make in their job search is to not look at multiple markets in their search. For most attorneys, we recommend you look at multiple markets when you are doing a job search—there are lifestyle, prestige, compensation and other considerations that make looking at other markets worth your while.

You graduated from law school, passed the bar exam, and met all other requirements for admission in a given state. Congratulations! You can begin practicing law in that state.

But what if you have not yet passed the bar exam? Or you want to explore legal opportunities in a state different from the one where you were admitted or practice federal law in federal district courts? Are there additional hurdles you need to overcome?

This article answers these questions. It provides an overview of the bar admission process – which is complicated and varies from state to state – and explores ways in which attorneys licensed in one state can practice in other states. It also covers what to do if you fail the bar exam and how to make use of your J.D. degree without actually practicing law. This article also discusses the recent trend towards “portability” of bar exam results through state adoption of the Uniform Bar Exam.

You Passed!

Passing the bar is a HUGE accomplishment. All your hard work has paid off – getting the grades in college, acing the LSAT, churning out the law school applications, braving the Socratic method and final exams of law school, writing onto a journal, competing in moot court … and now the icing on the cake … a passing score on the bar exam!

All that is left is to fulfill the few remaining steps for admission in the state where you passed the bar, such as the character and fitness determination, and then you will be off and running in your new career as an attorney.

As you plan your job search, we encourage you to think about applying in several markets. As legal recruiters, we always explore the benefits of applying in several markets with our clients who are serious about career strategy. Additional markets give you additional options in all kinds of ways including lifestyle, financial, prestige, happiness and other considerations. You may be the perfect fit for a market and job you have not even considered and you may be able to land that job without even taking another bar exam. We cover concepts like multiple bar admissions and reciprocity below.

This article first appeared “A Comprehensive Guide to Bar Reciprocity: What States Have Reciprocity for Lawyers and Allow You to Waive into the Bar“ on BCG Attorney Search, also on Powershow.

Welcome to BCG Attorney Search — a legal recruitment firm that has built its reputation on maintaining high standards across the board. BCG Attorney Search is the America’s Premier Legal Placement Firm For Law Firm Attorneys.

Why Government Attorney Jobs Are First Choice Jobs For Grads?


The reason why Government attorney jobs and Government lawyer jobs are so coveted can be categorized in two segments: The quality of the jobs and the rewards they bring. Government employment means that you will be entrusted with challenging work practically from the first day itself, making the work extremely challenging and providing a chance to evolve and learn very early in your career. Moreover, federal employment provides a chance to serve the citizens of the country, especially those, who find it hard to afford private lawyers and attorneys. Add to this Government law jobs are amongst the highest paying jobs in the country and the employed can, apart from the excellent remuneration, get generous benefits, flexible working hours that allow you to balance work and home life much better than if you were working for a private corporate company or a law firm. Benefits include health insurance, retirement packages and vacations. Flexible work schedules means working from home; saving you time in commuting and federal holidays which coupled with other generous holidays and sick leaves ensures that you get loads of time and opportunity to spend with friends and family. And, finally one of the biggest reasons why federal employment is so coveted is that it has the element of security. Even in the worst of economic times, when privately employed lawyers fear the pink slip, federal employees are relatively safe. Government law jobs are available across the country and there is a strong likelihood of finding a job in the location of your choice.  Only 16 percent of all federal law employment is specific to the Capital, the remaining 84 percent are scattered across the country. Chances of being posted abroad are also very high and a large number of federal law employees work outside the country. Government attorney jobs form a union of convenience between your area of expertise, your interest and your talents. So if mathematics interests you, you can look for a job as a legal accountant or for a job in aeronautical industry.  If environment is your concern than opt for the environment department and similarly if you want to ensure that the poor and needy section of the society get appropriate medical treatment, than Healthcare is the place for you. Times are changing and every day brings something new. The reason why legal jobs are so hard to get these days is because of the advance of modern technology. It pays to stay abreast of latest developments and federal employment provides ample opportunities for professional development and continuing education to enhance existing skills. The BCG Attorney Search website is a great resource for searching for and finding federal employment. Apart from telling you where the jobs are the site will also enlighten you about the right way of applying for the jobs and the mistakes that you may make and how you can avoid them.

Why Legal Recruiters Are Invaluable To Businesses?

Legal recruiters provide invaluable service to both the persons seeking legal jobs as also to the firms desirous of finding the right persons to man their vacant positions. Legal recruiters provide job placements to all seekers of legal jobs from fresh law school grads to attorneys, paralegals and support personnel.

Businesses today are exceedingly competitive and of all assets and strengths that businesses possess, having a talented and competent workforce is by far the most important. Not having the right people, with the requisite expertise and talent can have a devastating effect on the business. The cost of employee incompetence and poor performance is astounding and since you cannot afford to make mistakes in hiring, it is prudent to use the services of legal recruiting firms that are well-known for their legal staffing and attorney recruiting.

A good and efficient legal recruitment firm can bring in the right talent that can kick start a sluggish business, give further momentum to one that is on an upward curve and even revive businesses that are on its last legs. BCG Attorney Search are legal recruiters of repute and standing, providing their clients with matchless and impeccable service. With more than ten years in the hiring business, they have the requisite experience and knowhow to fulfill client expectations. They have set themselves exacting standards which means that they never settle for anything but the best, whether it is finding lawyers for a company or finding a company for the lawyer.

Moreover, when you hire through a legal recruiter you are also saving on expenses that you would have incurred had you tried to do it on your own. You don’t need to list your vacancies, neither do you need to review resumes, shortlist potential hires, interview them and go through the entire gamut of the hiring process. The commission or the fees that you pay the professional is probably less than the money you will save, not to speak of the saving of time and effort.

Moreover, legal recruiters merit the fees that they charge. They act as a bridge between both the job seeker and the job provider, fulfilling both their needs. Furthermore, they scour the market for potential candidates and maintain a database of the most appropriate candidates. They also stay in consistent contact with companies knowing about job opening and vacancies and when the time comes mate talent with opportunity.

Using Legal Recruiters in the New York Market

The New York legal market is on a different plane than other markets. New York is home to some of the biggest, most prestigious law firms in the world, and landing a job at one of these firms can be difficult. For attorneys looking to practice in the state, and especially for attorneys looking to practice in New York City, legal recruiters can provide a valuable entry-point into some of the top law firms. At the same time, not all recruiters are created equal, and it is important to partner with one who will truly take your career to the next level. Here are some things to look for when searching for a legal recruiter:

1. Find a legal recruiter who isn’t just trying to land a commission.

It is easy to get cynical and assume that recruiters are just willing to make a placement, no matter how well the person fits in with a particular law firm, so that they can get a hefty commission. While this is true for some, the best legal headhunters realize that it is always in their best interest to make their end-clients happy (both on the employer side and on the attorney side). Attorneys who are well-placed at the right firm will obviously be more likely to think of using the legal recruiter the next time they anticipate making a move. In a market like New York, it is common for New York legal recruiters to generate repeat business from career-minded attorneys. Legal recruiters in New York will often be able to provide insight into not only where the openings are, but what it is truly like to work at a particular firm. Oftentimes, dissatisfied attorneys are desperate to leave their present jobs and are not focused on the long-term. Legal recruiters can help provide clarity for candidates to ensure that their next move is the right one.

2. Find a legal recruiter who knows the New York market, in and out.

Finding a recruiter who knows the New York market intimately is extremely important. The New York market is unique to other markets, and a good recruiter will know these intricacies and be able to use them to better market you to employers. Legal recruiters who have practiced as attorneys often bring in unique perspectives as people who have actually been in the profession and can now, with the objectiveness of a third-party, give counsel. Many legal recruiters in New York are battle-worn, former attorneys; some have practiced at firms in the city, and understand the work culture and expectations on a very personal level. Having a recruiter who has been in the trenches, so to speak, will improve your chances of successfully lateraling to a New York firm.

Legal Recruiters

Many legal recruiters are former attorneys or have had careers in law. A good legal recruiter brings to the table a deep familiarity of the current market and can advise his or her candidate on making a career choice that will be profitable in the long-term. Many attorneys use legal recruiting firms when they are at the end of their rope: they have often tried, unsuccessfully, to find a new job on their own. They may have tried to directly contact law firms or employers and even gone on interviews. Because most recruiting firms will charge a fee for the successful placement of the job candidate, many attorneys will not use them as a first option. However, if an attorney is lucky enough to find the right one, the expertise that a legal recruiter offers can be enormous for a stalled job search. . One such firm is BCG Attorney Search, a legal recruiting firm based in the United States.

Legal recruiters are often able to help candidates gain traction where they might have failed on their own. They are often able to get the attention of a law firm’s internal HR department through their established relationships with that firm or with individual employees on staff. This can help tremendously when you consider that many of these firms receive hundreds of applications in response to a single opening. Against this context, it is extremely difficult for an attorney to stand out against a sea of other applicants. In these instances, a legal recruiter who has a personal relationship with key people involved in the hiring process can be crucial

In recent years, attorney recruiting has grown very competitive. Many law firms will unashamedly poach high-caliber attorneys from their competitors. It is very difficult for law firms to retain talent. Many lawyers will only practice at a particular firm for a few years before making a lateral move, and it is no longer uncommon for an attorney to be at several firms before settling down. More and more, law firms must offer very comprehensive benefits to entice lawyers to stay. Those who do not are apt to find their attorneys leaving as soon as the next (better) opportunity comes along.

From the employer side, the use of a legal staffing agency or recruiter can be useful. Because they will typically be required to pay a placement fee if the agency’s candidate is hired, most will – if at all possible – opt to hire an attorney they can find without the use of a recruiter.

Where New Law Graduates Can Go Wrong With Legal Recruiters in Chicago

For any new law graduate, getting a job nowadays, by itself may be something great – because the student loans are always there. However, for most law graduates, getting just any job, or starting to work just anywhere may not be much of an option – given that ultimate success in the profession of law depends as much upon your luck and abilities as upon your social capital. It is understandable that law graduates may not be too keen to advertise a career beginning in pizza delivery, and this is where knowing legal recruiters in Chicago comes in handy for a new law graduate in Chicago.

It is usually taken for granted that top legal recruiters in Chicago are only working for top law firms and big companies – but that’s where you might be wrong. Finding the time of a Chicago legal recruiter might seem tough for a new law graduate, but keep in mind, that it is the job of those in legal staffing agencies in Chicago to find the right candidates for the right jobs, and they need to know about you as much as you need to know about them.

Most top legal headhunters in Chicago would not be people in vacuum or existing without networks. Their success depends upon active networking with peers and professionals, and more often than not, legal recruiters in Chicago can get a good position for you, if not by themselves, then through others in their networks.

However, getting into touch with the right Chicago legal recruiter takes some work. You are in luck if you can find one through your social network, family, or friends. But when working with legal staffing people, always remember that they are more concerned about getting their clients happy, than making you happy.

But that’s a difference between legal staffing agencies and legal recruiters. A legal recruiter has personal accountability, a staffing agency may not be so keen on ethics. This, you have to keep in mind.

So, you need to stand your ground and need to learn to reject offers that might seem too good to be true, as well as offers that clearly stand out as tickets to career catastrophe. You need to research, work by your own self to learn about the offers that are being put up before you by legal headhunters in Chicago. Not all of those offers might be bad, but you can rest assured that they are all much better for the clients of those recruiters than they may be for you.