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Information Blindness Causes Attorneys to Make Wrong Career Choices
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bad choice

Summary: Attorneys make a lot of bad choices when it comes to their career but sometimes they are not completely aware of what decisions are bad.

Information blindness may be a new concept for some. The idea that are things that attorneys are not able to see and understand the mistakes they make but affects their daily success is a common problem. In “Top 15 Ways Attorneys Make Huge Career Mistakes Due to Information Blindness,” Harrison Barnes explains where attorneys go wrong and end up hurting their careers.


The lack of information is what leads everyone to make incorrect choices. When an attorney does not have the proper information before them, they often make bad career decisions. This lack of information involves jobs, their future in their current firm, the health of their firm, when to move or not, how to handle colleagues and firm leadership, and more.

Here are some of the common mistakes attorneys make due to a lack of information for their career:

  1. Being an attorney

Barnes estimates that roughly half of all attorneys are in the wrong profession. Being in the wrong profession leads to all kinds of problems regarding one’s careers and lives. The reasons that tend to make someone turn to a career as a lawyer include a high intelligence, natural talent for negotiating and arguing, ability to think and act quickly, desire to solve problems and make a lot of money.

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  1. Taking a job for the money

There is nothing wrong with wanting to earn the most amount of money possible. However, not everyone can have the high paying jobs or enjoy the hours that go into those kinds of jobs. This causes many attorneys to give up and drop out of the profession. For those that do end up getting a high-paying position, they typically can only hang on to those positions for a few years before being pushed out and quitting on their own.

  1. Wrong practice area

There are some practice areas that an attorney will not excel in but there is no way of them knowing that until they get into the practice area. A common mistake they make is moving to a transactional practice area when they would experience greater success staying with litigation, employment, and other related practice areas.

  1. Relying on past credentials

Attorneys assume their prestigious law school and top grades will carry them through their entire career. While attending a top law school definitely helps an attorney start out strong in their career, it does not mean they will succeed. Law firms will not let an attorney get off easy and do less work just because of their credentials.

  1. Billing hours equals success

Law firm associates are expected to bill as many hours as possible but that does not guarantee that they will be successful as an attorney. While associates have to be billing as much as they can, they also need to be strong relationships with those in the firm with power as well as their own book of business.

  1. Being involved in management and committees

Attorneys that find themselves without a lot of business try to save themselves by becoming heavily involved with the firm by managing and joining committees. When it comes down to it, law firms care about money so they need partners contributing to the firm’s profit, not just taking from it.

  1. Only turning to a few firms for a new position

Attorneys have been told the lie that applying to a lot of law firms is bad. The more places an attorney applies to, the better their chances of finding a firm that matches their values and needs.

What can attorneys do to make better decisions for their career? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

To learn more about being a successful attorney, read these articles:




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