A recent American Bar Association (ABA) study on the rates of substance abuse and mental health issues among attorneys confirmed what many lawyers already know. Attorneys are not happy.

According to the study, attorneys experience higher rates of alcohol abuse disorders, and 28% of lawyers suffer from some form of depression.

Although the ABA study provides great insight as to what is happening with the contentment of lawyers, the question that remains unanswered is why. Science magazine suggests that the answer to that question likely lies in cultural fit.

What Is Cultural Fit?

A company’s corporate culture is the sum of its patterns of acceptable behavior and the beliefs and values that promote and reinforce those patterns. Cultural fit means that an employee’s personal values align with the corporate culture of her workplace.

Many attorneys view cultural fit as a job aspect that is “nice to have” when it comes to selecting an employer. However, this is a critical mistake. Almost 80% of an attorney’s career satisfaction lies in her personal value alignment with the corporate culture.

What Does Attorney Happiness Look Like

Although no two attorneys are alike, there are some commonly held values among lawyers that significantly contribute to their career satisfaction. These values include independence, integrity, the perception of the social value of their work and the quality of their relationships with coworkers.

Attorneys that work in environments that fulfill these values experience a deep sense of satisfaction and fulfillment. Conversely, legal professionals experience disappointment and anger when their values do not match the corporate culture.

So Which Attorneys Are The Happiest?

The happiest attorneys, therefore, are those who experience a cultural fit. This means they work for firms where they are free to act independently, do work that matters to them and collaborate on teams with people who complement their personality and communication style.

Unsurprisingly, autonomy and collaborative effort are guiding principles at Aegis Law. These principles are two of the main reasons that so many of our attorneys are happy with our firm and with their careers.
If you’d like to learn more about how our unique approach to legal services can help your business thrive, send us a message or call us at (314) 454-9100.