One of the many typical personalities you encounter as a Cog in Big Law Land is Mr. Big Law Boss Man, or in some cases, Ms. Big Law Boss Lady. You might think these titles refer to actual bosses — like Chairmen of the Firm, founding members or powerful partners. But Mr. Boss Man and Ms. Boss Lady are titles that these Big Law lawyers give themselves in their minds, regardless of their actual status as the “boss” of anyone. I like to think of this as a personality disorder — Boss Man Syndrome.

It is important for Cogs to recognize Boss Man Syndrome in their fellow Big Law attorneys because one of the symptoms of Boss Man Syndrome is to compulsively identify “subordinates” to direct, lead, throw under the bus, dominate and overshadow. Those who suffer from Boss Man Syndrome also need to find others from whom they can take credit for their work because rarely are those afflicted by Boss Man Syndrome highly competent in their own right. Mr. Boss Man will take you down — beware.

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