“Research has suggested that lawyers are by nature competitive and have a high degree of self worth. In other words, seeking help or supporting colleagues are not natural.” Thus saith Mark Prebble, Managing In-House Legal Services: Providing High Value Support for Your Organisation (Thorogood 2009) at 61. That Hobbesian view of the collective psyche of in-house attorneys bodes ill if it is true! By their nature competitive strikes a strong claim, which is a genetic determinism. More likely self-selection, law school, culture in Darwinian law firms, and such factors as a narrowing career path encourage in-house lawyers compete with each other. In fact, they may be less at each other’s throats than the sharp knives loose in firms.
It is good for some competitive juices to be present, but not a disabling level (See my post of Sept. 26, 2009: all-star law department would stumble; Oct. 2, 2008: competitiveness with 29 references.).