BCG Attorney Search CEO and Founder Examines Law Firm Diversity in New Book

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Summary: Harrison Barnes, CEO and founder of BCG Attorney Search, put together a book covering the issue of diversity in big law firms.
A. Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes

The founder and Chief Executive Office of legal recruiting company BCG Attorney Search, Harrison Barnes, spent much of the past year writing a book on diversity within big law firms. Barnes decided a book, titled Law Firm Diversity: How Race, Gender, Age, Social and Economic Divisions Impact the Hiring, Retention and Advancement of Big Law Attorneys, was needed to address the growing changes regarding diversity within the legal field.

After spending several months researching the industry and collecting information from his own career of placing attorneys in law firms, Barnes completed the new book examining why there is a lack of diversity in big law firms and what can be done about it.

America’s largest law firms have been making efforts to increase their diversity in response to client demands and sociopolitical norms, according to a press release about the book. However, their efforts have produced minimal results. American law firms have an established way of conducting business and moving away from those traditions has proven not only difficult but scary for these established institutions.

Barnes used interviews with attorneys and law firm leaders to support his book, along with published studies and personal experience. He was able to conclude in the book that male attorneys are preferred over females, ethnic minorities are perceived as unqualified, and that women and minorities do not receive challenging assignments or as many opportunities to get promoted.

Barnes said, “Many law firms recognize the need for diversity, but they do not do enough to recruit diverse attorneys, or help them succeed after they are hired. I hope my book helps attorneys from diverse backgrounds find employment, and thrive, in big law firms.”

Through his work, Barnes has seen firsthand what law firms are wanting and who they end up hiring for positions. This unique perspective gives him access to the real data of what makes a lawyer valuable to a law firm and what does not. BCG Attorney Search also understands the lawyers and the most prestigious law firms better than outsiders would, providing valuable insight.

The purpose of the book is to discuss why BigLaw is failing to diversify their workforce and how they can aim to correct the lack of diversity among their lawyers.

Barnes has made the book available for free on BCG Attorney Search’s website. Go here to read it: Law Firm Diversity: How Race, Gender, Age, Social and Economic Divisions Impact the Hiring, Retention and Advancement of Big Law Attorneys.

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