Putting Technology to Use

December 3rd, 2020|2's Company - Magnus Insights|

I was prompted to write this, and the prior post, because of Magnus’ recent move. The move necessitated discarding many tools which have been useful during our careers in trial consulting. When we started Magnus in late 1993, Melissa began to receive invitations to speak to groups of lawyers, insurance adjusters, and law school students. This move made me reflect on the evolution of the technologies we have used for these presentations. We started with the text slides I wrote about previously. When Melissa made presentations to these groups, her outline was projected using a Kodak slide projector and

Follow Judge Simon’s ‘Casa Le Pyro’

December 3rd, 2020|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: Looking at the question, “What does a federal judge expect from an Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA)?” U.S. District Court Judge Michael H. Simon of the District of Oregon, in a recent issue of the DOJ Journal of Federal Law and Practice (Simon, 2020), gives his answer in an acronym with ten parts:  (1) know your client; (2) know your audience; (3) know the standards to which you will be held; (4) know how to advocate; (5) know the law; (6) know at least a little about every other discipline; (7) know how to be a

5 Factors for Determining if a Remote Trial is Right for Your Client

December 2nd, 2020|The Sound Jury Library (Sound Jury Consulting)|

With the late Fall surge in COVID-19 around the country, many courts are again having to consider the option of conducting remote trials through a videoconferencing provider. Notably, some venues around the country have already conducted remote trials, with many touting them as tremendous successes during these difficult pandemic times. For example, Florida Circuit Chief Judge Jack Tuter said in a recent Law.com article, “You never could have convinced me back in March that we could have a jury trial on the internet….I would just think there’s just so many limitations, but it seems like for every limitation we had

Account for One Reason the Polls Are Broken: Social Alienation

November 30th, 2020|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: We all know by now there were errors in the pre-election polls. While Joe Biden still scored a decisive win, there wasn’t the dramatic margin that many polls predicted. Part of the problem is that the task of sampling the population is getting harder and harder. A recent Washington Post article details how in just a few decades, the situation has gone from about one in five being willing to answer the phone and take a survey, to fewer than one in a hundred. Systematic public opinion researchers have responded by paying greater attention to demographics and stratification,

Show Don’t Tell

November 26th, 2020|2's Company - Magnus Insights|

Trial exhibits are a big part of all properly conducted litigation. Most lawyers learned long ago that showing, and not just telling, is important. Some lawyers are more effective than others with this but most of them seem not to think visually. Once again, it’s Rush to the rescue. The first track on their 1989 Presto album was “Show Don’t Tell.” Neil Peart’s lyrics for the song include the words “You can twist perception. Reality won’t budge!” That sums up the reason it is important to show, not just tell. (The song has allusions to a courtroom experience.) Of

Be Thankful (Jurors Like You Better That Way)

November 26th, 2020|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: In the current wave of this pandemic year, as many trials and in-person jury research projects are on hold, the social science research has continued. I’m thankful for that, and for this post, I want to appreciate a new study on gratitude itself. The study (Algoe et al., 2020) shows that people expressing gratitude are held in higher esteem, and specifically that those witnessing expressions of thankfulness are primed to be helpful toward that person, to disclose more to them, and to want to affiliate more with that person as well. The authors note, “Gratitude may help build multiple