If It Looks Like a Courtroom, Treat It Like One

July 31st, 2019|The Litigation Consulting Report (A2L Consulting)|

There are many situations outside of trial where lawyers find themselves in a courtroom or courtroom-like environment. Some examples include a mock trial, a pretrial hearing, an arbitration, a mediation, or an administrative hearing. Some of these situations are a lot like trial, yet I find many litigators don’t treat them like a trial. I think they should. One such example whose lesson applies broadly to almost any trial attorney is a relatively new type of administrative hearing that occurs every day at the Patent & Trademark Office. It’s called an inter partes review hearing (IPR). And if you think

Witness Prep: Don’t Blur the Line Between Practice and Discussion

July 29th, 2019|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: Attorney: “To help prepare you for your testimony, let’s review what they’re going to ask about. They’re going to ask about Smith’s performance reviews.” Witness: “Okay, I can talk about these…” Attorney: “Great, so…Why would you terminate Smith after rating him excellent just three weeks earlier?” Witness: “Well, I think you know why… Oh, is that the question? Okay, then, I’d say… Mr. Smith was terminated for knowingly violating a company policy.” Attorney: “Now, why do you say, ‘knowingly?’ That isn’t in your term letter, and we actually don’t know what he knew. Isn’t it more

Top 10 Articles About Mock Trials

July 26th, 2019|The Litigation Consulting Report (A2L Consulting)|

Our team has planned and conducted more than 500 mock trials over the past thirty years. In that time, we have noticed striking similarities in the way jurors behave. We have noticed that a trial team can radically increase the amount of valuable information they mine from a mock trial just by following a few best practices. We have seen over and over that a well-executed mock trial is the most valuable form of pre-trial preparation a trial team can do. In these ten articles listed below (our top ten all-time articles on the subject), we reveal many of A2L's

10,000 Hours

July 25th, 2019|2's Company - Magnus Insights|

There is considerable research on what level of effort is required to perform at “master” or “expert” level at a variety of skills. Malcolm Gladwell expounded on this concept in his 2008 book, Outliers. Much of the focus of this research has revolved around becoming expert at a skill like chess or mastering a musical instrument. While there is considerable debate about whether it is a hard rule that 10,000 hours are required to become a master and whether other factors are essential (e.g., innate talent and age when beginning the endeavor), the point remains, practice does improve performance. Whether

Experts, No Your Work Can’t Just Speak for Itself

July 24th, 2019|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: The big moment finally arrived. After two years of investigations and fast-churning news cycles, Robert Mueller, the former Special Counsel who focused on Russian election interference and obstruction claims involving the President, finally arrived to testify before the House Judiciary Committee and the nation. But if House Democrats expected him to arrive with a fiery denunciation, like Moses returning from the Mountain top, that isn’t quite what they got. Instead, they got a witness who seemed a little hard of hearing, and who often needed to hear the question again to get on track with the

10 Indicators of Who Will Be Opinion Leaders in Deliberations

July 24th, 2019|The Sound Jury Library (Sound Jury Consulting)|

By Thomas M. O’Toole, Ph.D.  Jury selection is difficult. It is impossible to predict exactly how any one individual is going to decide the case. Instead, we look for indicators or glimpses into how a potential juror might decide the case. Some attorneys rely on the simple lifestyle choices of jurors, such as their news sources or what the bumper stickers on their cars say. Others use voir dire to explore jurors’ case-related attitudes and life experiences. While some methods are more reliable than others, they are all imperfect tools for trying to predict the future. These imperfections inevitably lead