Consider That Your Zoom Conferences Might Be Sapping Your Collective Intelligence

December 6th, 2021|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: Even as things are fitfully returning to a post-pandemic normal (perhaps against the current COVID Omicron variant-driven medical advice) one feature of the last 21 months seems to be lingering: the Zoom conference. In legal settings, these video conferences are being  used increasingly for team meetings, witness preparation sessions, hearings, and more. As the goal of limiting COVID exposure starts to fade, other goals — ease of scheduling, less travel, no conference rooms — have come to the fore. And in many ways, the meetings themselves seem nearly as good, so many of us are thinking,

Are angry or sad victim impact statements more compelling to jurors? Online Jury Research Update

December 5th, 2021|ComCon (Kathy Kellermann Communication Consulting)|

Almost every state that enforces the death penalty allows for victim impact statements during the penalty phase of the trial. Nunez and colleagues (2017) examined the effects of angry and sad victim impact statements on 581 jury eligible and death qualified mock jurors. Mock jurors watched the penalty phase of a capital trial. For one group of jurors, the penalty phase had no victim impact statement. For a second group of jurors, the trial included a victim impact statement with emotional content that was sad. For a third group of jurors, the trial included a victim impact statement with emotional

Your Direct Examination: Know the Steps, but Let the Attorney Lead

December 2nd, 2021|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: When preparing for trial testimony, often the focus is on what opposing counsel is going to do. You prepare for cross, naturally enough, because that is an adversarial moment. But my own view is that direct examination should get the same amount of preparatory attention. The questioning by friendly counsel, even as it seems “safer,” can be just as critical, or even more so: It is an opportunity for the witness to tell their story through their own perspective. That testimony should be clear, credible, interesting, and engaging. It has to be organized and pointed toward particular goals.

Elegantly Forceful

November 30th, 2021|2's Company - Magnus Insights|

Magnus Research Consultants recently worked in Miami, where we have worked numerous times throughout the decades we have been in business. Most of the time when we are conducting mock jury research, the research participants/mock jurors are respectful toward one another, the Magnus staff, and me. Once in a while, however, one or more of them will overstep the line of decency, which is a guarantee they will be sent home, immediately. On this day in Miami, one of the mock jurors, who had volunteered to be the jury foreperson, refused to follow the instructions he was given by

Know How Your Testimony to the Jury Will Differ from Your Deposition

November 29th, 2021|Persuasive Litigator (Persuasion Strategies)|

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: A typical witness preparing for a civil trial often has only one good reference point for what their experience will be, and that is their deposition. That’s where they met opposing counsel, got a taste of that attorney’s style, and heard the questions that are likely to serve as the foundation for what they’re asked at trial. Some things from that deposition are going to be the same: There will be a parallel need to listen carefully and hew close to the question that is being asked, and there will be a continuing need to provide

What are the effects of juror note-taking during trial? Online Jury Research Update

November 28th, 2021|ComCon (Kathy Kellermann Communication Consulting)|

Considerable research on juror note-taking has been conducted in both actual and mock trials for many years. Extensive pilot programs and field studies on juror note-taking have been undertaken with real jurors who sat on actual criminal and civil cases. Well-conducted mock jury studies have simulated the experience of sitting on a jury. The results of these studies on juror note-taking during trial have been consistent over many years and across different research methodologies. Reviews of this extensive research on juror note-taking report that:....