About this blog

After more than 20 years operating a trial consulting practice together as co-founding partners of Magnus Research Consultants, Inc. and Magnus Graphics, Inc., and more than 25 years of marriage, Dr. Melissa Pigott and David Fauss decided to share some of their thoughts, experiences, pet peeves, and perspectives on operating a small “mom & pop” business. The intended audience for their writings is other business owners, as well as employees of small businesses. Trial consulting is a professional service business, as was David’s photography business. There are many unique issues faced by professional service providers; Melissa and David share some of their insights on running a successful business.

Get Help for Mental Health Issues

David and I recently wrote about people with mental health issues who don’t act “normally.” This, related, post is about getting help for mental health issues. Because mental health issues are not as well understood as more observable physical maladies, there is often a reluctance for people who suffer from mental health problems to obtain […]

Continue Reading

It is too late to “do something” after the harm is done. Red flags are called that for a reason – they are the signs that something isn’t right and that the person is likely to “go off the deep end” and hurt himself or herself, or worse, others. There are too many tragic examples […]

Continue Reading

Cream & Sugar

Recently, I met a client/friend, or perhaps friend/client for “coffee.” Coffee is in quotes because I rarely drink it; I ordered iced tea. Here’s what went down. Robert asked for a coffee, with a little room for cream. The barista dude said “We only provide milk products for our lattes and cappuccinos. Our brewed coffee […]

Continue Reading

Readers of David’s and my posts often remark to me that they wonder when, or if, we will ever deplete our supply of topics about which to write. I believe this is highly doubtful, due to the colorful lives we live and our unique ways of looking at the world around us. Who would have […]

Continue Reading

People with Mental Health Issues Don’t Act “Normally”

Mental health, and the absence of mental health, are largely misunderstood by the general public. In that mental health concerns, including the rapidly increasing rate of age related dementia, are common within our society, it is time for people to come to terms with the variety of signs and symptoms of cognitive crises. There are […]

Continue Reading

As a psychologist, Melissa is acutely aware of mental health issues. However, in the last 10 or so years, the personal nature of her, and my, observations of mental health issues has grown, sadly, exponentially. This has included dementia related health issues of family and friends, as well as other mental health problems of family […]

Continue Reading

O.J. Simpson’s Contribution to Trial Consulting

The topic of O.J. Simpson came up recently in a discussion I recently had about the world of trial consulting. The murder of O.J.’s former wife, and the subsequent trial, was one of the first televised celebrity mega trials. For better, or worse, almost everyone was aware of the accusations against O.J. in that case. […]

Continue Reading

O. J. Simpson has been vilified since the time he was accused of murder. David’s and my post is not intended as praise for O. J.; rather, it is written as an example of how one event, even a tragic one, can change other things which, at first glance, appear unrelated. I have no positive […]

Continue Reading

“You’re Not Cheap!”

I recently attended a meeting with an attorney, who is a client of mine, and the attorney’s client, the person who paid for my services. It is rare in my world of jury/trial consulting to attend a meeting that involves the “end client,” that is, the party to the litigation, as opposed to his/her/its attorney. […]

Continue Reading

Melissa was still laughing about this encounter when she returned from this meeting. We both chuckled about it after she shared it. She is clearly not cheap. I can attest to that! But, in the context of business, we have never had the goal of being cheap. We are often not the most expensive trial […]

Continue Reading

CYA: Another Reason for a Mock Trial

CYA, 3 little letters about something important – self protection. Cover your ass – there, I’ve said it. I don’t know when I first realized that attorneys sometimes use a mock trial to protect themselves from their client. There are many reasons for a mock trial but it was perhaps the attorney who once told […]

Continue Reading

I am a detail oriented, meticulous person who does not like to leave anything to chance. I strongly prefer to have more, not less, data with which to make a decision. I always practice my bass lines as much as time will allow before performing a gig (and I bring an extra battery in case […]

Continue Reading

My Favorite lawyers are Gators: Kim, Pat, Charles, Suzanne, Buddy

As anyone who knows me, even slightly, will attest, I have never been a “school spirit” kind of person. No “rah rah, go team, go” for me. It’s just not who I am. When I decided to pursue my doctorate degree in psychology, I applied to 10 schools and I was accepted for admission to […]

Continue Reading

Melissa came to this realization not that long ago, and she had to admit the University of Florida must not be all bad. It is not that she is a “rah rah” Seminole fan, instead, it is only an ironic realization that these 5 attorneys, as well as others who are double or single Gators, […]

Continue Reading

“You’re Making Me Look Bad” (Because I Didn’t Read the Contract)

More often than one may think, I’ve been told by attorneys, who are the majority of our clients, that they never read our contract. This usually emerges when some detail “surprises” them. Yes, they received and later signed the contract to authorize our work. Yet, they often indicate that they did not see or understand […]

Continue Reading

It has been my experience, more often than not, when someone says “You’re making me look bad,” it is actually the case that the person saying this is making himself/herself look bad. Think about it. How many times has someone else made you look bad? Looking bad is something most people can do on their […]

Continue Reading

Courthouses

A Point of View

Melissa Pigott, Ph.D.

On May 22, 2018

Category: Getting the Job Done, Marketing your Business

I like courthouses. I also like libraries and art museums, but this post is about courthouses. In my career as a jury/trial consultant, I have spent countless days, hours, and minutes in courthouses, from Alaska to Florida. When I am working with attorneys during the jury selection process in trials, the courthouse and its courtrooms […]

Continue Reading

Another View

David H. Fauss, M.S.M.

On May 22, 2018

Category: Getting the Job Done, Marketing your Business

I don’t have the long history with courthouses like Melissa does, though, now that I think about it, my Dad had an office in what was then the Federal Courthouse in Jacksonville for a time when I was very young. But, I have enjoyed becoming familiar with them as a photographer. Since 1996, I have […]

Continue Reading

Not Telling Client About Proposal

Some of these posts are prompted by the puzzling events which occur when operating a business, especially one with high stakes, with litigious people, and the stressors of succeeding when facing tremendous pressure and challenges. I recently met with an attorney who asked me to meet with him about a case and ultimately requested a […]

Continue Reading

Just when David and I think we have “been there,” “done that,” or “heard everything,” a new client dilemma surfaces. Never, in all the years (almost 3 decades, in fact!) I have worked as a trial/jury consultant have I known about an attorney who was a prospective client, after requesting both a meeting and detailed […]

Continue Reading

Powered by: BARD Marketing