Archive | Careers

The Game Warden’s Badge

An event I observed decades ago on a dove hunting field created a memory I will never forget. Opening day of dove season is a social event, the hunt, or shoot, occurs on a large field, 30, 40, or more acres; hunters with shotguns are spread around the field. There are social norms of politeness […]

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Jumping to conclusions is rarely a good thing to do. Sometimes, one may be right, however, other times, one may be wrong. David mentions authority figures who fail to consider all of the circumstances before wrongly accusing someone of something. We have all heard numerous examples of police officers who shoot first and ask questions […]

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Rhythmically Challenged People

Rhythm. Some people have it and some people don’t. Johnny Cash sang, “Get Rhythm” as a cure for the blues, and, although I love Johnny Cash and this song, in particular, I don’t share his optimistic view about certain people’s ability to get rhythm. Fortunately for me, I have always had rhythm. I can keep […]

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“Timing is everything” takes on a new meaning when talking about keeping the beat. Because that is literally what it is about – timing. I can’t dance, but I’d like to think I can, or once could, keep the beat when I played in my high school’s band. And, I try hard not to be […]

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Watch What You Say – You Never Know Whose Feelings Will be Hurt

My first job upon earning my Ph. D. was Director of Marketing Research at a large hospital in Jacksonville, Florida. Soon after I began working, I met an influential staff member who escorted me throughout the entire campus, introducing me to all of the high level executives whom he believed would help me in this […]

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I would add to Melissa’s elevator concerns the adage of “lose lips sink ships.” Beyond healthcare with its HIPPA rules, there are many environments where confidentiality is a concern. And, not just for the risk of hurt feelings. In fact, this is an area we make special efforts to train employees when hiring. And, we […]

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The Show Must Go On – Even With a Concussion

In the three decades I have been working as a jury/trial/litigation consultant, I have never missed attending a mock trial, focus group, or other research due to an injury or illness. Although I have been injured and sick (the latter, numerous times) on some research days, I have kept my health issues to myself. Instead […]

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Even though we’ve heard Atlanta Rhythm Section’s music for many years, listening to their songs still amazes when one listens to Paul Goddard’s bass lines. The show now goes on without him (sadly, he passed away in 2014), and I am sure he is a hard act for his successors to follow. The last time […]

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10,000 Hours

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 […]

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I don’t know how many hours it takes to gain expertise on something, but I do know expertise cannot be achieved without effort and experience. The characterization of an attorney as a “trial lawyer” is, in my opinion, misplaced unless the attorney has considerable courtroom experience. These days, many attorneys who call themselves “trial lawyers” […]

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The day after a research day is not a holiday

Conducting mock jury or focus group research is hard work. I am the first to admit this. After working as a jury/trial consultant for 30 years, I know everyone who works with Magnus does a great job, for long hours, in difficult environments, with demanding clients. I get it. I really do. I am right […]

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It is interesting, and often frustrating, working with new hires whose perspectives on work have been formed in less demanding environments, if they have even worked in a professional environment. The day(s) after research are critical for assimilating the data collected, the videos uploaded, and addressing client concerns which emerged on the research day. As […]

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Confirmation Bias, Part 1

I read an article recently about confirmation bias and how it negatively impacts social science research and progress. Confirmation bias is “the tendency to seek, interpret, and create information in ways that verify existing beliefs.” (Brehm & Kassin, Social Psychology, 1989. Which is, coincidentally, a textbook for which Melissa co-authored the Instructor’s Manual and Study […]

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David’s post is interesting to me in two regards. First, it is interesting that David, and not I, chose a topic related to my background as a social psychologist. Second, it is interesting that David focused his post on confirmation bias in social science research. Recently, the media have frequently mentioned confirmation bias, as if […]

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Travel to maximize office/work time

The late Wayne Huizenga, who founded several major corporations and owned several professional sports teams, was quoted in a news article many years ago as endorsing the view that he and his employees traveled on business during the time most people are home, spending time with their families. For Mr. Huizenga, it was more important […]

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There is certainly a balance in scheduling work and work travel to meet the clients’ needs. Without imposing on our employees’ personal time or incurring too much expense related to overtime work, the clients’ needs must come first. And, one thing, I suspect, is not taught at law school is that the life of a […]

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It’s all Marketing

I will admit, I probably have a bias. Both my undergraduate and graduate business degrees had a strong emphasis on marketing. Therefore, in the context of operating a small business, I am cognizant of details that create impressions. As a result, it seems to me that almost everything done in a business is marketing. The […]

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David is right. It’s all marketing. From the manner in which the telephone is answered, to the style of written communication used in an email, to the attire worn in the courtroom (or research facility, during a mock trial), to a brochure, to a website, to the report of research findings prepared for a client, […]

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Dress for Success

In the 1980s, “Dress for Success” was in vogue for people (although, it seems, primarily women) who wanted to achieve status in the world of business. There were books about how to dress for success, as well as seminars and other related products. My (then) employer enrolled me, along with other female executives, in a […]

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Reflecting on the attire of past job candidates who showed their inability to dress for success at their interviews is telling. There was the heavyset young man who showed up for his job interview wearing a shirt (partly untucked), tie and dress slacks, sweating profusely. Okay, it is Florida, and it was hot, but the […]

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