Archive | Trial Consulting

Judges are People Too

A Point of View

David H. Fauss, M.S.M.

On June 22, 2017

Category: Careers, Getting the Job Done, Litigation Tips, Magnus, MagnusInsights, MagnusResearch, Psychology, Trial Consulting, Trial Science

We recently wrote that lawyers are people too. It has been interesting for me to watch client reactions when Melissa occasionally finds herself needing to remind the attorney/clients that judges are people also. Once an attorney becomes a judge, and puts on the black (usually) robe, a new relationship develops between their former colleagues and […]

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Another View

Melissa Pigott, Ph.D.

On June 22, 2017

Category: Careers, Getting the Job Done, Litigation Tips, Magnus, MagnusInsights, MagnusResearch, Psychology, Trial Consulting, Trial Science

I cannot count the number of times I have said to an attorney, “Judges are people too,” only to have the attorney look at me first, with astonishment, then, upon reflecting on my comment, nod their agreement. I have presented many continuing legal education (C. L. E.) programs in which judges were among the audience. […]

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When driving the boss’ car

For most of the two plus decades David and I have co-owned our business, we have had three vehicles: his primary car, my primary car, and the so called “company truck.” The company truck is, in reality, not owned by our company but instead, is co-owned by David and me just like our other vehicles. […]

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Driving the “company” car, or “boss,’” car is a privilege not given lightly. In our business, of course, we know about the liability issues that are also a part of the equation. But, you have to get the job done and, as Melissa said, we have always expected that common sense would dictate that an […]

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Why Buy from Mom & Pop?

Small businesses, especially those run by family members or spouses, are often called “Mom & Pop.” I have written about this previously and have planned other posts on this subject. Sometimes, there seems to be almost a negative connotation to being Mom & Pop and the implication is that Mom & Pop can’t be on […]

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As the co-owner of a small business in which the other owner is my husband, I am “Mom” to his “Pop.” In my opinion, and based on my experience, there are many advantages for clients and customers of small businesses that can never be achieved when doing business with a huge conglomerate. Having worked for […]

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Trial Consultants We Have Known

In any industry, business, or practice, one gets to know one’s colleagues/competitors. And, we have, in the past 30 years, seen the gamut of the good, the bad, and the ugly. Melissa started her career with Litigation Sciences, Inc. and many of the consultants who were affiliated with LSI remain among the top consultants in […]

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In every occupation, there exists a range of people, from the truly excellent to the amazingly inferior. The world of trial consulting is no exception to this general rule. I have a Ph.D. in social psychology and, given that a Ph.D. is the highest academic degree that exists (including M.D., D.D.S., D.O., J. D., E.D. […]

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Clients are People Too

Clients are people too.  I repeat, clients are people too.  This may seem obvious to the astute reader, however, there have been many occasions on which I have had to remind my staff to treat our clients like people, instead of merely treating them like clients.  Magnus’ clients are high powered attorneys, insurance adjusters, risk […]

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On a research day it is a bit of a toss up who the most important people in the room are. The participants, i.e., mock jurors are critical to our projects. Without them we cannot do our work. But, without the clients, we have no work to do. Our support staff usually is comfortable with […]

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Soldier First

Recently, David and I were honored to attend the graduation ceremony of our dear friend, Suzanne, from the United States Army Judge Advocate (J.A.G.) training program.  Suzanne is an amazing young woman, about whom we have written in other posts, and whom we have known for her entire life.  She has excelled in everything she […]

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Melissa suggested that I read the Soldier’s Creed prior to responding to her comments about Suzanne, and I will add that I agree that Suzanne’s humanity is one of her many assets. But, as I read the Creed, I realized that it is very fitting for Suzanne, of course now, but parts of it have […]

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Defining Success

As trial consultants, we work in a field where defining “success” is somewhat elusive. We have talked around this in other posts, but will explain it further in this one. In the civil arena in which we work most often, the outcome variables are a verdict comprised of liability and damages. While lawyer advertising often […]

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The primary difficulty in defining success, when it comes to evaluating a jury verdict, is that there is no objective way to measure it. In psychology and other scientific endeavors, there is a control group, which receives no experimental manipulation, and is thus, considered a baseline by which to measure the results of the experimental […]

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Power of Words: Plantation ≠ big farm

This post is third in a series of posts about David’s and my experiences in the Mississippi Delta. We had fun times, but as usual, we learned some unexpected things from people we met during our trip. One of Magnus’ long time and favorite clients is named Orman Kimbrough. Orman is a native of Greenwood, […]

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Sometimes it is the “little” surprises that happen while traveling that are the most memorable.  I, too, found the plantation/big farm revelation mind opening.  It is also a reminder about the evolution of language.  The “de-sexisming” of language seems to have mostly evolved.  Gone are mailman, stewardess, chairman of the board, replaced with the gender […]

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Debugging the Case

When I am wearing my marketing hat (one of many hats I wear, as discussed in other posts), I often find myself looking for ways to explain what a trial consultant does for a trial lawyer. As hard as it is for me to repeatedly explain, after 25+ years in this field, I frequently find […]

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As of this writing, I have consulted on thousands of high stakes civil cases. So far, there has never been a client who retained my services (or those of my employers, prior to the time David and I founded Magnus) because he/she believed he/she had a perfect case. Quite the contrary: 100% of the cases […]

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Po’ Monkey

During the summer of 2016, in July to be specific, David and I took a road trip to the Mississippi Delta. The purpose of our trip was to learn about, and experience first hand, blues music. As every serious fan of rock and roll music knows, and according to Muddy Waters, “The blues had a […]

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I had no idea what to expect when we ventured out on this Mississippi trip. I, too, read up a bit, but was still not sure. Melissa had done more research and her knowledge of the Blues is stronger because she has spent many years absorbing information while playing bass guitar. She has gained a […]

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