Archive | Entrepreneurship

Is your consultant a criminal?

This is a strange topic: Is your consultant a criminal? In this context, it is related to your trial consultant. When one hires a new employee, most often, a variety of background checks are conducted. A lawyer’s criminal history is policed by Bar associations; similarly, other licensed professions are vetted. But, what about professions not […]

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In the decades Magnus has been in business, we have found out many things about our employees, vendors, and prospective employees that, absent our checking into them, would have remained hidden.  Often, these secrets were nothing serious, for example, the office administrator we hired, even though we knew she had been arrested for D.U.I.  Then, […]

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Work Life Balance

The term “Work Life Balance” seems to have existed for a long time. In writing this post, I did a bit of quick research and found the concept was not well defined until the last 20 years. Researchers have identified 3 key balance components: time, involvement and satisfaction. When work or life (family) demands are […]

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Due to the lasting impact of COVID-19 on our nation’s workplaces, the issue of work/life balance has taken on a new urgency.  Although many corporations are requiring their employees to return to the office full time, and some workplaces, such as hospitals, never allowed remote working, other employers are struggling for ways to keep their […]

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Price based decisions

Melissa and I recently made a big purchase. A roof. It was not something I’ve shopped for willingly. The failure of the old roof after storms made it a necessity. It is a big purchase, bigger than anything we’ve ever bought, other than a house. Shopping for a roofing company was a reminder of how […]

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When it became necessary to shop for a roofing contractor, I went about it in the same way I search for just about anything.  I researched local roofing companies, asked people for referrals, and checked ratings from various sources.  I eventually obtained 4 bids and 1 refusal to bid (due to the complexity and danger […]

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Politics of Litigation

A Point of View

David H. Fauss, M.S.M.

On May 20, 2021

Category: Entrepreneurship, Getting the Job Done, Jury Consultants, Magnus, Magnus Insights, Magnus Research, Trial Consultants, Trial Consulting

Magnus is hired for many reasons. To evaluate the liability issues in the case. To assess the damages potential. To determine at whom to point fingers. To get a plaintiff to understand the realities of their case. To get a defendant to understand the realities of their case. Is it a case to try? Is […]

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The behind the scenes intrigue in many of our clients’ cases is often more important to our clients than the outcome of their jury research.  One of my all time favorite clients, now deceased, was a wonderful attorney who worked for a government agency.  Until he hired Magnus to work on several of his cases, […]

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Retainers

Call it a deposit; call it a retainer. Magnus doesn’t start work without one (except in rare circumstances beyond the scope of this post). We need money, we want money; importantly, other people want money. We learned, the hard way, that clients need to “show us the money.” One of our first cases blew up […]

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No one works for free.  By definition, work is performed in exchange for compensation.  (The obvious exceptions, such as slavery, human trafficking, etc., are beyond the scope of this post.)  The fact that one of the largest law firms in the U.S.A., as well as its client, one of the largest corporations in the world, […]

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Templates – Creating and Using

We spent some time recently updating the templates we use at Magnus. From day 1, I’ve worked on developing templates and, over the years, modifying them to keep up with changes as necessary. We have templates for reports, for contracts, and countless forms that help us keep track of our work. The only thing standardized […]

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David likes forms and templates more than anyone I have ever known.  When we are in the process of developing a new service, David routinely advocates for using a template to ensure things are standardized.  Although all of my questionnaires are custom designed to assess mock jurors’, survey respondents’, and other research participants’ attitudes about […]

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Hiding behind Email

Prompted by my posts about “different direction” and “ghosting,” a related phenomenon is hiding behind email, especially as a way to deliver bad news. Maybe it is just me, but it seems a matter of professionalism and fairness that, if one asks someone else to do something like prepare a proposal for consulting services, the […]

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I love to discuss, and write about, etiquette.  As a social psychologist, I am keenly aware of the social norms involved in etiquette, which involves far more than knowing which fork to use.  There is a certain etiquette involved in communicating with others, in both professional and personal settings.  This includes “responding in kind” to […]

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I’m a Professional Judge of Character – Trust my 1st Impression

There have been several notable examples of my, and others’, questioning my first impressions of someone. On all of these occasions, my first impression was correct and unfortunately, questioning it caused negative turns of events. In that, as a psychologist, I am what most people would consider “a professional judge of character,” I have tried […]

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One aspect of owning a business never gets easier – hiring.  I feel like it is always a gamble.  And, I’m apparently not a good gambler because I’ve taken chances on hiring people who turned out to be ill equipped to do our work, or worse, a really bad fit, a bad choice, maybe a […]

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Tribute to Willy

I am writing this on March 3, 2021, one of the saddest days in the long history of Magnus Research Consultants. Last night, our beloved office dog, Willy, passed away of a brain tumor. Willy was the dog of David’s and my wonderful employee and friend, Megan. For the past 7 years, Willy worked in […]

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As you can tell, this dog, Willy, was truly hu(mans) best friend.  Willy and Megan were tight – she trained him well.  And, he trained her well also.  She communicated with him in his language – she knew what he was trying to tell her.  Usually things like, pay attention to me, feed me, walk […]

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Better Than “Different Direction”

As a follow up to David’s last post regarding the soul killing phrase “We have decided to move in a different direction,” I will provide alternative phrases that are more appropriate forms of rejection. Keeping in mind that David, and other consultants, spend considerable time and money speaking with prospective clients, preparing proposals outlining the […]

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I like that-“vapid euphemisms.”  In my most recent vapid encounter, vapid also seemed to apply to the paralegal who called me.  Whether it was her fault or not, she not only had insufficient information to give me as to what the attorney purportedly wanted (which was an inappropriate research design, given what she did know), […]

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