Archive | Magnus Insights

Do the Right Thing

Do the right thing. It seems both easy and obvious, but it has been my experience that doing the right thing is, for many people, neither easy nor obvious. David and I have recently experienced the passing of several people we know. One person was a dear friend for many years; one was the step-father […]

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I find it surprising that doing the right thing doesn’t come naturally to everyone. This surprise makes me realize that my parents taught some fundamental concepts to my brothers and me which transcend many situations. The right things Melissa described just seemed “necessary” to us – we did them knowing that the thing we did […]

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Confirmation Bias, Part 2

In thinking about my prior post on confirmation bias, I thought about one aspect of being hired as a professional trial consultant. It happens that I recently saw an announcement of a bar association seminar on do it yourself (DIY) mock trials. I know that mock trials are often expensive when conducted by a qualified […]

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I’ll begin my part of this topic by saying that, if social psychologists, who study confirmatory bias and are, therefore, presumed to be experts on it, are subject to confirmation bias in their decision making, then almost anyone can engage in this type of biased information processing. Attorneys may be more educated and more intelligent […]

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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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Have Brain-Will Travel

“Have Gun-Will Travel” was a Western radio and TV series starring Richard Boone that was broadcast from 1957 to 1963. The lead character was named Paladin; he was a gunfighter who traveled around the old west while working for people who needed his help solving their problems. Paladin charged a lot of money for his […]

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Many jobs require a lot of “stuff.” The tools of many professions such as Melissa’s, however, require a sharp, focused mind, and little else. A pen and paper for note taking are probably the minimum in these occupations. However, despite the fact that Magnus is essentially paid for brainpower, certain aspects of the work we […]

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Can Do

“Can Do” is one of my mantras. I adopted it from Claudia Taylor Johnson, more commonly known as “Lady Bird” Johnson, the wife of President Lyndon Baines Johnson. Lady Bird Johnson was our First Lady from 1963 to 1969. On her desk was a paperweight with the “Can Do” motto on it, to signify that […]

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It is refreshing when the can do attitude is demonstrated by a stranger, a store clerk, a server in a restaurant, and of course, an employee. I was once complimented by a customer to whom I was selling a camera in a retail setting. I didn’t think I was doing anything special, but he noticed, […]

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Be the Solution

One of the television shows Melissa and I watch is “NCIS.” The story line in a recent episode involved a young man telling about his father, who had died in another episode. The young man said that, before he died, his father attempted to teach him to “be the solution.” That is, don’t be the […]

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“Be the solution” is similar to “Be the change you want to see in the world” (with the latter saying commonly misattributed to Mahatma Gandhi, who, according to multiple sources, never said anything of the sort). The idea behind both of these statements is that, for positive change to occur, one must be an active […]

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Analytics

Melissa and I had lunch with a long time client recently during which he brought up a “new” thing he hears from his clients. That is, give us the “analytics” on the case. Analytics is a concept that gets lots of airplay in various contexts. The business world has long focused on numbers to indicate […]

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It is interesting to me that what is old to me is new to other people. And, it is also interesting that words have different meanings to different people. I have been analyzing scientific data since 1977. Analytics are, therefore, what I do; it is what I did in college and grad. school and what […]

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Like “Bull,” but without the Bull

At the time of this writing, there is a popular television show that is loosely based on the life of a well known celebrity who used to work as a jury/trial consultant. The title of the show is “Bull,” and based on what I have seen, the show contains more “bull” than truth. However, because […]

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“Bull” has been fun for Melissa and me in the sense that it provides awareness of the existence of jury consultants. It’s not like we’ve been hiding though. There was at least one episode of “L.A. Law” portraying a trial consultant in a not too favorable manner. And, then there was OJ. Much of the […]

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Small Business Ownership: Always On

One of the things I do when writing a blog post is to categorize it so that one can search for similar topics on our website. The list of categories has grown over time but has always included #WorkLife. Work Life is usually followed by “balance” as in work/life balance, meaning how to manage one’s […]

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Owning a small business is not for the faint of heart. Owning a small business with one’s spouse is only for the heartiest of individuals. David and I are fortunate, in that our jobs within our company do not overlap. David has expertise in many areas, such as business management, finances, accounting, etc. that I […]

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Talk to the mailman – he could be a Beatles fan

Magnus has been headquartered in the same office since 1996. Over the years, we have had a variety of letter carriers, including some who were very nice and others, who were not so nice. I rarely see the letter carrier, due to the location of my office out of sight of our office’s entrance. Once […]

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It is easy in life to overlook others as we go about our daily business. But, one never knows where they will meet a friend or make a useful connection. Perhaps with the mailman, or the landscapers, or any other similar service provider, it is easy to ignore them as we go about being busy. […]

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