by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting
by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting Today is the 20th anniversary of the founding of A2L. We literally started in a closet not long after I finished law school. First, we were Animators at Law. Then almost five years ago, we became A2L Consulting to reflect the fact that litigation graphics were now less than half of our business. Jury consulting, trial technology support and litigation advisory services are now a bigger part of what we do. Twenty years later, we're a national litigation consulting firm and arguably, the very top litigation consulting firm in the country. That's not mere puffery. We're consistently voted #1 in local and national legal industry surveys. To celebrate our 20th, here are 20 new realities that litigators, in-house counsel and litigation support professionals should consider. 1. The New CLE: It is a rare CLE seminar that does not put us all to sleep. I think that modern formats of continued learning like our Litigation Consulting Report blog and other litigation blogs, including those recognized by the American Bar Association, are the best places to go for continued learning. It’s time for the legal establishment to agree. 2. The power of storytelling: The science behind the effectiveness of storytelling as a persuasion device is just now coming into view. It is critical for litigators to study this field and to understand the insights it has developed. See, Storytelling for Litigators E-Book 3rd Ed. 3. Big firm litigators rarely try cases: As a result of this new reality, litigators must get a new kind of help - help from trial tested litigation consultants. These courtroom experts may participate in 50-100 trials per year. It just stands to reason that they can help a litigator who is in court far less frequently. See, With So Few Trials, Where Do You Find Trial Experience Now? 4. Using PowerPoint incorrectly does more harm than good. Most lawyers will actually design slides for themselves that will reduce overall persuasion - but they don't have to. See, How Much Text on a PowerPoint Slide is Too Much? 5. Juror expectations are on the rise: Jurors expect litigators to wow them a bit with graphics and to keep them interested. They know what can be done in the form of graphics and at a lower price than ever before. See, Will Being Folksy and Low-Tech Help You Win a Case?
by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting There is a lot to learn from data, and these days data is everywhere. For better or worse, data can be available for everything from the number of steps you walked today to how long you took to read a particular Web page. I recently took the time to assess how the AmLaw 100 law firms were interacting with our site, particularly with the articles on this blog. Some law firms are very active, and some hardly visit at all — and I think this information tells us a great deal about these law firms. This data is interesting to me for many reasons. First, I’m interested in making sure that our articles appeal to the AmLaw 100 law firms, as just about every one of them has been a client of A2L Consulting at some point. However, I’m also interested in what the data says about the law firm itself. Is the firm interested in learning? Is it serious about litigation? Is it set in its ways?
Forty-five states may have mandatory continuing legal education (CLE) requirements for attorneys – but all litigators and litigation support staff, wherever they are located, have a duty to stay informed and maintain their skills. Whether you are a first chair litigator or a litigation paralegal, given the pace of change in trial technology and trial strategy, it can be a challenge just to keep up with the latest trends.