Author Archive


Public Speaking

Need a Confidence Boost? Try This Before You Speak

By | Aug.23.17 | 1 Comment

When teaching speaking skills to lawyers, the first question is why participants are there. What do they want out of the session? The most common answer is they want to feel more confident. They want …Continue reading »


Trial Skills

Are You Acting in the Courtroom?

By | Apr.24.17 | No Comments

A law student is working on a direct examination during a trial skills program. She is practicing her presentation — how she stands, gestures and speaks. Each time through the examination, she asks exactly the …Continue reading »


Public Speaking

Make Eye Contact to Engage Your Listeners

By | Aug.01.16 | No Comments

Every group of listeners — whether a big audience, a small group, a jury or a single senior partner — is a multi-eyed monster that a speaker must confront, eyeball to eyeball. The only way to …Continue reading »


Finish Your Sentences!

Stop ‘Rough-Drafting’ and Learn to Speak with Precision

By | Nov.10.15 | 1 Comment

When we speak, why do we so often fail to finish our sentences? Linguists must know the answer to this question, but I am at a loss. All I’m sure of is this: Lawyers find …Continue reading »


The Court's Secret Music

Speaking Lessons from the Supreme Court

By | Sep.02.15 | No Comments

Although it isn’t something I freely admit to my friends outside the legal world, I can share with you how much fun I routinely have on Oyez.org, the Supreme Court media site. (Oyez.org is part …Continue reading »


Body Language

Convert ‘Resting Bitch Face’ to ‘Neutral Alert’

By | Aug.10.15 | 2 Comments

The New York Times brought the pop culture term and Internet meme “resting bitch face” (RBF) to the mainstream media with “I’m Not Mad. That’s Just My RBF.” Lots of discussion has ensued about the label, …Continue reading »


Communication Skills

How to Look Them in the Eye

By | Jan.23.14 | No Comments

There’s no getting around it. As a lawyer, you must be able to meet the gaze of everyone you speak to, and you should always make eye contact when addressing an audience. Easy to say, of …Continue reading »


Practice is for Professionals

Perfecting Your Presentation Skills

By | Oct.15.13 | 4 Comments

There’s a misplaced belief among lawyers, one that many may hold as a self-evident “truth”: Rehearsing and practicing is for lily-livered, milksop fraidy-cats. Just last week I heard, yet again, this self-evaluation from an attorney …Continue reading »