Of course, there are big differences between litigators and newscasters. Litigators don’t simply read what is in front of them (at least not the good ones). Preparation for a newscast takes hours or days, not the months or years a trial might take. And of course, the skill set of a litigator is quite broad outside of the courtroom performance aspect of the job, typically requiring the ability to negotiate, write well, organize well, think on your feet, lead a team, sell and much more.
Still, I believe there are some very useful lessons to be learned from watching how the news is put together. The Nightly News with Brian Williams is a good example of a high-quality newscast, and about 10 million people watch it every day. Whether the evening’s anchor is Brian Williams, Lester Holt or Savannah Guthrie (she happens to be an attorney), the presentation is well-refined, the delivery is exceptional and overall, it serves as a good model for how to communicate in the courtroom.
Let’s look at 10 things that litigators, especially those who participate in jury trials, can learn from a high-quality news broadcast.
1) Newscasters never speak in jargon
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