Telling your story “on the record” can be daunting no matter if you are talking to a reporter or to an attorney. Either way, the pressure it on to get it right.
Recently, we started applying messaging and media training tactics, originally designed to prep CEOs prior to reporter interviews, to individuals facing legal depositions in civil lawsuits.
Here’s what we found:
Training helps people clarify both what they wanted to say and the language they wanted to use. Whether recalling a specific event, noting a trend or describing a circumstance, carefully crafted language gave their story more impact.
Preparation builds confidence. Litigation can be intimidating if you are not a regular part of the system. Once the language is in place, it is easier to develop a strategy for delivering the story confidently and with emphasis. Individuals became ready to gracefully but persistently “stand their ground” in the face of hostile questions.
Practice eliminates the emotion. With a solid story-telling strategy in place, it is easier to avoid emotional responses and to stick to the facts. Civil litigation often stems from an experience where someone feels wronged and wants to recoup damages. Feeling wronged can lead to emotional responses that can be damaging to the overall case. Clear, concise messaging can neutralize the story and showcase the facts of the case.
How do you prepare for your day in court?