In all law fields, attorneys that want to be really successful need some specific character traits and skills. These need to enable the attorney to set himself/herself apart from all the rest. Such skills vary based on law field but it is common to see the need to have transaction skills and organizational skills. However, for the civil litigation attorney, according to Joey Langston, there are some extra qualities that have to be highlighted.
A litigator needs to be able to persuade a jury, the opposing counsel, a client or the judge about specific issues. In all contexts, persuasion power is vital. Whenever a case will go to trial, the highly persuasive side is the one that usually wins, except for the situations in which there is a clear finding based on law. Persuasiveness is all about ability to relate to and understand people. Civil litigation success often comes through persuasion.
You can have the best case ever and still end up losing if communication skills are not in place. Most people do not understand laws. It is often the job of the attorney to relate case proof in a way that anyone understands. This is so much more important than even persuasiveness and you simply cannot be successful in civil litigation when communication is flawed. This is simply because communication will underly important attributes civil litigation attorneys have to obtain. A clear understanding of who the lawyer communicates to and purpose are needed.
This is the quality that is most likely known by people since it is logical. Most cases do not end up being solved in front of the jury. Negotiations tend to happen before that. When the civil litigation attorney is more than capable to go to trial, many insurance companies and other defendants tend to initiate negotiations.
As the lawyers negotiate, everyone wants to get the best possible deal for the client. The cooperative negotiator is the one that often gets the best possible settlement deal. No matter what the negotiation style is of the lawyer, how good he is at it will dictate the outcome of so many cases that it is impossible not to think about this as being an important trait for the civil litigation attorney.
Having strong interpersonal skills is not something that is unique to law. However, it is much more important for lawyers than many other professionals, especially for one that works as a civil litigator. This is because this attorney spends a large part of the day meeting and talking with clients, co-workers, colleagues and judges. Every single relationship will demand a distinct and separate interpersonal skills set.
As opposed to the traditional attorney, the civil litigator has to be fully comfortable to talk to anyone and should be able to easily get along with practically all kinds of people. When the client ends up not liking the attorney, there is a much lower possibility that future work is going to appear, usually without even mattering what the outcome is.