Every good lawyer needs to have a set of skills that set him apart. Success is achieved by continuously working to improve yourself in every way and the skills required to be a successful lawyer can be learned and developed over time. Here are just a few essential skills that will make you a better lawyer:
This one should come as no surprise to anyone, as it’s the fundamental skill any good lawyer needs to have. As a lawyer, you must be able to draw reasonable, logical conclusions or assumptions from limited information. You must also be able to look at these judgements with a critical mind in order to anticipate potential weaknesses in your arguments that need fortified.
On a similar note, you must also be able to identify weaknesses in the opposition’s argument. Decisiveness is also essential, as you’ll have to make a lot of important judgement calls and little time to do so.
Good Research Skills
A huge part of being a lawyer means having to do a lot of research quickly and effectively – to understand your clients, their needs, and to prepare legal strategies.
In order to prepare legal strategies, you’ll need to absorb and comprehend large amounts of information, which you then have to distill down into something that is both manageable and useful.
Good Communication Skills
An essential aspect of being a lawyer is the ability to be orally articulate, have excellent written communication skills and be a very good listener. Seeing as how you will be required to argue convincingly in court before judges and juries, public speaking skills are also important.
A lawyer must be able to write clearly, concisely and persuasively, as they will have to produce a variety of legal documents.
Good listening skills are important when analyzing what a client tells you or when you follow a complex testimony.
Good Analytical Skills
As mentioned earlier, as a lawyer, you will be required to absorb and comprehend large amounts of information, which you then have to distill down into something that is both manageable and logical.
There will sometimes be more than one reasonable conclusion, or more than one precedent that can help resolve a situation. Therefore, a lawyer must have the necessary evaluative skills in order to choose which is the most suitable to the case.
Even studying to become a lawyer requires a lot of perseverance and commitment, and you haven’t even started the actual work yet.
A lawyer will usually do an undergraduate law degree, an LPC, and a training contract before qualifying. Most also complete a vacation scheme or some other type of work experience.
When working on a case, a lawyer must have the commitment and perseverance necessary to complete the work successfully.
Being a lawyer is not only about being logical and analytical; some of the best lawyers use a great deal of creativity in their problem solving.
The best solution to a problem is not always the most obvious one and in order to outsmart your opponent you often need to think outside the box.
Good People Skills
No matter how well you may do academically, lawyers work with people and on behalf of people, and the decisions they make affect people’s lives.
Lawyers should be reasonable, able to read others effectively, and persuasive. This is how they gauge jurors’ reactions and whether or not a witness is being honest.
These skills allow them to take the best approach in order to achieve their desired outcome: either getting clients to take their advice or negotiating with the opposition.