The I, Witness programmes help you to prepare for Court by focussing on performance and delivery, rather than on the content, of the evidence you are to give.
Usually, it is the witnesses who make or break a case. Yet, appearing as a witness can be very stressful, especially during cross-examination. The odds are often stacked against you, the witness, in favour of the cross-examining lawyer. Consider this:
- While this may be the first time you’ve been to Court; it’s likely to be one of the lawyer’s regular stomping grounds.
- The court system is formal and structured. You may not understand the complex rules and etiquette, but the lawyer probably will.
- While you give your evidence, you will be sitting down (in a chair that is not guaranteed to be comfortable). Usually, the lawyer will stand when questioning you, which gives them an imposing height advantage.
- The lawyer asks you questions; not the other way around. They’re also trained to do so artfully and with some degree of cunning. They control and direct the proceedings, often without you even knowing it.
- You may have a lot to lose (job, money, reputation, perhaps even your freedom). This could make you more attached to the outcome of the case than the lawyer.
Even though it is natural for witnesses to be anxious about giving evidence, it’s also common for people to try and hide their nervousness. Unfortunately, a ‘false bravado’ or other such mask can mean that your evidence does not quite ‘ring true’ to a judge or jury. In other words, even though you are telling the truth, you may not be believed.
I, Witness is an intensive and interactive workshop that will prepare you for Court, by training you to withstand the pressure of cross-examination and improve the way you communicate your responses.
I, Witness (expertise)
"What's an expert? I read somewhere, that the more a man knows, the more he knows he doesn't know. So I suppose one definition of an expert would be someone who doesn't admit out loud that he knows enough about a subject to know he doesn't really know how much." MALCOLM S FORBES
We have a specially-tailored I-Witness programme for people who appear or wish to appear as expert witnesses. Like the standard I-Witness, it is an intensive and interactive workshop. It also focuses on the special role played by and expectations required of expert witnesses in the Court system.
You will learn how to:
- prepare clear, persuasive reports;
- represent your clients effectively, without losing your independence;
- respond confidently and effectively under cross-examination.
"We would strongly recommend to anyone who is likely to be a witness to experience the advice and skills that David McCubbin and Gai Roper have to offer.
We were extremely amazed by the simple skills that we developed not only for use in the witness box but in general business and personal life.
The result of our matter was favourable and we would attribute a large portion of this success to the witness preparation programme."
Tony Vickers, Director
Garry Grant, Retired Managing Director
ZADRO CONSTRUCTIONS PTY LIMITED
"In my experience as a solicitor, I have found that many cases turn upon the credibility and persuasiveness of key witnesses, including expert witnesses. Even the most experienced professionals underestimate the pressures and procedure of a courtroom environment, which can have a detrimental effect on the outcome of the case.
Parties invest enormous money on other areas of preparation, particular on witness statements, document management and expert reports, but relatively little in preparing the witnesses themselves for the court experience. Appropriate exposure and training is invaluable in giving witnesses the skills and knowledge to ensure that they present their evidence with clarity, conciseness and confidence."
James Clancy, Partner