Body Language Expert | Media Personality | Communication Expert | Leadership Coach & Trainer
I have seen Susan Constantine on television and various programs for many years and always wanted to meet her, ask questions, and discuss her area of expertise in body language. Not all lawyers are perfect in every respect. For example, some are good writers and others are good orators. However, during my 20 years of practice, I have often witnessed lawyers who are so concerned with their own appearance and preparations, court deadlines and working up their case that final witness/client preparations are overlooked or hurried.
It only takes one bad witness to alter an outcome. Even worse is when your own client or key witness blows the case. Priding myself on witness preparation, I always look to improve and recently wondered what I could do to help my client make the best possible showing when it counts. Then, I remembered Susan. We had never met but I took a chance and called her. She answered the phone immediately and was charming, funny, polite, intelligent and most important patient, cooperative and facilitating. I explained our case and the need for assistance (on short notice) preparing our client for a one time live interview/presentation via Zoom with the decision maker in the case. As a quick study, Susan immediately understood the sensitive nature of our case and was ready to assist. Litigators all know the basics – but, what if you had just one chance to make or break your case? Wouldn’t you take every possible opportunity to help your client make the best possible presentation? As lawyers, we already know our client (and important witnesses) and have likely spent countless hours talking with them and preparing them factually for deposition and possibly trial. But, what if you could have a fresh perspective, a second set of eyes and ears solely focused on the client or witness’ appearance, gestures, word choice, mannerisms, posture, focus – and body language – which sometimes speaks louder than words? With that in mind, it is my honor and privilege to be able to say that I had the wonderful opportunity to work with Susan along side our client to achieve a significant result in a high profile sexual assault case. There are things that a third party outsider notices that lawyers who may become too familiar with their own case may overlook, ignore or believe insignificant. A third party expert like Susan can also say things to a witness or client that a lawyer may not be comfortable discussing such as attire, color choice, hairstyle, makeup, hygiene and accessories – like jewelry. And, in the age of Zoom there is even more to consider such as practice sessions, equipment, location, seating, sound, lighting and background. As a busy litigator, you may not think of these things and even if you do, they are likely not priorities when you are laser focused on the legal aspects of your presentation. I can truthfully say that Susan is a phenomenal resource, a consummate professional and everyone can benefit from this type of support. Even the decision maker in a case would benefit from tips on how to read people from their body language.