What Skills Will Be Valuable To A Lawyer In The 21st Century?

What skills make a lawyer at Silver & Silver exceptional? For the different cases, lawyers need to be versatile when handling slip and fall, dog bites, personal injuries, drinking and driving, trucking, car and workplace accidents, and criminal defense. The skills lawyers need to be successful are endless. Skills such as teamwork, independence, initiative, problem-solving, commercial awareness, organization, and the essential skill knowledge of legal procedures and substantive law are added commodities for lawyers.

Nine Skills for a Successful Lawyer

  1. Strong Communication Skills – communication is an essential skill that lawyers cannot fall short of having. Skills for communicating and writing are required for a lawyer to do their job effectively. They rely on these skills to present a convincing and robust argumentative case to the judge and jury. Without these skills, their chances of winning are slim. As with communicating and writing, listening is another skill that lawyers need. They will not analyze their client’s needs without listening skills and reacting to those needs will be difficult.
  1. People Skills – having a job that deals with the public require the ability to interact with others. Whether they are the judge, jury, law enforcement agency, other lawyers, and the lawyer’s client, an astounding people skill with help to gain trust and generate a rapport with clients and co-workers. Be sure that respect, politeness, and relatable are a part of people skills. Without people skills, situations can arise, causing clients to believe they are being mistreated.
  1. Time Management – only if there were more than 24-hours in a day, more could be accomplished. Unfortunately, 24-hours is all there is in a day, and lawyers must take advantage of every minute. Heavy workloads and demanding deadlines leave no time for wondering what to do next. At the core of a lawyer’s work ethic is time management. By prioritizing and working ahead, lawyers can accomplish what needs to be done in 24-hours.
  1. Research Ability – lawyers must extensively dig around and read old cases to make the best argument for their client and be practical. Researching is a skill that should be mastered early in their career. It is crucial to analyze, understand, and summarize critical key factors from extensive articles and documents. This is especially helpful for those with a large caseload and who need to know the vital characteristics.
  1. Detail Oriented – accuracy, precision, and an eye for detail are added jewels for lawyers to have. A minor mistake made can lead to a lawyer being sued for malpractice. A detailed-oriented lawyer minimizes errors by carefully making the decisions needed to win a case.
  1. Creative – lawyers must be clever to win cases. Being creative shows the flexibility that is needed to become a successful lawyer. Having to think logically and analytically provides lawyers with the ability to outmaneuver whatever scenario that comes their way.
  1. Judgmental – being judgmental is another key and core component for being a lawyer. Drawing a reasonable and logical conclusion is a skill that lawyers need to be based on limited information. Finding the weakness in their opponent’s case can give them the edge for winning a case.
  1. Manages Stress – trying to solve their clients’ problems takes up tremendous time for lawyers. Some clients have incidents that are extreme and create stressful and challenging situations. Adding communication and people skills help lawyers cope with a stressful situation with their clients.
  1. Business Skills – understanding the business side of being a lawyer, whether working in a firm or private practice, learning how to bill for services renders is a skill that is much needed. It is essential to explain to clients the hourly rate, contracts, and additional charges to clients. The ability to market and network are bonuses for lawyers.

One skill that was not listed is computer literacy. Since lawyers use a lot of their time researching, knowing their way around a computer is beyond helpful. Fostering collaborative culture delivers the ability to provide professional litigation support. Lawyers that are computer literate and tech-savvy give the added benefits to allow advancement, easy accessibility for clients, and an easy and faster way to access files. Being tech-savvy will enable lawyers to look deeper into their profession while becoming more competitive and growing in their careers. 

Soft skills are just as necessary as core skills. Soft skills promote integrity, a desire to help others, sensitivity, humility, empathy, confidence, persistence, simplicity, loyalty, discipline, and dependability. These skills help a lawyer feel human and vulnerable, granting lawyers a stronger rapport with their clients. 

Outside of being a doctor, lawyers are among the top trusting careers people place on a pedestal. People seek legal advice for themselves and their loved ones in hopes that their lawyer will help them win an unthinkable case. Without the proper skills, lawyers may be viewed as “ordinary” people.

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