Add Your PerspectiveNovember 25, 2013
It’s hard to imagine a better audience than the Dallas Bar Association’s Bench Bar Conference to discuss litigation, settlement, and new ways to look at both. I recently got the chance to do just that, and the talk — and the debate that followed — were even better than I had imagined.
Clients often have a different perspective on settlement than their lawyers, and we had fun exploring why.
No, we didn’t start with stories about settlement. We began with the Zig Ziglar’s take on how a newlywed couple cooked their fist roast — and we decided that just because we’ve been settling cases one way for the last 30 years doesn’t mean we need to settle cases the same way tomorrow.
I won’t repeat the whole talk here, but a few highlights include:
- The quote from one of my old clients that first put it all into perspective for me: “I’m not in the litigation business. I’m in the business business.”
- Why — and how — clients are different from the lawyers they work with;
- How interests, rather than positions, really can serve as the foundation for a better settlement approach;
- What Stage 3 Trust is, and why it’s important to you; and
- A few examples of settlement processes — some of which are summarized here — that might work for your clients.
And it wasn’t all about settlement, either. Since the power to negotiate is the power to walk away, we talked a bit about Early Case Assessment, what better settlement processes can do for courts’ dockets, and more.
Take a look at Settlement the Way Your Clients Want It — you’ll be glad you did.