How Body Language Can Impact Your Deposition Performance

October 15, 2021 7:05 am Published by Leave your thoughts

As an attorney, you’ve probably already learned how body language impacts deposition performance. Maybe you’ve spent years taking Courtroom as Theatre classes or just plain public speaking courses. Either way, when your hands shake, your face gets red and your voice comes out as a squeak, you know that it can affect your performance. Not only do juries and witnesses perceive you differently, but you’re less confident.

Body language can affect your deposition performance. Here’s how to improve your performance.

  • Make good eye contact: One of the ways that we evaluate a person’s honesty is whether they can make eye contact with us. It’s not foolproof, and no one really thinks about how hard it is to keep in eye contact with people we don’t know. However, whether you’re talking to a judge, a jury or a deposition witness, it’s crucial that you maintain good eye contact.
  • Stop fidgeting: What’s the biggest tip-off that someone is nervous? For more people, it’s when they’re fidgeting. It can be difficult to stay calm and in control during a deposition—and that’s okay. Find a solution to work out that nervous energy. It might be a fidget item where you can quietly click a button in your pocket, or working out intensively before the procedure. Either way, find a way to convey you’re confident.
  • Stay hydrated: Dry eyes and dry mouth can tip people off that you’re nervous. Of course you’re nervous—if you’re a good attorney, you care that someone else’s life or property is on the line. But deposition witnesses, attorneys and juries can misinterpret that nervousness. Stay hydrated to prevent dry eyes and dry mouth, so you’re not constantly blinking and swallowing.
  • Pay attention to posture: Who do you trust more: the person who’s slumped over a computer grunting out answers, or a confident person who is firing off commentary from a position of power? Your posture matters when you’re in a remote deposition. Not only does it help your own confidence, but others will see you differently.
  • Don’t block your body: Finally, whether you’re in a real time or remote deposition, make sure that you don’t block your body with a lectern or other objects. It might make you feel better to stand behind a block of wood or a desk, but it gives off the distinct impression that you’re hiding something… even if that something is only your own shaking hands.

When you need to conduct a flawless deposition, there are dozens of moving parts. It’s your job to handle body language and deposition, but working with the right company can help make everything easier.

Consider hiring Bartelt | Nix Reporting, LLC for your next deposition. Our skilled court reporters will ensure that every word of the deposition is recorded as necessary. Call us today to learn more, or get a quote.

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