Final Argument #6 - Your Call to Action
Why your 'ask' is so compelling
This is the sixth episode in the series on Final Argument. This episode focuses on what you want your decision-maker to do with what you have said. Again, we borrow from the public speaking techniques in the handbook Think! Write! Speak! Speechwriting for Professionals (available from Amazon in ebook and paperback, here).
When you learned to write essays in school, you were taught to conclude your work with a summary. You should leave your reader with an idea of the significance - the impact - of what you said in the essay's body. You should connect your summary to the introduction, demonstrating how you accomplished what you set out to do.
In the courtroom, you typically minimize the passion and accent the reasoning behind your positions. Law is, after all, a dry subject that relies on rules and logic. However, your case is rarely so dry as to be limited to money or the other order the parties want as the outcome of the hearing. Usually, there is a human or moral principle at issue. When you created your theme, you focused on that principle. After all, who gets emotional about a wad of cash or a dismissal of a lawsuit? You want the outcome to deliver some kind of message. The result you advocate should support that message, and that is the Call to Action.
Let's consider your very last words before you sit down. Are they, 'Please order the Defendant to pay my client $500,000'? Or are they, 'The Defendant's misconduct warrants a strong rebuke. Make it pay the price for acting as it did!' Which is more persuasive?
Decision-makers are human. They are subject to the same emotions as everyone else. Given the freedom of action, they want to do justice, not only what is legally correct. Help them out by showing how they coincide in this case.
As with most Advocacy Club techniques, there's a formula for the Call to Action.
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