Civility. Courtesy. Respect. Professionalism. These are words that should be synonymous with “Advocate” but in a world of high stakes, strong opinions, and a general, societal decline in basic manners, how can attorneys fight the good fight while living up to these ideals – especially if the other side doesn’t? We set out to find examples of lawyers who model the way while providing excellent representation.
Getting Along is Not Wrong, an initiative of the IndyBar Standing Committee on Professionalism, is the impressive collection of such positive and compelling behavior.
The Power of a Simple Gesture
Matt Neumann, Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP
One anecdote of “professionalism” that comes to mind was a case opposite Travis Jensen of Johnson Jensen LLP. Some heated depositions and contentious discovery in the social media realm made it a unique and challenging case. I would characterize the litigation as hard-fought but civil and professional in all respects.
The case settled before trial, and Travis took a brief moment to call and tell me that he had enjoyed working on the case and commended me and the other lawyers involved in the case on a job well done. To a relatively young attorney, this was a meaningful gesture. It multiplied my respect for Travis, which was not lacking to begin with, and galvanized my opinion that civility and professionalism can be maintained even in contentious litigation.