My interview with Karl Sturge was honestly a great experience for me. For, it was just like another day in the office, but that was the first time that I ever participated in a real interview. Several days before the interview, I had a real positive attitude towards it and I believed that it was going to be easy, but as the day for the interview came, nerves started to run through my body because I was scared that it was not going to go as planned. Luckily for me, Mr. Sturge showed the utmost professionalism and made my job a piece of cake. It was such an amusing experience to be able to listen to all the information Mr. Sturge had to offer. As the interview was happening, there were some barriers that I faced. One of the barriers was that Karl had been a family friend of mine for many years, which made it challenging to separate personal friendship and business during the interview, but only for the beginning of the interview. As I said earlier, Mr. Sturge always acts with the utmost professionalism, which made it easier for me to stay focused and separate our personal life from business. Also, the room created an echo at some points depending on how loudly we spoke and my uncertainty with my placement of recording device became distractions to me. Every time I though the device was maybe to close or too far, I would move it, which caused me to wonder off while Mr. Sturge was speaking. But with the barriers, came the successes. I was very pleased with the fact that we did not have to take a break once during the entire interview or have any awkward moments. I came in to the interview expecting to maybe have to take a break here or there to gather our thoughts or to gather our focus, but fortuitously for me, we ran a smooth interview. Also, Mr. Sturge was able to give me more than enough information that I needed for this project, without having to deviate from my scripted questions. I got out every bit of information, and more, that I needed. All in all, I would say my interview was not only a success, but an eye-opening experience that I am glad I participated in.
As I was reviewing my interview with Mr. Karl Sturge, an attorney based out of Miami, Florida, I heard a few key things that he made note of. One of the more relevant ones to our class was reacting vs responding. Mr. Sturge discussed not only talked about how to control your emotions, but how to strategically use reacting to what you hear while in a trial. Mr. Sturge talked about how difficult it was for him to learn the skill to not react, but to respond. It can be very difficult at times for a lawyer to listen to the opposing lawyer ramble on with lies or incorrect statements, but that is a part of being a lawyer. Mr. Sturge said that to be a good lawyer, you cannot get caught up in the lies the opposing lawyer is saying or the decisions the judge makes on topics of discussion, you must simply just listen to what they are saying, and be able to use it against them. Another thing jumped out at me from my interview was about listening properly and effectively. Mr. Sturge, as a trial lawyer, confessed that above all, like reading and writing, you must be a great listener if you want to be a successful trial lawyer. He discussed how listening not only to your opponent but to the judge or jury is important. If you are not listening with great attention at every moment, that one slip up could come back to destroy your chances of winning that case. Lawyers do not only have to listen to their clients, but also to opposing side’s story and the rulings that the judge makes on evidence that is allowed to be discussed or should not be brought up during that specific trial. Whether it be the judge telling both lawyers some things must be avoided while in trial, or the opposing lawyer is making a rebuttal or objecting to something you say, it is important to not only hear what is being said, but to process everything that is being said. To wrap it up, lawyers must be able to use their emotions wisely and listen properly and effectively if they want to be successful at their job.
Go to 10:11- 10:58 to hear a great quote about how important it is to be a great listener and why it is so important.
Karl Sturge is a defense attorney, located in Coral Gables, Fl. He is married, with three kids, all boys. He was born and raised in Miami, which is where he still lives to this day. Karl graduated with a degree in English from Florida State University in 1987. He then received his Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Miami in 1991. He has been practicing defense attorney since 1991.
Karl has focused much of his practice on representation of insurers. For over 20 years, he was counseled and advised insurance companies on first-party and third-party casualty and bodily injury issues and primary/excess issues. He has also counseled and advised on construction and environmental matters, professional liability claims, and all related extra-contractual issues. Karl has a lot of experience litigating in both state and federal courts in Florida. He has also been honored as an “AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell” attorney (gold standard lawyer).
Although Karl has been a great lawyer for over 20 years now, his greatest accomplishment has been Miracle League of Miami Dade, a non-profit organization that provides special-needs children with the opportunity to play baseball as a part of an organized team. Karl is the Chairman of the Board and has devoted many years and long hours to this organization. His passion for sports and helping those around him is what drove him to start the Miracle League of Miami-Dade.
- Where did you grow up?
- A soft, easy question that would get the ball rolling. It is also good to know where someone grew up to get a better understanding of them.
- What or who persuaded you to become a lawyer?
- I would ask this question because it is important to understand why this person became a lawyer. This question would most likely lead to the next question I would ask.
- What do you enjoy most about being a lawyer?
- This would help him open up a little and to see what kind of person he is. It also shows me what motivates him.
- What is the hardest part about being a lawyer?
- By hearing what he/she struggles with most as a lawyer will show me what kind of adversity he deals with on a daily basis. I get to understand some of the challenges that come with being a lawyer.
- What is the craziest case you have ever had?
- This question will hopefully bring up some laughs that would then make the feeling in the room more relax. Hearing his craziest story could help us connect and make the interview go smoother.