Law Business Mentors

the guidance you need to build the practice you want

You went to law school to make a great living,
make a difference, and have a great life...

WHAT HAPPENED?

The Law Business Manifesto has your answers.

Law Business Manifesto

Author Archive: Martha Hartney

Martha Hartney

Martha Hartney,
Law Business Mentor - Estate Planning

Martha is a later-in-life attorney, having had a successful career in marketing and advertising in the Los Angeles ad industry and another as a stay-at-home mom committed to her children and to helping other parents be the most empowered parents they can be.

She graduated in 2009 from the University of Denver School of Law in the top 20% of her class–as a full time single mom. Realizing that working for Big Law would not work for her family, Martha committed to working for herself right out of the gate and accepted Alexis’ challenge to become an estate planning attorney.

Martha has built her firm from scratch, learning how to claim the training and knowledge needed to be a family’s trusted advisor and deploying her experience in brand marketing and business systems to attract a vibrant and robust client base that feeds her need for connection and deep service.

Her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

As a Law Business Mentor, Martha teaches the Estate Planning Bootcamp.

5 Reasons to Be a Legal Entrepreneur Instead of an Associate

Here’s a truth for you: I have a vision of the world in which every person is an independent contractor with his or her company/ies… Where we freely trade our gifts, time and expertise for compensation in a fluid, conscious, enjoyable way instead of being shackled to a desk for 8+ hours a day. Let me tell you how I came to this… The year I got out of law school, the legal industry was undergoing a major contraction. There were no jobs to be had in law firms. Even unpaid internships were at an all time low and the … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

Work-Life Balance Only Happens By Fully Embracing Both

  My home is my refuge, my sanctuary. It’s the place where my soul gets rejuvenated each day. I take the beauty and soundness of my home very seriously. The condition of my home impacts my business in concrete ways. When my home is orderly, my thinking is orderly, and vice versa. I used to feel guilty that I spent so much of my “work day” at home. I’d putter around the kitchen, washing dishes, cleaning counters, fold the laundry, make beds, clear up the clutter. But when I’d sit down to study or write, my head would be clear … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

The Myth of the Difficult Client (It’s Not About You)

My life lesson: when I encounter resistance or difficulty, I can do one of two things. I can take it personally (and all the crap that comes with that), or surrender (and flow down the stream easily). This week, I had a client couple coming in who appeared to me to be unhappy with the work we had done for them. To be transparent, some of our systems didn’t work the right way while we were in the middle of a move and restructuring of the firm. And there were things that I personally could have done better to improve … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

Tips for Engaging Clients: The Energetics of Entrainment

When I started out in law practice, I kind of thought that my services would just be wanted and needed and that I’d eventually get paid for my expertise. Getting clients would be easy, right? Almost automatic, since I had the qualifications and skills they needed. Then, as I learned the art of working with clients… I was shocked to find out that how I behaved and “felt” in a meeting was the most critical factor of my success. What I’ve discovered is that my expertise is a very small part of the reason why people choose to work with … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

Shocker: I Hate Estate Planning

Yes, I know. It’s shocking. The gal that Alexis always talks about being in love with her practice actually hates the words “estate planning”. I hate estate planning because it conjures up the images of a bunch of stuffy, grey-haired lawyers sitting around a marble, diamond-encrusted conference room on the top floor of a skyscraper, talking about kicking the bucket and who’s going to get mom and dad’s fortune; cutting out Junior because he got a tattoo when dad forbade it; deciding how much each kid will get each month to live on. That image both bores me and bothers … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

5 (More) Steps Out of the Legal Entrepreneur’s Inevitable Business Plateau

Last week I explained how, for the entrepreneur, the “plateau” is natural and unavoidable. You might say this is especially true for the legal entrepreneur, since if you are starting a solo practice you are likely going to be a one-man or one-woman show for a while. However, whatever the size or structure of your firm/business, the characteristics I described are universal… The common thread being you will get (extremely) close to burnout and quitting! I also offered you the first 5 steps to get yourself OUT of the plateau… which mainly revolve around knowing your “numbers” inside out. I … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

5 Steps Out of the Legal Entrepreneur’s Inevitable Business Plateau (Part 1)

Like death and taxes, there is one thing about being a legal entrepreneur that is predictable… Your business will plateau. It will become overwhelming, lose its joy, and make you less money. Basic economics. When you grow, you have to spend more money to add “capacity” to serve the business you’re earning. That capacity reduces profit, and possibly your salary. You wonder, “Is it worth it?!” You find you’re working nonstop. You’re exhausted. Your team is in outright rebellion (or if your team is you, you’re hating your boss!). If tempers are flaring, moods falling, it doesn’t matter what your … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

Legal Entrepreneurs: 8 Tips for Busting Through Barriers to Success

Waaaay back, I wrote a post on making the transition from being a cog in the wheel of commerce to being the engine of your own law practice. Since then, I’ve encountered more and more data on how terrifying, how thrilling it is to be an entrepreneur. One of my side jobs is coaching other attorneys in making this transition from cog (employee) to entrepreneur. Like me, they hit barriers to their success almost daily—both within and without. Some give up. Some don’t. Here’s what they’ve taught me about getting through those barriers: 1. When in doubt, reach out. Lawyers … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

Cultivating the Entrepreneurial Mind: 8 Common Traits Lawyers Need To Know

The world is changing, shifting like quicksand under our feet. Lifelong employment is gone, job security too. There will be a day, very soon possibly, when we all are independent contractors… When we all are entrepreneurs. Colleagues often ask me what it takes to start your own business and have the courage to be an entrepreneur. Naturally, I hang out with a lot of entrepreneurs and I’ve noticed they either have certain traits or, lacking them, cultivate them consciously. Here a few of those traits… Entrepreneurs: 1. Have an intimate relationship with risk. Some people believe that being an entrepreneur … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.

What Do Estate Planning and Yoga Have in Common?

Last fall I felt a renewed calling to return to yoga practice full time. Committing to yoga came from a deep yearning to reconnect with my own body. After being a mom where my body was not my own alone; a law student, where I had to be out of my body and in my head for long periods of time; and a business owner, where I simply did not make time for my body, has taken a toll. I’ve known for a long time that the work I do as an estate planner has a sacred core to it; … Continue reading »

About the Contributor
Martha Hartney
Martha Hartney's is a successful Estate Planning lawyer in Colorado and co-creator of the Estate Planning Bootcamp. As a Law Business Mentor her greatest hope is to help other lawyers claim, or reclaim, the joy and the spiritual pursuit of being a lawyer.