Harman Law September 2019

September 2019

THE HARMAN HEADLINE

HARMAN LAW

Personal Injury, Workers’ Compensation, and Employment Lawyers

THE HARMANWAY

Why I Decided to Start My Own Law Firm

Some lawyers say they’ve known law was their calling from toddlerhood, but I’m not going to lie — there’s a good chance I only ended up a lawyer because I love school and helping people makes me happy. It’s as simple as that, and, in the beginning, the law had nothing to do with it. I actually got my undergraduate degree in history before going on to enter an MBA program. Then, I took a job at the YMCA in

“While I don’t have any beef with the companies I worked for in those early days, it didn’t take me long to realize I would do things differently when it was my name on the wall.”

Iredell County, of all places. It seemed a bit out of left field to some people, but in hindsight, I think the customer service work I did there really helped inform the kind of lawyer I’d be — and because the Y is the reason I met my wife, Jen, I wouldn’t trade my time there for anything. When my love of learning eventually pulled me back to school, I chose law because of the opportunities for independence it provided and because I wanted to give Jen a comfortable life. school and quickly learned the ropes. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit, and I knew from the start I wanted to open my own business, so my mission was to gain enough experience to start my own firm. While I don’t have any beef with the companies I worked for in those early days, it didn’t take me long to realize I would do things differently when it was my name on the wall. When I opened Harman Law PLLC, I got to make those dreams a reality. My two biggest innovations were simple: I wanted to prioritize a healthy work-life balance for my staff (and myself) and put my clients first. For the latter, I quickly put my experience in employment and personal injury law to work. The choice paid off on both counts. I worked in employment and personal injury law after I left law

Every job I’ve ever had has been customer-service oriented, and being an attorney is no exception. It’s not that the firms I worked for in the past didn’t care about their clients; they did, but I thought they could do more. Giving clients a good experience has always been very important to me, particularly because the folks I see at my practice are going through difficult times. My staff and I make it a point to give one- on-one attention to everyone who walks through the door at Harman Law, and for me, that means almost never turning away cases, even ones that, from a business standpoint, I’d be smarter to say no to. If I think we can get a reasonable outcome for a client, I’ll take their case even if it isn’t profitable. As for my other goal, having the flexibility to balance my work and home life is huge. Because Jen and I have little ones now — 2-year-old triplets Nolan, Miles, and Emerson — and I like to spend time with them before I head into work, being able to get to the office at 9:30 a.m. each day has been a real gift. Outside of work, the triplets keep me and Jen busy. We love taking them to local festivals, farmers markets, and the beach in their triple stroller. Watching football together at home or in the stands and scrambling after them as they toddle around the house in three different directions keeps us on our toes (okay, maybe we don’t love that part so much). Speaking of football, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention this is my favorite time of year. When I’m not busy helping my clients, you’ll find me cheering on the Carolina Panthers, Iowa Hawkeyes, and Virginia Tech Hokies. Here’s to an amazing 2019- 2020 season!

–Michael Harman

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