What’s the name of the business you run and its purpose/mission?
The name of my business is Law Office of Lisa Luong, P.C. I am a solo practitioner practicing mainly personal injury – automobile accidents in the northeast Atlanta area. I help clients who have been injured in automobile accidents. I ensure they are able to get the necessary medical attention to get back on their feet and will be adequately compensated for their losses due to another person’s fault or negligence. Often times, minorities and the lower income population are unaware and uneducated about their rights and the process involved when getting into an accident. I hope to become their resource of advocacy within the community.
What inspired you to pursue a career in law?
At a young age, my parents pushed me to be a doctor or a lawyer like every typical Asian parent did. So while in elementary school, I always knew I wanted to be a doctor or lawyer when I grew up. However, it wasn’t until college I realized it was something I really wanted to pursue. I tried the doctor thing and didn’t even make it to Organic Chemistry before I knew this wasn’t for me. I had a moment in my college career where I really needed to figure out what it was I wanted for my life. I knew I wanted to continue my education after undergrad, so I figured I’d give law school a try. Prior to college, I did a summer internship at a law firm and thoroughly enjoyed it, so I always kept it in the back of my mind. The heart of my profession are my clients, I’ve found it so rewarding being able to help my clients resolve their legal issues. As I get older and learn more about myself and my personality, I feel like it was a path I was meant to take.
What helped develop your goals in having your own law office?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs, so my parents have always instilled in me strong work ethics and goals to own my own business one day. Why work so hard to achieve someone else’s dream? I knew as soon as I went to law school, I would eventually own my own law firm. After law school, I did a few contract projects here and there just to get experience, however I felt so unsatisfied with everything that involved. I finished law school at a time where the market was saturated with unemployed lawyers. I had student loans I had to pay and I moved back into my parent’s home. I knew I needed to do something. I wasn’t special, I didn’t have a lot of money and I didn’t make straight A’s in college, but I knew I didn’t want to work for someone for the rest of my life and just be comfortable. Was I scared I would fail if I ventured on my own? Yes, but that is the worst mistake you can make in business. What is comfort compared to the life I wanted for myself? I knew I would make mistakes and I knew it would be hard, but I felt like I was young enough to bounce back if I was unsuccessful.
What’s it like to have your own law office (And be your own boss?)
Having my own business is very stressful at times. If I don’t work, I don’t eat. When I first started out, I had to make a lot of sacrifices; I had to limit social activities with friends, eliminated time spent on social media, I had to save all my money to reinvest back into my business and I spent a lot of time researching the internet and speaking to other solo attorney practitioners on starting your own business. I started out my business in my basement for the first few months. However, it was hard to meet clients and focus on my business working from home. So I found my first office space and I had 2 other employees with me at the time. After 2 years, I now have a staff of 6 and a more flexible work schedule. One thing that always surprises people is that I spend more time running the office than actually practicing law. There are a lot of things people don’t consider when having your own business and that is the simple task of getting it up and running. I had to do every minor task including purchasing office supplies, getting internet and even buying toilet paper for my office. Of course you will eventually get to a place where you can hire people to do things for you. I wasn’t making any money the first 6-9 month of my business. But I knew if I kept working hard, it would all work out. My business is growing and I still have to hustle every day to get it to where I want it to be. It’s no 9-5 job, but I’ve always believed if you work hard and do the things you need to do when they needed to be done, you would be able to do the things you wanted to do, when you want to do them.
Any advice to share for sisters who wish to pursue a career in law, or set up their own business?
My advice would be to just do it, take a chance on yourself. Stop making excuse as to why you can’t. Spend time researching and having a concrete business plan set out and how you are going to execute it. Figure out a way to finance your business, businesses are not funded by hopes and dreams. These are the harsh realities of having your own business. Invest a lot of resources in marketing and getting clients/customers, without them, you won’t make any money. Don’t lose motivation if there are bumps in the road. You will make mistakes. It’s not the end of the world. Fix it and you’ll do better next time. Surround yourself with people who will support you. Ask questions when you need help and seek out mentors in the same industry for advice. It’s never too late to follow your dreams.
I can be contacted if anyone has any additional questions: firstname.lastname@example.org