Put Pen to Paper – The Power of Handwritten Notes

I write notes a lot – birthday cards, thank you notes, postcards, “thinking of you” check ins, etc. – and I handwrite them (at least most of the time).  From time to time, stories hit pop culture news about the dying art of handwriting and the demise of the written letter.   From a family history perspective, saved handwritten notes and letters can provide an informa...
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New Look for Hough Law Thanks to Katchye Designs!

Hough Law has a new logo design thanks to the hard work of Aiman at Katchye Designs! When Hough Law started almost three and a half years ago, we cobbled together a set of templates that have served us well, but the time had come to update them with a more professional and modern look. With only a little general direction – along the lines of clean, modern, non-fussy ...
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Tax Reminder!

The tax deadline is swiftly approaching!  If you are overwhelmed at the thought of tackling your returns, here are some (free) resources to help you file your returns on time: City of Beaverton Tax Assistance Program – Offers free tax preparation and filing assistance to low-income Beaverton residents. Review their website to get hours, location details, and information on...
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Donating Time and Money to Worthy Causes

As a business owner, I am asked all of the time to donate time or money to a wide range of local causes and projects.  Whether it is a local school function or a fundraiser for a charity, it can be hard to decide when to say yes and how to make the most impact for worthy causes (big and small). In general, I follow a few rules of thumb: What’s the cause? Is it something...
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Hough Law is Three Years Old!

Last Friday not only marked St. Patrick’s Day, but also Hough Law’s third birthday!  I can’t believe another year is in the books. The last year was a bit of rollercoaster between managing a growing business and a new family addition.  There were (more than) a few sleepless nights, but they were worth it. I have learned so many lessons over the last three years, but the t...
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ICYMI: Marketing A Solo Law Practice

Running a solo law office presents a number of unique marketing advantages and challenges, especially for a busy attorney wearing a number of different job duty hats on a daily basis! A big challenge can be determining what the biggest bang will be for limited marketing bucks.  While businesses with a greater pool of marketing resources can cast their nets far and wide, it c...
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Free Tax Preparation Assistance

A new year heralds in the return of tax time!  Get a jump start on your taxes with free assistance in the local area.  Here are some resources to help you file your returns on time: City of Beaverton Tax Assistance Program – Offers free tax preparation and filing assistance to low-income Beaverton residents. Review their website to get hours, location details, and informat...
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Start the New Year with Some Found Money!

Millions of dollars each year are held by the Oregon Department of State Lands Unclaimed Property Program.  You, or a loved one, may have assets held by the State and not even know it! You can run a check by your name (or your business name) on the Oregon Unclaimed Property Search page.  It is as simple as typing in your name and seeing what may pop up! If you have lost f...
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New Year’s Resolutions

It’s a brand new year – the holiday excess is over (or at least winding down) and the gyms are packed with people resolved that this is the year they are going to be healthier! For those of you making resolutions, an idea I recently heard was to pick a theme for your year.  For example, if your theme is “health,” it provides you a wide range of options for how to work toward...
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ICYMI: 5 Tips for Improving Customer Service

Customer satisfaction is a necessary part of being in business and a large part of client satisfaction comes from the service you provide to clients.  Here are five easy tips to help improve your customer service: Respond Promptly – The number one complaint I hear from clients about pet peeves is that professionals don’t call or e-mail them back in a timely fashion. I try ...
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ICYMI: Make Your Meetings More Productive

No one likes to sit through an unproductive meeting (unless it is helping you avoid something else and/or there is free food), so focusing on making your meetings more productive can increase happiness for all involved. Here are five simple tips for increasing productivity: Have an Agenda – Having an agenda has many benefits. First, you have to plan ahead, which means y...
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ICYMI: How to Foster Others in Your Profession

Small Table
I, like many others, have benefited greatly from being mentored and fostered by others in my profession (and some outside of it).  Because of that, I take mentoring and fostering others in my profession very seriously and I put a lot of effort into trying to assist others get a leg up the ladder as they develop their own professional talents and goals. Here are some tips tha...
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ICYMI: How to be a Good Mentee

Having a great mentor is a blessing, but it is also important to keep in mind that the mentee/mentor relationship is a two way street and you also have to give back.  You also need to bring something to the table that helps your mentor in some way and to show your gratitude. For some people, this means that they always pick up the tab for lunch or coffee with their mentors b...
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ICYMI: How to Find a Mentor

Networking is often the bread and butter of marketing for new (and old) professionals.  Part of networking is figuring out how to meet people you don’t need to know, but should know, and how to connect to other people who would be helpful for you. A major part of networking is finding (and keeping) a good mentor (or more than one), which can be easier said than done.  Of cou...
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Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! I hope those of you heading out to trick-or-treat stay dry, wear comfy shoes, and are able to raid the candy stashes for your favorite munchies. My favorite Halloween tradition was started by my grandfather.  He would keep a tally of the costumes that came by my grandparents’ house each year and then send it to us to show what had been the most (and least po...
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ICYMI: Court TV Shows – Who are the Litigants?

For anyone who has spent time watching daytime television, you’ve probably seen a courtroom show (or two or ten) at some point.  Whether The People’s Court, Judge Judy, or one of the other plethora of shows out there, have you ever wondered where the litigants come from? First, it is important to point out that these shows aren’t really “court” – while the people who are pre...
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Write a Thank You Note

I am a self-appointed master of the handwritten thank you note.  I send thank you notes out all the time for a wide variety of things – gifts (naturally), hosted dinners at someone’s house (of course), a kind gesture (yup), or for any number of other matters.  Sending thank you notes, and handwritten notes generally, are something that I get comments and compliments on regularl...
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5 Tips for Improving Customer Service

Customer satisfaction is a necessary part of being in business and a large part of client satisfaction comes from the service you provide to clients.  Here are five easy tips to help improve your customer service: Respond Promptly – The number one complaint I hear from clients about pet peeves is that professionals don’t call or e-mail them back in a timely fashion. I try ...
Read More

Make Your Meetings More Productive

No one likes to sit through an unproductive meeting (unless it is helping you avoid something else and/or there is free food), so focusing on making your meetings more productive can increase happiness for all involved. Here are five simple tips for increasing productivity: Have an Agenda – Having an agenda has many benefits. First, you have to plan ahead, which means y...
Read More

How to Foster Others in Your Profession

Small Table
I, like many others, have benefited greatly from being mentored and fostered by others in my profession (and some outside of it).  Because of that, I take mentoring and fostering others in my profession very seriously and I put a lot of effort into trying to assist others get a leg up the ladder as they develop their own professional talents and goals. Here are some tips tha...
Read More