Private Practice Success: 10 Essentials for Starting a Practice
As a counselor, therapist or healing professional (massage therapist,
physiotherapist, alternative health practitioner, etc.) it is quite likely that you did not chose your profession because you wanted to be a business person. As a result, it can be challenging to go into business for yourself and be successful. Taking time to prepare and plan as you build your private practice will help you avoid costly and time-consuming mistakes. Below are ten areas to address to help ensure your success.
1. Get Your Life in Excellent Shape
Counselors, therapists and healing professionals know that our personal lives affect
our professional lives, yet many who are struggling to market a private practice fail
to take this into account. Look at all aspects of your life and determine what seems
to be working for you and what needs to change. Determine any activities you need
to reduce or eliminate in order to have the time and energy to market your practice.
Examine your lifestyle and personal work habits and see where improvement needs
to be made. The more your life is on order, the more time and energy you will have
for marketing and building a practice.
2. Develop a Financial Plan
Before you start your private practice, assess your financial situation and make a
financial plan. Make sure you have funds from other sources until your practice
becomes established. Do not put your self in a position where you are desperate to
secure clients in order to pay your bills. Potential clients may sense your
desperation and may not be eager to hire you. Feeling secure financially will allow
you to market and build your practice with greater confidence and ease.
3. Know that You Are a Business Owner
It is essential that you start seeing yourself as a business owner if you haven't made
this mind-shift already. You must pay careful attention to all aspects of your
business--your revenue and expenses, how you spend your time, methods of
attracting clients, and developing operating systems that allow your business to run
4. Develop a Vision for Your Practice
It's difficult to get somewhere if you don't know where you are going. Develop a
detailed vision of what you want your priavte practice to look like in 6 months, 1
year and 5 years and write it down. How many clients do you want to have? What
days and hours do you want to work? How much income do you need/want? The
more clarity and specificity you have, the more likely you will turn your vision into
5. Develop at Least One Specialization
Helping and healing professionals new to private practice often fear that if they are
too narrow in the type of services they offer, they will rule out many other potential
clients. The opposite is actually more often true as people tend to want to hire
specialists. The more targeted you are in marketing your practice, the more you will
stand out from others and become known for your expertise. In addition, it's easier
to market your practice to a particular group if you know where to find them.
6. Determine Any Negative Attitudes and Fears You Have About Marketing
Many counselors, therapists, and healing professionals are uncomfortable with the
marketing aspect of being in private practice. They see their role as to be there for
others and not to promote themselves. Our repeated exposure to negative and
manipulative types of marketing further contributes to the belief that marketing
ourselves is somehow inappropriate. Any negative attitudes and fears you have
about marketing a practice need to be eliminated. You can and should find ways to
market with integrity and authenticity. Be proud of your services and have
confidence that you have something to offer people that they need and want.
7. Develop a Marketing Plan
In order to market your private practice successfully you must have an integrated
marketing plan. One of the most common mistakes helping and healing
professionals make is trying a few methods of marketing your practice haphazardly,
and when the results are not immediate, they erroneously assume the techniques
don't work. Flourishing private practices are frequently built upon a number of
marketing strategies that work together over time. To market effectively you must
make yourself repeatedly visible to potential clients and referral sources so that they
get to know and trust you.
8. Choose Marketing Methods That Excite You
Take some time to explore and develop marketing methods that suit your unique
talents and interests. There are numerous ways to promote your practice. To get
ideas, read books, take courses, ask other professionals how they built their
practices, or hire a marketing consultant or coach. Marketing can be an enjoyable
and creative process that provides a balance to the work you do with your clients.
Find a way to take pleasure in this aspect of your business and you will be more
motivated to do it.
9. Make a Commitment To Build Your Practice
Typically it can take anywhere from 1-3+ years to build a full practice. Exactly how
long will depend on several factors including the size of your current network, how
effectively you market, the demand for your area of expertise, and how much time
you spend developing your practice. Make a commitment to take action steps on a
regular basis. It's best if you set aside a specific amount of time on a weekly basis
for marketing your practice, and try to stick to this schedule even when you become
discouraged or become tempted to allow other things to take priority.
10. Get Support
Because you will be primarily working alone, you may feel isolated and discouraged
at times. It's important to have people and resources you can access for support.
Most successful people have consistently had other people helping them. Whether
you get expert guidance from a professional business coach or consultant, or get
help from your colleagues and friends, getting support, guidance and feedback on
your ideas and goals is essential. The more support you get, the greater your
chances of success with your private practice.
Many professionals who are having difficulty building their private practices tell me
the reason they can't get clients is either because there is too much competition or
because of tight economic times. While it may be true that competition for clients
has increased and that financial resources are limited for many people, there will
always be those professionals in your particular field who do have a full practice.
Competition is not going to go away and you have you don't have control over the
economy. You need to find a way to develop and sustain a private practice in spite
of these apparent obstacles. If you act on the above ten guidelines on a consistent
basis, you should have a thriving practice within a few years. Be persistent, believe
in yourself, learn from your mistakes, and most importantly, get out there and
market your practice.
Juliet assists helping and healing professionals (coaches, therapists, counselors,
massage therapists, chiropractors, etc.) who are struggling to build their practices.
She helps her clients overcome resistances to marketing, learn no or low-cost
marketing strategies, create compelling promotional materials, and write effective
A graduate of both Coach U, The Institute for Life Coach Training and member of
The School of Coaching, Juliet has been a practicing coach for almost 7 years. Juliet
is also the Director of the Canadian Office of The Institute for Life Coach Training, a
training program for therapists wanting to become coaches. She is former member
of the founding board of the Vancouver Chapter of the International Coaching
Federation (ICF) and a current member of the ICF and Coachville.
Juliet can be reached through her website at: www.julietaustin.com">http://www.julietaustin.com or
through her marketing blog at www.marketingaprivatepractice.com">http://www.marketingaprivatepractice.com
Prime minister tells of delight at pregnancy but rejects trailblazer label
Having found herself in the midst of tough coalition negotiations after a closely fought election, Jacinda Ardern was facing far more than her political colleagues could have guessed.
Six days before becoming New Zealandâs prime minister-elect, the Labour leader discovered she was pregnant, but was desperate to keep it, and the accompanying morning sickness, a secret during the post-election maelstrom.
Private investigator tells House panel Farage gave thumb drive to Assange, who officials view as a conduit for the Russian government
Nigel Farage may have given Julian Assange a thumb drive of data and was possibly a more frequent visitor than was publicly known to the Ecuadorian embassy where the WikiLeaks founder lives, according to testimony given to US congressional inquiry into the Trump campaignâs alleged ties to the Kremlin.
Bombardment risks inflaming relations with US, which has allied with Kurds against Isis
The Syrian Kurdish YPG militia has said Turkish forces have fired about 70 shells at Kurdish villages in the Afrin region of north-western Syria, as Ankara said its threatened military assault was âde factoâ under way.
The bombardment from Turkish territory began at around midnight and continued into Friday morning. Turkey considers the Syrian Kurdish militia as an extension of Kurdish rebels fighting Turkey and has vowed to attack their Afrin enclave, massing troops and tanks on its border for several days.
When Ella and her cousin reached a refugee camp in Sudan, it seemed to herald safety. Instead, it was the start of an all too familiar ordeal
It was right at the moment Ella thought she was safe that she was kidnapped.
The 17-year-old had just entered eastern Sudanâs Wad Sherife refugee camp with her teenage cousin. The girls had been walking for days, in a desperate bid to escape compulsory, indefinite military service in their birth country Eritrea, which begins as soon as school ends.
Trump Towers project in India lures investors with chance of meeting US presidentâs son
The developers behind a Trump Towers project near Delhi are offering to fly the first 100 investors in the property to the US to meet Donald Trump Jr, the US presidentâs eldest son.
The promotional materials for the project â the fifth in India to take the Trump name â claim the address in the Indian capital is âso powerful, a letter would reach you from any part of the worldâ.
Pontiff on allegedly complicit bishop: âItâs all calumny. Is that clear?â
Comments undermine churchâs already shaky reputation in Chile
Pope Francis has accused victims of Chileâs most notorious paedophile of slander, in an astonishing end to a visit meant to help heal the wounds of a sex abuse scandal that has cost the Catholic church its credibility in the country.
Francis said that until he sees proof that Bishop Juan Barros was complicit in covering up the sex crimes of the Rev Fernando Karadima, such accusations against Barros are âall calumnyâ.
Brussels had less than 11 hours of sun last month, while Lille has had less than three in January
Sunshine is in short supply across a swathe of north-west Europe, shrouded in heavy cloud from a seemingly never-ending series of low pressure systems since late November and suffering one of its darkest winters since records began.
If you live in Brussels, 10 hours and 31 minutes was your lot for the entire month of December. The all but benighted inhabitants of Lille in France got just two hours, 42 minutes through the first half of January.
Critics say changes to judicial system and proposed decriminalisation of some corruption offences mean separation of powers is âfinishedâ
Romania is taking the biggest step backwards on the rule of law since it joined the European Union, a former justice minister has warned before what could be the biggest street protests in a year this weekend in Bucharest.
Monica Macovei, who was an architect of Romaniaâs anti-corruption policy when she was justice minister from 2004-07, said changes introduced to bring the country into the EU were being dismantled.
Here is some comment from journalists on the press conference.
From Politico Europeâs Charlie Cooper
Macron punchier than might have been expected on Brexit. If UK wants financial services access, "be my guest" but needs to pay into budget and accept free movement. ie. Norway
Macron telling the PM to âBe My Guestâ in English over access to financial services was the headline of that press conference - publicly reflects exasperation but acceptance from Europe that UK actively wants to give away trade advantages in the biggest market of biggest industry
Very interesting answer from Macron on financial services post Brexit. Says he does not want to exclude any sector of the economy from the trade deal, but the access to the single market would be lower than at present. So, broad but shallow access.
PM @theresa_may acknowledges 'we will no longer be full members of the single market' after Brexit. The word to focus on in terms of UK Phase 2 talks thinking is 'full'
Theresa May often returns to Lancaster House whenever she is asked or hears something she doesn't like on brexit. Like Macron's answer on the single market. It's her tell.
Macron can tell the Germans that German banks won't get easy access to London. Good luck with that!
Macron is so bloody French... 72 hours of charm, trolling Britain with a tapestry, and then tipping into threats and arrogance
Going Vertical, portraying Soviet victory at 1972 Olympics, is Russiaâs highest-grossing movie
A film about an Olympic basketball showdown between the Soviet Union and the US has broken records in Russia, at a time when the countryâs sports are mired in a doping scandal and relations with Washington are at a low point.
Going Vertical shows Soviet players claiming victory over the US in the final of the 1972 Munich Games, but skirts around the fact that the Americans never accepted defeat because of allegations of incorrect refereeing.
Hundreds queued for todayâs release â with the âŹ180 shoes doubling as âŹ700+ transport tickets, it wasnât just the usual sneakerheads
Outside Overkill, a hip shoe store in Berlinâs Kreuzberg district, breakfast is being served: MettbrĂ¶tchen, minced raw pork on a bread roll. âThis isnât a hipster breakfast,â explains Julian Kalitta of Overkill. âIt is typical old-school Berlin â something you can imagine one of the cityâs tram drivers eating before work.â
Itâs a fitting treat for the hundreds of people who have camped out in the snow, some since Saturday, waiting for the limited release of 500 pairs of the new EQT Support 93/Berlin shoe â an unlikely collaboration between Adidas and BVG, the cityâs transport company.
The Trump name is being scrubbed off skylines from New York to Toronto to Rio as the brand backfires
It takes all of 30 seconds for the doorman at Trump Place to kick me out of the building. âMaâam, you need to leave,â he says, when I tell him I am a journalist. Then he practically shoves me out the marble lobby, back through the revolving doors .
Tensions are high at Trump Place, 200 Riverside Boulevard. The luxury condominium complex on New Yorkâs Upper West Side is currently embroiled in an increasingly contentious legal battle with the Trump family. Like many of the towers bearing the Trump brand, 200 Riverside Boulevard isnât actually owned by the Trumps; it simply licenses the name, which is plastered on the building in big brass letters. And now many residents donât want it any more.
Amid the carnage of the civil war, Aden is the only major city in Yemen looking open for business â but it still has a long way to go
With Yemeni president Abd-rabbu Mansour Hadi still in Saudi Arabia, the return of prime minister Ahmed Obeid bin Daghr to the port of Aden at the end of December underlined the interim capitalâs importance. Amid the carnage of the Yemeni civil war and with the former capital, Sanaâa, under Houthi control, Aden is the only major city looking remotely open for international business.
President Hadiâs hometown was one of the few ports to be reopened at the end of last year after the Saudi-led coalition opted to starve out the northern rebels. Now Aden must work out how to recover from ruinous damage sustained during the 2015 offensive, in which the Houthis came within a whisker of seizing the city.
When a quake devastated Sicily in 1968, a bold plan was hatched â to build entirely new towns and move the inhabitants. But what looked futuristic on paper would herald a new decay
Fifty years ago, the ground began to shake in Poggioreale, an ancient village in the BelĂŹce Valley of south-west Sicily.
Calogero Petralia was eating spaghetti with his family, just as he did every Sunday lunch. By the time the initial earthquake and the aftershocks that night had quietened, the house where Petralia was born and raised was gone. It was 15 January 1968 and he was 18 years old. âMy heart remained in that room,â he says.
Peter Morrison sentenced to seven years for killing man on M6 after texting behind wheel
A football agent who sent a string of text messages before losing control of his car and killing a highways worker has been jailed for seven years.
Peter Morrison, 37, was driving his Mercedes ML350 4x4 on the M6 near Tebay in Cumbria, on 21 February 2016, when he hit and killed Adam Gibb, 51, and left his colleague, Paul Holroyd, now 53, paralysed from the chest down.
Donald Trump used a speech to anti-abortion activists to describe plans to give âconscience protectionsâ to medical providers who refuse to perform abortions for moral or religious reasons. Trump, formerly a supporter of a womanâs right to choose, has become the first sitting president to address the annual March for Life in Washington.
Pontiff addresses representatives of 400 indigenous groups in Peru
Amazon is âcultural reserveâ threatened by new types of colonialism
Pope Francis has warned that the Amazonâs indigenous people have ânever been so threatened in their territories as they are nowâ and demanded an end to the relentless exploitation of the regionâs timber, gas and gold.
Addressing an indigenous audience in Peruâs jungle city of Puerto Maldonado, the pope expanded on the environmental message of his 2015 encyclical, taking aim at the multiple threats faced by the Amazon rainforest and telling its indigenous inhabitants they were a âcall to conscience for a way of life which could not measure its own costsâ.
Thereâs nothing illegal about the US groupâs contract with Adecco but the growing trend is giving unions cause for concern
Amazon is recruiting in Australia. The job ads in Sydney and Melbourne show it is looking for skills such as IT and engineering support, sales and account management and âsolutions architectsâ.
But there arenât any warehouse or distribution jobs listed in Amazonâs Dandenong South fulfilment centre, even though the global internet retail giant launched its Australian operations in December.
Human Rights Watch report accuses western politicians of driving global misrule by feeding off public fear and discontent
Rising intolerance in many western countries has created an âopen field for murderous leadersâ around the world, a leading human rights group has warned.
In an annual report assessing more than 90 nations, Human Rights Watch warned of a âfrontal assault on the values of inclusivity, tolerance, and respectâ across states that have previously championed rights.
Silvana Beqiraj left rural Albania for France, only to be found dead in a canal four years later. Now her family want answers
On a bright autumn day in September 2014, the body of a woman was hauled from the Lunel canal, a stretch of water that crosses a flat, marshy area of Montpellier. French police at first assumed she had drowned. There were no signs of injury, but her nakedness was a cause for concern.
The body was that of Silvana Beqiraj, an Albanian. Silvana was originally from NdĂ«rmenas, a village in the district of Fier, an industrial town 100km from the Albanian capital, Tirana. A divorced mother of two, she had migrated to France four years earlier, leaving her young children with her parents. Another Albanian woman, Bukurie Elmazi, also from Fier, had moved to France with Silvana in 2011, having persuaded her to migrate for âbetter opportunitiesâ, according to Silvanaâs family. Elmazi identified the body.
Refugee-turned-Olympian Yiech Pur Biel is on a mission to give displaced kids a sporting chance
Being a refugee, says Olympic runner Yiech Pur Biel, doesnât mean you are nothing. Biel, a survivor of the Sudanese civil war who ran at the Games in Rio, is now leading a drive to improve sports facilities in refugee camps around the world and raise Olympic aspirations.
Biel was 10 when his familyâs grass house in Sudan was burned to the ground. Left to fend for himself in the bush, he survived on fruit and leaves before finally reaching a refugee camp in Kenya, where he learned how to run competitively.
Sudanese refugees in northern Chad are risking their lives to mine the precious ore in a desperate bid to secure a new life in Europe
Refugees from the troubled Sudanese region of Darfur, who are living in camps in neighbouring Chad, are being drawn into an African gold rush in a desperate effort to pay smugglers to get them to Europe.
Digging in holes 50m deep, Sudanese refugees are risking their lives in an area not only littered with landmines but also beset by violence, which claimed at least 25 lives last year.
Bayeux tapestry loan is latest example of use of symbolism to raise Franceâs global profile
Ever since the Norman era, the fine art of the meaningful gift has been at the heart of statecraft.
Historically, they have ranged from a menagerie of exotic animals to fabulous jewels, but Emmanuel Macron â by first offering the Chinese a horse called Vesuvius, and now offering the British the loan of the Bayeux tapestry â has revealed himself this month as the modern master of the diplomatic gesture.
Macronâs loan isnât some âGallic jokeâ about the last time we were invaded; itâs a portrait of how intimately linked we are to the continent
As a British-born, adopted Norman, I am delighted that the Bayeux tapestry may be going on a short holiday to Britain after 952 years. The tapestry (actually an embroidery) is a remarkable and remarkably modern piece of art. It is often described as the âfirst strip cartoonâ and the âfirst movie storyboardâ. Less frequently observed is the fact that it preceded television 24-hour news channels by nine centuries in its neat use of scroll bars to provide extra information above and below the main action.
Bombshell ruling commands Republican-led state to draw electoral maps fair to Democratic voters and fuels expectations highest court will set new standard
The last time North Carolina Republicans redrew the stateâs 13 congressional districts, they made absolutely no secret of their ambition to rig the system and lock in a 10-3 balance in their favour â regardless of whether they or the Democrats won a majority of the votes in future elections.
âI think electing Republicans is better than electing Democrats,â bragged the chair of the redistricting committee in the state general assembly, David Lewis. âSo I drew this map to help foster what I think is better for the country.â
Jacinda Ardern, the prime minister of New Zealand, has announced she is pregnant. The last time an elected world leader was pregnant in office was in 1990 when Pakistan's prime minister, Benazir Bhutto, had her daughter Bakhtwar
Vladimir Putin has joined millions of Orthodox believers by plunging bare-chested into icy waters in a Russian tradition to mark the Epiphany. Surrounded by priests and glittering religious icons, and braving subzero temperatures, the president lowered himself into Lake Seliger, 220 miles (350km) north-west of Moscow. It is the first time the 65-year-old, who has often posed topless on wilderness expeditions, has taken part publicly in the ritual
Boris Johnson has proposed a 22-mile link across the Channel â a distance which sounds impressive, but which is exceeded by many existing bridges. We look at some of the longest and most spectacular around the world
Pope Francis ordered his popemobile to stop on after a mounted Chilean policewoman was thrown off her frightened horse, which had reared up as the pontiff passed by. Francis stepped from his vehicle and waited several minutes on the pavement, at times talking to the woman, until an ambulance arrived to take her away. Officials say she was not seriously injured.
Pope Francis married two members of cabin crew in a wedding on a flight taking the pontiff and his entourage between two Chilean cities. Paula Podest, 39, and Carlos Ciuffardi, 41, had been married in a civil service but their planned religious ceremony was scotched when an earthquake in 2010 almost destroyed their parish church in the Chilean capital, Santiago.
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