The coronavirus pandemic has caused many to reconsider the way they work. If you’re in the mental health or wellness space and considering taking this time to move into private practice, there are some considerations to be made for you, your staff and your clients.
Create a Business Plan
Before starting any new business venture, a business plan is a must. Going into private practice is no different in this respect. A business plan is especially important if you intend to take out a loan, but in general, it’s a great idea as it will help you be successful in your practice. Your plan should include financial goals, marketing goals, human resources goals (i.e. how many people will you need to hire immediately versus long term). Additionally,if you’re seeking funding for your practice, you will want to include your repayment plan.
Be Aware of the Challenges
Running your own business can be full of challenges. From the big – the overhead expenses, staffing and marketing – to the every day – paperwork and payroll.
There are also challenges you might face in finding your niche in terms of clients. In the beginning, you may be open to working with any clients, however, you should think long term about the populations you enjoy and are most effective at treating. Keep an eye on market trends, and be mindful of ways you can adapt to industry and community changes.
Decide on Office Logistics
Once you’ve navigated through your business plan and mitigated or planned for potential challenges, deciding on office space is a big step. Of course, being in the mental health space, you should want to create a space that is inviting to your clients. Whether that space is somewhere in your home, shared office space or an office all your own, it should be someplace confidential and secure.
If you choose to lease an office space, Upstate Professional Center has options in our neighborhood, including single office spaces and full suites, with amenities such as included utilities, free parking and plowing and snow shoveling.
Marketing Your New Business
Essential to any new business, you’ll want to market your private practice when you’re ready to begin seeing new clients. Marketing your business does not always mean you need to make a significant financial investment in advertising, but there are organic ways to get your practice out there.
You should consider creating a website and/or social media profile where people can find information about your practice: business address and phone number, if you accept new patients, insurance/payment options and even relevant industry content. Additionally, a Google MyBusiness listing is a free and easy way to impact your search results for your practice.
Creating a clean, simple business card is a classic marketing opportunity. These can be given to other professionals in your field, new clients and potential clients. It’s also encouraged to attend networking/industry events and to participate in online and offline conversations regarding your specialties.
The decision to go into private practice can be quite an involved one, but if you love learning and have a passion for helping your clients, it can be very rewarding.