So many of us, as therapists have thought about the idea of opening up our very own counselling or psychology business.
For many therapists it is the ultimate long term career goal. But it is also a personal achievement to start your own business and the benefits to your lifestyle are also extra benefits that many of us never considered.
How to Start a Counselling Business
Starting your very own counselling business can be an exhilarating experience.
Having your own private practice gives you the opportunity to work on your own schedule and on your own terms because ultimately, you are in charge.
Starting your own counselling or psychology practice gives you the chance to structure your business in a way that compliments your lifestyle.
Starting your own private practice can also be terrifying. After all, you might be the most amazing and supportive therapist but most likely you have little to no experience in running a marketing campaign, understanding the legal and taxation requirements involved in opening a practice, formulating a business plan, deciding on adequate office space and logistics, writing policies and procedures, and marketing your new business, just to name a few.
As a new business owner there are some things that you will need to consider to help you start and maintain a successful private practice. Some of which include:
Choose Your Work Schedule
There is a time and place for everything in life, particularly work. A habit of a healthy and successful therapist is to establish fixed hours of work.
By having a set work schedule your mind and body start to develop a professional attitude towards your new practice. Having a clear work schedule allows your work/life balance to be healthy which will minimise your risk of burnout.
Have a Dedicated Work Space
When you are in the right space, creativity hits you immediately. When you want to set free the power of your mind, go to a professional office environment that is relevant to your practice.
Have a Time Limit for Each Session
Once you have determined your working hours, you need to dedicate a specific amount of time for each session. This will help you to maintain your work/life balance. If you decide to make your sessions 60 minutes, break down what you will be doing in that 60-minute period, will it be 50 minutes therapy and 10 minutes note taking and updating client files? You choose.
Know Your Worth
Remember, you are a trained professional who has dedicated their time and energy into this industry. You have spent many hours and lots of money on your qualifications and for that you deserve to be reimbursed in a fair way.
Do not charge clients less just to keep them from jumping to your competition, keep in mind the cost and value of your service. If you under charge you end up devaluing yourself and your industry.
Get Some Help
You can seek help or advice on how to start a counselling business in Australia from a professional association. Associations such as the Australian Counselling Association, the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia, and the Australian Psychological Society are their to help their members.
There are people to help you set up your new practice. Therapy Enterprise has specialist consultants available with over 12 years of experience that can take care of the business-related aspects involved in opening your own successful private practice. This can make your journey to becoming a proud business owner that much smoother.
Engaging a specialist consultant will guide you along your journey of starting a counselling business in Australia. This allows you to continue doing what you do best, and that is be a supportive therapist for your clients.
Apply for a Grant
A grant to start your business can provide you with a welcome cash injection for your new start-up practice.
Do you research and check for grants through Federal and State Government, Local Councils, community organisations and private businesses. A grant could provide you with the financial boost that you need to get things started.
Therapy Enterprise has speciality business consultants that can kick start your practice. Find out if you are eligible for the program today.