A successful private practice does not begin and end withthe time and dedication you pour into your clinic and clients.
In order to stepup your game, you need to look beyond just your clinical skills and competency.
Work Out Your Niche
This is the foremost step as a private practice therapist. Carry out needs assessment of the region you operate in and start expanding. For instance, in a large population of senior citizens, it could be the need for geriatric counseling. On the contrary, it could be a thriving town with successful Gen Xers, with considerable cases of mid-life crisis. Sort these out by matching them with your specialization areas.
Emphasize on Soft Skills
It begins with the way you greet the clients over the phone or at the clinic when they are seeking for consultation for the first time. On phone calls, make surethat you sound calm and friendly; introduce yourself and your mental health practice briefly and nicely; and let your clients feel heard and reassured.
When you are expecting them at the clinic, make sure you are there to greet them at the lobby or the receptionarea, because after all it is therapy they are coming for. It helps them feel reassured and calm. When it comes to mental health private practice, the clinic should reflect a sense of comfort the moment a client steps in. The overall environment should be clean, well-lit, organized, and exude a sense of warmth.
Beyond the “Private” Zone
Agreed it’s a private psychotherapy practice. However, it does not bode well to function in isolation. It’s important to go out and make your presence felt in the professional world. Get involved with networking – spending time with fellow practitioners, attending health conferences, and seeking referral sources such as companies, schools and doctors.
In addition, create a website, set up a blog or contribute to one, and design posters and cards – anything that helps you talk about your work. Having an online forum such as a blog or website also helps you stay updated with new developments in the field.
Remember the old adage, “the only thing constant is change”? Keep up with the times. Invest in newer training and professional development, and sign up for discussions and webinars.
Set aside some funds for marketing or promotional activities. Also, invest in the latest software or technology that makes your administrative tasks more efficient and leaves you with more time and energy to focus on clinical work and make your independent practice more effective.
You can also add a couple of items more depending on the needs and priority of your psychotherapy practice. However, the points discussed here should serve as a good starting point for a successful private psychotherapy practice.