Overwhelmed by the idea of starting your own practice?
(…but you know that’s what you want to do?)
Yes, it can be overwhelming! And scary, confusing, with spirals of self-doubt along the way (welcome to entrepreneurship!). But the benefits outweigh the costs; that’s what you keep telling yourself anyway.
And you’re right.
If you are a Canadian Social Worker or Mental Health Professional dreaming of starting your own private practice and wishing you had someone to just tell you how to make it work… then the Private Practice Roadmap is the group program I made exactly for you.
Hi, I’m Jill, and I created the Private Practice Roadmap because it’s the program I needed when I started.
Although I now work in my own practice full-time, it began as a side hustle while I worked for a large health system.
Much like you, I was:
- tired of being told how, when and who I could help
- disheartened watching people be let down by “the system”
- bogged down by bureaucracy and politics
- burning out fast
I craved balance, self-expression and a little extra money, so a side hustle seemed like the perfect way to dip a toe in. And not having the pressure to get clients and make full-time income right away gave me the space to experiment and create my ideal practice.
That makes the road seem much smoother than it really is.
So let me say:
I made mistakes. I faltered and doubted myself. And most of the time, I felt like I was plugging away in the dark, alone. It took trial and error to “crack the code” of what actually works to start and run a sustainable Private Practice, because…
All of a sudden, you’re not just a Social Worker, you’re a business owner.
And that is a completely different skill set.
This is the map to get you there — with support, knowledge, guidance, and company.
Our journey starts here:
Module One: Your Practice
This session will help you to identify who YOU are as a clinician in private practice. First, we look inward towards your goals, your life, your strengths and your weaknesses. THEN, we start to create the vision together of what your practice will look like. What are your hours? How many clients per week will you serve? Will you be virtual or office based? What are your clinical specialties, modalities and qualifications? Who are your ideal clients? Through discussions, exercises and self-reflection you will develop a clear vision of who you are and who you help.
Module Two: Your Website
They say your website is the microcosm of your practice. It is the place where you clarify, distill and represent the work you do in the real world translated onto the digital page. In this session we talk about website do’s and don’ts, a bit about design and a lot about copy. I will answer non-technical questions about the elements of a successful, client-attracting, stand-out website.
Module Three: You’re Legit
One of the first acronyms I learned in my first Social Work job was C.Y.A.: “Cover Your Ass”. In this session, we talk about the sometimes boring, but incredibly necessary, elements of a private practice, including: your business license, insurance, confidentiality agreements, practice management system, collecting taxes, supervision, and your legal and ethical responsibilities.
Module Four: Your Marketing
When I first started marketing my practice I quickly discovered that most “traditional” marketing advice doesn’t quite fit when it comes to therapy. The consultant I hired made great suggestions such as “pay a referral fee to other counsellors” or “run a sale where you give a huge discount”. Of course, the first suggestion is against the Social Work Code of Ethics. And offering a discount was tempting, but ultimately I decided that I didn’t want to get a reputation for selling cut-rate, substandard therapy. I eventually found ways to market that feel GOOD to me, and attract my ideal right-fit clients. In this session I will share what I learned and how you can make it work for you.
Module Five: Your Money
Money is what makes your practice a business and not a hobby. In this session we will answer your questions on start-up expenses, ongoing expenses, what to charge, sliding scale, how to get paid, tax planning, how to raise your fees and how to track your income and expenses. We will also delve into the (SUPER FUN) subject of “money mindset” (AKA how to get out of your own way to get paid what you deserve).
Module Six: Your Sustainable Practice
It’s up and running! By now you are starting to see real progress. Your practice is moving swiftly from “pipe dream” to reality. You have a clear idea on what you need to do to move forward. You may even have your first client! Once the honeymoon period wears off a bit it is crucial to think about how to prevent burnout, find community, practice self-care and set boundaries so you can serve clients for as long as it serves you.
- We begin January 11 or January 12, 2023!
- There are two time options: Wednesdays from 6:30-8:00 PM (PACIFIC TIME) OR Thursdays 3:30-5:00 PM (PACIFIC TIME). Please choose which time slot you prefer when you register.
- Sessions are held via Zoom
- Sessions will be recorded and made available the day after the live class, so if you can’t make every class, it’s okay!
- You get handouts, resources, exercises and optional homework.
- There is a Private Facebook Group for past and present Private Practice Road Map students.
Not 100% sure this is what you need?
Private Practice Road Map is for you if:
- You have a job you like, but it isn’t quite paying the bills. You’d love a little something extra to tuck away, make ends meet, save for a vacation or pay off debt.
- You are starting to feel a bit burnt out, and suspect being a Social Worker is not sustainable forever. You’d love an “exit plan”.
- You would love to work with clients who WANT to work with you.
- The thought of setting your own hours makes you gleeful.
- You feel overwhelmed just thinking about all the steps to take and stuff to know when it comes to starting your own practice.
- You have googled a few things, but the information was confusing and weird. You felt more perplexed than ever.
- It seems like most of the information available is geared towards therapists in the USA, and you need support suitable for the Canadian landscape.
- You feel like you know nothing about business, and “marketing” is what you do on a Saturday morning to get your fresh vegetables.
- You wish your social work/counselling school had a course on private practice logistics in addition to clinical competence.
- Or maybe you HAVE started your private practice. But the clients are not flowing in the door and you are wondering what you are doing wrong.
This program is not for you if:
- You already have an established, successful private practice and are looking for ways to grow it. PPRM is designed for beginners! I am always happy to share ideas and support in a 1:1 coaching session if you want to discuss your current practice.
- You are just starting your education program in Counselling or Social Work. (I mean you COULD join us, but you probably have enough on your plate right now.)
- You are in the USA. I honestly don’t fully understand what you guys do down there when it comes to Mental Health. Insurance Panels? Diagnostic Codes? State-by-state licensing requirements? What the…? I believe that American clinicians are much better served by a program that understands their specific and complex context. This program is designed for Canadian practitioners by a BC-based therapist.
- You don’t like jokes, laughing, or the occasional four-letter expletive. You take this very SERIOUSLY! I mean, it is serious. But it can still be fun.
Here are some answers:
I want to start a private practice, but I don’t know if I am qualified. How do I know I am ready?
Great Question! And really, your feelings of readiness depends on you. But I will say this: You do not need a PHD to help people (but it’s pretty cool if you do have one). You have something to offer. There will always be people with more and less experience/qualifications/ certifications/courses and education than you. The real questions are “what do you have to offer?” “How can you help people?” “How can you emphasize your strengths while being transparent about your limitations?”. This course is designed for Canadian Social Workers, Counsellors, Therapists and Mental Health professionals with different credentials across the provinces and territories. If you are not sure if you have the necessary qualifications to operate a private practice please reach out to me. I can’t make the decision for you, but I can offer my perspective and encouragement.
I want to take the course but I am not available at that time. Can I just watch the replays? Will you run it at a different time at a later date?
The answers, as far as I know right now, are “yes!” And “hopefully yes!”. You can watch the replays but you will not have the opportunity to ask questions in real-time and participate with the energy of the group. I plan to run the group as long as there is demand; Keep in mind the price will probably be higher.
Will I get a certificate?
No. This course is for information, support, personal development and business development only. It will not certify you to do anything, but it will prepare you to do everything you need to do to start your side-hustle.
Will you be covering any clinical counselling topics or teaching any modalities?
No. This course covers the practical aspects of starting a private therapy business. It does not teach counselling, psychotherapy, social work, or any other clinical topics.
Do you offer a sliding scale, scholarship or reduced rate?
At this time I am not able to offer the course for a reduced fee. Please contact me to discuss payment plans if necessary.
What is the investment?
Still have questions? Contact me!