Posts Tagged ‘business mistakes therapists make’

The Miracle Question for Your Business…

February 9th, 2011

I’m a huge raving fan of the miracle question. If you are familiar with solution-focused therapy, the you’ve likely used the miracle question. Here’s a common version of it:

“Suppose our meeting is over, you go home, do whatever you planned to do for the rest of the day. And then, some time in the evening, you get tired and go to sleep. And in the middle of the night, when you are fast asleep, a miracle happens and all the problems that brought you here today are solved just like that. But since the miracle happened overnight nobody is telling you that the miracle happened. When you wake up the next morning, how are you going to start discovering that the miracle happened? … What else are you going to notice? What else?”

As a true Creativity Queen I’ve been known to pull out a wand and have practice-building clients playfully embrace the role of playing “what if” in their business. It allows for some expansive ideas of what’s possible in the work you do, like creating a book you always desired, or offering a workshop or presentation of your creative ideas.

There are several stages that businesses go through as they grow and expand, and the miracle question allows you to explore what you desire to create. Let’s look at the different stages of business, so you can see what’s next for you (and perhaps see that the miracle is not that far from where you are).

Stage 1: You are in the set-up stage and you are either just about to launch your business, or you recently have launched. During this phase your miracle question likely will be about reaching new clients and welcoming them into your business. During this stage you are working on the basics for your business, such as setting up your space, making sure you have all the necessary legal paperwork as a business entity, and building referral resources. You may have created some business cards and brochures, and you’re looking at creating a website sometime soon.

Here’s what is essential during this stage: getting clear on who you help and how you help them, so you know where to best target your marketing efforts and begin creating referral connections. You’ll also be building systems at this time, so you have paperwork in place and a system on how you connect with clients when they call you. Your “miracle” likely involves having a full (or pretty full) client load and you are investing in getting clear on your client-centered message, and creating marketing systems for your business.

Stage 2: You’ve gotten clear on who you work with, created referral connections, and you’re starting to create a name for yourself in your community. During this stage you’ve created a client-attracting website and added speaking, community teaching, or community workshops. Since you are seeing more clients and your time is getting limited, you’re looking to leverage your time, hire an assistant, and perhaps add some groups to see more people.

Your “miracle” will likely involve (if you are a therapist), “how do I stop paying insurance companies and still maintain the number of clients I see”? Your solution is to create a managed care exit plan and to find very clear ways to communicate the value of your services and your expertise of the work you offer.  No matter what helping/healing work you are in, you’re investing in systems to make your business operations run smoothly and creating a “signature system” unique to the work you do, maximizing the effectiveness of your website, and maintaining and building community relationships and referral partnerships.

Stage 3: You’ve been seeing folks for a while and you’re tired of the ebbs and flows during certain parts of the year. You’re well established in your community and your clients are mostly private pay. Your business is pretty busy, with back-to-back clients, and you are likely running from dusk to dawn.

Your “miracle” will likely involve how to shift from trading dollars for hours and stop working so hard in your business. You may be feeling a bit isolated if you work alone, and you wonder how you can free up sometime and help more people without working harder. You’re investing significantly in shifting your business model, hiring additional staff and support, or leveraging your time by creating products to help your clients and new ways to service them, such as online programs.

Stage 4: You’ve decided to play bigger and want to move beyond just seeing folks in your community. You are exploring online opportunities to share your work, offer programs online/offline, or possibly train others in the model you developed. You are looking to share your message with the world and reach 10,000’s of people.

Your “miracle” will likely involve helping more people and connecting with people in a big way online and growing your list in a big way. At this point you are investing significantly in learning how to leverage your message and reach more people, which may include writing a book, or creating online and offline programs.

Want to get creative? Create a visual compass of what stage you are in and what direction you desire to head in. Use some luscious art materials or collage images and get super clear on your current place, then design an image that captures your “miracle” (Feel free to post an image of your artwork and ah-ha’s on the blog!)

Now all business are not quite that orderly, and you may find yourself with some actions in Stage 2 and Stage 4. However, there are some basic things that need to be in place, otherwise moving to a new stage may not be at all what you expect!

If you need some help with getting clear on where you are at (and what you need to do next) then you are going to want to JUMP for joy! I’ve got 2 spots left for the complimentary “Shine Your Message Online” Strategy Sessions. For a limited time I’d like to invite you to take advantage of a special, “Shine Your Message Online” Strategy Session where we’ll work together to:

  • Create a crystal clear vision for your ‘ultimate business success’ and how you can transform your message into programs and services that will help many, many more people make changes in their lives
  • Uncover hidden challenges that may be sabotaging the growth of your business, keeping you working too many hours, and preventing you from sharing your brilliance work with more people beyond your office
  • Leave this session renewed, re-energized, and inspired to turn your ideas into a highly profitable business while helping many more people transform their lives…

If you’d like to take advantage of this very special, very limited, and totally FREE 30-minute “Shine Your Message Online” Strategy Session click  here.

I am only offering 7 complimentary “Shine Your Message Online” Strategy Sessions (there are only 2 spots left) for a select few who are ready to create massive transformations in your community and beyond, and help many more people by sharing your heart’s work.

If that’s you, click here to complete your strategy session request.

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innovative, ground breaking Virtual Conference for Buisness Owners

May 14th, 2010

Are you in business and want to learn about using a Virtual Assistant, or you have a VA, then you’re going to want to join this ground breaking event.

You & Your Client

Building a Prosperous Relationship

May 17th – May 21st, 2010 @ 11:00 AM & 2:00 PM

Join GAVAA this May, for an innovative, ground breaking Virtual Business Conference! Experience a five-day conference with over TEN experts… and learn how to make the most of the VA-Client relationship, regardless of your role.

Register Now If You’re a Virtual Assistant or Independent Professional who utilizes a Virtual Assistant, and you want to learn how to maximize your profits and create a dynamic relationship that grows as the business grows!

You & Your Client Event

Join me 11 AM EST, MAY 19 as I present:

“Want to be a Hero to Your Clients? Discover What Creative Entrepreneurs Are In Desperate Need of and How You Can Profit From Being Their Problem Solver!”

You & Your Client Event

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Where do you invest in marketing for your business?

April 5th, 2010

If you are looking to market your therapy practice you have to make some choices about where you spend your time, and essentially your money too. When faced with limitless options of advertising via print and web, it makes sense to get very clear on what activities will create the “biggest return on your investment”.

Too often I hear therapists spending countless hours and dollars on creating fancy brochures or taking out an ad in local magazines, then seeing very few clients walk into their doors from their investments.

So ask yourself before you get busy with your facebook fan page or invest in glossy brochures, who are the people you are looking to connect with, what do they need help with, how can you serve them, and will this activity help to connect you with those who are looking for your services?

With these simple questions you’ll know exactly where to invest your time to be of greater service to those in need.

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I had no idea therapists in business wanted this!

December 18th, 2009

WOW! I was blown away at the response to the free call yesterday on the top 5 mistakes therapists make in growing their private practice business. People were calling my office and emailing me to see if they could get a copy of the call after the event. Only those registered for the free event got copies of the recordings. For those of you who want more information on this topic sign up for the free 7 simple steps teleseminar and you’ll receive our BSFT newsletter letting you know what topics we will be sharing in the future.  If you missed it, don’t worry. We’ll be doing more calls after the new year on related topics!

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