Biz Tip 3 Putting Your Business First
Are you putting your business first? Ask Yourself these questions.
- Are you happy with your current massage therapy income?
- Would you like to make more money?
- How much time are you putting into your business activities?
There are many factors that go into answering these questions.
- Are you full time or part time?
- Is your business growing or are you happy where it is now?
- Do you plan to expand or relocate any time soon?
- Are you in practice for yourself, working for someone else or a combination of both.
Regardless of your answers, a certain amount of time needs to go into business activities and that varies from situation to situation. The bottom line is if you want to be successful, you must contribute a significant amount of time to business activities. The amount of time and energy depends largely on your situation, but every massage therapist should be doing something towards the business-part of their livelihood.
Even if you work at a spa or chiropractic office where your appointments are booked for you, and you basically show up for work, you are still in business for yourself. Isn’t it your responsibility to retain your clients? Do you have a system for rescheduling your clients or are they walking out the door without booking their next appointment?
Do you spend any time on networking?
What if you are out in public and someone asks you what you do for a living? Are you an ambassador for the field of massage therapy? Are you able to promote yourself and your services in a way that people will respond positively to. Do you present yourself with a professional confidence that will inspire people to buy your services? These are all business activities, and you are responsible for performing many of them daily. Some of these activities happen unconsciously. Others, like networking meetings are more planned. They are necessary and can always be improved upon no matter how long you have been in business.
Spend 20% of your anticipated client hours on business activities.
No matter what your situation, to be successful, you need to devote a certain amount of time to business and professional development. Here is one suggestion presented by Jenn Sommermann, LCMT in Massage Today (August, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 08).
Spend four hours per week doing the "other" work or business activities. If you are part time and want to see 10 clients per week, then spend two hours per week on growing your business. Alter the formula according to your dream schedule. The time can encompass networking, educating clients, taking classes in business, meeting new people, sending postcards, working on your webpage... all activities that pertain to business. If you are faithful with this formula, it will work. Do the leg work and watch the effect on your career.
How much time are you devoting to the “business” of your practice?
If you wish to be more successful, you could probably be doing more. If you don’t have enough clients, ask yourself... “what am I doing to build my clientele”. Unfortunately, the answer to this question is often... “not much”.
Take charge of your own success. Commit to the time and effort required to develop and maintain your business. Schedule this time just like you would for a paying client and stick to it. Stay focused and put your business first.