Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alicia Patterson, a Women's Pelvic Health Expert and Somatic Counselor, based in Denver, CO, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is a private practice/consultation/service-oriented therapeutic offer oriented toward those who are ready to explore personal growth work and pelvic health from a trauma-informed lens. My customers are women of all ages, couples, and individuals looking to explore the deepest parts of themselves.
Tell us about yourself
I started working on creating my own business as soon as I finished my graduate work in psychology. I knew I wanted to orient toward the entrepreneurial journey and began taking steps toward that process as soon as I received my master's degree. My motivation has always and continues to stem from a deep inner drive to move forward. I've created everything I offer due to the resources and education I've had, as well as my capacity for motivating myself to move in the direction that is most aligned and inspiring to how I want to move through this world.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is probably the lengthy list of incredible testimonials, and results my clients have experienced. I do my best to remain very humble in the face of these "wins" and feel immensely grateful to be privileged enough to touch the lives and well-being of those who orient toward my therapeutic work. I've put a lot of hard work, study, practice, communication skills, and financial support into learning how to be the best practitioner I feel I can be. I feel humbled to have found such a fulfilling path at a young age.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
In my work, being a business owner means I do everything. I've had a team, hired help, and still feel best when I handle client-oriented things with my own touch. This means I manage my own schedule, handle all client communication, manage my office space, and write my own marketing and web materials (I have passed that off and never ever been satisfied with someone else doing my writing though I have a lot of help with a design that I am very grateful for), maintain my policies, charge cancellation fees, and so much more.
Amidst all the coaching and advice in the world, I've gotten myself into a scenario where I truly am my business. I receive the feedback that people come toward me and work with me due to who I am and how I carry myself in my business, and that is secondary to my long list of training. I really try to walk my talk, and that takes a high level of integrity toward myself and others. This is both a blessing and a responsibility that requires a deep amount of self, professional care, and support to maintain.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
I only feel I am equipped to give advice on starting running and growing a practice or a solo practitioner-type business, not necessarily a company or big business, as I feel those are very different skill sets. My three tips for growing a practice are:
- In the beginning, go above and beyond. This is the time to cut your teeth with experience and hard work. Build upon these skills and experiences to further your career and clientele retention, grow toward higher fees, and elevate yourself to the highest standard of your field at a slow and steady pace. Avoid miracle fixes and fast ticket sales from those looking to support you in your business. Any practitioner's success takes extensive time and effort to build a thriving and resilient practice amidst what our world is facing today.
- Know that if you are a truly powerful and impactful person, there will be those who love you and those who hate you. Accept this dynamic, learn from it, be willing to take ownership of mistakes, and grow into your best professional self. And learn how to let things go and move on because the nature of providing a service is that there will be people who want to tear you up or bring you down no matter how great your service is. Show up, be true, be raw, do your best, and learn how to let go when necessary.
- Set yourself up well and correct from the beginning in regards to finances, legalities, administrative requirements, and business practices. It's hard to go back and do things over if you didn't do them the correct way from the beginning. Get financial advice. Hire an advisor. Get tax support. Learn the ropes. Establish yourself as a successful entity and allow yourself to receive the return on that investment.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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