Do you spend time worrying about…
- your fees?
- the fact you don’t take insurance?
- charging for no-shows and late cancellations?
If you do… you’re not alone.
One of the biggest issues private practitioners worry about is how to justify what they charge their clients.
Here’s the bottom line…
YOU DON’T NEED TO JUSTIFY YOUR FEES –
YOUR CLIENTS MUST JUSTIFY YOUR FEES
Stay with me here for a moment. How do you justify whether or not you will invest in or purchase something? If it is not simply an impulse-purchase, most of us determine the value of that which we are considering. We think about what we will get out of the purchase.
In other words, we look at the potential RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI).
In the Influential Insider’s Circle mastermind group, we talk a lot about the FEPS Benefits we offer our clients. Essentially, ROI can be determined by weighing the potential FEPS Benefits of our purchase.
So… what is the potential ROI when people work with you?
What Financial; Emotional; Physical; and Spiritual benefits do clients get when they work with you?
How do you: help them get back to work; get them through some of the toughest times in their lives; help them manage their symptoms so they can be healthy and strong; and assist them in taking back their lives so they can help others and be all they are meant to be? What is all of that worth to them?
What is your ROI?
Once you realize your value, you’ll never feel like you must justify your fees again. And, you’ll position your marketing in a way that helps clients recognize the potential ROI of working with you, so they can justify your fees all on their own!
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Cynically speaking I can’t help but feel that many clinicians have established a new niche for themselves by offering “for a fee” advice on how to operate their practices. Years ago I was a personal trainer and saw the same phenomenon….I’m not saying that you are in any way deliberately misleading clinicians, especially those that are new to private practice, however individual circumstances cannot be denied . I live in an area devastated by superstorm Sandy and have done a lot of pro bono, nevertheless most of my clients pay heavily into their mental health care benefits as well as EAPs and deserve the best care possible when they are in need. I am that clinician with a $50 copay of my own which in times past kept me from a doc. Do I consider myself top notch as a clinician, you bet I do, do I deserve every dime I make, and more, you bet I do. If I reserve my talent and ability for only those that can pay my out of pocket fee I guess I’ll stick with my 3 figure income that allows for the great majority of us that need to use the insurance we pay so dearly for . Thanks for letting me vent
@ Barbara – First, let me commend you on doing the work you love, with those you wish to serve. The best part of private practice is the freedom to choose those things. I’ve been in private practice for 21 years, and have been helping other mental health professionals build successful practices for just as long. A big part of what makes that success is their ability to choose the work they do. It is a joy to watch people follow their passion and purpose.
I wish you the best in your work Barbara. I’m sure you are a blessing to those you serve.
Your response to Barbara seemed supportive, but it would’ve been very helpful to also read your suggestions on how to raise fees or even accept cash when working in an area marked by disaster or poverty. I enjoy what I do and accept insurance due to the fact that I work in an urban area in NYC where a majority of people have to use their insurance to cover therapy. Occasionally, I take cash for those who are uninsured but that is rare. I never wanted to accept insurance but after a year of struggling and not getting by I chose to get on a few insurance panels to prevent my business from closing. As someone who work in urban areas where the dynamic of the mental health system and the community affects our business, it’s difficult to raise fees or only accept cash, which I would love to do. I do feel a little left out when I read some newsletters because ideas for those who work in urban areas are rarely discussed. Thank you.
@ Edith. I can appreciate the frustration you must feel when it is difficult to raise fees or only accept cash due to the circumstances of your target market. It sounds like getting on insurance panels was a good decision as it allows you to see more clients.
Our choice of target markets and ideal clients will always affect our potential incomes. My outreach of support to Barbara and now to you is genuine. I don’t know how to help you generate more money in your practice without changing (or diversifying) your demographic. You might consider alternate streams of income that might not be so affected by the disaster and poverty you describe with regard to your target market. I wish I had a solution that would allow you to be paid what you are worth, without changing your target market, but I do not.
Finding ways to increase revenue with other income streams or focusing some of your practice on those who are able to allow you to increase your income might be worth considering. These options would require a change in your business model, and it might help to work with a business coach if you choose this direction. Good luck to you.