Resources to Start (and Grow) Your Occupational Therapy Business
Do you have an OT-related business idea or desire to start your own occupational therapy practice someday?
If so, that is awesome! Thank you! Every thriving profession needs entrepreneurs to drive innovation. The rapidly changing landscape of therapy and health care will definitely be opening new niches to serve our clients.
But, starting a new endeavor can (rightly be) scary.
I’ve been blogging for over 5 years now and in that time I’ve seen multiple OT businesses come and go. I’ve had readers begin down the path of practice ownership only to have life take them another direction.
One thing that has changed drastically over the past years though is access to resources and experts to help get your business idea off the ground... and then help it thrive. There are so many facets to starting a business. You cannot be expected to be an expert in them all. So why not leverage the expertise of those therapists who have done it already?
Below, I rounded up resources for occupational therapists who are interested in starting and growing a business.
I limited this list to resources that are produced by fellow therapists (OTs, PTs, and SLPs).
Nurturing Your OT Business Idea
If your business idea is in incubation, there are great resources out there to get your creative juices flowing.
The therapy podcasts listed below all focus on the business of therapy and feature interviews with therapists who have been in the trenches growing their own practices.
If you are looking for even more guidance in fleshing out your idea, Jen Gash has a handy ebook, Selling OT: From Random Idea to Unique Value Proposition. This book was written specifically for OTs. It provides encouragement, but also helps you think through critical initial questions like your unique value proposition, who your customer will be, and how to create a minimal viable product.
I also highly recommend the WebPT blog. The blog has been producing educational content specifically for private practice rehab therapists, including OTs, since 2008. They have covered almost everything OTs would need to know about starting, running, and growing their practices, including strategies and advice around marketing, compliance, healthcare reform, billing and A/R, technology, leadership and culture, communication, and revenue diversification.
Launching and Growing Your OT Business
Once you are ready to launch or grow your business, you may desire more in-depth or one-on one-help. Whether you are looking for an ebook, a mastermind, a coach, or a consultation there is someone out there to help.
Iris is a 30-year veteran in the business end of therapy and grew her own practice from scratch to a $14M multi-branch therapy company that she sold to a Fortune 500 Company. She now offers private consultations as well as affordable workbooks, on-demand webinars, and generic templates on her website www.nytherapyguide.com.
Her goal is to help therapists set up a fiscally and legally sound practices as well as offer actionable ideas on how best to strategically grow and eventually sell a private practice. She is on faculty at Columbia University teaching Entrepreneurship and Marketing.
Iris's most popular guidebooks and webinars include:
- Starting a Professional Private Practice
- Generic Policy and Procedure Manual
- Independent Contractor vs. Employees – What you Need to Know
- The Ins and Outs of Selling Your Private Practice
Since 2008, Jena has helped OTs, SLPs, and PTs who are looking for more flexibility, clinical freedom and higher income start their own private practices, step-by-step.
For OTs who are looking to start their own private practice (either full-time or "on the side"), Jena offers free and paid resources to help walk clinicians through the entire process.
Jena's available resources:
- The (free!) Private Practice Mini Course (great for those just starting to explore private practice)
- The Guide to Private Patients (ideal for beginners who need help with setting up their practice and getting their first clients)
- The Guide to Creating a Web Presence for Your Private Practice (for those looking to grow)
- The Guide to Setting Your Hourly Rate (comes with a rate setting calculator)
Aaron LeBauer runs his own successful cash-based practice and helps physical therapists and occupational therapists do the same.
In addition to his podcast, mentioned above, he has a course to walk therapists step by step through the process.
Here's what Aaron has to say about his course: The CashPT Blueprint is the premier online training program for passionate occupational therapists who want to achieve success in the cash-based therapy model.
(FYI- I have an affiliate relationship with Aaron for this course!)
Paul helps therapists gain professional and personal freedom while doing the work they love. On his website, paulpotterpt.com you will find:
- Inspiration and practical guidance on creating a lifestyle practice through content, courses, and coaching.
- Time-tested business wisdom combined with current trends to provide fresh perspective and resources to help therapists reinvent their professional careers.The Cash Therapy Success Course provides step by step guidance to launch a cash practice from scratch
- The Cash Therapy Success Course provides step by step guidance to launch a cash practice from scratch
You can also find resources from Paul in the OT Potential Store.
Jamey teaches practice owners such as PT, OT, and Chiropractors how to automate their practices. This allows them total freedom by having their team and the processes in place manage the day-to-day operations. This includes an understanding of the 4 areas of business:
At his website, jameyschrier.com, you will find coaching resources, video series, and the chance to join a year-long mastermind group.
Emmy helps health care practitioners who would like to integrate holistic/integrative health care into their practices, or begin a private practice with a holistic/integrative, prevention, health and wellness approach. She has been studying and practicing holistic/integrative health care for nearly 20 years. She has provided care in mainstream health care, holistic/integrative health care settings, and now blends the two.
Her mission is to bring holistic/integrative health care into mainstream health care. She provides coaching/mentoring, individual sessions, continuing education, and guides OTs and health care practitioners on how to integrate these approaches into their practices – whether in private practice, as coaches or consultants, or in employed positions.
Emmy’s available resources:
- Holistic Practice Group Coaching Class
- Monthly Holistic Practice Group Coaching calls
- Continuing Eduction Classes
- Monthly Holistic OT Conversations (free)
- Articles on How to Integrate Holistic/Integrative Health Care into OT Practice (free)
StartaTherapyPractice.com is a place for therapists already in private practice or interested in starting a practice. Scott offers a podcast, blog, ebooks, free forms, and tools.
Scott has recently opened The Academy of Private Practice which is a video based Ecourse that will take you from pre-launching your practice to start up and growing your practice to multiple brick and mortar clinics.
Groups to Join
Lastly, there are some active social media groups for you to join to connect with other therapists.
- Linked-In: Private Occupational Therapy Network
- Facebook: Occupational Therapy Entrepreneurs (I manage this group!) and Entrepreneurship4OT
- OTConnections: OTs in Private Practice
If I am missing any resources that have helped you grow your occupational therapy business, please let me know in the comments. I hope to keep this post up to date as new resources come out!