Practitioner or entrepreneur?

June 14, 2010Post by Laura Humphreys

My osteopath is a miracle worker. This morning I could hardly sit up straight over my long black and newspaper. By 2pm I was pain free. As I lay on the table feeling Martin’s healing hands do their work, we talked about business. He is the first to admit that if the definition of a business is something that will ultimately pay you when you no longer work in it, then he agrees he doesn’t really have one. He has a job, not a business. We’ve talked about this concept before and he really gets it. He is a practitioner. He is trained in his profession and has built a self employed career through his talents. He deserves his loyal base of clients because he is very good. He also deserves to have his business pay him back for all the hard work he’s put into it over the years. But unless he does something drastically different with his business model, it won’t. The question we talked about today is how can a practitioner create a business that he can walk away from. As his client base relies on him for the experience they expect, it seems impossible.

In reality it is not impossible. But it does require a mind shift. The first step is for the practitioner to want to build a business rather than a “job”. This will mean re-thinking how the business model works. To stop thinking like a practitioner and start thinking like an entrepreneur. The long term vision must be to sell the business, or have it continue working even when you are there. To create something that grows and inspires, and doesn’t rely on your own daily input to thrive.

The question the practioner has to ask themselves is this, “in what ways can my practice earn money without me doing the hands on work?”

It’s a great challenge. Love to hear your thoughts.