Scaling a Small Health and Wellness Business?

When it comes to scaling a small health and wellness business, it’s important to spend time on the front end that will set your business up for success as your grow. Failing to do so is not guaranteed to be costly and detrimental to the overall success of your business but will certainly cause more turbulence than necessary. By avoiding common traps, you can save yourself a lot of headaches in the long run.

After twelve years in healthcare administration and business development, here are my top 5 tips to avoid:

5 Tips to Avoid When Scaling a Small Health and Wellness Business by Dr. Sarah Crawford, PT, DPT, COMT, CMTPT

1. Failing to identify your secret power from day one

As a health and wellness entrepreneur, identifying your unique talents can be a game-changer when it comes to avoiding common traps in the industry. By understanding your strengths and leveraging them in your business, you can overcome obstacles and achieve long-term success.

Identifying core values from day one can be incredibly valuable for small business owners for several reasons. Core values provide a foundation for a business to operate on, and they can influence the direction of the business, the way it operates, and the way it interacts with customers and employees.

Those values then become your businesses superpower. It’s the rules by which your company lives, who you decide to collaborate with and the compass you use as you expand in people and offerings.

2. Self-performing everything

One of the biggest traps that health and wellness entrepreneurs fall into is trying to do everything themselves. They take on too much, spread themselves too thin, and neglect their own talents in the process. This can lead to burnout, decreased quality of work, and ultimately, failure.

Identifying your unique talents can help you avoid this trap. That means, the thing that you do that is so special that no one else can do it.

By focusing on what you’re best at, you can delegate tasks that are outside of your skillset and free up more time to focus on growing your business in a meaningful way. For example, if you’re great at marketing, you can outsource other tasks such as bookkeeping or social media management.

Nickel and diming yourself to avoid spending money to outsource will catch up with you because you’ll spend too much time doing work that you’re not exceptional at when you could be working on what delivers value to your business.

5 Tips to Avoid When Scaling a Small Health and Wellness Business by Dr. Sarah Crawford, PT, DPT, COMT, CMTPT

3. Shiny object syndrome

One of the most significant traps that small healthcare business owners fall into is expanding too quickly. It can be tempting to want to grow quickly and add new services, products or other add-on’s but it’s essential to remember that scaling too fast can be detrimental to your business in the long run.

Overexpansion can lead to financial instability, increased risk, and ultimately harm your business. It’s important to take a measured approach to growth and focus on sustainability.

One big piece of advice is to always know your break-even number when contemplating a new revenue stream. Consider carefully the cost-benefit of each step towards expansion and aim to grow at a pace that your business can handle without compromising quality.

4. Neglecting Talent Acquisition

A business is only as good as its employees.

When it comes to health and wellness in a world where Instagram and YouTube are primary search engines, it’s even more critical to hire and retain top talent.

Neglecting to focus on talent acquisition can lead to staffing shortages, burnout, and decreased quality of care.

Taking the time to find the right people for the job can save you time and money in the long run. Investing in the right training and development for your staff can also help to retain employees and improve overall patient care.

One key aspect of growing your team is ensuring you’ve established your core values, mission, value proposition and differentiating activities from competitors. In a crowded market, standing out is key to success. By highlighting what you’re best at and using that as a selling point for your business, you can attract employees and even better, customers who are looking for a unique approach to health and wellness.

5. Failing to Prioritize Client Experience

Providing quality client care should be the top priority for any healthcare business. Failing to prioritize the patient experience can lead to decreased patient satisfaction, negative reviews, and ultimately, loss of business.

But we often only think of the client experience as that that happens when they’re in the room with us.

5 Tips to Avoid When Scaling a Small Health and Wellness Business by Dr. Sarah Crawford, PT, DPT, COMT, CMTPTAs a sole owner-operator, your unique talents are just that: unique. As you scale your practice or business, setting the standards of care will be pivotal, including how your clients are communicated with before/after their sessions and what other resources you make available to them.

That said, maintaining a network of ally’s and colleagues in the community is paramount as it’s a key component of your client experience. If a time comes that a client needs more than you can offer, having a friend in the community to refer to is a huge opportunity to build trust and rapport with your client. It’s also a wonderful way to have a sound board and confidante in building business.

In conclusion, scaling a small healthcare business requires careful planning and execution. Avoiding these common traps can save you a lot of headaches in the long run.

By focusing on identifying your secret powers, putting your strengths into action and outsourcing what you’re not good at, avoiding shiny object syndrome, hiring and retaining top talent, avoiding shiny object syndrome, and prioritizing the patient experience, you can build a successful healthcare business that will thrive for years to come.

Remember, a strong foundation is the key to success.


About the Author:

Sarah Crawford Anchor Wellness Physical Therapist Cincinnati OH

Dr. Crawford earned a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of Miami (FL) in 2011 and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from The Ohio State University in 2008. She is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) as well as the Ohio Physical Therapy Association (OPTA).

Dr. Crawford brings over 10 years of experience as Physical Therapist in addition to healthcare administration. She has served in roles from office manager, clinical director and partner for several local, independently owned physical therapy practices before opening Anchor Wellness Inc. and the Anchor Wellness Center in 2019.

The motivating force behind Dr. Crawford’s move into entrepreneurship came from a place of creativity. Recognizing early on that traditional healthcare is reactive while also knowing the cost of doing business, Dr. Crawford opened the Anchor Wellness Center to support other local entrepreneurs in a progressive and supportive environment. Ultimately, this improves care for the individuals’ utilizing services within our integrated center as well.

As a PT, Dr. Crawford is highly skilled in treating a wide variety of conditions including chronic pain, neck and back pain, cervicogenic headaches, sports injuries and temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD). She is classically training in Geoffrey Maitland’s approach to orthopedic physical therapy and is a Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist (COMT). She believes in the use of hands-on treatments to restore normal function in order to maximize results and optimize patients’ outcomes. Dr. Crawford was the first Physical Therapist certified by Myopain Seminars (R) in the state of Ohio in Trigger Point Dry Needling (CMTPT) as an alternative treatment intervention to a variety of conditions including: tennis elbow, neck/upper back pain, IT Band Syndromes, Frozen Shoulder, Rotator Cuff injuries and much more. Dr. Crawford believes in the power of functional training through the use of multiple treatment techniques however she places an emphasis on Pilates based rehabilitation, earning her Certified Pilates Instructor credentials in December 2012.

Dr. Crawford began her career with extensive training in neurological rehabilitation, specifically spinal cord injury and cerebrovascular accident (stroke), which has further enhanced her skills as an orthopedic therapist. She utilizes a comprehensive approach to each and every patient, integrating neuromuscular, fascial, musculoskeletal systems in a manner that positively influences a faster return to prior level of function.