I made the mistake of quitting my regular job before I started my private practice. I had always wanted to start a practice but I didn’t put much planning and thought into it. It ended up working out for me but I don’t recommend it. It’s a better idea to be partly established in private practice when you quit your job. Learn what steps you should take before you leave your job for a private practice.
Steps to Take Before You Quit Your Job
- Save money
- Learn everything you can about private practice (Read books, watch videos, take trainings or webinars)
- Get your NPI and EIN
- Register with CAQH
- Apply and be accepted to at least 3 major insurance companies
- Apply to at least 1 EAP
- Create or purchase forms or choose a EMR
- Have a business plan
- Choose a business structure (sole proprietor, partnership or LLC)
- Choose a business name
- Have a letterhead and logo
- Be active with social media
- Have a Facebook page and Twitter account for your practice
- Be active on LinkedIn and make connections with other providers in your area
- Have a website
- Have a blog and write relevant articles regularly
- Choose 5 to 8 specialties which you have the most experience
- Call other providers in the area where you want an office and ask them if they would be interested in office sharing
- Contact group practices in your area and ask if they have room for a new provider
- Start a small practice evenings and weekends
You want to wait to quit your job until after you have completed this list.
I know it sounds like a long list but if you begin when you finish your Master’s degree, by the time you have your license, you can have this list completed. During this time, it’s important to keep up with developing your online presence by blogging, tweeting and posting to Facebook and other social media. The more you write and post, the more interest and connections you will make. These people are resources for referrals and information when you start your practice.
If you devote as little as an hour a day to writing and posting, you will have a large following in the two or three years that it takes to get your license after completing school. You can even start developing your online presence while you are still in school. The more people who know who you are, the more opportunities you will have for referrals. Plus, you may want to supplement your income at some point with books, eBooks, products, webinars, etc. You can develop a long list of contacts to which you can market your products. Even if they are not the target for your products, they may have access to your target market.
The point is that it is never too early to start. There are a lot of things you can do to work toward starting a practice that you can do long before you get an office and start taking clients.