Have you ever experienced a week where you had fewer sessions than expected? If so, trust me, you are not alone. For some practices, this can be cyclical based on the season or perhaps for another reason. Or perhaps you need to find more clients. Regardless of what is going on, I know it can feel a little defeating. What has helped me in the past with this is contacting old clients, or to clients who may have needed to cancel at the last minute and have not had time to reschedule.
I used to think that I was chasing clients down and it was up to them to reschedule until I became the client who honestly forgot to reschedule. It was so nice to get the phone call and reminder of coming back for another appointment and it made it so much easier for me. If you would like to test this out for yourself, try some of the following tips.
Give your clients a personal call
I normally wait about two weeks to call a client who I have seen consistently and who needed to cancel. It’s often that something work or family-related came up and they needed to put more time and energy into this part of their lives. I highly suggest calling your clients first and following up with an email or letter. Remember to record this correspondence as a chart note in your client’s file. It also helps you when you are going through and auditing your open files and determining if you need to close that file.
Make it easy for your clients
In our modern world, we want things to be quick and easy, which includes scheduling appointments. If you do decide to contact a previous client, remind them that they can conveniently schedule their next session online. Simply add the link to your email, give them the link on your voicemail, and make it easily accessible on your website, social media accounts, and/or Psychology Today profile. If you do not have this feature yet, it is one worth investing into! I personally use Simple Practice and have found it to be very easy and convenient for my clients.
Has it been months since your last session?
If it has been months since your last session that you successfully ended services with, then consider giving them a call to check-in and see how they are maintaining the treatment goals that they worked hard for. Something that I have incorporated into my practice that some of my clients enjoy is a half-price follow-up session 6 months after sessions have ended. Of course, this is if you are only doing private pay and is totally up to you. But when reviewing my informed consent, I share how this is a way for all of us to ensure that the change that is being worked towards is still being maintained.
I hope these few tips help you out in filling up your week’s schedule! Listen to this great podcast for more advice on getting more clients.
Priscilla Rodriguez is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who owns a private practice, Modern Wellness Counseling, in San Antonio, TX. She works with couples and individuals who are wanting to enhance their relationships and connections with others. She offers online services and an online relationship class; which couples can learn a multitude of research-based relationship