How to Grow a Large Practice that Serves the Needs of the Community with Sherry Shockey-Pope and Jill Johnson-Young | GP 92

An image of Jill Johnson-Young and Sherry Shockey-Pope is captured. The are co-owners of Central Counseling Services in Riverside, Murrieta and Corona California, and the non-profit, a non profit, CCS Wellness. Jill and Sherry are featured on Grow a Group Practice, a therapist podcast.

Are you looking to scale up your group practice? Are there unmet needs in your community that you can serve? How do you figure out which population needs assistance in your community?

In this podcast episode, Alison Pidgeon speaks about How to Grow a Large Practice that Serves the Needs of the Community with Sherry Shockey-Pope and Jill Johnson-Young.

Podcast Sponsor: Brighter Vision

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Meet Jill Johnson-Young and Sherry Shockey-Pope

An image of Jill Johnson-Young and Sherry Shockey-Pope is captured. The are co-owners of Central Counseling Services in Riverside, Murrieta and Corona California, and the non-profit, a non profit, CCS Wellness. Jill and Sherry are featured on Grow a Group Practice, a therapist podcast.

Jill Johnson-Young and Sherry Shockey-Pope have owned Central Counseling Services in Riverside, Murrieta, and Corona California for eleven years. They started the business in the midst of a recession, and it has grown continuously since then.

Jill and Sherry now have a non-profit, CCS Wellness, and they offer services 7 days a week, telehealth, and in-person appointments with all the precautions, and sliding scale services through the NP. They provide an educational site for grad students and supervise associates through their licenses. Sherry also wrote a book about establishing a practice in a sensible manner, and both have separate streams of income they have developed. Jill and Sherry love to see staff following in their footsteps but following their own dreams.

Visit the Central Counseling Services website and connect on with them Facebook here and here.

Visit Jill Johnson-Young’s website and check out Therapist Practice in a Box.

In This Podcast

  • Connecting practice growth with serving the community
  • Distinguishing who to help
  • Cultivating contacts in your community
  • Sherry and Jill’s advice to early group practice owners

Connecting practice growth with serving the community

When Sherry and Jill plan to hire staff to grow their group practice, they inform their decision by first observing what the community needs. They focus on under-resourced areas that they can assist.

We’re looking at some under-served areas, and so creating a group of six staff in a particular area would be our next goal to … have a smaller unit which is easier to manage and easier to open financially. (Sherry Shockey-Pope)

Their practice, therefore, expands into the areas where it will be valued the most because their services are in short supply.

Distinguishing who to help

To figure out which communities need assistance, Sherry and Jill:

  • Conduct research via the HUD listing of underserved areas
  • Look at general research on which areas have the highest propensity of unemployment and/or poverty
  • Work with other non-profits in the areas they consider
  • Read newspapers to keep tabs on local news
  • Speak with their clients

If I didn’t have that resource then I would do something to gather that resource. (Sherry Shockey-Pope)

Cultivating contacts in your community

Most contracts grow by word-of-mouth through the community, especially if you are known as a social worker or therapist who is interested in serving the unmet needs in the surrounding community.

You can also look at requests for bids from the county because those are available to any agency and any group who wants to do it. There are always bids out there that you can [complete]. (Jill Johnson-Young)

Contact branches of agencies that you take contracts up for and see if you can do the same for them.

If you are working for someone in the northern region of your state, and they have a sister agency in the south, reach out to them and see if you can provide similar services.

Sherry and Jill’s advice to early group practice owners

  • Be careful not to overspend and rack up a lot of debt at the beginning
  • Find ways to recycle things you have already done: objects from previous offices and published articles from previous media that you have created
  • Cultivate a growth mindset and look at issues as opportunities
  • Invest in your mind: read books, take courses, and upskill as a business owner
  • Celebrate your growth and any progress that you make
  • Avoid comparing yourself to others: focus on building yourself up instead of looking at other people and their journeys

Books mentioned in this episode:

Useful links mentioned in this episode:

Check out these additional resources:

Meet Alison Pidgeon, Group Practice Owner

An image of Alison Pidgeon is displayed. She is a successful group practice owner and offers private practice consultation for private practice owners to assist in how to grow a group practice. She is the host of Grow A Group Practice Podcast and one of the founders of Group Practice Boss.Alison Pidgeon, LPC is the owner of Move Forward Counseling, a group practice in Lancaster, PA and she runs a virtual assistant company, Move Forward Virtual Assistants.

Alison has been working with Practice of the Practice since 2016.  She has helped over 70 therapist entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses, through mastermind groups and individual consulting.

Transformation From A Private Practice To Group Practice

In addition, she is a private practice consultant for Practice of the Practice. Allison’s private practice ‘grew up.’ What started out as a solo private practice in early 2015 quickly grew into a group practice and has been expanding ever since.

Visit Alison’s website, listen to her podcast, or consult with Alison. Email Alison at alison@practiceofthepractice.com

Thanks For Listening!

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