Do you feel overwhelmed by the amount of admin that you are doing daily? At what point should you hire administrative assistants? What are some practice hacks that will save you time?
In this podcast episode, Whitney Owens does live consulting with Kandice Moss about balancing the administrative side of private practice.
Meet Kandice Moss
Kandice Moss is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago, holding a Masters degree in Dance Movement Psychotherapy and Professional Counseling. Her own experience of the healing power of dance and movement and her interest in helping individuals find their “why” led her to further her education in this field. Her faith is what has allowed her to experience this manifestation.
Kandice brings a wealth of experience to her private practice, Moss Therapy and Wellness. Kandice’s experience includes working as an Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health clinician with parents and children between ages 0-6 years old. She’s worked as a dance movement therapist for children and adults with special needs. She was also a dance movement therapist for individuals with Alzheimer’s & Dementia at Abe’s Garden memory care facility in Nashville, TN.
“Connection and relationships” are her motto. Kandice is passionate about helping individuals foster self-awareness and gain insight into their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors by using movement as a modality to further integrate themselves into a whole BEING– physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
In her free time, Kandice enjoys dancing, meditating, and reading, and most importantly, spending time with her husband and 2 children by having movie nights and trying new restaurants.
In This Podcast
- The administration will change over time
- Invest in what works
- Invoicing time saver
The administration will change over time
I’ll say first of all, it changes over time. The more your practice grows, the more [the] administrative is going to be needed, and that is especially important for people when they grow into a group [practice]. (Whitney Owens)
If you are a private practice owner who would like to start a group practice, but you especially enjoy the clinical work, then you will need a strong administrative side because doing all the admin yourself will take up a lot of your time.
Spend some time figuring out how much income you need a week, and a month.
Let that number dictate how many clients you need because that will dictate how many administrative tasks you need to complete.
Invest in what works
Always invest more in what works, and not in new things, unless you think it’s really going to work. (Whitney Owens)
It may be exciting to branch out and try a multitude of new things, however, keep it simple.
Work with what works, and if something really seems like it might be worth the money and effort, then give it a try.
Invoicing time saver
EHR companies such as Simple Practice can save credit card for you.
Get the credit card details when the client calls to book an appointment, clearly explain your cancellation policy, send them an email with the cancellation policy in red writing to be sure.
Then, charge the card at the end of a session so that you do not have to invoice them at all. This will save you a lot of time.
- Live Consulting with Christy Pennison: Creating Effective Systems in your Practice | FP 90
- Simple Practice EHR
- Join the Faith in Practice Mastermind
- Practice of the Practice Podcast Network
- Group Practice Launch
- Group Practice Boss
- Email Whitney at firstname.lastname@example.org
Meet Whitney Owens
Whitney is a licensed professional counselor and owns a growing group practice in Savannah, Georgia. Along with a wealth of experience managing a practice, she also has an extensive history working in a variety of clinical and religious settings, allowing her to specialize in consulting for faith-based practices and those wanting to connect with religious organizations.
Knowing the pains and difficulties surrounding building a private practice, she started this podcast to help clinicians start, grow, and scale a faith-based practice. She has learned how to start and grow a successful practice that adheres to her own faith and values. And as a private practice consultant, she has helped many clinicians do the same.
Thanks For Listening!
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Welcome to the Faith in Practice podcast. I hope you’re having a good day and that your week is going well, or maybe you’re just getting started on the week. So I hope it’s right for you. Thank you always for taking the time to listen to the show. We are really finishing up with this episode on our series of live consulting. I have truly enjoyed getting to hang out with all the people that I got to do consulting with and helping them in their practices and I appreciate that you’ve kind of been going on the road with me, and I hope that some of the questions that these people have asked are questions that you’re asking too, and that it helped you build your business.
If you’ve been listening to this series of live consulting and you’re thinking, “Gosh, it’d be so cool to get some consulting from Whitney,” please send me an email at email@example.com. Would love to jump on a call with you to see if it would even be a good fit for you and where you are in your business.
Also the mastermind groups are going to be starting next week. So you have one more week to sign up for those. There’s going to be two different groups. One of those groups is specifically for people who are solo practice owners with a smaller caseload, really wanting to grow their caseload. So going to learn how to maximize their website, maximize their Google My Business, how to make referral relationships, how to make connections with churches, all those things to grow your caseload and that within six months, hopefully you’ll make yourself a job. You’ll have a full-time gig as a therapist. And then the other mastermind group that I’m running is for people who have just hired their first one or two clinicians, really want to work on setting systems for their practice, monitoring KPIs, making sure they’re paying themselves enough, and making sure their marketing is running smoothly. Because it’s a lot of hustle when you first hire people and then you kind of have to figure out how to make things run smoothly. So you can step away a little bit more from your business and not be so involved in the every day to day function. So that’s what we’re going to be working on in that mastermind group.
Both of those groups start in July. The one for new practice owners starts the first week in July. The other starts the second week in July for solo practice owners. Both of those, you can sign up at practiceofthepractice.com/faithmastermind. Or if you want to jump on a call with me and talk a little bit about the group, see if it’s a good fit for you, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org. All right.
So I’m excited to jump into another life consulting call with Kandice Moss. She actually is in the Next Level Practice community that we have with Practice of the Practice and has a solo practice. So we’re going to talk about growth within her practice. So let’s go ahead and get started.
Welcome to the Faith in Practice podcast. I have Kandice Moss. She’s a graduate from Columbia College, Chicago holds a master’s degree in Dance Movement Psychotherapy and Professional Counseling. Her own experience, the healing power of dance and movement and her interest in helping individuals with their ‘why’ led her to further her education in the field. Her faith is what has allowed her to experience this manifestation. She brings a wealth of experience to her private practice, Moss Therapy and Wellness. Kandice’s experience includes working as an infant and early childhood mental health clinician with parents and children between the ages of zero and six. She’s worked as a dance movement therapist for children and adults with special needs. She also has a dance movement therapist for individuals with Alzheimer’s & Dementia at Abe’s Garden memory care facility in Nashville, Tennessee.
[WHITNEY] In her free time. She enjoys dancing, meditating, reading, and most importantly, spending time with her husband and two children by having movie nights and trying new restaurants. Well, Kandice, thanks for coming on the show today.
[KANDICE MOSS] Thank you so much for having me today.
[WHITNEY] Great. Well, I’m looking forward to hearing about your practice. So why don’t we jump into it? Tell us a little about your story of how you started your practice and where you’re at now.
[KANDICE] Yes, absolutely. So I began my practice in 2017 and as of 2020 became more full-time and engaged with things right before the pandemic started. Since then things have been progressing and moving quickly or sometimes more quickly than I can keep up, but I’m just blessed and excited to see things began to take, having it take its course and just seeing where I am today.
[WHITNEY] Awesome. And you have this unique aspect of the dance therapy. Can you tell us a little bit about how that works in your practice?
[KANDICE] Yes, absolutely. So as a dance therapist, we utilize movement and or dance, depending on what that may look like. You know, as minors, breathing techniques or finger movements to anywhere is large or maximize to the capacity where someone may need to punch or jump or scream or lie on the floor, but utilizing the body in ways that typically at times, clients are unable to access their verbal expression. So if we use it as a component to help drive the unconscious and bringing it more to the surface to bring it more, and having an understanding of on a conscious level.
[WHITNEY] That’s so interesting. So Kandice, tell me what your question is today.
[KANDICE] My question for you Whitney is how have you begun to set aside work for your business? How do you decide the amount of time that you set aside for your clinical versus the business side of things knowing that they both have to coexist, but just knowing how do you set aside both?
[WHITNEY] So how do I set aside my time? That’s a really good question. I get this a lot in the consulting world, and I’ll say, first of all, it changes over time. The more your practice grows, the more administrative side that’s going to be needed. And that’s especially important for people when they grow into a group, because a lot of times practice owners think they should start a group because that seems to be the thing to do and to make more money. But if you love the clinical side of things, that’s not the thing to do because you’re going to have a really hard time seeing clients. So just the more your practice grows with clients, the more administrative tasks that are going to be required of the business owner.
So when you’re a solo practice owner, some important things for you to think about, first of all, is even beyond that, I mean, most of us don’t want to do administrative work. So I would be thinking more about how much income do you need a week, a month, and then let that dictate how many clients you see. Because that’s going to dictate a lot of how many administrative tasks you have to complete. Does that make sense?
[KANDICE] Yes. That’s very beneficial almost as [inaudible 00:07:31] approach.
[WHITNEY] Yes. So why don’t you tell me, what is it like right now? How much time would you say you’re spending a week seeing clients and how much time are you spending doing administrative tasks?
[KANDICE] Yes, same clients, I would say between eight to 10 hours per week, eight to 10 clients per week and administrative tasks, I would say between eight and 12 maybe.
[WHITNEY] Okay. That is a lot. All right. Another thing when you’re talking about the moving backwards, what is the number of clients and the income, and then what hours do you actually want to work?
[KANDICE] Long-term, I would like to work three to four days per week and between the hours of 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM.
[WHITNEY] Okay. You want to take a lunch break, right?
[WHITNEY] Okay. So you’re going to be working seven hours a day. If you work three days, that’s 21 hours or you’re working 28 hours?
[KANDICE] Yes. I would say 28 hours.
[WHITNEY] Okay, 28 hours.
[WHITNEY] And when you’re thinking about your income amount, have you thought about how many clients you need to see to hit your ideal income? Are you that now or do you need more clients?
[KANDICE] Yes, I need more clients, and kind of working through that process now, around that number.
[WHITNEY] Okay. All right. So I think we have two different things to tackle here. One is kind of the getting the clients up because, do you actually like doing administrative tasks?
[KANDICE] I do not.
[WHITNEY] So if you could increase your client load, you could get an assistant to do the things you don’t like, and you can invest your time and energy doing things that bring you joy and excitement, right?
[KANDICE] Most certainly yes.
[WHITNEY] Yes. You’re already thinking this, I can tell.
[KANDICE] Yes, yes.
[WHITNEY] All right. Let’s talk about you’re spending, let’s say you said about 10 hours a week doing administrative tasks. What are you doing?
[KANDICE] I would actually say closer to eight hours, doing like social media posts —
[WHITNEY] And tell me more about what you do with administrative tasks.
[KANDICE] So administrative tasks is billing, personal invoicing for clients, working towards becoming paneled with more insurance providers. That has been probably the most time-sensitive thing that has taken more of my time recently, I would say over the last three months and working on creating a timeline or creating structure so that I can begin to incorporate blogging. That’s something that I’m very interested in. So even within my phone, my notes section I’ll take notes or take down ideas where I would like to put into either blogging. But that, I would say it’s, those types of administrative things has taken most of my time. I’m meeting with CPA at the end of the month, every month. ad that takes quite some time as well.
[WHITNEY] Well, you don’t want to let go of the CPA. That’s important.
[WHITNEY] How many insurance panels are you on?
[KANDICE] I am on two working on third right now.
[WHITNEY] And would you say most of your clients come from insurance?
[KANDICE] No, actually most are from Psychology Today, so private pay.
[WHITNEY] So why are you getting on panels?
[KANDICE] To be able to increase, getting more clients, because that was my thought, the suggestion that you gave of, okay, how do I acquire more clients?
[WHITNEY] Sure, you can. Something to just think about, always invest more in what works and not in new things, unless you think it’s really going to work. Now, insurance usually works. You probably are going to get more clients. You might have to do more administrative tasks to be able to be on insurance panels, but it will really help you get more clients. Definitely want to make sure that you feel like your pay is worth it, but this is just something for you to think about. What is your cash pay rate actually?
[KANDICE] For couples we’re at $150 and for individual they’re at $120.
[WHITNEY] Okay. And do you know yet what, or I guess you probably do know what do you get paid? What’s an average pay that you make from an insurance company?
[KANDICE] The average is I would say $80.
[WHITNEY] Okay. So for every, if I’m doing my math right, I’m not going to end up doing this, basically, let’s see here. Trying to think about, you got to see more clients to make the same amount of money. So two clients, you make $240 and you have to see three clients to make the same. So for every two clients, you see cash pay you have to see three clients on insurance. But you’re also telling me that that’s where clients are coming right now.
[WHITNEY] Is through cash.
[KANDICE] Majority that I currently have are cash, but new clients, I would say are insurance but most of my caseload is cash.
[WHITNEY] Sure. That’s just something for you to think about. You’re going to have to work twice, like a third harder to take the insurance clients. And if you’ve already been able to obtain some cash pay, I don’t know, maybe invest more in your marketing as a cash pay practice and see if it works if you feel like you’re having a hard time getting on panels and that it’s becoming consuming. Because I will say, if you’re going to be on panels, your administrative tasks will be higher unless want to pay somebody to do them for you. If you’re a cash pay practice, that administrative, that’s why I was like, what are you doing administratively? I mean, really, as a cash practice, your admin side of things is pretty low. I mean, you write your notes. If somebody requests something, you might have to do something, but there’s not a lot that goes into that. With a cash practice most of your time outside of your clients is spent marketing your practice.
Now another question I had for you here on the, because my guess here is that you could just decrease this administrative time. Because when you gave me that number, you’re spending twice the amount of time administratively as you are seeing clients, which is probably too much. When you say personal invoicing, can you explain more what that means?
[KANDICE] Yes. So through, I use the platform through QuickBooks for for both insurance and cash pay clients. So going in and sending those out for the sessions. So that’s what I’m saying, like myself personally, going in to do invoicing.
[WHITNEY] I used to do something like that. I hated it. It took up so much time and energy and then I would have to go back and make sure that everyone paid their bills. Lots of people forget. And then me remembering and going after people, it was terrible. Are you ready to blow your mind?
[WHITNEY] Let’s save you lots of time. Do you have an EHR?
[WHITNEY] Good, fantastic. They will save credit cards for you and you get the credit card when the person calls and schedules the appointment. Save the card, explain your cancellation policy, clearly explain it, send them an email, red writing, 24-hour cancellation policy or whatever your cancellation policy is, and then charge the card at the end of the session that they put on file. And then you don’t have to invoice them at all.
[WHITNEY] In fact, just recently, one of my clients, she was probably on a fourth session. She looked at me like she was startled and she said at the end of the session, “You haven’t even taken my card or anything. Have you?” I said, “We got that when you scheduled your first appointment. I’ve been charging it every week. You don’t even have to worry about it.” She’s like, “Oh, that’s so great.” Like, she didn’t have to even think about it. It’s just done. And that’s going to save you a lot of time and energy. How do you feel about that? I know it was probably a change in your mindset.
[KANDICE] Yes, it is a change. It is a change. Yes, it would just come with adjustment. It would just take some adjustment, but I’m open to it. That is something recent. My husband supports a lot with the admin things for the practice and that was one of the things that he’s kind of been pushing me towards, saving the credit cards and using the EHR system. Like, “Hey, it’s right there.” And I would say over the last three or four clients that has come in initially for services, that has been the way in which that they have provided their ways of payments. So I’m still working through it because I’m still having to shift the initial clients that are still, that were on QuickBooks to having their credit card on file.
[WHITNEY] Well, good. Well, it will help you so much. It’ll help them too. And with Simple Practice, you can do a lot of your billing for insurance through there. So if you’ve been doing it through QuickBooks, no wonder you’re spending a lot of time billing. You can just simply collect copays and bill insurances through Simple Practice. You’ll have to follow up and make sure you’re getting those payments from the insurance company. Now, all those things you can bill out for, hire a company to do it for you, but when you’re in these phases, sometimes it’s good to do it yourself because you get to see how it functions and then as you grow you could fan out for them. But I mean, I would say when I think about the administrative side of even my group practice, I probably spend 15% of my time, 20% doing the administrative side of my practice if that gives you any kind of clue. I would say for you really working on automation and systems would be super helpful. And really use that EHR. It does a lot more than you realize it does for you.
[KANDICE] You said working on automation systems?
[KANDICE] Totally agree.
[WHITNEY] Any other administrative tasks or things you feel are bogging you down in your practice?
[KANDICE] No, I don’t think so. No. That is like the largest thing that is on my radar, but trying to shift scale and put more automated things in place.
[WHITNEY] It’s good. Another piece of advice, when I was a solo practice owner, I would try to make one contact a week, like network with one person. It didn’t have to be something extensive. It could be just sending an email to get to know somebody or sharing about your practice, but that stuff adds up after awhile. So the fact that you’re telling me I’m on insurance panels and I’m still having a hard time getting clients says to me people don’t know you well enough yet. So really working on that marketing piece and I think website development and SEO, I mean, I can’t say enough about that. So that would be the other thing I would suggest that you put your time and energy into. Any other questions that are kind of coming up for you as we talk today?
[KANDICE] I was wondering about just the way in which that you were able to shift from solo to group. Like, what was your caseload like at that time, was shifting or coming for you?
[WHITNEY] So I was too busy. I should have done it earlier. And that’s what most people are going to tell you when they hire their first clinician. I suggest that people look at how, if you want to own a group practice, like that’s already your dream, I suggest you do it when you’re 75% full of what your ideal caseload is. Because if you fill up, you’re too busy to do anything you need to do. Now talking about administrative things, your administrative work, when you start a group practice is high because you have so many things to do to implement it and get things in place. And then once you’ve really gotten it going and you create good systems, it just starts running and you can step away if you need to. It’s a lot of work though, to get to that point, but it’s well worth it. So yes, so some of it was you asked, how did I know that I was ready or what was it like?
[KANDICE] Yes, what was it like when you shifted from the solo?
[WHITNEY] Yes, it was very stressful. It was super overwhelming. I had way too many clients and then I totally didn’t know what to do. Like I was like what’s the contract? How do I find that? How do I pay somebody? And I am the kind of person that if I’m going to do something, I want to really follow the steps and do it well the first time. Not that we can ever get it perfect. So it was really, my story is kind of crazy how I kind of was thinking about all this and praying through it. I was running away from God as much as I could, because I knew I was supposed to start a group. I didn’t want to. It was too much work. And at the same time was following Joe, Sanok, a consultant. I was kind of following his podcast and he had this free event on Facebook where he would teach you how to write a book. And I’d always wanted to write an eBook. Unfortunately, I actually never did finish that eBook, but some things come to us and we have a plan and God has something different.
So I started that group and was writing the book and you would complete a task and then as you completed the task, you would be, you could win things basically. So one night I said to my husband, “Oh, I think I’m supposed to start a group. I just really don’t know. If I win a free consulting call with Joe, that’ll be my sign from God that I need to start a group.” That’s, got to throw the fleece out there, which I really hoped would not work. And of course he says my name that I won this consulting call and then I was like, “Oh, well okay, I guess I’ll do it. But surely he’s not going to tell me to start a group practice.” You know, it was just kind of like I was doing everything I could to convince myself not to do it because it seemed like too much. Anyway, so then we got on a call and Joe says the things he always says and now I say these too to people that I can consult with, because I think they’re great advice.
His first piece of advice was hiring an assistant, which I should have done before starting a group practice. I like started adding people and I was even more overwhelmed. You should raise your rates and I really didn’t want to do it. I was very scared at that point. I was at $90 and he was like, no, you definitely have to raise your rates, which I did on the very next call. I want right up to $125. I was glad. And then he said, join my mastermind. And I was like, what’s a mastermind. Even though I’d been listening to his podcast for years, I still didn’t know what a mastermind was. So I joined, I think the next day. I joined the mastermind. I knew this was what I was supposed to do. I hired two people within six months and started a group practice. Then I hired an assistant a few months later. She was fantastic. Anyway, so I was taking calls and seeing clients and training new clinicians. It was craziness, but it was beautiful at the same time. So everybody has their own story, but it’s kind of figuring out what, I mean, ultimately what do you want, but also prayer and what’s best for your family. What’s best for you. And what does God want you to do in your community?
[KANDICE] Yes. Beautiful. Thank you for mentioning that.
[WHITNEY] Of course. Of course. I always love thinking back on the good things God’s done and remembering what it was like, because it was a scary time. Well, good. Kandice, I want to ask you what I ask everyone that comes on the show. What do you believe every Christian counselor needs to know?
[KANDICE] Oh, great question again, that patience is a virtue and like planting the seeds with the ideas that we have, but also being able to be open to God’s plan will most certainly project us some place further than we could even imagine. Yes, most certainly. And just being open to the new people that He brings our way and then new ideas and just being open to it. That’s where I found my success this far. It’s just being open.
[WHITNEY] Awesome. Well, I appreciate you coming on the show and being vulnerable and sharing about your practice. And I think a lot of people listening are probably right where you are and so they’re walking away with a lot of tips moving forward, so thank you for coming on the show.
[KANDICE] Thank you so much for asking me and offering this opportunity. Thank you.
[WHITNEY] Thank you again, Brighter Vision for sponsoring this episode. If you want to take advantage of the special deal, remember to go over to brightervision.com\Joe.
Thank you for listening to the Faith in Practice podcast. If you love this podcast, please rate and review on iTunes or your favorite podcast player. If you liked this episode and want to know more, check out the Practice of the Practice website. Also there, you can learn more about me, options for working together, such as individual and in group consulting, or just shoot me an email, email@example.com. Would love to hear from you.
This podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. This is given with the understanding that neither the host, Practice of the Practice, or the guests are providing legal, mental health, or other professional information. If you need a professional, you should find one.