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    What Do I do AFTER Massage School?

    Thursday, February 4th, 2016

    What Do I do AFTER Massage School?

    When you went to massage school, you were trained by a specialist.  How do you know what you are trained to do?  What does your training mean?  How do we discuss what we do? If you were not trained by a specialist – trained in the general sense – you may not be able to speak specifically enough about your work to call it “specialized.

    Massage school may or may not be what you expected it to be.  Most school owners and instructors are specialists, meaning: they have taken their basic training and focused the development on their practice in one or two techniques or modality areas.  I had an instructor named Jon Heart.  He was one of the major influences in my practice when I graduated. He is an amazing deep tissue massage instructor; however, he did not make me into a well-rounded therapist.  Most of us did not expect to practice in the professional world exactly what we learned in massage school.  But after we get done with our massage programs, can we say what it was all about?

    Most of us graduated from massage school and we started looking for job.  Many of us took the first job that came along.  The location at which we are employed does not necessarily mean we are “a Spa Massage Therapist”.  I work at a spa and a massage clinic.  I can talk about Kinesiology in either setting, and I build my client base in both settings.  The best way to look at what you do is not based solely on the location of your practice: look into what specialty you enjoy and will continue to study in the profession.

    Massage school is just the beginning; however, at the end of your training, you need to ask yourself “What does my training mean?”  The biggest challenge in teaching is effectively communicating how and what to study.  If you had a teacher who pushed you to look at specific topics you would find out the answers s/he is looking for.  Hopefully, you also applied some of the information and started thinking logically about the concepts being presented.  If you were never introduced to ideas, you probably wouldn’t have expanded your knowledge of the subject.  I can see several categories of massage therapist that initially produce a type of trained massage therapist in our field.  Below are the categories I am suggesting to the profession for training.

    Classically-Trained:
    A classically-trained massage therapist graduates with entry level knowledge and performance.  These types of massage therapists can also advance in classical training by expanding their knowledge of Swedish techniques.  These basic skills are where a massage therapist with a minimum of 500 classroom hours in massage school will most likely graduate.  If you are a classically-trained therapist, that does not mean you cannot change your practice, it just means you need more education/experience to become additionally specialized. I would say many massage school graduates come out classically-trained and start working for an employer that does not require more.  If this is your passion, embrace it and love the wonderful work you will continue to do.  You will change many people’s lives and make many people happy.

    Hints: You most likely have a routine or standard massage that works well for you and is very patterned.  You ask about medications and injuries to avoid contraindications and provide a safe massage experience. You usually refer to strokes and their therapeutic benefits to explain why massage is good for your clients.

    Clinically-Trained:
    A clinically-trained therapist usually looks at the physical status of the client before making a treatment plan.  This includes any number of pathologies, ranging from a sprained toe to many forms of cancer.  Most clinically-trained massage therapists do not start this way.  Being specialized in this sense requires advanced training, beyond classical training, that prepares you for application of a specific technique for a specific condition.  I believe one of the biggest things that sets these therapists apart from classically-trained therapists is their willingness to work with clients who are in many different stages of illness, from the athlete to the hospice patient: each client is very unique.

    Hints: You ask your clients what issues they are having so you can focus on it.  You want a complete health history to make sure there are no medication or systemic or specific health issues you may need to consider.  The bigger the health issue, the more excited you get to see what you can do for the client. You usually work in collaboration with or actually inside a medical facility (doctor, doctor’s office, hospital, pain management clinic, rehabilitation facility, etc).

    Spa- or Service-Trained:
    A spa- or service-trained therapist will be most successful if they study sales, product placement and the art of ambiance – customer service is a high priority.  All therapists need to be able to sell their services or they will not have a strong business or strong support for their employer’s business.  Service training will give you the ability to expand on your business.  Many massage therapists who worked as waiters or waitresses while in school received this training as they prepared for their profession.  Just because you are a good massage therapist does not make you a good salesperson and vice versa.  Product knowledge and research are key to this profession.

    Hints: You want to know what is in everything: all your products, all your supplies, and how to maximize the client’s benefit with the most skill.  This usually includes specialty in hydrotherapy, aromatherapy, skin applications, and advanced customer communication skills.  You ask about pathology so you can see if there will be any reactions to the products you regularly use.

    Energetically-Trained:
    Energetic training for a therapist can be quite rigorous.  Some therapists have this information come naturally to them.  Others are advanced practitioners of the quantum realm.  From Reiki Masters to quantum healers, this training includes more than just touch.  Some specialists can operate without touch, however, to keep it in the profession of massage therapy (not of Bodywork, as well) we categorize only therapists that use hands-on techniques or use the other only in conjunction with hands-on work.

    Hints: You usually look to something outside the musculature for cause and effect.  You want to know more than just what activity they have been doing, but sometimes how they feel about doing it.  You ask about health history to see what the effects maybe by changing the energetic body to help.

    Combining these Training types can give you a specialty that many others may not have.  However, if you are mediocre at practicing or applying many of these types together, in one practice or service menu, it is going to be tough to stand out and be successful in any one of them.  Remember: if you do what you love and love what you do, you will find a reason to be successful.  Massages can rarely feel like an hour when you go beyond your massage school program: reach out to the specialty that interests you at this point in your career – integrate new techniques and modalities that help you put your practice in a class of its own.

    To improve your training I would suggest the following online courses provided by www.MassageWarehouse.com

    Nathan J. Nordstrom LMT LMP BCMT

    Educated Touch

    P.O. Box 329

    Oakesdale, Washington 99158

    Nathan@educatedtouch.com

    (503)706-2480

    At MassageWarehouse.com, massage therapist enjoy a one-stop shop for professional quality massage products at the lowest prices available.  Rely on Massage Warehouse massage therapy supply, massage tables and spa equipment needs.

    Strategic Income Planning

    Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

    Strategic Income Planning

    Painless Tips To Make More Money In 2016

    By Angie Patrick

    Who doesn’t enjoy a raise? A raise means someone acknowledges you and your efforts for another year of service. It means you have performed well at a certain level and now it is time to reward your efforts by raising your earnings a little.

    A raise is something we have all come to think of a synonymous with doing a good job and being rewarded for that good job in a monetary way by our employer. No, I do not believe anyone ever said, “What? A raise for me? No Thank You!”

    But what if you are self-employed? What if “the boss” who so graciously divvies up raises happens to be the same person as the purchaser, the scheduler, the therapist, the marketer, the janitor and the chief bottle washer? How do you give yourself more money from a business you think you run like a tight ship, and a workload and that is at maximum capacity? You look for new ways, that’s how. Money hides in the darndest places, and finding ways to eke out a couple more percent here can add up to a net pay raise overall for you. I want to look at a few places your money is hiding from you, and give you a few tips on how to coax it back into your pocket.

    Preventing Client Churn

    In most businesses, churn happens naturally for a variety of reasons. But sometimes, it is because of specific reasons and these may well be reasons you have control over. Before we can look at why customers leave, we need to first have a means to identify they have left.

      Now, I understand many clients come for a specific issue and then once that issue is resolved, they stop coming. We all want to be known as the therapist who helped Jimmy with his frozen shoulder before his big golf game. But do we just accept Jimmy will not be returning because the issue has found resolution? When this happens, do you just allow them to go or do you offer other means to serve their needs and provide education to support this? I am sure you are familiar with the old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” These are clients that have experienced your talent and skill first hand, likely are candidates to continue to visit you to prevent issues. It takes education on the importance of prevention and the means to keep in contact with that client long after the initial issue has resolved. A client who knows you will likely return if they have received good service, been treated well, and have seen the value in what you provide. These same clients that are now better as a result of your care may well wish to remain under your preventative care to ward off future issues. This is a client you can count on, and can rebook. But if you just allow them to leave without providing alternatives, you have to work hard to find a replacement client.

    When a client does make the decision to leave, do you ever learn why? Do you notice they are no longer booking with you? It is more common than you might believe to have a client slip through your hands unnoticed. Having a means to track client visits and reach out to them on a regular basis is important. Whether you do this through personal calling, a newsletter, or email; customer outreach is hugely important to a successful practice. Knowing when a client leaves as early as you can detect it, will give you the ability to call and check in with them and learn if they are in need of making an appointment or have moved on to other pastures. If they have moved on, I always think it is important to try and determine what prompted the decision to leave your practice. This conversation need not be confrontational, but more informational. Perhaps they had a bad experience, one for which you were wholly unaware. Learning about it and finding the root cause to prevent re-occurrence can save you future client departures for the same reasons.

    The money and time spent keeping a client is far better spent than spinning through new client after new client that seldom return. I am not advocating fabricating reasons or issues that compel your client to return out of fear. I am advocating your taking a preventative stance, and sharing with them what you know to be true. Regular massage brings along with it many significant health benefits. Educating your client on the benefits of regular massage can help you keep your client happy and satisfied, and your booking calendar full.

    Eliminate ” No Show” Clients Early On

    We all have them, those client that book a block of time, and then on the day of appointment they don’t show up and you find yourself sitting on 60-90 minutes of booked time. This happens and is part of life, but working to nip this behavior in the bud is the best means of prevention. There are a few ways you can help alleviate this issue.

    First, consider spending time the day before reaching out to your clients by phone to remind them of the appointment. Sometimes, this will enable you to learn ahead of time any challenges the client has come across in making the appointment allowing you time to rebook. Second, consider a ” no-show” fee. If a client has booked with you and fails to show without contacting you in enough time to work to rebook the time, then a fee could be charged. Having explained this fee and the consequences up front can help eliminate this issue fully. No one wants to pay a fee, but additionally, no one wants to be “surprised” by one either. Clear guidelines need to be set up and discussed before a client books so they know what to expect.

    Lastly, most people want to be respectful of your time, but will take any slack you allow them. Make sure you have clear guidelines as to when to show up for an appointment, and when the appointment is over, regardless of late arrival.  If a client arrives late, still see them, but being clear that they have taken up their own appointment time in being late ahead of time makes for a less uncomfortable exchange and can help prevent lateness the next time.

    Remember, your time is your money. When you allow your time to be wasted by clients who don’t show, or are chronically late, it is you who pays for it. Think carefully about these issues and find a place of comfort you can live with and then inform the clients of your policies. They will work to adhere to your guidelines, and when they cannot, they know what to expect.

    Supply Chain Management

    As a therapist, you are a consumer of professional products, specifically related to the work you do. Have you ever considered how you purchase your goods as a means to add black ink to your bottom line? Having a strong understanding of your supply needs, timing, and consolidation of purchases, as well as how you choose to pay for them can save you money.

    Let’s say you are a therapist who orders just what is needed, just in time for the previous product to run out. You order weekly, or perhaps every other week, and order just enough to satisfy the needs of the next two weeks. This is called “Just In Time” ordering, and can work for many. However, if you take a step back, and look at your overall purchases for a three month period, you may be able to detect a specific pattern to your needs. Once you can determine what goods you will likely need for the coming quarter, consider buying these all at once. Look online for price breaks on your favorite brands, or freight incentives, and consider buying in bulk. You can save significantly by the gallon if you go from buying five individual gallons, to buying a five gallon pail. The savings are real and are important enough to take a longer look into what else you may be able to buy quarterly instead of bi-weekly.

    Once you have determined that you may well be able to save not only money, but time when you place the planned quarterly order, you may want to consider how you pay for these goods. Many opt for paying cash or using a debit card. This is always good, and can give you real-time accounting of what money you have right now. But with a little forethought, you can structure these buys to provide you rebates, points or cash back on the goods you know you are going to need anyway. In my experience, I have seen successful businesses have a business-only charge card and they search for the ones providing the greatest loyalty benefit to the business. Maybe you prefer a percentage as cash back of purchases, or perhaps you would like to earn points towards a personal reward like that set of gourmet pots and pans you have always wanted. Using a card for these purchases, then paying the card off in full monthly, will help you take advantages of the benefits of using these cards and still alleviate the interest if paid in full each month.

    Hire an Accountant

    I know, it sounds scary, but believe me when I tell you, your accountant will always help you stay on the right path and help provide direction in a whole host of ways that ultimately save you money. This is the single best piece of advice you can be given in my opinion, and here is why: Do you know what education expenses are deductible? Do you have all the answers in regards to claiming a client gift or dinner, what is deductible and what is not? Do you know if you can claim attending conferences and what mileage can be claimed? How about association fees, or other business related forum fees? Most people don’t have this committed to memory, and chances are this is not your center of focus either. Just as your clients hire a professional in your field to provide them with solid advice and care, you should do the same when it comes to your money and the care of your business.

    When you hire an accountant, you can let them manage all the financial issues you may or may not have been doing correctly, thus allowing you to focus on building your business and retaining clients. They can worry about filing taxes, returns, exemptions, deductions, and all those things most of us find nebulous at best. An accountant is certainly handy to help you put accounting management tools in place so you can also have greater visibility to the overall financial health of your company. Obtaining the advice of this type of professional is a smart business decision and one that will save you from mis-steps and pitfalls often made when braving these endeavors on your own.

    Ultimately, in order to save yourself the maximum amounts of time and money possible, you need to take a close look at your processes, how you do things, and seek ways to improve or streamline them. No doubt, when you take each part of the business management role you play and look to find sleeker more streamlined ways of management, you will not only save time but money, too. For most of us, these two things are one in the same. Any time or money saved can be spent doing things you enjoy, spending time with family, or even just reinvesting it into your business. Isn’t this the same we would do with a raise from an employer? Take a weekend, and re-evaluate where you can streamline and consolidate, or improve processes like retaining clients and re-booking. Doing so now can net larger dividends for you in 2016!

    At MassageWarehouse.com, massage therapist enjoy a one-stop shop for professional quality massage products at the lowest prices available.  Rely on Massage Warehouse massage therapy supply, pedicure tools and spa equipment needs.

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    Café Brulée Indulgence Signature Massage Treatment by Biotone.

    Monday, September 14th, 2015

    Café Brulée Indulgence Signature Massage Treatment by Biotone.

     

    This full body exfoliation uses a Café Brulée sugar body polish made with pure cane sugar, fine ground coffee and natural exfoliant seeds in a creamy, thick buttery base. Use in combination with warm wet towels to slough away dead skin cells, revealing beautiful, radiant, youthful skin. Then cocoon your clients with a silky layer of Cocoa Comfort Massage Balm with Aloe Vera to hydrate and moisturize. Finish with a relaxing massage, leaving the skin with a natural glow.

    Biotone Sugar Body Polish Cafe Brulee 12 Oz

    Ingredients

    Café Brulée Sugar Body Polish 2oz

    Cocoa-Comfort Massage Balm 1.5oz

    Supplies

    2 Rubber spa bowls

    6 warm, moist hand towels

    Instructions

    1. Add 2oz of Café Brulée Sugar Body Polish in a rubber spa bowl.
    2. Add 1.5 oz of Cocoa Comfort Massage Balm in a rubber spa bowl.
    3. Apply 2 oz of Café Brulée Sugar Body Polish following the BIOTONE protocol* for exfoliation.
    4. Apply Cocoa Comfort Massage Balm in an even layer to each part of the body, *while quickly covering each area with plastic wrap. Cover client with towel to keep warm.
    5. While standing at the head of the table, pull up all layers of sheets, thermal wrap and blankets, cocooning the client.
    6. Allow the client to rest wrapped for 15-20 minutes. This is an ideal time to incorporate a face or foot massage into the treatment.
    7. Remove plastic sheet, and perform a finishing massage treatment with the Cocoa Comfort Massage Balm.

     

    At MassageWarehouse.com, massage therapist enjoy a one-stop shop for professional quality massage products at the lowest prices available.  Rely on Massage Warehouse massage therapy supply and spa equipment needs.

    Introducing The Pink Grapefruit “Squeeze” – A Signature Massage Treatment from Bon Vital’

    Friday, September 4th, 2015

    Introducing The Pink Grapefruit “Squeeze” – A Signature Massage Treatment from Bon Vital
    Tantalize your senses. This refreshing massage also includes an exfoliation on the hands and feet that will leave you rejuvenated and balanced. Bon Vital Products needed: Original massage Oil with Jojoba, Grapefruit Essential Oil, Pink Grapefruit Sugar Scrub, Pink Grapefruit Body Silk, Grapefruit Aromatherapy Essential Roll-on, several warm, moist towels and some dry spa towels.

    Time: 90minutes – Approximate Cost per Treatment: $7 – Recommended Charge per treatment: $125-$175
    To prepare the signature massage oil, add 3-8 drops of the 100% pure essential oil to each ounce of the Original Massage Oil with Jojoba. Gentle shake the container to combine the oils.

    Bon Vital Spa Sugar Scrub 8Oz Pink Grapefruit

     

    In a supine position
    1. For the Face
    Put a few drops of the blended oil on your hands and rub together vigorously. Placing the pads of your thumbs on the center of the forehead, massage the “third eye” in a clockwise, circular motion and massage the temples with the pads of the three middle fingers.

    2. The Scalp
    Apply a few tablespoons of warm grapefruit oil blend to the upper forehead just above the hair-line. Next, comb through the hair with your fingers for a few moments and end by wrapping the hair and scalp with a warm, grapefruit-infused towel.

    3. The Upper Extremities – includes a scrub
    Moving to the right hand and arm, apply the blended oil over the entire region. Place a quartersized amount of Pink Grapefruit Sugar Scrub in your hand and massage it over the oiled arm, using the heel of your hands, compress, squeeze and lift the forearm and upper arm. With a warm, damp towel remove excess sugar scrub. Apply compression strokes on the hand, forearm, and upper arm by gently squeezing the extremity from distal to proximal. Apply Pink Grapefruit Body Silk to the freshly scrubbed arm. Using the heel of your hands, squeeze the tissue, finishing with effleurage. Repeat on left arm.

    4. The Lower Extremities – includes a scrub
    Move to the right foot. Massage in the Grapefruit oil to the lower and upper leg with a medium pressure. Apply Pink Grapefruit Sugar Scrub to the right foot and lower leg. Wrap the foot and
    lower leg with a warm, damp towel. With the towel wrapped around the right leg, compress (squeeze) the tissue under the towel. Repeat on the left leg. Return to the right leg and remove the towel and the excess Pink Grapefruit Sugar Scrub. Repeat on the left leg. Massage in the Pink Grapefruit Body Silk starting with the right leg and moving to the left leg.

    5. Turn the Client Prone
    Starting with the right leg, Repeat step 4.

    6. The Back
    With a light amount of blended oil, apply the oil over the entire back. Using your forearms, glide over the erectors starting at the Lumbar area finishing at the upper traps. Apply Pink Grapefruit Body Silk to the entire back using your choice of massage techniques.

    7. The Finish
    A final application of the Grapefruit Aromatherapy Essential Roll-on to the pulse-points of the wrists and neck, bi-laterally will add to your client’s feeling of being refreshed, rejuvenated and energized!

    8. The Take Home
    The cost of the Grapefruit Aromatherapy Essential Roll-on is baked into the treatment. Give the Roll-on to your client encouraging them to continue their spa experience at home.*Recommended: have the Pink Grapefruit Sugar Scrub and Pink Grapefruit Body Silk available for resale.

     

    At MassageWarehouse.com, massage therapist enjoy a one-stop shop for professional quality massage products at the lowest prices available.  Rely on Massage Warehouse massage therapy supply and spa equipment needs.

    Berry Beautiful Feet Signature Massage Treatment by Biotone

    Friday, August 21st, 2015

    Berry Beautiful Feet
    Signature Massage Treatment by Biotone

    Pamper your client’s with a luxuriously rich foot treatment containing decadent aromas of fresh picked raspberries and made with a blend of skin loving moisturizers and nature’s gentle buffers. Follow with a deeply hydrating, mineral rich rose mud from the Province region of France. Then massage to rejuvenate feet with a quenching, lightweight formula of sweet scented Pomegranate & Cranberry Massage Lotion.

    IngredientsBerry Beautiful Feet Treatment
    Berry Buff Sugar Body Polish…………………………….1/2 oz
    European Rose Mud……………………………………………1 oz
    Pomegranate & Cranberry
    Hydrating Massage Lotion……………………………….1/2 oz

    Tools
    •3 Rubber Spa Bowls
    •4 hot, moist hand towels
    •Plastic wrap

    Session Time: 30 minutes
    Recommended Price: $35 – $45
    Cost Per Treatment: $4.80

    Instructions
    1. Smooth Berry Buff Sugar Body Polish over the entire right foot. Apply in small circular movements – paying special attention to rough/callused areas. Repeat on the left foot.
    2. Remove the Berry Buff Sugar Body Polish with a hot, moist towel.
    3. Warm European Rose Body Mud prior to application.
    4. Apply the European Rose Body Mud to the entire right foot using small circular movements, repeat on left foot.
    5. Cover both feet with plastic wrap and a bath sheet. Leave on for 5-10 minutes.
    6. Remove European Rose Mud with a hot, moist towel.
    7. Complete the treatment with a quick foot/lower leg massage using Pomegranate & Cranberry Hydrating Massage Lotion.

    Retail Offering

    Friday, December 12th, 2014

    Massage Retail Offering

    We know this business.  We have been around long enough to know this time of year brings some unique earning opportunities for you and your practice, spa, school, clinic or franchise.  Seasonal offerings can mean more profit for you. Whether you offer seasonal treatments, or a retail offering with a focus on gift giving, your business can benefit.  Not only does it make sense to beef up your retail offering with gift items, but selling your own services as a gift is a natural! Gift certificates mean money now for work later! Gift Certificates can also bring you new clients.  When someone thinks highly enough of your skills to buy a gift certificate for a gift, this testimonial is more valuable than gold! All you have to do is ask for the next appointment!  In this issue, you will find many ideas for seasonal treatment offerings and retail ideas designed with your success in mind!

    Consider massage warehouse your portal to profits! I encourage you to check out the incredible seasonal scents of our Keyano lines. Build a new “Limited Time” menu offering and your clients will line up for the treatments!  Think about the gift giving needs of your clients, and create a well planned gift for them to buy for someone.  Build a basket with Biofreeze®, some Thera-Band™ exercisers, and a Gift Certificate for Massage! Perhaps create a gift basket with a robe, slippers, a sampling of ME!Bath products and some TheraPro Lavender Essential oil.  That is a gift I would love to receive!  Let your own creativity run wild, and try something new! Your clients, and your bottom line will thank you for it.
    Angie Patrick

    Director of Corporate Sales and Business Development

    2240238

    The Ergonomics of Massage Table Design

    Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

    The Ergonomics of Massage Table Design

    By Elline Eliasoff, CMT

    Massage Therapy is one of the most exciting, flexible, low stress and rewarding professions! As a Massage Therapist, the most important investments you will make are: your education, your self-care, and your equipment. In this article I will discuss purchasing a massage table which is the largest single investment and the main tool of your practice.

    It is important to have a good idea of the type of massage you want to practice before purchasing a table. Please consider the following:

    • Where will you be practicing (office, home, field events, etc.)?
    • Will you bring your table to client sites?
    • Will your massage space be allocated for massage only? Will the space allow you the luxury of an       electric or stationary table?
    • Will you be doing any other adjunct therapies on the table? Is a spa table worthy investment?
    • Do you need to position a chair under the table?

    Purchasing your table

    Client comfort is essential; however, more essential is the comfort of the therapist. All massage tables must be height adjustable. Maintaining good body mechanics by avoiding excessive bending or reaching is imperative for the longevity of your career. Reaching and bending may seem like minor inconveniences; however, the cumulative effects on your body can be devastating over time.

    The width of the table is also a consideration for more petite therapists with shorter extremities. Massage tables can be found in widths starting at 25” all the way up to 32”. The average massage table is 30”, however, a smaller therapist may want to consider opting for the 28” width. (The 28” table will accommodate most clients without a problem).

    The weight of the massage table is an important consideration if you are traveling with your table to client sites. Carrying the table, moving it in and out of a car, and negotiating stairs can be extremely taxing on your body if a table is heavy. There are a number of table manufacturers that sell lightweight massage tables with aluminum frames that substantially decrease the weight of the table. This is a worthwhile investment for a traveling practice!

    A reiki panel or end plate is important if you plan to practice therapies that involve sitting. (Reiki, Reflexology, Cranial Sacral, etc.) The Reiki panel, or end plate, will allow you to get your legs under the table and sit in a neutral posture.

    Electric and Hydraulic Stationary Tables are undeniably the most versatile for client comfort as well as positioning and table height for the therapist. The most desirable feature is the ability to adjust height during a treatment. They are typically designed so that chairs can fit comfortably underneath and seated therapies can be performed with good body mechanics.

    Purchasing the “correct” Massage Table that enhances your professional skill set and your physical needs is the first step in a long and prosperous career as a Massage Therapist. Wishing you a long and successful practice!

    To Be an Employee, a Contractor or Self Employed? That is the Question

    Thursday, October 16th, 2014

    To Be an Employee, a Contractor or Self Employed? That is the Question

    By Angie Patrick

    Our industry has a wide array of opportunity for the newly graduated therapist. It also presents a wealth of opportunity for seasoned therapists who may have been hit hard in the past years of economic uncertainty. Recently, I read a survey from the Day Spa Association sharing that 2013 and 2014 have shown some significant increases. It claims the Spa Industry is indeed in growth mode.

    This news is indeed encouraging. Moreover, I have had a number of conversations with employers within the spa and wellness industry who claim they are on constant lookout for therapists, as the need of the wellness seeking public outnumbers the quantity of therapist applicants. In one case, I learned that the lack of available therapists caused locations to close rooms and turn away clients as a result of not having enough personnel to cover the demand.

    I have spoken to therapists in private practice who also share they could expand their practice, if only there were two of them. They have more need for their services than they have time in the day to assist. This news also sounds encouraging. Could it be that the need for therapists has grown and people understand the importance of massage therapy in their lives, health and well being? It sure sounds like it!

    So what does this mean to you? Well, that vastly depends on what your needs are and whether you want the responsibility of running a business, contracting for a company or being hired. These are three very different roles and each has their own perks. I want to share a bit of high level insight as to the potential benefits of each and provide a bit of information to help you decide if one of these options is for you.

    Self-Employed

    If your personality seems to show a penchant for understanding the ebb and flow of business, social and print marketing, and the importance of the principles of strong money management, then this venue may be for you. As a self-employed therapist, you need to have a solid understanding of what the reality of profitability looks like and a plan on how to make it happen. You will be your own marketer, buyer, scheduler, workforce, accountant and boss. Being your own boss sounds pretty good, but in order to be successful as a solo practitioner, you should really understand it involves far more than being a competent therapist. The responsibilities of the success or failure of your practice rest solely on your shoulders and the rewards are great if you are willing to do all of the jobs above with as much effort and energy as you put into the role of therapist.

    Contractor

    If taking on the full responsibility of running a business isn’t something that speaks to you, then perhaps you should consider becoming a contractor. In this role, you are still working for yourself, but have contracted your services for a price to another business owner. This provides a bit of autonomy however, you will likely be asked to work a specific schedule which is conducive to the needs of the business owner and not necessarily your need. This may be a good tradeoff for you, as you can leave at any time and are often free to pursue other interests and opportunities at the same time. Additionally, you should be prepared to do the work in the manner the company requires and not necessarily how you would in your own business.

    These parameters should be clearly explained and discussed before you enter into a contract agreement so there are no misunderstandings of the expectations. There are perks to being a contractor, such as tax deductions and other economic benefits. These are better explained to you by your accountant and the opportunities may vary by state. Some of the upside may include the ability to deduct business expenses on your own income tax return. These can include office space, mileage, per diem and more. To learn more about the benefits of being a contract employee, please see your local employment bureau.

    Employee

    If neither of these options seem suited to you or you really do not want the added responsibility of running a business or keeping records of every expense so as to itemize, then perhaps being an employee may be of greater interest to you. The benefits of being employed by a company as a practicing therapist are numerable. Not the least of which, you will be free to concentrate more of your efforts on client care. The marketing, money management and ordering may well have nothing to do with you. You should be prepared for the reality that you will be doing your job in the manner required by the company you work for and it may include retailing and rebooking of the client. This is generally accepted as being the case and many prefer this to the other methods of ownership or contracting.

    Occasionally, these positions can offer benefits such as healthcare and 401K. Another perk may be a regular income you can rely upon week after week to better manage your personal expenses. There is a wealth of places looking to hire dependable and talented therapists and the growth of need shows no sign of slowing. The industry as a whole seems to be growing. It has seen its share of difficulty in recent years, as all industries have. The economy has had a great impact on discretionary spending. However, while massage was once considered a luxury or splurge by many, it is now becoming more mainstream and accessible to the public. Certainly now more than ever, preventative healthcare and stress management are more forefront and people are seeking alternatives to the high cost of healthcare.

    They are doing this by working to take better care of their body, their mind and spirit in ways they have not done before. They are more inclined to work to stem the causes of long-term illness such as chronic stress, pain and inflammation in ways they would not have considered as little as ten years ago. In doing so, this has created an increased need for properly trained and licensed therapists across the nation. Many larger companies are adopting the philosophy of preventative care, and this too has opened some doors for massage therapists to walk through and build a lucrative career.

    You already know you love caring for others. You have a service heart that wants only to provide a means toward greater wellness. You have learned your craft and continue to hone it to become the best therapist you can be. Now, the decision which lies before you is how to go about the business of using these talents to sustain your livelihood and prepare a home for you and your family. I hope the information here may have sparked your interest to investigate further into the various roles you can fill and helps you in finding the space that is right for you.View more of Angie Patrick’s articles at Massage Today.

    Deep Sea Detoxify Me Protocol

    Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

    Deep Sea Detoxify Me

    Stimulate and soften skin with therapeutic salts from the Dead Sea, improve texture with Black Baltic Body Mud containing organic fresh water salts. A massage with light, silky, botanical filled Herbal Select Massage Creme leaves skin feeling smooth and intensely moisturized.

    BIOTONE® Ingredients:

    a.Exfoli-Sea Salt Glow (2 oz) 285-0127

    b.Black Baltic Body Mud (4 oz) 183-0461

    c.Detoxifying Customizing Complex (60 drops) 246-0289

    d.Herbal Select Body Therapy Massage Creme (1 oz) 225-0295

    Supplies:

    e.Rubber spa bowls (3) 283-0072

    f.Spatulas (3)283-0376

    g.Warm, moist hand towels (12) 062-0031

    h.Plastic wrap – 60”x75” (1) 278-0067

    i.Thermal wrap (1) 278-0097

    j.Sheet set (1) 229-0040

    k.Blanket (1) 055-0002

    Instructions:

    1.Mix Exfoli-Sea Salt Glow with 30 drops of Detoxifying Customizing Complex in a rubber bowl.

    2.Black Baltic Body Mud with 30 drops of Detoxifying Customizing Complex in a rubber bowl.

    3.Apply an exfoliation treatment with Exfoli-Sea Glow.

    4.Apply Black Baltic Body Mud in an even layer to each part of the body, while quickly covering each area with plastic wrap. Cover the client with a towel to keep warm.

    5.While standing at the head of the table, pull up all layers of sheets, thermal wrap and blanket, cocooning the client.

    6.Allow the client to rest for 15-20 minutes. This is an ideal time to incorporate an add-on face or foot massage.

    7.Remove the plastic wrap, removing as much mud as possible with the wrap. Remove remaining mud with warm, moist towels. Be sure to cover exposed damp skin with a bath towel.

    8.Perform a finishing treatment with Herbal Select Body Therapy Massage Creme.

    Session Time: 60-90 min

    Recommended Price: $120-$150

    Cost Per treatment: $9.03 (lg. sizes)

     

    Five Habits of Consistently Successful People

    Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

    Five Habits of Consistently Successful People

    By Angie Patrick

    We have all known these people, you know the ones. The people who seem to always succeed in whatever they endeavor to do, no matter how crazy or wild-eyed the scheme might be. They are the risk takers, the people who have learned some very basic, but highly important skills that keep them focused, alert, sharp and in tune with the business they create, making them far more likely to be successful.

    I have met these people throughout my career and it occurs to me these renegades of business, the titans of triumph, all seem to share some common traits that undoubtedly contribute to their continued success.

    I would like to share with you my observations of these enigmas and perhaps provide tips on how we might all increase our success rates.

    Habit 1: Focus

    Successful people are focused. They see the finish line and have already won the race in their mind. Everything else is just a matter of how it happens. Failure is something they do not dwell upon, but rather they look at the lesson that failure might have taught them. They take that information, focus on bettering outcomes and press on.

    Habit 2: Don’t look back

    Successful people do not spend time looking behind them. They look at their own tasks, complete them and give little concern to what their competitors are doing. They know, if they are focused on what they are good at, then competition is not really a problem. Providing a good or service UNIQUE to your skill set makes competition seem less of a concern. No one can provide what you provide the way you provide it. Successful people make their product or service their own and do not try to emulate others.

    Habit 3: Avoid the Fray

    Successful people work very hard at staying out of the fray. Too much time spent finger pointing and whining about something that did not go the way they hoped can only serve as a morale killer and time waster. Instead of blaming, they spend their time working to make things better and take the opportunity to coach, mentor and train employees to make better choices and decisions.

    Habit 4: Be Available

    Successful people are available to their customers. They know communication is key, and having dialogue with clients about bettering service, bettering product and bettering productivity can only serve to make their business stronger. They engage their clients through newsletters, e-mail blasts and by asking questions. They value their customers and their opinions.

    Habit 5: Do What You Love

    Successful people are those lucky souls who are doing what they love. It is very difficult to find success in an industry or job for which you have no passion. Success is born of passion, and these savvy people ooze passion about their business. They cannot resist telling everyone they meet about what they do how they do it, and how what they do can help the other person. This drive is not something you learn; you have to just FEEL it. If you do not feel this passion about your profession, perhaps you need to take a long hard look at your chosen path.

    Being successful is more than just making a nice living; it is about lifestyle, it is about fulfillment, it is about a drive to be the best you can be. It is certainly within the reach of each and every one of us, but it takes hard work and a willingness to remain true to your goals. Perhaps something in this article spoke to you and you can take that nugget and enhance your own success story! View more of Angie Patrick’s articles at Massage Today.

     

    At MassageWarehouse.com, massage therapist enjoy a one-stop shop for professional quality massage products at the lowest prices available.  Rely on Massage Warehouse massage therapy supply and equipment needs.  MassageWarehouse carries many brands including Earthlite, Bon Vital, Oakworks, Soothing touch, Biofreeze, Stronglite, Biotone and many more