Positively Inspired: An Interview with Dr. Stephanie Johnson

You walk into work and check your schedule to see if there has been any changes before you prep your room for the day.  Nope - a completely full schedule - for the next 3 weeks.

Sound like a dream?

With the right communication and business skills this can be your reality.  

I’ve worked with so many aestheticians over the years who are technically very talented - such a wonderful touch - but they struggle with half empty schedules and since they are not filled with requests they end up with the clients coming in only for that months special.

Sound familiar to anyone?

Well, the good news is that you can learn how to build trust, communicate effectively, and put spa best practices into place so that you too can have a schedule that is booked out for weeks.  

I wrote an entire How-To Guide on the subject called The Five Pillars of Success for Aestheticians if you want to learn more about creating an achievable pathway to success.

To give you a little inspiration and education for the week, I want to share with you an interview I did with health and wellness superstar Dr. Stephanie Johnson of Positively Chiropractic.  I met Dr. Stephanie at a networking event and was really impressed how quickly she had grown her business.  I was intrigued, and while she is a chiropractor and most of you are aestheticians the concept of “building your book” is the same.  

Keep reading to learn about Dr. Stephanie and how she built her practice.

You lead a very active lifestyle - you have been practicing Yoga for 20+ years and teach - you are a classical ballet and modern dancer and a long distance runner - is that lifestyle what led you onto your path of becoming a chiropractor?

Life is motion and motion is life.  My active lifestyle absolutely led me onto my path for becoming a chiropractor.  I received a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and a Bachelor of Arts in Dance during undergrad, and I became a yoga instructor a few years after graduating.  I love to move and life with optimum health.  When pursuing a career in the health and wellness field, I looked into several professions which included acupuncture, allopathy, naturopathy, physical therapy, chiropractic, and osteopathy.  The philosophic and holistic approach to chiropractic resonated with my personality, passions, and lifestyle the most.  Chiropractic is a conservative, drugless and non-surgical approach to health care that can not only relieve aches and pains, but is incredible at keeping the body in tip top shape.  Chiropractic addresses the mind, body, and spirit by touching upon nutrition, life stressors, and physical activity.  It is truly a profession where I practice the advice and recommendations that I preach to my patients.  Life is about moving, and I want to help others keep movement in their lives.

A passion of yours is treating pregnant women and children.  What benefits does seeing a chiropractor have on these two groups and specifically with kids, how do you know when you should take your child to a chiropractor?

A pregnant woman's body is constantly changing.  Asymmetries in alignment can often become exaggerated as the baby begins to grow.  This can lead to great discomfort for the mom, which in turn can lead to a more stressful and/or restricted environment for the baby.  Regular chiropractic care can reduce the time moms have to spend in labor and delivery, as their bodies are more readily able to adapt to the structural changes demanded during this time.  In regards to kids, they can be checked as early as day one!  Adjustments for babies are gentle and much different than the adjustments delivered to adults.  Labor and delivery is not only tough for mom's body, but it is also quite the journey for the infant, placing a lot of stress on its nervous system.  As the child begins to cross the mile stones of sitting, crawling, and walking, they are often falling and bonking into things along the way.  This is another great time to have your child checked.  When you think about it, where do you think the asymmetries in your body that give way to your bad knee, shoulder, or back began?  In your youth.

Here are some helpful links to learn more:

Chiropractic Care in Pregnancy for Safer, Easier Births

http://www.makinmiracles.com/articles_pregnancy/chiropractic_care_in_pregnancy_for_safer_easier_births.html

Webster Technique Defined

http://www.makinmiracles.com/articles_pregnancy/the_webster_technique_defined.html

Why Chiropractic Care for Children

http://www.makinmiracles.com/articles_children/why_chiropractic_care_for_children.html

Understanding Chiropractic Care

http://www.makinmiracles.com/articles_children/understanding_chiropractic_care.html

Common Questions Asked by Parents

http://www.makinmiracles.com/articles_children/common_questions_asked_by_parents.html

 

You’ve built a successful practice at Positively Chiropractic - something that all of us in the health and beauty industry know takes time and requires building trust with your patient.  What do you feel has been the greatest contributor to your success in regards to building your practice?

The most important element to building trust when constructing a successful practice is to always serve in the patient's best interest.  While there are many other things critical to success that cannot be ignored if you are starting from square one, you must first always be genuine and truly working for the best interest for the individual in front of you; whether networking, communicating one on one, educating, or selling a product.  Tied for second place are: 1) being active in community networks so people know who you are, and 2) providing top notch service.  Providing excellent service is just as critical as serving in the patient's best interest.  This is what leads to referrals.   People may stay for your service because they love you, but they won't refer you more business unless they love you AND know you will provide excellent care to the people they recommend to you.  Your business will begin to pick up as your reputation builds, and your name will begin to naturally spread through word of mouth.

How do you divide your time between seeing your patients and building your business?  In regards to building your business, how much emphasis do you put on your online presence and social media as opposed to face-to-face or word-of-mouth marketing?

In the beginning, if I wasn't seeing patients, I was out networking and meeting with other business individuals one-on-one.  I began by contacting several yoga and Pilates studios and speaking with their owners, as well as health and wellness centers.  These meetings usually lead to referrals to meet with other like minded individuals.  I also joined a BNI (Business Networking International).  As my patient base grew, my time outside of the office lessened.  Currently I emphasize 20% of my efforts online and 80% face-to-face.  Most of my current new patients are coming in from referrals by word-of-mouth.

What advice would you give to health and beauty professionals who are just starting to build their practice?  

Have patience!  And make sure to have 6 months of reserve funds when you are first starting out.  It takes a lot of effort to get your name out there in a genuine fashion, but the steady persistence will lead to a quality reputation with quality referrals that follow.  Don't stop networking, connect with other professionals of your trade in your area, and get involved with your community.  And ALWAYS serve in the best interest of your patient.

Stephanie Johnson, DC