12 years ago I started my own Canadian Home Care Company with absolutely no idea what I was doing.
I would love to tell you that I did all the right things and within a few weeks of launching we were off and running with a full caregiver team and a bunch of clients but that is not even close to true!
Early on I wasted a lot of time and money doing all sorts of the wrong stuff.
Now I get the chance to meet lots of young new business owners who want to start their own Canadian Home Care Company and they all ask me the same questions:
If I could go back in time and start a Home Care Business all over again, what would I do differently?
I get asked the question so often I decided I would write this article to share it with everyone!
So here you go, my top 3 things I would do differently if I was starting all over again:
#1 - Focus Online and Keep it Simple
When I started out I spent way too much time and money having a professional web designer build a complicated custom website for me.
On top of that I did not spend enough time creating 'evergreen' content that I could use for social media traffic referrals.
(NOTE: if none of this makes sense to you don't worry! We built HomeCare 101 to provide resources to you to help you learn all these things!)
How I would do it now
I would start by using a simple website builder (Wix, Weebly, Shopify, or even Wordpress) and build a clean 4 or 5 page site that I could use to start to build history with Google.
I would write 5 or 6 'evergreen' blog posts (meaning they'll still be relevant a year from now) and then I would use Facebook Ads and Google Ads to promote those with whatever money I had set aside for marketing.
Voila! You are officially findable where most people will find you!
#2 - Make sure you price yourself to pay yourself!
Most small business owners start out by pricing their services way too low.
They do this because they believe that since they are just starting out they have no justification to charge higher prices. As a result they set up a business with low margins that means the business does a good job of paying everyone except themselves.
How I would do it now
Price yourself at the high end!
Remember that you are going to run your business with a really great service level and because of that you should never feel bad about charging the higher prices that your great service level justifies.
In my article The Financials of a Successful Home Care Business I give you some great outlines on exactly how to set your pricing to leave enough margin to pay yourself and provide great service.
Also, in the HomeCare 101 Starter Kit we provide a great cashflow worksheet to help you turn you price list into a monthly and yearly cash flow plan so you can see what you get paid!
#3 - Setup your policies and procedures BEFORE it gets crazy busy
At the beginning it feels like your business is going nowhere fast. The phone does not ring that often and you find yourself with lots of a very precious commodity - FREE TIME!
Then, all of a sudden, the clients start to roll in and before you know it you're running around like crazy doing interviews, caregiver introductions, running to the bank, looking at offices, and hiring staff.
Before you know it you've gone from having your phone not ring that often to having a whole office of phones that never stop ringing!
How I would do it now
If I could go back and talk to myself in those really early days I would tell myself to take advantage of that early time to setup all my policies and procedures so that the rules for my employees are setup even before I start hiring them.
Policies about vacation time, how to book off sick, what the company uniform is, how payroll will be handled, are all much easier to setup in the beginning than when you're really busy. So take advantage of the time!
You can save TONS of time by getting the HomeCare 101 Starter Kit that has everything you need to build your employee handbook and lots more!
Starting your own Canadian Home Care Business is one of the most rewarding things you can do if you decide you want to be an Entrepreneur.
I know because 12 years ago I started my own and went from right where you are now to providing thousands of hours of care every week!
I hope you enjoyed my 3 things I would do differently and feel free to leave a comment and I promise I'll respond!
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Did you like this article? Check out some more great content!
- How to grow your small Canadian Home Care Business during COVID-19
- Why I Don't believe in buying a home care franchise
- The Key Ingredient for a Successful Home Care Business
- What comes first, finding clients or hiring Caregivers?
- The Financials of a Successful Home Care Business
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