Starting Out Checklist

What do to when being your own boss is a better option than what you are doing now

Are you ready for a career in business as a dietitian or nutritionist? I’ve spent over 3 years working with dietitians who have their own business and over that time, I’ve picked up along the way some of the characteristics that I have witnessed that help people become successful.

1. Being organised

2. Knowing exactly what time-management means and having a strategy to apply

3. The ability to say no. Self-discipline and the willingness to work long hours

4. The ability to say yes. Take on opportunities but don’t just wait for them to come to you

5. Risk adverse people tend to stay in their comfort zone limiting full potential

6. Make decisions without over thinking it

7. Creative, highly motivated, committed to process, as long as it takes. Not looking for overnight success

8. Some understanding or willingness to learn business and marketing skills

I talk about starting a business and not just about starting a private practice because these days, the opportunities are endless for dietitians. The way you shape your business and what it’s core offering is can be ANYTHING!

What are your options?

  • Private practice from home
  • Private practice from a clinic in which you rent the space from
  • Consulting at an organisation
  • Contracted into a business
  • Lease rooms yourself
  • Brand ambassadors
  • Media spokesperson
  • Digital product creator
  • Online course developer
  • Membership
  • Writer
  • Blogger
  • Cooking class
  • Teacher
  • Recipe writer and food photographer
  • Herbal and dietary supplements
  • Functional medicine
  • Workplace health and wellness
  • Food service
  • Community
  • Clinical
  • Coach for other people at a different stage to you in their business
  • Product Rep
  • Tertiary education/tutor/lecturer

And probably so many more I haven’t thought of yet. What even is a conventional dietitian anymore?

If you are in the very early stages of starting a business, there are a few steps to take you from idea to starting. So here they are:

1. Have that vision. What is it that you ultimately want to achieve in your business?

2. Create a business plan: map out where you are now and where you are going and what that looks like in the most basic form

3. Determine your offering. What is it you will be selling? 1:1, packages, programs, courses, digital products, memberships, services or products?

4. Register business name and domain name

5. Apply for ABN (relevant for Australian residents)

6. Purchase insurance that will protect you and your business

7. Choose how you will record your finances

8. Open up a bank account for business expenses and income

9. Prepare some marketing material if you are promoting to people in person

10. Choose how you will receive payments

11. Choose what program or software you will use for bookings and any patient related note taking

12. Register with insurance companies/Medicare

13. How will you receive referrals?

14. How will you communicate with referrers?

15. Develop business protocols such as privacy policy, cancellation policy

16. Set up social media handles

17. Research your audience and think about where they are, what their biggest pain points are, what is going to make them take action and how you are their solution

And that there opens up the can of worms called marketing so I will it there for you.

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