TPI Press
TPI PressContents

How We Built Our Dream Practice

$29.95

Scroll down for book description and excerpts.

What clinicians are saying about this book:

Beyond Grateful!!  The generous wisdom that Dr. Frank Gaskill and Dr. Dave Verhaagen share in their book has completely changed my perspective of how to develop a successful practice. Graduate programs typically do not provide instruction on how to establish a successful practice and there is limited literature on the business of psychology…. until now!

Very relevant and inspiring!  I can see why these guys do so well. Although I believe I’m a great therapist this book is pushing me to be even better.Thanks guys for writing such a great book and giving us a glimpse into your wonderful personalities!”

A must read for anyone whether at the beginning of their career, middle, in the midst of a change or beginning a new life venture beyond retirement. You’ll laugh, smile, grimace, and be wowed by their down to earth uplifting advice.”

If you are expecting a book on billing, record keeping, scheduling software, and lease agreements, then this isn’t the book for you. However, if you might be interested in considering how one actually builds their dream clinical practice, then this little gem will inspire you! I found the authors’ vision, passion, bold and creative ideas, and audacious style contagious. It’s a must-read book that challenges traditional thinking about designing a clinical practice and creating a professional future infused with your heart and soul and core values.”

Scroll down for book description and excerpts.

Product Description

Dave Verhaagen and Frank Gaskill and their colleagues at SoutheastPsych in Charlotte have built a creative and successful clinical practice that could be the envy of any private practitioner. Influenced by their core values of FIRE (Fun, Innovation, Relationship, and Excellence) the authors describe their experiences of creating a group practice of more than 30 clinicians, all with full clinical caseloads, working completely outside of managed care. Written in a reader-friendly and personal style, the authors provide a perspective and framework that you can adapt to create your own unique dream practice. Unified and strengthened by a clear mission, values, and culture, SoutheastPsych has flourished much more than Verhaagen and Gaskill had ever dreamed. They hope that How We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours will do the same for you.

Verhaagen and Gaskill have written a charming and easy-to-read book, based on their own first-hand experience, on how to create a dream practice and make it a reality. If you are expecting a book on billing, record keeping, scheduling software, and lease agreements, then this isn’t the book for you. However, if you might be interested in considering how one actually builds their dream clinical practice, then this little gem will inspire you! I found the authors’ vision, passion, bold and creative ideas, and audacious style contagious. It’s a must-read book that challenges traditional thinking about designing a clinical practice and creating a professional future infused with your heart and soul and core values. Steven I. Pfeiffer, PhD, ABPP, Professor at Florida State University and Licensed Psychologist

Read the introduction here (click arrow to expand)

We were in Orlando for the American Psychological Association’s national convention with a bunch of the Southeast Psych staff. One evening, we had booked a reservation for a big table at a restaurant in town called Café Tu Tu Tango. We had no idea what to expect. What we got was something memorable and remarkable. Not only was the food unique and outstanding, but the experience was unlike any other restaurant. Within a few minutes of being seated, an African drummer with a booming voice and two dancers in traditional African dress paraded beside our table, chanting and yelling and singing at the top of their lungs. A belly dancer worked the other side of the restaurant. A fortuneteller sat at a table near the back, delivering good (or bad) news to the patrons. An artist in residence was painting near the center. The entire place pulsed with energy. It was unlike any restaurant experience we had ever had before. It was so good, in fact, that we both took our families back to it on other trips.

When was the last time you were not just impressed by a business, but wowed by it? It happens so rarely that when we experience it, it jolts us. We take notice. Remember the first time you saw an Apple Store? Have you ever been to a Disney theme park? What about the time you stayed at a hotel that was so amazing you didn’t want to leave?

There are lots of very good businesses, but there are only a few that are truly something special. These organizations deliver great services or products, have top-notch customer relationships, and offer a special experience that is incomparable to others in their field. They may spawn competitors who try to duplicate their model, but rarely with the same success. These companies are simply remarkable.

It doesn’t matter what profession we are talking about, nearly every business has the opportunity to be something remarkable. It could be a car dealership or a clothing store or concert venue. All of them have the chance to be extraordinary.

So if there can be awesome businesses in any field, when was the last time you saw a counseling or therapy practice that you would say was amazing? Not just a place with good therapists or nice offices, but something that was truly remarkable? Probably never.

And why not? Why couldn’t there be a practice that blew you away, that far exceeded your expectations? Why couldn’t there be a practice so remarkable that clients became fiercely loyal to it and other clinicians longed to be a part of it?

That’s what this book is about. It’s not about the mechanics of running a traditional private practice. It’s about a framework for building a dream practice. It’s about how to do something truly special. Something remarkable.

Our hope is to inspire you to new ways of thinking so you can build your own dream practice. In this book, we draw from our experiences in starting Southeast Psych in Charlotte, North Carolina. We hope to inspire you, challenge you, and stir you to action. We hope to push you beyond your fear to build something amazing—something that exceeds your wildest dreams.

Dave Verhaagen and Frank Gaskill
Charlotte, NC

Prefer the Kindle version? Get it here.

Are you considering this book for a class you are teaching? 

Request a review copy. Download the request form and email it as an attachment to jeffzimmermanphdATthepracticeinstitute.com.

 

Reviews

  1. :

    The generous wisdom that Dr. Frank Gaskill and Dr. Dave Verhaagen share in their book has completely changed my perspective of how to develop a successful practice. Graduate programs typically do not provide instruction on how to establish a successful practice and there is limited literature on the business of psychology…. until now! This book provides valuable insight for new and experienced private practitioners. The authors are advancing our field of psychology by sharing their personal success story and revolutionary business practices. This is a must read for any Psychologist going into private practice!

  2. :

    By following the basic business principles outlined in this easy-to-follow and entertaining guide, you will learn how to define your niche, become distinct in what you do and launch your practice with confidence and success.

    If you are looking for an encyclopedic listing of all the nuts and bolts from office leasing to Xerox machine rentals, look further. But you can be sure this book will prepare you with the impetus and charisma to know who to talk to and how to get what you need.

    Aside from the humor and engaging quality, this book is an insider’s view of how two Mental Health professionals take the plunge into group practice. They share researched business prospective, reveal their trials plowing through risks and errors and encourage the reader to duplicate their wildly successful partnership that boasts financial and clinical rewards.

    Distilling complex marketing concepts into relatable and concise to do’s, Verhaagan and Gaskill motivate you to resurrect your archived dreams and demystify the journey of becoming an independent provider.

    As they scour the leading marketing literature, the authors study the most salient business principles. Not all fun and games, they talk about the “scary stuff” as technical voyages and paperwork; but most importantly, they instruct how to sail through it without getting caught up in the minutiae. You will find the secrets to preparing top notch presentations and what it takes to be a good leader, all condensed into one chapter.

    They address the challenges of opposition and fortify you against the “haters and naysayers”. You know you are doing something right when you get opposition. “If you are successful, opposition is likely to increase.” Verhaagan and Gaskill warn.

    Mental health professionals naturally are altruistic and often feel that their compensation is secondary to the emotional gratification of helping clients. The authors emancipate readers of the underlying guilt for striving towards better compensation – they give permission to make money and lose money. This book will help you get beyond the “failure factor” and journey into what you think is impossible.

    After reading, you will get a sense of what a practice looks like, feels like and how to get started. You may want to relocate to Charlotte, North Carolina and join the Southeast team. Guess what? You can model their success right in your own neighborhood.

    Every aspiring clinician wonders…

    How do I define my niche market?
    How do I get referrals?
    How are my services unique?
    When do I become part of the professional community?
    How do I advertise?
    What can I do to increase my revenue?

    If any of these questions are on your mind, this book is for you!

    Chana Kaiman, LCSW, psychotherapist, lecturer and consultant. chanakaiman@gmail.com.

  3. :

    Posted by Richard Sethre, Psy.D., L.P. on Aug 7, 2016 in Professional Practice Resources, Excerpts of original review reprinted with permission.

    Providing mental health services (therapy, testing, consultation-liaison services, and more) is increasingly challenging and stressful. Mental health professionals (MHPs) face pressures from Managed Care Organizations, expectations to be part of Accountable Care Organizations, competition from MPHs with less training, and more. Those of us in independent practice (individual or small group settings – not employed by someone else) are finding it increasingly difficult to survive – to say nothing about trying to thrive in our chosen field. This book will challenge your assumptions about what you need to do to survive- and thrive- in the era of health care reform.

    Dave Verhaagen and Frank Gaskin have written an exceptional book that describes their own struggles as they developed their group practice, Southeast Psych, in Charleston, S.C. They have clearly survived, and have gone on to achieve remarkable successes – and are thriving. Frank and Dave obviously cannot provide a complete practice-oriented business course in their 151-page book, but they provide excellent tips, stories that illustrate their advice, and references to business resources that we can follow up on for our own development. Some MHPs may chafe at being told that they need to learn some things about the business world, but Dave and Frank make it very, very clear that those of us who hope to practice in a “ivory tower,” with only clinical skills, are going to have a very rough time of it in the current practice environment.

    Here is their most important advice: be different than the average MHP who is providing the services that you provide, and be willing to take chances. You cannot just provide “therapy for depression and anxiety,” with a quiet waiting room and a consulting room with a soothing decor. That is what everyone is doing. You need to do something that makes your practice stand out – and it has to be welcoming to people and provide helpful and memorable experiences. They support this with examples from their own practice, which includes spaces for a coffee shop, bookstore and a video studio. And, they clearly have fun with their practice.

    The 10 chapters provide advice about real world challenges and problems that we will face when developing our own practice. Each chapter provides information and resources that were probably not part of the typical training program. It is highly recommended to read one chapter at a time, think about your own situation, and reflect on whether you can change something to make your own practice more effective. You are probably going to find that this book stimulates a lot of ideas; some may be challenging, some may be more doable, but all are likely to help you with your own practice challenges.

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