Efficiency at its Best: How Therabyte Helped Caley’s Private Practice Thrive

Caley is from St. Albert. Her current private practice, Me2Be Pediatric Wellness Services, was founded about two years ago. She’s been a therapist for about 13 years and she chose Therabyte for her Private Practice.


Are you new to working in private practice? Tell us a bit about your transition story.

I worked in Alberta Health Services and Alberta Education for over 11 years. Through these experiences, I met incredible clinicians and knew that one day I would be working alongside them on a regular basis. Over COVID, I began working with a few private clients alongside my husband, a behavior consultant. We built a website, incorporated our company, and invested in a client software system. Now I work as a full-time private practice practitioner in families’ homes. I’ve also joined a business with 5 other women to collaborate and bring our services together through a clinic space and ongoing in-home work.


Did you have any fears or concerns about making that leap?

Absolutely. I’m the kind of person who thinks about things in depth. I’ve been thinking about this ever since I went to New Zealand. I started to think about it, and I felt like a person on the fence with two legs straddled over, and there comes a point where you just lean in and take the leap.


I started with only a few clients, and the benefits, pensions, and holidays that come with being in the public sector are wonderful. It’s taking that step, and for me, it was writing down how much I would need to make financially. How much should I set aside for pension benefits? 


When I started writing things down and seeing them very clearly, it made the leap a little easier. -Caley


My husband is a behavioral consultant, and we run our business together. We help families with kids who have a lot of anxiety. In our society, anxiety is on the rise. We were all going through a lot of trauma at the same time, especially because of COVID. That’s why my husband and I wanted to get into this kind of holistic care for families. It’s hard to tell the difference between regulation and behavior. So we went in, wrapping ourselves around families and looking at it from the perspective of developing people’s skills and abilities through a coaching model. We noticed a significant gap when we wanted to see families in their natural environments. So we were going into homes rather than clinics or schools, and that’s where it started. And it began with two or three clients—perhaps two or three families—and then it just went on and on from there.


What was the tipping point for you to quit your public job?

It took an entire year. I gradually reduced my time with my other employee and began working 0.7. It was a slow process, and it took about a year to do that.

When I came out of a home visit, I would come out so happy. And it was that joy and that feeling that I thought, “This is what I want to feel on a daily basis.” 

I was in a school setting, where you were using a consultative coaching model, and I was getting my hands dirty in therapy, working alongside families, and developing skills. And I was like, “I want to do more of that.” So it took about a year, and then I was like, “I’m going to take the full leap,” and I put in my request. finally made it over the fence. I was straddling both sides, and I finally jumped.

I think as you build up your caseload, it also really builds up your confidence in saying, “I can do this.”

If I could tell any clinician that the work is out there, you just have to believe. As you work more in private practice, you find these beautiful little gaps or interests that you want to follow. You start doing things like reaching out to family and making a sort of specialty for yourself. And then families start talking to each other, and it’s cool. and that’s getting better.


Were there any resources, mentors, or other people on whom you could lean that helped you make that change?

My husband is my greatest rock. He’s extremely helpful and a really supportive partner. I’m also surrounded by beautiful and amazing women who work as physiotherapists, psychologists, and behavioral consultants, all of whom took the leap at the same time.

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How do you get referrals? How do people find you?

I started with a website, and then I connected it to Google. Then I started looking at all the different social media streams, such as Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn, and then word of mouth. Most of my referrals come from Google searches. Then there’s word of mouth, and previously, if you worked somewhere for ten years, you’re very well connected within that community.


I also work with wonderful people who share. Also, when you are surrounded by different therapists, like PTs and psychologists, we all kind of work together. Instead of seeing each other as competitors, we all ask, “Who has the best set of skills?” “Who serves this area?” This is how we help each other.


Did you write up a business plan before you took that full leap?

I did not write up a business plan. I made a plan, and my husband and I sat down to talk about it. We talked about our mission, our vision, and our kind of care philosophy and framework. We wanted to combine some of my husband’s skills in mental health and trauma with some of my skills in sensory development milestones. We wanted to do this in a very holistic way. So then we came up with a plan that kind of worked for us.

You will get there eventually. Don’t let that be a stopping point for you in taking that leap. Just start and it will evolve and it will become more clear and it will become more systematized and organized as you get into it.


What would you say allows you to be open and receptive to feedback?

I believe that all clinicians should because it allows for those open-ended conversations. and especially when you move into private practice. Both my husband and I have taken motivational interviewing, which is a very powerful tool. I think it’s also modeling and demonstrating open, kind, and clear conversations between a therapist and a family. I’m not scared to have hard conversations, and I think I look at it as a gift when families give me feedback. I think as clinicians, don’t be scared to have those tough conversations and to receive that feedback because it really allows you to shift, be reflective, and meet clients where they’re at.


What were some of the systems that you put in place?

I started exploring, and I reached out to a bunch of different client software and did their trials. I would do a week-long trial, and then I would always make sure I connected with someone, either via Zoom or a phone call. I was also using QuickBooks. So I had all these different parts all over: I was using Google, a paper file, and QuickBooks. 

I thought there has to be something that puts this all together. So I started looking, and then I pretty quickly, within a month, stumbled upon you guys, Therabyte, and I loved it.


What stood out to you about Therabyte?

To be honest, what stood out was that it was built by an OT for OTs and SLPs. Even with Jane, it was very physio-focused. Owl was very interested in psychology. I felt like these weren’t quite right. They seemed to have some of what I was looking for, but not all of it. The ability to do contracts was also one of the criteria. And being able to see how many hours and money are spent throughout because that accounts for half of my work. So I needed something that covered all of that. I’m a very visual person, so I needed something that was visually very simple for me to use. Then there was the scheduler, which I absolutely loved because I tried navigating through some of the other schedulers and they just weren’t as user-friendly or visually kind to the eyes if that makes sense.

When you open Therabyte, it is very easy on the eyes. It’s very simple to use.


What did that transformation look like for you when you made the switch? How did that impact your work?

I was able to get rid of QuickBooks almost immediately. I like how you could quickly create invoices and send them to families. So that was a quick switch. The scheduler was an instant game changer. Previously, I had it on both my personal phone and my Google, and nothing was transferring. to understand that it’s like I put it in the scheduler, I’d do my plan, and then you could go back and write everything up after a visit and invoice. That type of procedure. That all changed very quickly. Everything on paper was quickly transferred to Tech. As a result, I no longer keep paper files.


Are there any features that you weren’t using at first but are now using and enjoying?

I’ve gotten to the point where I’ve fixed up the landing page so that clients can book appointments. Previously, I handled everything via email, but I’ve grown far too big and busy. I’m now doing all of my documentation on Therabyte. I’m starting to use the bookings, which is great because when I open up my calendar, I can see if there’s a tentative booking. I can answer yes or no, and that was a game changer.


Are you utilizing the client portal more than your clients? Are you seeing a positive reaction in terms of the sharing of information? What does that look like?

I think it’s really important to just touch base with a client. After that, I will send them my intake through Therabyte. I’m still figuring out my waiver forms, and I’d like families to actually sign off. Then I upload that to Therabyte. I still need to shift to putting it into Therabyte and sending it out that way. Now my documentation has been beautiful, and I just send all my documentation and share pieces of their homework or resources.


What is one unexpected benefit you’ve experienced since using Therabyte?

It allows me to manage hours for contractual services through FSCD. The best ever.


To watch the full interview- click here

Connect with Caley!

Website: https://www.me2be.ca/


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