Many of you know the saying “It takes a village to raise a child” which is the old adage that it takes more than one person to raise a happy, adjusted young person while supporting needs of the parent(s). Getting grandparents, caregivers, babysitters, professional help to support the needs of our little ones is beneficial to everyone involved… so why is it that when it comes to our wellness practice, we think that we can do it alone?
Do you think that if you refer your clients to another practitioner, you might lose them as a client?
Do you believe your client will think that you don’t know everything and will leave to find someone who does?
Actually, the opposite is true and here five reasons why building a great network of practitioners to support your clients is a win-win!
1 – Expands the network of client support.
There are many times clients come to you with problems that might be outside of your scope of practice or that require complementary care to help solve. This is when having a referral network comes in handy, which is essentially a group of other businesses or practitioners that you band together with to provide referrals to one another. When your client has a need you can’t meet, you can refer them to someone in your referral network who can better help, and vice versa.
2 – Clients receive more education on different modalities which help them to get a better understanding of their condition.
Treatment for many conditions isn’t solved unilaterally… we are complex beings. If you have a referral network that involves like-minded practitioners, the client benefits from multiple disciplines. Supporting information on wellness solutions can be invaluable, especially if your client has started on a new journey with a new diagnosis.
3 – You become more educated in holistic healing through multiple modalities.
Holistic nutrition involves the whole person including mind, body and spirit. While I am confident in my practice, I am definitely a more body-centred practitioner. Are you? If not, find someone who is! Through my research to find great practitioners, I have also gained knowledge and appreciation in the areas of reflexology, acupuncture and guided meditation. I have tried some personally, but also listened to feedback from my clients around their own experiences. We treat whole body people… and some are just better at it than I.
4 – You become a community builder, not only for your clients, but for yourself.
Resilient communities foster a greater sense of well-being and support and I want that not only for myself, but for my clients. Some of the blue zones in the world (areas where longevity and quality of life are higher than the average) include community as a centre pillar of their daily lives. Many of us are sole proprietors of our businesses and I, for one, like to know that there are other practitioners who are supporting both me and my clients.
5 – Symptoms can be double-teamed from multiple practitioners.
One of the primary benefits of a multi-pronged approach to wellness is that symptoms can be targeted through multiple body systems. Take a combo of reflexology and nutrition on something as simple as digestion. Many digestive issues involve stress and tension. One of the main benefits of reflexology is relieving these symptoms. Imagine if your client could benefit from a reduction in stress in order to alleviate IBS symptoms. By working together, clients can receive treatment, along with a diet that works with blood sugar levels balancing or transit time. Some practitioners work on acute problems, while others support the underlying contributing factors. Both, working in tandem, can only help to support client’s wellness goals.
So who should be in your referral network? Here are some examples of supportive practitioners that I have in my network!
Reflexologist – a great supportive practitioner for diabetic clients, to highlight just one example. Through diet, we can work on blood glucose control while reflexologist helps to support diabetic neuropathy related food complications.
Acupuncturist – by working together, a nutritionist can suggest a diet to complement acupuncture treatments which help to reduce inflammation and may improve healing time.
Herbalist – this is a practitioner who I have in my back pocket as more complex herbal remedies are out of my scope of practice.
Naturopath – outside of the scope of practice of a nutritionist is the ability to order labs and other clinical tests. By referring to a naturopathic doctor you can have your client request particular tests and then have access to results, with their permission of course. This can help to give you a more in-depth glimpse into what it happening with your clients.