Starting a Home Care Business - 5 Common Mistakes to Avoid
Starting a home care business is no small operation. Despite the big rewards offered by the home care market, it takes work to launch a successful home care company. Whether you're starting an independent agency or launching your business under a franchise brand's banner, starting a business in the care sector takes time, effort, and patience. Under these circumstances, some entrepreneurs try to take shortcuts — a strategy that rarely ends well. If you're starting a home care business, here are five common mistakes you should take care to avoid.
Poor Market Research
Skimping on market research — or misjudging your location's market — is a common mistake when starting a home care business. Proper market research is the foundation on which any successful business is built. So be sure to do your homework and go beyond the surface-level metrics offered by your market. Research your competition, speak with potential customers, and pull detailed statistics on local demographics so that you know your target consumers better than you know yourself.
Failing to Invest in Caregivers
Your agency's caregivers will make or break your business. But believe it or not, many care agencies fail to invest in their care staff. Whether you're failing to implement smart hiring practices or pushing your caregivers too far when it comes to scheduling, you will set yourself up for big problems. if you don't value your caregivers, you may lose them to the competition or, worse yet, lose clients who find themselves unhappy with substandard work.
Launching Before You're Ready
Many entrepreneurs set an overly ambitious start date for their business. It's easy to see why this is tempting. After all, every day you wait before opening is a day you're spending money without bringing any in. But launching your business before it's ready is a recipe for disaster — particularly in senior care, where a poor first impression can dig your business into a deep hole. So, make sure your business is ready for launch before you open your doors.
Making the Wrong First Impression
Speaking of first impressions, there's more than just one way to spoil one. When starting a home care business, you'll go further with positive reviews and word of mouth recommendations. That means investing in marketing efforts to attract your first clients, then doing everything you can to give those clients a positive care experience. Instead of taking these early opportunities for granted, seize them as a way to build a rock-solid reputation.
Putting Profits Ahead of People
This is maybe the most common mistake when starting a home care business or any business for that matter. After all, as a business owner, it's your job and your goal to generate money. But while a profits-before-people philosophy can serve entrepreneurs well (at least financially) in other industries, it's a self-defeating approach when you're working in the home care sector. Your business depends on making life easier for some of your community's most vulnerable people, a responsibility you can never take for granted.
Thinking of starting a home care business? Contact Visiting Angels today to learn about our home care franchise opportunities.