I have recently had numerous conversations with allied health business owners I work with who have been growing their businesses, building their teams, signing contracts, planning, designing new rooms and building websites. And one question that is commonly asked is on the topic of rooms – the look of your office / centre / clinic, whatever you may call it.
As with any other facet of your business like accounting, marketing, etc., working with a design professional in enhancing the look, feel, and image of your allied health business is now being availed by future-focused small and fast-growing allied businesses.
Working with Professional Designers
Hiring designers to fit out rooms is an investment. But what I’m seeing is that at the end of these significant projects are rooms that are just breathtaking.
Designers can bring a sweep of guidelines of what the business is going to look like with regard to colors, swatches, fabrics, tonal variations, and complementary tones which is very important to instill the message or tone you want to set for your business – whether it be professional, welcoming, relaxing, therapeutic and such.
The Impact and Value of Improving Your Space
Engaging a designer can bring so much value to your space by improving your therapy rooms, meeting rooms, team rooms, waiting rooms, the facade and make them look amazing. I’m starting to see rooms that are remarkable, very subtle, elegant, and customer focused. This can have a powerful impact on the customer experience and perception of the experience they will have while working with the business.
This can also impact the way clients react to the space and to the therapy in itself. Through many, many years of working with children in my allied health business, I know that big colors usually bring out big behaviour. Colors and surroundings have a profound effect on mood, behavior, etc.
Branding Your Business
Hiring a professional photographer to take photos of your professionally designed rooms could be a great way to brand your business. These photos may be placed on your website, social media, social stories, marketing videos, flyers and other marketing documentation.
This will set the tone for your business and engage your client even before they set foot in your space. They will, hopefully, have a strong sense of the effort and professionalism that is sitting behind the whole design and service.
Doing a Walkthrough and Audit of Your Space
Here are some questions you might want to ask yourself: How do your rooms measure up at the moment? When was the last time you did a walkthrough and did an audit of the furniture, flooring, equipment, paint, windows, etc.? Have you thought about inviting an external specialist in to walk through the rooms and evaluate them with you and seek their opinion on what it would take to give it a lift? Do you reach out to customers to ask them their thoughts on your visible environment? Do they have some suggestions that you can come up with?
There are times when the appearance of the rooms don’t match the services they offer. The vibe you have in the space you work at and receive clients is really important and should meet the standards you would expect from working with a business like yourself. It’s important to invest in the structure and function of the pieces and the rooms.
Start off your evaluation with the facade and parking experience, the front door experience, the reception and waiting room, the bathroom/s, the hallway, and how traffic works. Then move on to storage, desk space, client rooms, team rooms, your office, acoustics and lighting. What does it look like? How is the experience?
Starting Your Beautification Plan
A beautification plan might be essential for this project. You may start with some good easy wins and a little bit of ground work. Get professional input, plan the changes, and have a very staged approach to lifting the rooms if that is what they need.
It doesn’t have to be done all in one go. It can be done in parts and batches just like a normal business plan. Work towards it whichever way works for you.