Gig Wage Customer Spotlight: Tidemark Therapy and VA Services
Right now, mental health and wellness is more important than ever before due to the fear, uncertainty, and lack of human connection that has come as a result of the pandemic and civil rest around us. Because of this, we wanted to highlight the mission of one of our customers, Tidemark Therapy, that hopes to help others find human connection and compassion during this time. We spoke with Brittainy Wagner, founder of Tidemark Therapy, to learn about how she has utilized contractors to create two innovative businesses.
A little about you:
GW: Introduce yourself and your business.
BW: My name is Brittainy Wagner and I am a mental therapist and a group practice owner. I also own a Virtual Assistant business where my staff and I help other private practices with their scheduling, billing, and administrative needs.
GW: What is your business’s mission?
BW: In a world where so much kindness is absent, Tidemark Therapy hopes to leave the world a better place than what we found it by reminding people what compassion, human connection, and empathy is.
“Our company puts emphasis on having a positive and fun work culture, but we also make sure that our clients in both businesses are still our biggest priority.”
GW: How did you decide to start your business?
BW: I started my private practice 7 years ago after being employed in a local non-profit agency that was a toxic work environment. I wanted the freedom to set my own schedule and the possibility to earn more. As I grew professionally, I realized I also wanted to mentor other providers so I hired on additional clinical staff in my practice with the goal of teaching them how to set up their own private practices. This led to a need to hire admin staff to help with the workflow, but we didn’t quite have enough work to keep them busy. Dean, my first staff member, asked if I had extra work for her to do, to which I suggested we utilize her time to do administrative work for other companies. This is how Tidemark Virtual Assistant Services was formed.
GW: How is your company different from your competitors?
BW: Our company puts emphasis on having a positive and fun work culture, but we also make sure that our clients in both businesses are still our biggest priority. So many people walk through this life without anyone to really care for them, and we strive to help our clients understand just how important and significant they are.
“I wanted the freedom to set my own schedule and the possibility to earn more.”
GW: How was COVID-19 impacted or shifted your business?
BW: I would be lying if I said COVID hasn’t affected my business. Our therapy practice clients and VA business are down. We are taking this all in stride and recognize that it is out of our control. Rather than stressing about finances, we are trying to look at the positives COVID has afforded us. For example, things have been slower paced, I have been able to train my puppy better, and spend time on projects I otherwise wouldn’t have had time for. This is what we do best at Tidemark Therapy — help people find the positive in their situation. Now, we are finding the positive for ourselves.
GW: Where will your company be in 5 years?
BW: I plan to release an EMR (electronic medical records software) within the next 5 years that fills in the holes of the existing, popular EMR platforms. My husband is a software developer and I have experience both as a provider/user and as a biller. My goal is to incorporate our billing and scheduling services into the EMR as a package option, and I have several colleagues who are willing to beta test and make the shift. We will of course need to find investors for this project to make my goal a reality. I foresee both of my businesses continuing to grow, and perhaps becoming a household name in the mental health professional circles. I also foresee my team of staff continuing to grow, and I want to provide the type of work environment for them that makes them happy to come to work, vs. dreading it.
“I also think really sitting down and listening to my client’s concerns and pain points has been a game-changer.”
GW: What key factors have led to your success?
BW: Dedication to the craft first and foremost. I have to believe in what I am selling to folks, whether it is the change I am trying to create in the therapy room or how outsourcing services for practices can free up your time to grow other people’s businesses larger. I also think really sitting down and listening to my client’s concerns and pain points has been a game changer. I can relate to where they are coming from, because I have been there as well. So often customers are told what people can do or what they’re wanting to sell for them, and they miss the single biggest factor of how can you bring relief to your customers. People these days do not like to be driven by fear, but they want a relationship of reciprocity. Finally, I think the other biggest success to my business is my hard-working staff. They are self-motivated individuals, we work very well together to the point we can finish each other’s thoughts and they would do just about anything to see the continued success of the business. They really are the needles in the haystack and I am so lucky to have intelligent and hard-working staff members.
GW: What advice do you have for businesses who employ contractors?
BW: Recognize that you can’t really instruct your contractors to do anything, so it is important as you hire contractors, that they know exactly how to do the tasks you are requesting prior to coming on board. I give them a “working” test when interviewing them and provide them with scenarios and how they would go about trouble-shooting the scenarios. Remember they are responsible for their own supplies. Really make up your mind about how much control you want over your staff and their productivity, if you are a person who likes to be more structured and detail oriented, be able to have meetings, and/or be responsible for their supplies they use, you probably want to hire W2s over 1099s.
“Gig Wage's user interface is very intuitive, simple and easy to use."
Your thoughts on Us:
GW: What problem(s) were you trying to solve with our product?
BW: I wanted to be able to direct deposit funds to my 1099s quickly.
GW: How does our product or service stand out from other options?
BW: Gig Wage’s user interface is very intuitive, simple and easy to use.
We are proud to work with incredible companies like Tidemark Therapy who are advocating for mental health and making the world a better place through the gig economy. You can find Tidemark Therapy on their website here to make an appointment or learn more.
Written byLucy Hart