resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Apple Takes a Bite Out of Research
The more than 700 million iPhone users have just been given the opportunity to "do their part to advance medical research."
If Your Pro-Chiropractic Governor Resigned, Would You Be Prepared?
John Kitzhaber, MD, recently re-elected to a historic fourth term as Oregon governor, has resigned among alleged ethics violations by his fiancée' and first lady, Cylvia Hayes. I developed a personal friendship with John and consider him a good friend.
Functional Impingement of the Hip (Part 2): Rehab Exercises
I find functionally impinged hips that don't move properly on so many of my patients. (See part 1 of this article for a description of the condition.)
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Talking to Patients About Medial Branch Neurotomy (Part 2)
Even when lumbar facet denervation (medial branch neurotomy) is successful, relief is rarely complete or permanent. Smuck, et al., reviewed 16 articles and found the average duration of >50 percent pain relief for an initial procedure was nine months.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Trouble in the Wellness Waters?
Call me old-fashioned, paranoid or just old, but I do remember graduating from chiropractic college in the late '70s in the midst of the Wilk v AMA lawsuit.
News in Brief
Dr. Frank Nicchi Receives Award at ACC-RAC; Sherman College Expands International Influence.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Teach Your Patients About External Healing Applications
Since the skin is the body's largest organ, and is able to respond to both internal and external stimulations, communicate sensations to the brain, protect the body, breathe and even excrete toxins, it can be an excellent source of healing.
Applauding a Legacy of Leadership
Founding Palmer West President, John Miller, DC, HCD (Hon.), FICA (Hon.), a 1954 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, passed away March 8, 2015 at age 83.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
April, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 04
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry. The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend of the author.
You have, without a doubt, one of the most attractive little day spa operations in the United States.I've seen hundreds of them over the years, and what you've created leaves me awestruck! It was so great to see you last month to help train your new staff, and check out the great work you've been pouring into this project.
Walking into the Spa House is like walking into a really comfortable and beautifully appointed home! The screened-in front porch is filled with sunlight, plants, a tinkling fountain, and the artwork of children from the community. It was a great idea to ask them to draw pictures of water - the origin of spa - in all of its manifestations: rivers, pools, the ocean, and even in their own backyards. The result is a blue splash of riotous color that will leave your customers in a calm and uplifted state of mind before they even enter the front door. And how much did this cost? Nada. You even got a local shop to donate the frames in exchange for displaying their name to your customers.
I don't mean to sound commercial about something that was obviously done from the heart, Lou, but think about the marketing coup you've pulled off here. Before you even open your doors for business, you've created a built-in clientele: the parents of those little artists and all of their friends. This was a stroke of genius from your partner, Barbara.
And speaking of Barbara, you didn't tell me she was such a knockout, Lou: gorgeous, sincere, smart, quirky - the woman has it all. Certainly a wise choice in business partners, and, I see now, a wise choice in life partners. You have to be careful, though, when cultivating a personal relationship like this, since you work so closely together and you both have invested money in the spa. But, as they'd say in France, "C'est l'amour." And there's nothing you can do about that.
After passing through the front porch and entering the door, I found myself in a homey sanctuary, with a welcoming wood reception counter, and a large waiting area that is like someone's living room. I was glad to see you'd taken my suggestion to offer foot treatments in this area, enticing other clients to do the same while creating a soothing atmosphere at the same time.
The treatment rooms are gorgeous, too - simple yet elegant, each one with its own music and lighting controls. It was fun and comfortable to train your staff in these rooms, and I'm sure they're going to enjoy working there on a daily basis, too; however, there are a few staff "issues" I noticed cropping up even at this early stage, and I wanted to pass along a little advice regarding your employees - things I've run into over the years that you might want to keep an eye on.
Don't get me wrong. It has been a pleasure working with such a dedicated and enthusiastic staff. In fact, I'd go beyond the word "enthusiastic" - they are downright excited! It's a great opportunity for them to be part of a unique experience in the community. I wouldn't mind working there myself someday. Keep me in mind! However, the startup phase of a spa - or any business - is often the "honeymoon" stage, when excitement is greatest and the rigors (and, at times, boredom) of daily operation have not yet set in. Regardless of your staff's enthusiasm now, you will assuredly run into some problems down the road; it's best to know about them up front.
One thing I noticed in your newly appointed lead therapist, Jeanie, is what I call the "overachiever syndrome." Jeanie is well qualified for the job: She's smart, bright, attentive, customer-oriented, and she seems to want to give of herself for the betterment of the team. What could be wrong, you ask? Well, I noticed some traits in Jeanie that I've seen in other lead therapists who "crashed and burned" early in their spa careers. One was a male who was arrested and charged with assault on a female customer; another was a fellow who rearranged the whole massage department to his liking (without permission); he was ousted three days later. These are people, who, like Jeanie, are self-sufficient and highly skilled, but don't take orders well, and at any given moment they could create unrest among fellow employees or guests.
I am not suggesting that you fire Jeanie, but I do suggest taking her aside and laying down the law. You, for better or worse, are the boss. Remember when you worked at the resort spa and I told you there were going to be some unsavory aspects of being a supervisor? I called it "the boss trap." You are caught in it more deeply now because you are not only the boss, but also the owner. It is crucial, in my opinion, to let Jeanie know that you are watching over her closely, and that her power is limited to her job description.
That's right, Lou. It's time to get serious about job descriptions. I know this is yet another task that seems less than glamorous, but it is going to help a lot, believe me. It will improve your chances for having a happy staff if Jeanie knows exactly what is expected of her, and what lies inside and outside the boundaries of her authority. This, in turn, will lead to a proper understanding by the other therapists, the receptionist, the estheticians, and you regarding who is responsible for what. There will come a time in the not-too-distant future when you are so busy with the daily rush of activities that these written job descriptions will be a lifesaver. They can, of course, be modified, discarded, or changed, but it is important that everyone agrees upon a working framework - especially as your grand opening approaches.
So, that is your homework: job descriptions for everyone! Add it to the endless list of things to accomplish as you move toward your dream of opening and operating a successful Spa House.
Talk to you soon,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
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