I've always wanted to have my own business. A long time ago back when my sisters and I worked as aides in a nursing home we used to talk about opening a group home someday. Not just any group home, but a totally awesome one that every old person would love to live in, with a 'feels like home' atmosphere. Well, that never really amounted to anything more than an idea, but over the years I've had a few other ideas, that again amounted to nothing. Well recently I decided to act on one of my ideas. I had a job assignment that involved going into a patients home and doing private duty nursing. I was assigned the job through my agency in Kalamazoo which is 65 miles away.
So it was on my second day of driving out to Kalamazoo to the patients house that I started thinking that I could do this kind of thing myself right where I live without an agency. I called my friend Michelle at 6am and woke her up, cause I decided that she would be the perfect person to go into business with. Yes I could probably do it by myself, but I didn't want to, I think my chances of success with a partner are way better than on my own. She was also super excited about the idea and quickly got over the fact that I woke her up at 6am.
We did some checking into it, and there are quite a few companies in the area who offer companion care, or aides, but not really any that offered RN's for skilled care. Okay there was one, but they wanted $100 per hour and as much notice as possible so they could 'find a nurse', not very reassuring and who's gonna pay that?
We have done most of the behind the scenes prep work and we expect to have our business license in hand in a couple days, our lawyer filed the paperwork with the state already and we are just waiting to hear back. As soon as we do we can get our business cards printed and start looking for work. We can't print the business cards until we hear back from the state because they rejected our first business proposal name. Apparently 'Private Nursing Services' could mislead people into thinking we are practicing medicine. I don't exactly agree with that, but I don't make the rules, I just have to follow them. So our new proposed name is 'At Home Private Nursing'. It's not really all that different from the first name, but our lawyer seems to think it will be accepted.
So far we are funding the business ourselves, the start up cost is less than what we lost in the stock market last year, so I think it's worth the risk. We have talked to a couple banks about getting a small loan or line of credit in case our business grows fast and we need to hire other nurses. (Michelle and I can work for free in the beginning if we have to until we build up some money, but I don't think that would go over very well when we hire employees) Apparently though the banks want a business plan before they will give any loans out. The business plan that I have in my head is not what they are talking about either, they want an official business plan which is a book with all kinds of info in it, you have to do market research for your services and the need for it, get info on your competition, revenue and expense proposals, worst and best case scenarios, etc etc. I guess that's where that bachelors degree in nursing would come in handy. At least for now we can get started without a loan, and work on our business plan in the mean time.
Anyway, we are very excited about it. We are not sure which direction it will take us. Our focus will be providing 4 to 24 hours of care in home for patients who need skilled nursing care, who would otherwise need to be in a facility of some kind. We are thinking respite care and newly discharged patients from the hospital will be where we start looking for clients. We have some other possibilities we are looking into as well, but I don't want to tell about it until it's more official.
Oh and this is just another one of my excuses for my lack of blogging lately. Starting up a business is rather time consuming. I really hope it pays off.