Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Sarah Crawford. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Sarah, thanks for taking the time to share your stories with us today Let’s start with a story that highlights an important way in which your brand diverges from the industry standard.
Industry standard health care relies heavily on reactive medicine through a lens of risks mitigation on the part of the provider. I need to be clear in stating that this statement is not directed at any single provider or group of providers inside traditional healthcare systems but instead at the systems themselves. We have allowed insurance companies to get involved in decision making by using gold standards as primary modes of decision making. Gold standards are incredibly useful but not all individuals fit inside any particular paradigm.
What we do different is give our time and weed out information based on our clients experiences. We use evidence-informed care, clinical experience and patient/client experience to direct care. None of this is dismissive of science as we are whole-heartedly scientifically based, this is just to say that there is so much more than research studies can encapsulate when we are talking about human beings.
That said, we use clinical judgement to help guide health and wellness decisions as well as the interest and motivation of the clients we’re trying to help. Insurance does not get the opportunity to limit potential due to their limited view and understanding.
Sarah, before we move on to more of these sorts of questions, can you take some time to bring our readers up to speed on you and what you do?
The Anchor Wellness Center was founded by Dr. Sarah Crawford, PT, DPT in 2019 after years of specializing in chronic and persistent pain as a Physical Therapist. Many individuals exist in some level of discomfort daily and believe that’s the best it will get. Dr. Crawford realized that to help someone be well often requires a team and that the systems in traditional medicine create barriers to wellness. The Anchor Wellness Center was founder to reduce the time and space between an individuals care providers to maximize efficiency and effectiveness. Our distinguishing factor is the way you access care. We believe most individuals have a gut-sense of the care they need and we TRUST them. We champion clients who want to get better. Because of that, we pride ourselves on being a one-stop shop. Our centralized, online scheduling tool is what allows clients to access the care they want when they want it. Additionally, they don’t have to be the transporter of information because our network and it’s systems allow the providers to collaborate without the presence of the client/patient. Additionally, consumers of health care services can trust that the providers inside the Anchor Wellness Center are client-centric, collaborative and specialized, the core values of our business. Unless you’ve been through it, most people don’t realize that traditional health care is really just sick-care management with many hoops to jump through. They also don’t realize just how often the insurance companies dictate care based off of deciding what they are willing to pay for. That said, our center currently offers Physical Therapy, Nutrition Therapy, Health & Wellness Coaching, Massage Therapy, Pilates, Yoga and Strength Training. We also have a variety of trusted providers outside our network that we refer to for mental health, medical and other speciality practices that are value based.
We are most proud of the work that we do to put individuals in the drivers seat of their care. We’re also thrilled to be part of a movement towards preventative and lifestyle medicine, helping debunk common myths and proving the individuals are capable of healing. On the business front, we are proud to have expanded our business and its reach through a Pandemic, coming out stronger and more resilient.
We often hear about learning lessons – but just as important is unlearning lessons. Have you ever had to unlearn a lesson?
I think its a misunderstanding that entrepreneurs are globally risk-takers. In contrast, most entrepreneurs are risk averse and dive into business based on experience or data. Prior to launching my own business, I had the wonderful opportunity to be part of several others businesses, picking up on what went well and what didn’t go well. From those observations, I decided that to make money you had to spend money. I knew that I wanted to outsource all the things that I didn’t know how to do or want to do (for example, web design/development, social media marketing, SEO, etc). I knew that I was a Physical Therapists and not a designer, programmer or marketing specialist.
After a year or two of our-sourcing everything and feeling like some of it wasn’t valuable, I had a coach challenge me on the motto “you have to spend money to make money.” It was like I was outsourcing for the sake of saying I could or I was but without real intention. There was so much work I needed to do before outsourcing but I was so fearful that if I wasn’t doing all the things, I’d somehow lose pace.
Much to my discomfort, when I decided to push the breaks and learn more about where I was spending my dollars, business didn’t slow down and I wasn’t missing out. I was just so stuck in that mindset based on my past experiences.
Have you ever had to pivot?
When I originally wrote the business plan for the Anchor Wellness Center it was based around a very common model used by hair stylists. However, that model is ultimately a real-estate model and doesn’t deal with individual peoples direct health outcomes. I hadn’t thought that part through at first. When I realized that this location would be dealing with the health and wellbeing of real people (not just the hypotheticals when writing a business plan) I started to realize that we were going to have to pivot. That was just within the first few weeks of working on this idea!
Like most entrepreneurs, I decided it would be best to go slow and grow. Initially, we took on a very small rented space and maximized its use before expanding. We were doing our due diligence and trying to make deals happen when COVID-19 arrived and fortunately/unfortunately, derailed our plan of owning property. The upside was that I didn’t own essentially vacant healthcare space during a Pandemic however the downside is we expanded into more rented space in a longer term lease than preferred, outside of the geographical region preferred. The pivot came after a lot of discernment about market reach and opportunity.
Fortunately, that pivot landed us in a class-A office building in suburban Cincinnati with access for our team to a brand-new fitness center, state of the art conference and board rooms as well as on-site cafe and outdoor plaza, all of which were amenities we were looking to feature in our next space but with significantly less up-front risk and cost.
- Website: anchorcincy.com
- Instagram: anchorwellnesscincy
- Facebook: Anchorwellnessinc
- Linkedin: anchor-wellness-inc
- Youtube: Anchor Wellness
Julie Doran Photography