David Klow, the founder of Skylight Counseling Center, has a unique way of connecting therapists with each other. I first heard about his “Therapist on Tap” events via his email notices. They sounded intriguing. Here is what I learned through an email interview.
Q1: I’m on your email list and I am intrigued by the initiative you call “Therapist on Tap.” I’m wondering several things about this. How did you come up with the idea?
I have found that offering a service to other therapists is a great way to stay connected to possible referral sources. When you host a networking event, you are offering a positive addition to their clinical practices. People often come to associate the benefits of this event with your practice.
Q2: What were you initially hoping would occur and what did it actually turn into?
I noticed that what most people like about networking events is the mixing and mingling portion of the event. They like the free ability to talk to others in the field and make connections with like-minded clinicians. Instead of us offering a program in which someone gives a talk, we simply do the mixing and mingling: connecting therapists.
Q3: What do you think this program does for Skylight?
This allows Skylight to get to know others in the field and connect them with one another. There is something about offering this service that gives back to Skylight in a roundabout way.
Q4: I know you have offices in the city and in the suburbs. Have you seen differences in the types of marketing you need to do to be successful in those different types of communities?
Regardless of the community, I think that the best way to market your services is to network with referral sources. In the city, we tend to network with more companies and larger organizations that may send their employees our way. In the suburbs, our networking tends to be more with schools and other therapists who might cross-refer.
Q5: How did you match your marketing to the particulars of your communities?
We will be bringing back a networking event to our Skokie office this summer called the Conscious Practitioner Forum. This event ran for 3 years in Skokie before taking a hiatus. The Conscious Practitioner Forum is a chance for practitioners to discuss alternative forms of practicing which often extend beyond traditional counseling. This event meets on a Sunday afternoon. It has more of a discussion portion in addition to mixing and mingling. It tends to fit the suburban location better. We’ve found more of a community of therapists in the suburbs who want to come together to have these conversations. Over time, this event tends to lead to referral sources thinking about Skylight for sending clients our way.
Q6: Do you see that the downtown office helps the suburban office or the other way around or maybe both directions equally?
Since the suburban location came first, it often feels like that office helps the city location. Perhaps if the city location existed first it would feel the other way around. I think that there is something about the first office which ends up feeling like the home base.
Can you say a little about your practice?
Skylight Counseling Center provides professional counseling services to individuals, families, couples, and groups. Founded in 2011, we are dedicated to the growth and development of our clients and ourselves. There are currently 12 staff members and 4 interns. We plan to add a few more staff members this year. Currently, we are located in Skokie and also in the Chicago Loop right across from the Art Institute. We are planning to add a third location in Evanston this summer.
And we aim to help people gain insight into themselves and to live their lives with deeper passion, conviction, and harmony. Our therapists utilize various modalities of psychotherapy and healing to provide the best possible opportunity for change.
We believe in the healing power of relationships. Each of our therapists focuses on caring deeply for their clients. We also focus on doing our own work. Each of us is working on better understanding ourselves, having more fulfilling relationships and living a life of richer meaning.