If you are a doula, you are a business owner! Being a successful doula requires some basic knowledge of running a business, and thankfully, there are some great resources out there for you to follow and read. If you are not already following some business related blogs, here are some of my favorites (other than THIS blog, which *of course* I think is worthwhile…) that focus on birth professionals:
1. Heart Soul Business I love the way this blog balances the heart and soul of doula work with the business aspect.
2. Your Doula Bag Excellent blog that encourages the business mindset for doulas.
3. Inspired Birth Pro Very good site on business practices. I’ve not bought any of her products, but I have guest blogged over there.
4. Your Doula Business An Australian site (so keep in mind anything legal they talk about is likely to be different here) that talks about ethics, marketing, organization, etc.
5. The Website Doula Mostly web site related tips and tricks, but online marketing is a huge part of making sure expectant families can find you!
Birthy blogs that occasionally talk business and are all around interesting:
1. Science and Sensibility They have covered resources, ethics, and ways to connect with expectant families. Their “Welcoming All Families” series is a fantastic read for birth professionals.
2. Jodi the Doula Her articles on free doula work went viral a couple of years ago. I particularly love the one where she talks about how to do service work as a doula without going bankrupt.
3. Doulaing the Doula Amy Gilliland’s blog covers some business stuff, but also research, how to avoid burnout, and ethical issues in doula work.
4. BirthSwell Jeanette McCulloch’s blog talks about time management and social media. She also keeps the most comprehensive calendar of upcoming birth conferences.
5. Childbirth Today – the writing of Connie Livingston, current president of ICEA. Generally her thoughts, sometimes for birth professionals, sometimes for parents.
Since I also work as a photographer, and I like reading business info, I’ve found some non-birth resources that are helpful, and easily translate to birth work:
1. Psychology for Photographers Jenika has a lot of great ideas and helps you see things from your customer’s point of view.
2. Brand Camp Just be forewarned, Kristen has lots of good ideas and tips, but she doesn’t censor her language at all…
3. Small Business Ideas Blog Not all are applicable to doula work, but I’ve learned good stuff here.
4. Chic-CEO Small business tips for women, she has a podcast as well if you like that.
5. Tara Gentile She has some great thoughts and ideas – I have really learned from her to think about my business in non-linear terms and to constantly be evaluating and adjusting.
This is a lot to follow if you’re trying to remember to visit all these sites regularly! I recommend that you use a service like Feedly (the one I use) or add these feeds to an app like Flipboard on your phone or tablet. Just add their RSS feed to your reader of choice, and the latest articles will be delivered to you in one place.
Got a business related blog for doulas to share? Add it in the comments!