What It Takes For Success
The path to success is hardly ever traveled alone, and rarely comes without a few bumps in the road. There’s often a multitude of factors that play into one person’s climb to the top of their ranks. We spoke with a handful of determined and successful people with ties to the Fargo-Moorhead area regarding what, and who, they believe helped them find success in the area we’re proud to call home. Join us as we introduce these individuals over the coming months.
Embrace Therapy Services offers pediatric speech and occupational therapy, orofacial myology and more amongst their services. Trisha Page, Executive Director of Embrace Therapy Services, co-launched the company in August of 2019.
Page was first inspired to pursue this career path when her first son, who is now 20, was diagnosed with autism at age 2. Before launching Embrace Therapy Services, Page held roles in advocacy through Family Voices of ND, as well as in administration as the Director of Autism Services for the State of North Dakota and Director of Behavioral and Mental Health for the Anne Carlsen Center. These diverse experiences drove Page to embark on the journey that is now Embrace Therapy Services. When forging her own path, Page launched the company with two other women, who she describes as “two of the best therapists [she has] ever known.”
Meet the Owners!
Since the company’s initial launch, Embrace Therapy has grown from a core team of 3 employees to 9 people helping the cause. Throughout her journey to the position she’s in today, Page has gained a wealth of knowledge and lessons learned over her career. She elaborated on some of the advice that she believes in and attributes to some of her success.
#1 Scouting! Be prepared (For Every Possibility)
If I see something going south, I’ll say ‘Fail to plan; plan to fail.’ I’m a big planner. I don’t necessarily always have an organized plan, but you’ll find paper and notebooks all over the place, and eventually, it all comes together. After planning, it’s important to continue to whittle down the plan’s details and fine-tune it. Then finally, most importantly, going back and re-evaluating. Oftentimes, people will put a plan in motion and think ‘Oh, that’s good to go,’ and then realize there were missed opportunities and a need to change course.
Did You Know?
Roughly 1 in 6 (17%) children aged 3–17 years are diagnosed with a developmental disability, according to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
#2 Collaborate; both inside and outside of your network.
When Chris, Emilee and I were putting [Embrace Therapy Services] together and setting our mission, vision and values, we talked about embracing families through collaborative therapy opportunities. Having a collaborative therapy model is a core focus for us and everything we do. Are we collaborating with ALL of our clients’ team members? Are we reaching out to our resources? Are we networking with those who can truly make an impact? We started next-level marketing and connecting with our community with Spotlight, and are seeing some big returns in those early efforts. We intend to continue to take bigger steps into collaborating with the community as we grow.
#3 Not only collaboration, but communication and transparency with your team.
Communicating with business partners (if you have them), your spouse and your employees through everything you do is essential. I’m huge on communication and I’m always putting my thought process, motivations and inspirations out to those around me. If our team knows why we’re making the decisions that we’re making, it’s 1,000 times easier to get them on board.
For [Embrace Therapy Services], we have a certain budget number that we need to stay afloat; and then we have another number where we can start kicking out perks. But those numbers will move as things change. When we move into a bigger building, add therapy tracks or make bigger equipment purchases, our team needs to be on board because they are investing as much as we are. We want transparency so that it’s upfront and our team sees it coming.
Some of the many services offered by Embrace Therapy!
“We plan a cost-neutral budget. We budget for those funds to go back to the business, employees, client-supports and equipment. Any profits that we make, we reinvest for improvement and growth. If we’re getting a bonus as owners, then so are the rest of our employees.”-Trisha Page
#4 Uplifting and including your team in decision making.
Taking it one step further beyond communication; it’s also about empowering your team, and clients or customers, to allow them to have a choice. We want to give people the opportunity to choose. Maybe not from 60 options, but it’s important to have at least a few options so that they don’t feel trapped. I know I appreciate being able to choose and have a little bit of control, because sometimes that will make a world of difference.
When asked about mentors that Page may have had throughout her journey, she was quick to cite three people along her journey as some of her biggest inspirations. “Nationally, Dr. Kathy Pratt was the one that originally introduced me to the collaborative therapy concept that we conduct at Embrace Therapy. 18 years ago, her thought process was to bring everyone to the table to stay on the same page, and it will expedite the results. I did that with my own son at a time where it was unheard of in the FM area,” Page said.
“Locally, Phyllis Magelky started Dakota Orofacial Myology, where my son went for therapy. She ran her business frugally, conscientiously and carefully. Both of my business partners worked for her at one point, so when she retired, we sat down to discuss how we would like to continue the vision that she had. Knowing that she was able to be an advocate, a mom and all the other qualities she carried during her work was so inspiring.”
After citing two professional role models that greatly impacted her career, Page credited a third mentor that was a bit more personal than the others. “My husband, Gary, is the Owner/General Manager for Heitkamp Construction. We purchased the business from the founding family in 2011, a few years after he was hired on as the General Manager. Seeing the sacrifices that he made for me and our boys, I knew what I was getting into when running my own business. But also, I saw the benefits and support that [my husband and I] received. He’s an amazing partner to have by my side with the craziness of running two businesses in one family,” Page said.
Page’s work has impacted countless lives, both those with special needs as well as their families. While it may not be easy work, Page is proud to be doing something that makes a difference in her community. “Our clients are told all the time, ‘That’s impossible.’ But then, we watch miracles happen and they conquer the impossible,” Page said.
“It comes down to what resources, whether it’s time, money, energy or sleep, are you willing to compromise to make the impossible happen? Nothing is impossible. But it’s a determined commitment of resources. It’s really fun, and incredibly inspiring, to see the impossible happen.”
“I always try and give kudos to MSUM and the professors that I had there. They knew what I was passionate about, having a kid that has special needs and wanting to follow an atypical career path. My professors were always presenting ideas and opportunities that connected to my focus. It opened doors that I wouldn’t have had Otherwise. For anyone furthering their degree, no matter their age in life, I’d encourage you to talk with your professors and let them know why you care about your education. These are the top 1% of professionals that can help you find your path. I had not thought of going into business and just wanted to help people. Now, I really love coaching and empowering parents and employees to think differently and make an impact themselves ”-Trisha Page.