After successfully completing rehabilitation, Per Wickstrom followed his passions and opened his own treatment center. Today, he is the owner of several successful facilities and he is here to guide entrepreneurs through the process of getting started in the addiction industry.
How did you become successful in the substance abuse recovery industry?
For the majority of my life, I suffered with addiction. When I was 38 years old, I felt as though I had hit a low point in my life. Though I had tried treatment programs before, I entered a new rehabilitation facility. During my time in the recovery center, I learned how to deal with my underlying problems while I successfully battled my addiction. Though I knew that recovery is a life long process, I felt sure that I wanted to help others, just as rehabilitation had helped me.
With this passion and my entrepreneurial spirit, I became committed to opening my own rehabilitation facility. With countless hours of research on substance abuse and recovery, as well as my own experiences, I developed a unique and holistic treatment curriculum that hadn’t been seen before. With my passion and a bank loan, I then started my own treatment facility. Now, I can say that I own several successful businesses in the addiction industry and, more importantly, I have helped countless individuals achieve and maintain sobriety.
What tips do you have for other entrepreneurs in the addiction industry?
Most importantly, follow your passions. If you aren’t passionate about helping others recover from substance abuse and addiction, you are bound to fail in the long run. It is my passion that motivates me to continually improve as time goes by.
Secondly, it is essential that you do your research, as I did, when initially starting your business. Even if you have first hand experience with addiction, it is important to understand every aspect of substance abuse treatment, including methods, techniques, and current industry leading practices. Only once you have this core base of knowledge can you go on to create a business plan (and hire the appropriate staff). Furthermore, don’t ever take a backseat; remaining proactive in your business will help foster motivation and create a positive environment for all.
Finally, the key to success is caring about each and every person who enters your facility, from patients and families, to employees and community partners. Your ultimate goal must be to help addicts recover from addiction, not just to make money. If you are driven only by wealth, your business and its patients and staff will ultimately suffer.
Similarly, it is important to reach out to the community and create solid bonds in the area in which you do business. Not only can you achieve recognition and notoriety, you will also help rally your community around those who need help the most.
Overall, it is important to go into the addiction industry with a strong entrepreneurial spirit, but also a desire to do good. Without these factors, your business and its vulnerable patients may fail. So, take the time to consider all of your options and follow the path that brings you, your patients, and your community the most fulfillment. Know that the right facility can help save lives, and that is a true responsibility that must be taken seriously.