Fiona Melvin-Farr, a marketing consultant, has been working closely with the team since we created the new business, Physis Scotland. Recently she was commenting on how impressed she has been at the TA community, embracing new technologies as we have had to pivot through the impact of COVID-19. Fiona shares her observations.
Having previously enjoyed working with Fiona Firman, supporting the marketing of her business Chrysallis Counselling, I was absolutely delighted to be invited to work with the two Fionas, as they embarked on the exciting, but challenging opportunity to take over Physis Training and rebrand into Physis Scotland. And no, it is not a requirement to be called Fiona, but it does seem to be an advantage.
Collaborating we embarked on a rigorous but speedy development and implementation of a strategic marketing plan for the business. It was important to ensure a smooth transfer from the previous team, support the existing students, and be ready to launch a successful Foundation Year for a new cohort. The hard work was rewarded with a marketing strategy in place and a full Foundation Year commencing in September 2018.
I am sure the two Fionas, will not mind me commenting that ‘technology’ relating to the website, marketing, or systems are probably not their strength. However, with guidance from specialists like myself, an openness to learning new techniques and determination, they delivered an incredible 18-month programme of training and CPD workshops. These are all proudly hosted in their stunning new offices at Drumsheugh Gardens, Edinburgh.
The business model and culture of Physis Scotland is to be at the heart of the TA counselling & psychotherapy community, welcoming people face to face. The shock of March 2020, with businesses, people movement, and the country all stopping abruptly was initially, as for so many businesses, like a mini earthquake. All weekend workshops were immediately suspended and the outlook bleak.
After a few days, of what I imagine was feeling like they had fallen down a rabbit hole, the two Fionas emerged and regrouped. At points of rapid change, some businesses will freeze and fall over…, not Physis Scotland. They embraced Zoom, reconfigured how workshops might be facilitated online, encouraged trainers to believe in them, and go with it. Helping their students how to use the technology that they had only just learned themselves, they closed out the academic year to June 2020 in a blaze of hard work and a successful outcome for their students.
The new online programme of CPDs is selling out so fast and even the reluctant amongst the TA community are appreciating that they can still access a fantastic programme of learning and development during this unusual time.
Autumn 2020 and the new academic year has just launched, for now all online, with an even bigger cohort of Foundation students than 2019. Congratulations to everyone, it has been a joy to observe the transformation.
Fiona Melvin-Farr, Marketing Consutlant