The H.E.A.R.T. Birth Business Pledge
Honest. Ethical. Accountable. Reliable. Thoughtful.
- I want to operate my business with an abundance mindset. I believe that there is enough business for everyone and I take responsibility for attracting my own clients while celebrating every time a colleague is hired as well. I choose community over competition.
- I realize that it is impossible for me to appeal to or serve every client who wants my services. I will work to understand my unique niche so that I can work with the clients who are the best match for me. When someone isn’t a good match I can gladly refer them to a colleague so that they are best served.
- I get to choose the fees that are right for my services and I allow other professionals the same courtesy. I value a living wage for my profession AND the provision of care for the disadvantaged. I will never shame someone for wanting this service but not being able to afford it, I can decline their inquiry with grace.
- I will serve potential clients, and clients, with enthusiasm and professionalism. This means returning calls or emails quickly, being on time to appointments, retaining back up when needed, using a clear contract and doing what I will say I will do. When I make a mistake I will do what I can to make it right.
- I am completely transparent with my pricing and present it up front. I choose not engage in pushy sales tactics such as cold solicitation in public places or hard up-selling during interviews. I give potential clients the space they need to make financial decisions that are right for their family. I am honest and open if my referrals to other professionals result in financial gain for my own business.
- I will operate my business with integrity, following all applicable laws and my training organization’s scope of practice. If I know a colleague may be operating outside the law or their scope, I can come alongside them with grace to seek resolution. If they don’t accept an offer of help, I will reach out privately to their trainer or certifying body. I do not use other’s mistakes as a marketing advantage to prove that I’m better than them.
- I choose not to make exaggerated or unprovable claims about my business, such as being “the best”, “the most professional” or “above the rest”. I recognize that we can all excel at our jobs and the only the reason I want a client to hire me is if they feels I am the best fit for them. I resolve to always do my best work and expect other professionals to do the same.
- I will not cast aspersions against other professionals or provoke fear in order to gain business. Mothers deserve informed consent and validation of their own concerns, not the imposition of my agenda, in the hiring process.
- I choose not use controversy as a marketing technique. I do not subscribe to the mantra “any publicity is good publicity”. When I write blog posts or interact on social media I have my ideal client’s best interests at heart. SEO, website traffic or other business concerns are secondary to providing useful, uplifting content designed for my client’s consumption.
- When my business is struggling I will use it as a learning opportunity and reach out to receive mentorship. I accept that building a business is hard work and there are no shortcuts to success. I refuse to compromise my ethics to be hired.
- I recognize that I will never know everything about my job. I choose to be a lifelong learner. This profession requires both humility and confidence. I accept the tension between both ends of this spectrum. When I am unsure of myself I will take my concerns to a trusted mentor instead of muddling through at the client’s expense.
- I value the experience of those who have come before me. Even when I feel confident in my own business, I will show kindness and respect to those who have a vast pool of experiences to pull from. I will have the humility to ask for advice when I encounter a situation that is new to me.
- I welcome newcomers into my profession. Everyone has valuable skills even when they are just starting out. I offer my support and encouragement as colleagues gain experience.
- “It’s just business” is not a philosophy I subscribe to with birth work. Birth is one of the most transformational times of life. It is more than business. I am being invited into the sacred space of a woman becoming a mother. I will always respect the emotional gravity of my profession. My business goals are secondary to the family’s needs.
- I acknowledge that there are many pathways to competence in my profession. Even if I feel loyal to my training or certification organization, I refuse to diminish or demean professionals who choose to train or certify elsewhere. Skills and ethics matter most, not associations. I will offer support to colleagues of all backgrounds.
- I will speak to my fellow professionals with the same kindness that I would speak to my clients, even when we disagree. I refuse to act one way online and another way in person.
- I reject horizontal violence, bullying and harassment in all it’s forms. I will not participate in the destruction of my own profession no matter how strong my alliances are. In every situation I will ask myself: Does this advance the cause of my entire profession?