Today's episode is a special episode about a question that I'm asked often, either for dietitians or aspiring registered dietitians who want to know is pursuing a dietitian business worthwhile in 2024. And that's a legitimate question. So I want to break that down. You might have heard that some dietitians are not happy Only because dietitians can earn low pay. Statistically speaking, the statistics of labor and bureau have our average salary around 62 to $65,000 a year and again, of course, that depends on where you live. That's just the average. But we have to go to school and get and now in 2024, get our master's degree. So today's episode is inspired by the 2024 master's mandate. So we're required to have a high level of education, but our pay isn't substantially increased. Additionally, many jobs in, let's say, a clinical setting. Unless if you do 1,000 hours and become a certified diabetes educator or you become a manager, the opportunities for promotion are fairly bleak. Now I will say becoming a certified diabetes educator is a good track, but you have to get in 1,000 hours to be eligible. So that means during the time that you're putting in to get 1,000 hours, you're accepting probably a lower pay, and I don't think that's fair.
I think that we should, as dietitians get paid more. So how do we do that? Well, we either start our own business, we create income on the side, and or we negotiate a higher pay. It can also be hard to find jobs because there are more dietitians than there are positions open. It doesn't mean that more positions aren't opening up for us, but if you're looking for a clinical position, which is the most common job that dietitians go into, they are fairly competitive and most clinical jobs want you to have two years of clinical experience, which I don't agree with. But because that's the case, it means that newer dietitians are taking on jobs for much lower pay that they are overqualified for, and that can feel frustrating, because we come out of a dietetic internship that's unpaid, where we're already doing clinical work and yet we're considered still new, so that's frustrating. Finding jobs can be really challenging, depending on where you live and the competitive landscape of where you live and the qualifications. So my answer to that would be finding a way to create your own income or finding alternative ways, maybe different types of jobs that are not clinical oriented, that are becoming more common, like a corporate job or other types of jobs that dietitians can work in that might offer a higher pay.
Now, starting a business, which obviously we're a fan of here at Dietitian Boss, does require skills that school didn't teach us right, because school does not require entrepreneurship as part of the curriculum, and the curriculum hasn't been updated. I believe in a century the last time I checked for dietetics. The competencies keep focusing more and more on clinical and dietetics, and entrepreneurship is not seen as essential. There are competencies for leadership, continuing education, competencies that can fall under the sphere of information technology, leadership and business and marketing, but that's not mandatory, right? And so, of course, here at Dietitian Boss, we like to offer those continuing education opportunities under the space of sales and marketing and leadership, but that has to be something that you choose when you decide that you want to get your credits to renew your license as a dietitian. I'm also very impressed with some colleges, some programs, that are offering elective components for nutrition and entrepreneurship. I teach in elective now, and I've been a guest for the last three years at UC Berkeley teaching about nutrition and entrepreneurship, where I'm happy about that. Those opportunities are still few and far between, meaning they're not standardized. Yes, they're happening here and there, but it might take another decade or so for nutrition and entrepreneurship to really blend. It might even take longer. So that's what we're passionate about here at Dietitian Boss, and our mission and vision includes providing educational resources and access right.
We are the number one business resource for dietitians and we know dietitians need the business education. Whether you decide you want to negotiate a higher pay in your job or your part-time job, or whether you want to start an additional revenue stream or private practice, you're going to need to learn business skills so that you can articulate and communicate all the information you know as a clinician and help you actually get clients right and retain clients and create a great customer experience without sacrificing all of your personal time. And those are skills anybody can learn, just with a good attitude. So is pursuing a dietitian business in 2024 worth it? I would say yes, but let's go over some of the advantages and disadvantages. In terms of overview, the schooling, as I mentioned before, now we have the 2024 master's mandate.
Now, if you were grandfathered in which meaning that you became a dietitian before 2024, you did not have to have your master's degree, that might not apply to you, but new people in the field are required to have a master's degree. It doesn't have to be in dietetics. It could be in any field, but that does raise the barrier to enter. So that means more education, more money. Now I already have my master's degree, and I got my master's degree because I always wanted to start a business and I was told that I needed to have a master's in clinical nutrition to be taken seriously for my private practice. So I did pursue a master's degree conversation for another day because I could have used that time to focus on building my business skills. But of course, I learned some things and they were helpful in terms of how I was able to use that knowledge to then teach nutrition, which is what I did for five years before I started my business helping dietitians. Right, I had a nutrition consulting business, teaching nutrition education, specifically medical nutrition therapy.
Thank you, I will say that there are a lot of opportunities Now. I think the opportunities in dietetics are becoming more common now. Back five or 10 years ago at least, when I graduated, these opportunities beyond clinical were kind of seen as secrets. Right, people didn't talk about corporate opportunities. Private practice was seen as something that dietitians shouldn't do for another five or 10 years after they get their two years of clinical. But I want to say that I subjectively I don't have stats on this, but I do see more conversations in the field welcoming alternative career paths for dietitians, which I think is great. Of course, covid has accelerated this because of telehealth and because of virtual and hybrid practice is more accepted in the world. So because of that and because of the Academy working on advancing some licensure regulations to hopefully make licensure across state lines easier for dietitians, there are more opportunities now than there have been and because of that, I think it's an exciting time for people to become a registered dietitian, and today's topic is about building a business. So I do think, with all the opportunities that we have for hybrid models, corporate opportunities, I think that being a dietitian and creating a business is a great time right now Because there are a lot of people online, active users on the internet, searching for solutions every day.
So whether you wanna be in private practice virtually, or you wanna create a digital product like a course or an ebook, a membership or group coaching or some type of a program, there are so many people who are willing to pay for that product or service, as long as you have the skills to learn and match that your product or service fits the needs that the customer hats, right, and that's the tricky part that we help you with, and we have so many resources inside of the library to help you understand your idol client and to help you create a digital product that you validate first to make sure that people are interested in what you have to sell. But let's talk about the disadvantages, because although with telehealth and with offering remote work being so common and normal now, I do see that there is more of an opportunity for dieticians to be accepted as operating fully virtual or partially virtual, there are some disadvantages and that would be the expense. So because we're required to now have our master's degree, that's more expensive for us to complete our education and schooling. I should know I had a loan from grad school that I worked my tail off to pay off, and that's why I had so many jobs, and it worked as an nutrition consultant in addition to a full-time clinical job to try to pay down that loan. Right, because it was expensive. So I understand that that is a disadvantage, and that is also true for other career tracks that require advanced schooling. So it's something to consider and there might be ways you can offset that, although I believe there's only a few internships that pay you. There are still some internships that do pay dieticians to complete them. They are competitive, but there are options and I did a distance internship which allowed me to work because it was flexible. I got to choose my rotation, so there are some ways that you can go through schooling. That's a little bit flexible, but you're gonna have to be prepared for that and do some homework. So I will say that, as long as we operate within our scope of practice, that's important and I have many podcast episodes regularly about scope of practice from our team lawyer. We have resources inside of our library where we can help you identify scope of practice in legal terms so that you can operate legally.
But being a dietician is highly regulated and if we're following the code of ethics with the academy, which we have to for practicing as a registered dietician, we do have to keep up to date with licensure laws as well as scope of practice and our clinical skills and business skills. So that is quite a lot for a practitioner and with COVID happening, I think that the academy as well, as well as many other organizations and institutions, are trying to keep up with how to create laws. So the laws for telehealth, telemedicine are trying to keep up with the demand of what's going on with practicing virtually. So it does require upkeep from the registered dietitian to stay regulated and we cannot practice as a health coach. We have to. I mean there are rules in terms of how we want to position ourselves when it comes to how we decide to practice. So we have to. If we're practicing as a registered dietitian, we have to call ourselves a registered dietitian if we want to keep our license. So you're going to have to double check that with where you live and scope of practice. Again, we have resources, but it's not just as easy as you one day saying you're a health coach and the next day saying you're a registered dietitian. There are laws that you have to follow in regulations. That can be feel frustrating and I resonate, I can understand that's frustrating, but that is because we're a regulated industry. So that is I want to say it's an advantage because the idea is to help lift us up, but the disadvantage is that it can feel challenging to keep up with all that regulation as a clinician when you also have to keep up with your business skills etc.
I also want to talk about career path. So, for me at least, when I did clinical as I've talked about extensively on this podcast I felt bored, right. And I looked at my job description and I felt that I could do a lot more than what I was asked to do in my clinical setting. And so I want you, if you're working at a job any job doesn't have to be clinical I want you to take a moment and take a look at your job description and ask yourself is what you're doing? Do you feel stimulated from your work? And if you don't, ask yourself, what would you need to do that would make you feel stimulated? And for many of you and I know because you send us messages and tell us you want to start a project, you want to start a business, you might want to grow your brand, you want to sell a digital product and you want to increase brand recognition and value and meaning to what your line of work is a dietitian. And so I want you to reflect on if, right now, wherever you are in your career path, if starting a business does feel good to you. Okay, because I've mentioned some pros and cons. It's never going to be perfect, but I want you to think of that.
With your situation right now, private practice has the most opportunities. Now. Private practice does not just mean that you are taking insurance and working at a brick and mortar institution. Private practice means that you are not owned or operated by a government institution. So private practice can mean that you're a consultant that you teach, you speak, you offer digital products. There is a whole, you know, there's a whole offer. There's a variety of options of what you can do as a private practitioner. It essentially means that you own a business. So I do believe that the best way to stimulate yourself in terms of feeling like you are reaching your full potential and to earn money, to gain financial independence and flexibility so that you can live a life with, you know, remote work, would truly be by having some type of business, whether it's part-time or full-time, whether it's hybrid or fully virtual. I do believe that that is the key to success as a dietitian and it'll help you bring back the joy that maybe we're feeling mixed about as a clinician.
Now. I will mention that when you're trying to pursue a dietician business in 2024, you will be experiencing judgment Judgment from colleagues if you already have a job because they might not agree with you starting another project. You might experience judgment from your peers who don't agree or understand asserting a business as a viable option. You might also have experienced judgment from your friends and family or community because they don't understand or other again other dieticians who are happy with the nine to five and don't really understand or support business ownership. And if you decide that you tell people at your job, you might get some pushback from other people. So I want you to realize that starting something new requires that you build resilience, and that is something that you don't have to do alone. And in our library, which is our monthly membership, you can join with your peers and they'll support you, and you'll have a whole community of dieticians from around the world who are looking to also grow their business, and they're on that journey with you at different stages. We offer live calls and a curriculum that you'll have access to so that you can grow your business with less doubt and with more certainty about what to do next.
Now I also want to mention that the highest paid dieticians, according to the salary and compensation guide from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that's only available, if you remember, are private practice dieticians and dieticians in academia. Those are the two highest paid registered dieticians that can earn up to six figures a year. So I want to ask you what's important? How much money do you want to make knowing that the highest paid dieticians own a business or go into academia? And what would make you feel fulfilled knowing that judgment is part of this process? Are you willing to go about a journey where you have to practice resilience? Do you have the support system now, or do you need something different in order for you to pursue something that is worthwhile but that won't be easy every day, and I want to invite you to join the library where we can support you on this journey, as you are looking to build more meaning into your life and create financial independence as well as flexibility.