Have you ever felt like you are working really hard but not seeing progress? Pouring funds into a ‘sure fire’ business or marketing strategy only to come up empty handed? Sometimes the beliefs you ‘hang your hat on’ or have been told over and over can be holding you back. That was the case for me.
As many of you know, I have managed physician practices since my beginning years as a nurse in Ohio (early 1990’s). It’s been so gratifying, and I have led some phenomenal teams. Now I have the pleasure of consulting with practices to improve their operational systems, team performance and profitability.
Here are some of the beliefs I had to leave behind in order to accelerate business success. Any of them sound familiar?
- I need to be the expert in everything. I am one of those people who DO believe that I can do anything I set my mind to. I also strive to instill this belief in my children and my team. I like to be able to function in every office role (except the physician or physician extender of course) and put efficient, predictable processes in place. I am a leader and helper by nature and I also love to teach. However, I figured out over time that to be an effective leader, I can better serve the practice, my team and the physicians if I focus on the desired outcomes instead of the nitty gritty process. When I share desired outcomes/goals with the team and let them implement a standardized process to accomplish the goal/outcome, it is attained faster and everyone is happier with the process. Team ownership takes over and they become eager to take on additional responsibilities/goals in the process.
- More people and extra planning will solve the problem. In my days as a hospital administrator and in consultation with many practices, I often hear managers saying, “We need more people.” Sometimes this is truly the case but often, roles and responsibilities of current team members just need to be clarified and/or rearranged. Also, sometimes team members aren’t a good fit for their role. Taking time to figure this out can eliminate ‘fires’ you have to put out, improve team performance and result in enhanced job satisfaction. This will ultimately positively impact the care you provide. A win-win for everyone!
- Getting our ‘name out there’ on TV and radio will drive patients to our practice. Like me, you are likely bombarded with media marketing experts that guarantee they can bring you more patients with the ‘perfect’ ad campaign. However, you either end up with just ‘impressions’ online, marketing messages that don’t properly differentiate you from your competition or patients that aren’t ideal for your practice. The truth is you and your team actually know your patients the best. You know their pain points, what they desire and the services that will best bridge the gap between their current situation and their desired outcome. You know online marketing is necessary, but you might not have time or know how to start. I found that once I learned the power of in-house online (organic) marketing and optimized our team talents for graphic design, content creation, video and the like, we were exponentially more effective and now come up at the top organic placement for searches online. We are also timelier in our communication and increase engagement significantly. The best news? Organic marketing is essentially FREE and FUN to do. If you aren’t sure where to start, reach out to me and we can get your team trained to do the same.
- Insurance payment is the only way to go. As a nurse, I was trained only about insurance reimbursement for services. The thought of anything in healthcare for cash payment was foreign to me and quite frankly almost inappropriate in my mind. I am a helper by nature and payment out of pocket would be absurd. However, particularly in the field of weight loss, adding cash services and retail products ends up improving patient outcomes, engagement and quality of care. The patients are paying for services and products elsewhere so why not provide the highest quality of services and products in your practice so you can make a better impact on the health of your community. The patients have some skin in the game, are typically more compliant, appreciate more personalized services and create a steady stream of referrals to your practice when implemented properly.
- Build it and they will come. Facility planning is one of my favorite things to do! I love analyzing flow, including team members for optimal operations and selecting finishes so the atmosphere reflects your personality and attracts your ideal patients. I am a detail person and have managed large facility planning projects in hospitals and offices alike. However, in the end, it is just space. It is you, your services and your team that makes the biggest difference in the lives of your patients. You want a functional and attractive facility but be sure not to overdo or take the focus off your patients when planning your space.
Are there other beliefs that have held you back in your business? I would love to hear from you! These are some of the things addressed in Bariatric Business Boss and our 1:1 time together. Just have a question or want to explore ways to enhance your practice profitability, team performance or systems, reach out to me and let’s have a chat! Karol@WeightLossPracticeBuilder.com