Are your patients getting mixed messages?

Are your patients getting mixed messages, and you don’t even know it?

Most especially, might there be an incongruence or two with regard to office policies which might not only be slowing you down, but could be like driving your car with the brakes on?

Well, if you have more than one staff person, the answer might be yes. It’s so important to try and head this off with the policies and procedures covering every little detail.

Even in our practice, I discovered this quite by accident last week. The problem began with a newer staff person getting into encounters for the first time by herself.

It seems like everything has broken in our office in the last 3 months. Computers, phones, credit card swipe machines, and even a diagnostic unit. Stay in practice long enough and stuff just happens to fail eventually.

Anyway, last week it was the card swipe machine. This can really hurt the income for a day or two as you know.

Now my staff is very bright, and they know our policies on collections. So why did the failure of one simple device cause chaos at the front desk?

It was simply because the basic “fix” that is in the office manual was not referred too. Once I pointed this out, we were back to normal quickly.

Once again, a smooth running private practice is all about congruent policies and procedures. This is where Living and Practicing by Design membership can help you accomplish and then stay on top of this each week.

For further information please contact my team HERE or shoot us a call or text to 781-659-7989

Patti

It’s all just a “test”

It’s all just a “test”

We speak often about the power of planning, and then implementation.

All fine, and essential. But happens when your plan does not work as intended?

There is a saying in marketing that there are no failures, only tests. It’s all just a “test”.

And so it is in the world we live in right now. What worked so great in practice a while back may not be working so well right now.

What do most people do? Stop trying!

What’s a better way?

Analyze, fine tune, make some appropriate changes, and “test” again.

Then again.

Seriously. Every great practice and business is built upon the backs of many, many failed “tests”…

Learn much more about “Bullet Proof Marketing & Media Expansion” HERE: https://perfectpracticeweb.com/living-practicing-by-design

#privatepracticebuilding#lovinghealthcare#livingpracticingbydesign

 

He called his big idea the “Certain Way”.

About 100 years ago, Wallace Wattles warned those aspiring to make better lives for themselves to ignore politicians, naysayers and media. He called his big idea the “Certain Way”. Focusing endlessly only upon your desired outcomes with continuous gratitude being your dominant thought.

Doing everything with the utmost care and attitude of devout service.

I believe he was right. It’s a fact; politically self-serving agendas have been a part of history for centuries. Even back in Ancient Rome and Greece, elders warned about the expansion of self-perpetuating plutocracies. Right now though the constant injection into the media is fear from politicians who we entrust to be leaders.

Rather than reassurance this trash talk about the wealthy is destructive, and controlling.

Too often, the very criticisms our politicians hurl at others, mirror habits that exist in their own lives, a fact too many of their constituents and certainly the paparazzi ignore.

It’s the deeper message though, most recently not so hidden, that in my opinion is the most dangerous to private healthcare, especially for our student doctors.

That message is that being wealthy and ultra successful is somehow bad. That because you did well through your own efforts, your results must now be penalized.

Never has such a more dangerous notion been put forth with unquestioning by the mainstream media.

It’s NOT wealthy successful people that bring the economy to it’s knees.

It’s now many years of bad decisions and top down government and corporate corruption that transcends political parties and international boundaries, fueled by incredible greed. Unfortunately, these basic facts are too often conspicuously absent from the daily media banter.

It’s the wealthy and most successful (not the greedy and corrupt) that pay the bulk of taxes already. It’s the wealthy that are the philanthropists and benefactors in a free society.

For those younger than I, this attitude is nothing new.

The problem is, in our current world, this trash talk about success is today again everywhere. This only serves to perpetuate dangerous myths, especially to our young and inexperienced citizens.

In fact, the greatest minds in history have warned about the dangers of unbridled political banter.

So what can you do?

First of all, have the guts to acknowledge media BS as just that.

Don’t focus and dwell on what’s wrong with the world.

Instead, focus on improving it, one patient visit at a time.

Yes, a lot has changed in practice! It’s changed in your patient’s lives too. And some have been enormous.

So, what have you done lately to help deal with their changes and how they utilize your care, or not?

And what about their own fears and concerns? Are you like a deer in the headlights, or a pillar of community strength?

When is the last time you and your team took actions that can make their days brighter, and their futures even healthier? The possibilities for practice expansion with this one are huge!

But, most importantly, make sure your daily actions and decisions are ultimately putting you in charge of your life. Take full responsibility for your own results.

Work a little harder, maybe a whole lot smarter to develop your own future choices and flexibility.

Always remember, no matter how ineffective prior decisions may have been, or how bad things may have been this is a brand new day.

Completely new opportunities abound.

But only if you decide to be fully engaged.

Tough or not, there is no better time to make your mark than right now.

I would also assert that is this the very best time to refocus, and reorganize. Learn new systems. Invest in your business skills development. Reorganize. Rebuild if you must!

Be sure you are limiting your media exposure. Focus on your new business and personal goals. Plan now to be reaping the rewards, without guilt.

Ready to change the way you look at practice and maybe your entire life?
Have your entire team trained for you by experts? Come away with an entirely new vision?

Learn More HERE:

Private Practice Systems

The most important of all Private Practice Systems is…can you guess?

Answering telephones by script. It is simply a mechanism to ensure two things. One is that patients are not turned off by what is said. The other is to obtain valuable information in terms of what parts of your marketing campaign are working. You have to make sure that whoever is answering the phone is ascertaining exactly how these particular people are finding you.

The second daily marketing task is to make sure that your new and returning patients are now automatically enrolled in stay in touch “sequences”. You certainly can enhance the effectiveness of autopilot marketing by making sure that you’re subdividing these patients, putting them into different groups and categories. This is now much easier with modern software.

Third, you need to make sure that referral & primary care docs and other professionals who share the care of your patients with you are being updated by you on a regular basis. It is important to have this on autopilot. In our office when the doctor finalizes an examination report, the doctor or a staff person prints it. The staff will make sure that we have indeed personally signed the professional copy. If it’s a primary care doc who I haven’t handled before or haven’t had the opportunity to meet, I will put an introductory letter in there as well.

The fourth task to continue to drive referrals to your practice is to make sure you’re always keeping your word. If you told Mrs. Smith that on this particular visit she’s going to begin rehab or have an evaluation for carpal tunnel syndrome, you have to make sure this is indeed happening.

The fifth point is to make sure that you have surrounded yourself with a team of “can do” and not “I can’t.” The worst thing that can happen to you is to have your plan stymied by somebody who is continually coming to you with, “I can’t,” or “I didn’t get to it.” Our tolerance for this behavior is virtually nonexistent.

Do you see how important all this is? Then why doesn’t every practice operate this way? Don’t let this be you. Our team can help.

Learn how you can have twice the income and half the hassles HERE

 

Start your office day right!

If you haven’t already tried this tip, I suggest you adopt it for 2 weeks, and tell me if it does not make a huge difference. 10 minutes before starting a patient shift, gather all your team in a private area. Have a copy of your Schedule, New Patient Log, and Missed appointment log. Go over each briefly, with the entire team. Make sure full communication is present amongst your players. Make sure your Team Captain (even if its you) are acting as the moderator.

Just doing this alone can have a huge impact on your practice.

Here’s a challenge to all clients and guests. Try this your next full week. Then email us or post to our Blog the results. I look forward to sharing your experiences.

Your Own Outcomes Study

When Was The Last Time You Conducted Your Own Outcomes Study?

Last week, I wrote extensively on really taking command of the direction of your practice, and your life as a powerful economic stimulus. In reality, it’s all you have in private practice. There are some really simple ways to do this, but before we talk about that, here’s a reality check-up.

If I told you right now there are doctors like you doing 7 figures, mostly self-pay patients/year, would you believe me?

If not, why?

Likely, it’s a very limited worldview on what you can really accomplish with all the correct systems and tools. And far too often, this is so defeating if it takes place early in ones career.

If I also told you Concierge MDs are collecting 10-15k per patient per year cash, and these same patients gladly pay, and in fact request that type of healthcare, and also pay health insurance premiums, what does that say about how you value, and price your services?

_____________________________________

Well, here is another huge economic management tip.

Regular benchmarking of your results against your goals helps put you at the head of the class.

There is a real easy way to get this done. This tip alone might put another 10K in the income column this month.

The first thing to do is take your list of basic daily, weekly and monthly targets. Higher performing CEOs/CFOs do this daily. Use your white legal pad, but better yet for this one is an Excel spreadsheet (because you can graph it easily and tweak it in all sorts of ways).

My basic daily targets are body weight, miles run or cycled, hours skied, services and income, dollars saved. Yours might be totally different, as it should be. You really can do some incredible things with these numbers, but resist that temptation in the beginning.

Put your goals or targets (BOLD) on one axis, and simply enter your results on another. Save room for notes, photos, and maybe even video clips.

Next, post this somewhere you can see it all the time during the day. Admittedly in the office, maybe it’s in your portfolio, which you pull out during the day, or simply, hidden on your desktop or handheld. Just be sure to look at it at least once daily.

Here’s why this is so powerful. Because it’s a glimpse of right now.

Many people who have trouble setting goals find new life with this method. It keeps you in the moment as well. For us type A’s, it can actually be a better way of dealing with “Futurizing”, which some might say is an unhealthy psychological trait.

But to make sure your not deluding yourself, if you use daily targets, they must be the correct fraction of the weekly/monthly/yearly whole.

Just by doing this daily exercise, some great things start to happen. Many times, I have found breaking so many things in life down into daily pieces really simplifies accomplishment and helps move me forward instead of stalling or going into overwhelm.

Now, you are forcing yourself to look at your goals. In fact, now you have actually set goals!

Next, you are inspecting what you expect, automatically!

And finally, you are really taking advantage of a tremendously powerful principle.

That which can be measured, like your results, can be improved!

And herein lies the most powerful tip of all.

Continuing to improve your results and changing your targets to suit your desires in any endeavor is the ultimate in human accomplishment.

This single hallmark of a powerful life is shaping and molding that which we can control. It is creative energy harnessed. It is fulfillment vs. frustration. Happiness vs. resentment and regret.

When combined with all the other key components of Living and Practicing by Design™, it adds a totally new dimension to who and what you can become.

Let Our Team Help

SWOT analysis for physical therapy business

The MOST Important Way To Build A Powerful Private Practice

The MOST Important Way To Build A Powerful Private Practice is to simply tell patients the truth.

Most especially today we’re talking about truth surrounding patients own lifestyle, health problems and other issues, which may have caused or perpetuated their illness.

Now I’m not saying this is always easy, in fact this is one of the most difficult things in life, yes and in your and my private practice alike.

But if you don’t do this, you are not serving your patients nor are you living up to your highest level of responsibility.

And most of us very well trained in healthcare don’t get adequate training and/or experience in communicating these facts to patients.

So what is the best solution?

We find the best solution is to start out by being an exceptional listener. Be sure the patient has had adequate space to tell their own story.

And should this extend beyond your patients initial visit, so be it – it is that important!

As I recently said during one of my postgraduate training seminars history taking is becoming a lost art.

Sometimes we as clinicians only have 10 minutes to fully understand a problem that could’ve taken half a lifetime to develop.

And this is where excellent communication platforms and tools must be implemented into the modern private practice.

Fortunately, with the correct systems you can do this easily and with a minimal invasion of your time.

Most importantly however is that you learn to IMPLEMENT all these modern tools!

Otherwise you will find a large part of private practice, especially specialty practice becoming extremely frustrating.

Not only is incomplete history taking frustrating to patients but it could be very well be dangerous to leave out the essential parts of identifying what is really going on helping your patient the most!

All of these new tools are so important that we’ll be spending extra time on these in our Group 24 Weekends and private practice consulting platforms!

http://perfectpracticeweb.com/group-24/

Join our conversation today on Facebook by clicking HERE!

Taking Command of Your Direction…

Last week, I wrote extensively on really taking command of the direction of your practice, and your life as a powerful economic stimulus. In reality, it’s all you have in private practice. There are some really simple ways to do this, but before we talk about that, here’s an “Economic Summit” reality check-up.

If I told you right now there are doctors like you doing 7 figures cash/year, would you believe me?

If not, why?

Well, here is another huge economic management tip.

Regular benchmarking of your results against your goals helps put you at the head of the class.

There is a real easy way to get this done. This tip alone might put another 10K in the income column this month.

The first thing to do is take your list of basic daily, weekly and monthly targets. Higher performing CEOs/CFOs do this daily. Use your white legal pad, but better yet for this one is an Excel spreadsheet (because you can graph it easily and tweak it in all sorts of ways).

Put your goals or targets (BOLD) on one axis, and simply enter your results on another. Save room for notes, photos, and maybe even video clips.

Next, post this somewhere you can see it all the time during the day. Admittedly in the office, maybe it’s in your portfolio, which you pull out during the day, or simply, hidden on your desktop or handheld. Just be sure to look at it at least once daily.

Here’s why this is so powerful. Because it’s a glimpse of right now.

Many people who have trouble setting goals find new life with this method. It keeps you in the moment as well. For us type A’s, it can actually be a better way of dealing with “Futurizing”, which some might say is an unhealthy psychological trait.

But to make sure your not deluding yourself, if you use daily targets, they must be the correct fraction of the weekly/monthly/yearly whole.

Just by doing this daily exercise, some great things start to happen. Many times, I have found breaking so many things in life down into daily pieces really simplifies accomplishment and helps move me forward instead of stalling or going into overwhelm…

Watch for another powerful WCS 2010 follow-Up later today…


Serious About Your Future?
Then Why Not Schedule a No Charge Phone Strategy Session Or Client Consultation HERE

Private Practice Building and New Patient Calls

In Private Practice Building, Prioritize Calls from New Patients

All your private practice building efforts will go down the drain if you don’t train your staff on how to receive calls from new patients.

It’s true that we recently talked about the importance of focusing on your existing patients for private practice building—keeping them truly happy so they keep coming back for more.

But there is an element of private practice building that is equally important and shouldn’t be overlooked.

Too often, private practice owners think that if they’ve got a great marketing campaign out there, then the calls will roll in. But what if calls come in from prospective patients, and your staff doesn’t handle them appropriately?

The first phone call is the missing link between your efforts at private practice building and the scheduling of new patients. Your marketing isn’t “done” until the new patient walks out the door after their first (wonderful) visit.

That’s why it’s so important to train your staff on the exact procedure you want them to use in responding to new patient calls.

The first line of defense is to make sure you have at least two team members behind the desk at ALL times. That’s because it’s inevitable that new patients will call when a lone staffer is interacting in person with existing patients. What you don’t want is for that person to have to answer the phone and put that new patient on hold! How many people do you think will wait for more than a few seconds before hanging up?

There’s another vital component of how new patient calls affect your private practice building success, and it lies within the phone conversion skills of your staff. Remember, simply answering the phone and making an appointment isn’t good enough.

Your staff has to be able to make the new patient feel appreciated and special from the first moment in the call, and your staff also has to be able to effectively answer any questions that the new patient may have about your private practice.

How well would your staff do on the new patient call test?

 

Wrong Approach to Marketing Private Practice

The Wrong Approach to Marketing Your Private Practice

You might be getting it all wrong when it comes to marketing your private practice—most people do! Here’s how to distinguish your practice effectively.

Frankly, most private practice owners get it all wrong.

They think they’re working hard at marketing—but in reality, they’re spinning their wheels.

Here are some classic ways that most private practice owners fail in their marketing—along with more effective alternatives that can make a real difference in practice building.

“Talking at” the prospective patient instead of listening to his or her unique needs.

Effective marketing is not a monologue. Honestly, whether we’re talking about a billboard or a website, prospective patients are turned off when they sense that your marketing is all about you. Patients want to hear about themselves. Good marketing is an invitation to an ongoing dialogue about the patient’s needs.

Having no idea about your target market.

If the audience you’re trying to reach with your marketing materials is “everyone in the local area,” you’ve already failed. Your private practice can’t cater to “everyone,” and identifying your ideal patient (demographics, buying habits, personal preferences) will make a world of difference in the long-term sustainability of your practice.

Thinking it’s enough if the community knows your name.

Once upon a time, the idea was to “get your name out there” and rely on name recognition as your primary marketing tool for private practice. But it’s not a small-town world anymore, and patients know they have a lot of choices in where to take their business. You absolutely must craft an effective message about your private practice and target it at the right kind of patient.

Betting on one marketing venue to bring in all your new patients.

You might think it’s not a good idea to spread yourself thin in terms of allotting a marketing budget to too many venues, and there’s some truth to that. But don’t swing too far the other way and put every cent into one single approach.

There’s a reason why private practice owners tend to think that marketing is overwhelming and difficult—without guidance, it can be.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Private Practice Marketing Strategy

Private Practice Marketing Strategy: Are You Way Behind?

If you’re way behind in marketing your private practice (like most private practice owners), here’s a step-by-step plan to rescue your marketing plan today.

It’s a sad fact that most private practice owners leave marketing tasks somewhere at the bottom of their to-do lists.

What’s even worse is that most of them don’t even have a comprehensive marketing plan—so whatever marketing does happen, it’s chaotic and ineffective.

Every week that you ignore marketing is another week that your private practice falls behind. That means your competitors are out there winning over YOUR patients while you look the other way.

It goes without saying that this is not the way to build a sustainable private practice.

Here are the simple steps to rescuing your private practice marketing so that you and your business can thrive in the long term.

Schedule planning time for marketing. Put it on your calendar. Ideally, you’d be devoting a few minutes to this every day. If that seems impossible right now, try an hour a week to start. Make it an uninterrupted hour when no one else is around, whether that means an early morning or a late evening for you.

Know your marketing budget. Most private practice owners pick a figure out of the air when it comes to allotting a marketing budget. Others ignore the budget concept altogether and simply spend a little here and a little there. To do this right, you absolutely must know what you’re willing and able to spend.

Define your marketing goals, long term and short term. It’s not enough to have an idea of what you’d like to do to market your private practice; you have to understand WHY you intend to do it and what the intended outcome will be.

Consider the ways that you can improve internal marketing opportunities. Before you spend money on ads or any external marketing approach, look at the missed opportunities in terms of your existing patient base. What can you do right now to improve customer service and increase referrals?

Improve your website. Your online presence is the number one way you’re putting yourself out there. If a prospective patient is compelled by an ad to go to your website, but then the patient is confused or turned off by what he/she finds on your site, you’ve lost an opportunity.

Find effective ways to track the ROI of your marketing efforts. Don’t throw your private practice marketing funds down the drain by never assessing how well each promotional effort has worked. If you don’t know what has already proven effective (and what bombed), how will you know what to do next?

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

 

What “Word of Mouth” Really Means for Your Private Practice

Don’t take it for granted that you know what “word of mouth” means—and how it affects your private practice success.

Some things never change in marketing a private practice—like the power of “word of mouth” advertising.

But wait! “Word of mouth” doesn’t mean what it used to mean.

Years ago, when we talked about word of mouth, we meant that people talked to each other about things. They talked over the water cooler at work, at social gatherings, and in casual interactions with familiar faces at the post office or grocery store.

Nowadays, it’s a digital era. For better or worse, folks just don’t talk to each other in the same way face to face. When it comes to word of mouth marketing these days, it’s all about Internet interactions. People who are happy with a service will “like” the private practice page on Facebook or give it several stars on Yelp. People who are actively searching for a service like yours in their area will turn to those online resources looking for social proof.

What does that mean for your private practice? It means that you need to be online, not just in a standard “meets expectations” kind of way, but in a big way.

These days, when we talk about differentiating yourself from the competition, we’re not talking about having a better ad in the Yellow Pages. We’re talking about your private practice website. Not just that you HAVE a website, but that the site actively works to recruit new patients and maintain relationships with existing ones.

Even if it turns out to be a traditional “word of mouth” and face to face referral, it’s very likely that the prospective patient will stick check out your private practice website. He or she may just be looking for directions to your office—but chances are, the real information being gathered is a sense of fit. Today’s patient is a savvy consumer.

Does your private practice website have what it takes to win over today’s high patient expectations?

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Your Private Practice Needs Serious Help

Private Practice Owners Must Use Content Marketing Effectively (Here’s Why It Matters)

For private practice owners, effective content marketing can make or break your long-term success.

You’ve heard about “content marketing” and that private practice owners should be using it to build their businesses. But do you really know what content marketing means—or why it’s so important to the long-term success of your private practice?

In short, content marketing means that through your online presence (your website, your social media accounts, and so on), you are providing valuable information to potential and current patients. The goal is to enrich their lives through building a teaching relationship with them.

There are several reasons why private practice owners absolutely must embrace content marketing and use it effectively for private practice building.

Your content enhances your branding. There is much, much more to branding for private practice owners than just your logo and website design. Every message you share with your local audience enhances and develops your brand by emphasizing the ways that you serve patients and the community.

Patients are constantly looking for information online, and they are eager to find a trusted source. Private practice owners can use effective content to capture the attention of their ideal patients, not just right now, but for the long term.

Great content marketing is about building relationships. Rather than focusing on the interests and specialties of private practice owners, it emphasizes the needs and interests of the audience—your prospective patients. In other words, content marketing isn’t a monologue; it’s a conversation.

Content marketing is an opportunity for private practice owners to use storytelling as a way to engage audiences and humanize providers. Human beings love stories, and potential patients will feel a bond with you when they read relevant personal information and hear significant information in your “voice.” These patients will follow you over time, and they’ll tell others about you.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Private Practice Marketing Strategy

Are Patients Truly Top Priority in Your Private Practice?

You may think your private practice puts an emphasis on customer service, but do your patients think so?

It’s common knowledge that customer service has to be a key focus in order for a private practice to survive and thrive in the long term.

Customer service is just as important as excellent clinical practice… maybe even more important, from the customer’s perspective. Many patients value the overall experience (including staff interactions and convenience) more than the specific interaction with the clinical provider.

Unfortunately, many private practice owners think they’re doing a great job in customer service, when in reality their patients might not give the same feedback.

Is your private practice just giving lip service to customer service? Or are you making patients’ experience truly your TOP priority above all else?

Here’s how you can examine and improve your private practice in terms of customer service. How do you rate on the following questions?

  1. Have you looked closely at every possible point of patient interaction? Take a look at every communication (or failed communication opportunity), beginning with appointment scheduling and going all the way through patient follow-up after the visit. (If you’re not doing consistent and meaningful follow-up, start there.)
  2. Is your private practice built around patients’ needs, or your own preferences? This aspect includes everything from your office hours to your ability to make same-day appointments for some kinds of urgent situations. Patients can tell whether the top priority in your office is their needs… or yours.
  3. Have you built your customer service policies and procedures around standard expectations, or an expectation of WOW? Patients don’t forget when you over-deliver, and what’s more, they will happily tell others about you when you go above and beyond what they’ve been trained to expect from other providers. Distinguish yourself, not just in your marketing but in your everyday interactions with the people you serve.
  4. Do you expect your staff to deliver exceptional customer service without specific instruction on how to do that? Like you, your team members probably feel that they deliver amazing customer service every single day because they’re working hard at it. But if everyone isn’t on the same page about the specific expectations of your private practice, then the service delivered will not be consistently excellent from the patient point of view.

Remember, your patients could go anywhere for the service you provide (or something similar). Are you giving them compelling, consistent reasons to choose YOUR private practice?

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

 

The REAL Impact of “Future Shock” on Personal Power, Profit and Influence

Without personal power, profit and influence, in your own life and practice, you are unlikely to learn from the past, deal with the present and plan as accurately as possible for the future. But just why are these so important?

One of my fascinations as a consultant comes from dealing the vast differences in how people view the world, as well as their own professions.

Even more fascinating, is how they respond to the wide variety of situations we are all presented with every day. Now this is something I’ve written on extensively, during the last three years, and continue to research on almost daily basis.

Of course, there are many reasons for these vast differences, even amongst similar groups of people (like MDs, DCs, DMDs JDs etc.). No doubt, some are biologic and likely even genetic responses. Some are cultural. Some are environmental. And lets not forget education and professional training.

No doubt, the largest factor accounting for all these differences is personal beliefs about the world we live in and then how we should act upon incoming information and react or not to the situations we are faced with on almost a moment-to-moment basis.

Our personal beliefs are what comprise our self-image. Many years ago, Dr. Maxwell Maltz, a plastic surgeon observed this in his patients, and then went on to write about it extensively in his landmark work, “Psychocybernetics”.

Dr. Matltz’s observations at the time were, and still are landmark, in dealing with human behavior and achievement. Matlz observed that humans have the unique capacity to set courses like a missile, and hit targets with precision. He also astutely observed that these missile courses are never over a straight line, and indeed the vast majority of travel time is off course.

Q. So what causes a missile, or you or I to hit our targets?
A. It’s actually continual course correction.

Q. And which is the faster course?
A. It’s always a straight line.

Q. Which combination of characteristics produces a straighter line in professional practice development?
A. It’s Personal Power, Profit and Influence.

Success, happiness and fulfillment in practice and in life are always a combination of accurate assessment and response, over and over again. (This is also why the mechanisms we teach to run and grow a professional practice actually work.)

As keen as Maltz’s observations were, it really wasn’t until 1970 when Alvin Toffler wrote “Future Shock” did we come to understand again, some of the reasons why we have vast differences not only in human behavior, but society as a whole.

Toffler’s work also clearly demonstrates how ignorance of these factors can lead entire groups and organizations to become ineffective, powerless and unprofitable.

Not unlike healthcare professionals (“providers”).
Not because they (we) changed, but rather the world changed.
Seemingly very quickly. And

So how can we prosper and grow as individuals and professionals? Have the largest impact on humanity? How can we stand for solid principles and render the excellence in human services we have been trained to do?

It will be only through Personal Power, Profit, and Influence.

Personal Power comes from building all aspects of our lives on a firm foundation. Personal power in this day and age comes only with an eye clearly on the future. Ignorance of either the speed of change or the magnitude of change will lead to failure. Without firm foundations, principles and beliefs, we are like trees without roots.

With a firm foundation however we can weather hurricanes, tornadoes and tsunamis.

And profit. You, and you alone will determine your financial future. Without profit and savings, a strong financial future is impossibility. Without a strong financial position, as doctors, we actually end up powerless, in so many ways.

Lastly, let’s talk about influence. Many of us ignore the impact of our influence on our patients, our staff, and most especially our communities. Those doctors, who maintain a high degree of influence not only in their offices, but also in their communities, will undoubtedly be those who master personal power and profit.

In “Future Shock or Future Affluence”, we will together be exploring the role all these have not only in our personal and professional lives, but the significant impact our collective efforts have in producing meaningful results and a bright future, not just for doctors, but a distressed healthcare system.

And, most especially our patients.

I hope you will join me on the quest to preserve patient choice, the affordable access to private healthcare, and the highest quality of care possible.

Why Not Join Our Team of Experts For a Personal Help HERE:

Private Practice Owners Can’t Afford Missed Appointments

Missed appointments may be inevitable, but your no-show rate has a direct effect on private practice sustainability over time.

When patients don’t show for scheduled appointments, your private practice schedule gets thrown off—and you lose money.

Many private practice owners treat no-shows as a minor annoyance that’s regrettable, but inevitable. And that’s a huge mistake.

If you have several missed appointments each week, you are potentially losing thousands of dollars every year.

The good news is, you DO have some control over missed appointments in your private practice.

First, understand why patients miss appointments:

  • They forgot about the appointment.
  • It was just too hard to get away from work.
  • Their childcare fell through.
  • They had a change of heart because of the expected cost of treatment.
  • They simply felt better by the day of the appointment and decided not to come after all.
  • They were laid out with an unrelated illness (a common occurrence during cold and flu season).

But by far, most missed appointments can be attributed to “just forgetting.” Just as you are very busy at your private practice, patients are very busy and distracted in their professional and personal lives. It’s genuinely hard for many patients to remember their appointments with your office.

For that reason, the best way to reduce missed appointments is to implement a streamlined appointment reminder system in your private practice.

Appointment reminders can take many forms. (Keep in mind, too, that your private practice may need to follow specific regulations about patient communications.)

Reminder calls by staff. This may seem old-fashioned and even inefficient, but many private practice owners swear by the personal reminder calls. In an impersonal era when we all get robo-reminders from pharmacies, libraries, and everyone else, a personal call helps to cement the provider-patient relationship. It also provides an opportunity to immediately reschedule if illness or personal conflicts are going to prevent the patient from keeping the scheduled appointment.

Automated reminder calls. Some private practice owners choose this option. There are software packages available that offer automated reminders for patients. In some private practice settings, this could be the most appropriate form of default reminder.

Email reminders. Many patients seem to prefer email communications these days. Of course, you’ll need to be careful about following regulations to protect patient privacy.

Text reminders. In an era when we’re all glued to our smart phones and other mobile devices, texting could be the most direct way to reach patients, as well as the easiest way for them to notify you if they need to cancel an appointment.

The best reminder format might even be a combination of these. Perhaps your private practice could make personal phone reminders the day before the appointment as a default, but additionally provide email or text reminders a week ahead for patients who request them.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Private Practice Building and New Patient Calls

Are You Giving Your Private Practice Patients What They Want?

You’ll retain more patients, not to mention garnering more frequent referrals, when you’re able to give patients exactly what they’re looking for in your private practice.

Understanding the needs and desires of your patients is key to success in private practice. But do you really know what they want?

Naturally, they want excellent service by their clinical provider and by the staff. That’s a given.

You might be surprised at some of the other things that private practice patients want—especially in a private pay model, where patients expect more.

Consider some of these points, which you may not have considered as necessary in your private practice (or you may not have thought about some of them at all):

Patients want to feel understood. Are you and your private practice staff making an effort to provide empathy to every patient, every time? The human connection is vital in terms of the patient’s perception of “quality of care.” And it’s important to realize that patients who feel cared about and understood will be less bothered by inevitable hiccups, like having to wait longer than expected for an appointment.

Patients want technological benefits. It’s not enough to have current magazines or a TV in your waiting area. What about free wi-fi so they can read email or work on a laptop while waiting? Also, think of other ways you could use technology in the name of customer service. Some private practice offices have begun offering to send a text to the patient’s cell phone if the office schedule is running behind, for example.

Patients want to be happy. The more your private practice is able to address this desire, the more satisfied patients will be (and the more often they will refer others to you). When you go beyond resolving a physical pain and make them feel good in general, they’ll be loyal fans for life.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Private Practice Marketing Blunders

Don’t be a victim of these Private Practice Marketing Blunders

One of the most enjoyable parts of what I do, when helping clients with marketing, is proofing ads. Having been a student of marketing, copy writing, and advertising I hear Yogi Berra in my head saying, “You can observe a lot just by watching.

And you know what? This never changes. Errors from layout as well as placement are so common. Sometimes, a well-meaning person changes a tested font or something else that causes the un-proofed ad to tank.

Here are a few things that I have seen just in the last few months.

A radio announcer for an urban doc spoke so fast on his ad, the docs phone number was not identifiable. Needless to say, a totally failed radio campaign—and a very costly error. Almost unbelievably, another client’s radio ad was shortened, with the phone number omitted!

A TV campaign was run that had no call to action inserted in the ad—where space was left just for that purpose.

An artist didn’t like the submitted newsprint layout, so she substitutes images and rearranges tested headlines.

A salesperson takes a ¼ page ad that is designed to be a “booster”, usually run for a couple hundred bucks, turns the same content into a half page ad costing over $2000.

Testimonials omitted. No clear call to action. No offer. No deadline.
No website URL in an online ad.

And so the end result is no reason at all for patients to see only you.

The list could go on forever. It makes no difference in the media you are using; basically the same rules will still apply.

Of course, these are all preventable by very careful attention to the ad structure, layout, and component function, no matter where your media goes.

Needless to say, we have saved our clients from many needless disasters by tweaking, fine-tuning, and making sure all is as good as can be BEFORE a campaign to promote their private practice ever launches.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Retaining Your Private Practice Patients

For Private Practice Success, Focus on Keeping Current Patients Happy

It’s time to reconsider how you market your private practice and put the emphasis on retaining patients, not just attracting new ones.

What’s more important, bringing in new business or keeping current patients happy?

Of course, the answer is that both are vitally important… but too often, private practice owners focus almost exclusively on attracting new patients. The thing is, if you’re looking for long-term success in private practice, the bulk of your attention should focus on the patients you already have.

After all, the most effective marketing tool out there is word of mouth and patient referrals to friends and family. But those things won’t happen unless you are truly meeting patients’ needs and fully exceeding (not just meeting) their expectations.

Unfortunately, it’s too easy to assume that your current patients are happy with you and simply hope that they refer when they have a chance.

There are two major problems with this approach. First, patients rarely refer unless you give them a gentle and frequent reminder—it’s just not on their minds to talk you up to friends and family unless you are direct about it on a regular basis. Second, most unhappy patients won’t complain to you. They will simply disappear, and only those friends and family will hear their complaints!

To complicate things even more, patient satisfaction is built on so much more than their clinical interaction with you, the provider.

What really makes or breaks the patient experience—and the likelihood that they will speak positively about you to others—is the customer service experience. That’s everything from the first phone call to how the waiting room looks and feels, the length of time that clinical staff spend with them, and follow-up from you and/or office staff about their visit.

The next time you are wearing your marketing cap as a private practice owner, consider this: you are three times as likely to keep the business of a fully satisfied patient than to get an initial visit from a brand-new patient through external marketing.

Doesn’t it make sense, then, to spend three times as much effort on retaining existing patients and asking for referrals?

These kinds of details are hard for private practice owners to navigate on their own. Looking for expert assistance in marketing and other business aspects of private practice? We can help!

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Referrals for Private Practice

Do You Know How to Effectively Ask for Patient Referrals in Your Private Practice?

Even when you’re providing excellent service in private practice, most patients won’t automatically refer. Here are two key points that explain why.

It’s a cold, hard fact of private practice: simply being excellent at patient care does not guarantee referrals.

Actually, your reluctance to directly ask for referrals is a guarantee that you won’t get them.

Even worse, if you’ve only been asking for referrals in an informal way that’s impossible to track, you might feel that you’re putting forth a lot of internal marketing effort with nothing to show for it.

What you need is a simple referral-eliciting system that gets EVERY patient thinking about referring you, and it’s got to be one that’s also easy for your staff to monitor so that you know when you’re getting results.

When you are shaping your referral system, keep in mind these two key ideas about why patients fail to refer:

  1. Patients have no idea how much each referral will help you. If you seem to be doing pretty well—a full waiting room, up-to-date equipment, and so on—most patients will assume that you don’t need any help from them. On the other hand, if they understand how easy and powerful it can be when they refer friends and family, they’ll make a point of telling others about your excellent service.
  2. You’re focused on how referrals will help YOU, not how the act of referring to a trusted provider will earn the gratitude of your patient’s friends and family. No one wants to pick a provider at random when they can rely on personal testimony.

Another important thing to remember about patient referrals is that once a patient has referred a loved one to your office, your patient will be even more loyal to you in the future. In essence, he or she wants to believe you are the very best possible provider, after having passed on this message to friends and family!

 

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team