Mastery vs. dabbling: in this world, your choices will be readily apparent in your private practice.
Very often, when I look at a practice and its doctors—who are really making things happen—out of every conversation and analysis, one simple fact emerges.
When I look at productivity and results in all areas of life and practice, it is clear that those who are the happiest, most productive, and profitable have engaged completely in one area and department at a time.
Quite simply, from my very first telephone contact with these offices, every step that has taken place behind the scenes becomes readily apparent.
Obviously, they have trained their staff to answer the phone impeccably. Happy, polite—willing to help any way they can.
Now of course, this is something I regularly do with enjoyment. I can tell so much about a doc and their practice based upon how the staff answers the phone. Timing, attitude, how questions are handled; are they organized? Are all their tools obviously at their fingertips?
In fact, if you’re not doing great at the moment, ask three friends to anonymously call your office. Two as new patients with no health insurance. You should listen in—you may, however, be shocked.
When it comes to collections at the counter it’s, “Here are your options Mrs. Jones, would you like me to put the entire week (or month) on the same card?”
Here’s my point. Those who build powerful practices, and, indeed, personal lives, continuously aim to master each area! No, it’s never perfect, and always requires measurement and attention, but nonetheless the process is in place via policies, procedures and trainings.
Clinically, it’s also very important to your patients!
Now, in my office new patients still tell me almost 30 years later, “That was the best exam I have ever had in my entire life!”
Because on each new patient I still insist on a thorough pre-exam presentation by my aides—yes, even interns—complete vitals, thermogram, ROMs with instrumentation, chest and carotids auscultation, VBA screenings in C-Spine cases, abdomen when indicated—on and on.
It’s because my mentors taught me, and I was smart enough to pay attention, that the most powerful practices are built upon mastery, not dabbling!
I see this principle frequently when something goes wrong in an office. For example, a doc gets all pumped up over introducing a new service or technique to the practice. The person who sold them on it had really great results, referrals and profitability. Case studies and referrals.
So, they bring IT back to the office and gets the staff all revved up—but in so doing, actually takes them off other areas central to the practice, does not allow time for effective marketing or training, and, in reality, introduces this new procedure in a half-hearted way.
So, of course, when things don’t turn out right, there must be something wrong with IT.
I’ll give you the antidote to this practice management pandemic, but I’ll warn you in advance: side effects may include nausea and heartburn. Might even cause stronger visceral and emotional reactions.
The antidote is to vow RIGHT NOW to take each area of your practice, each of the 12 Key areas I identify, and set up the time and systems to go back and master each one!
And yes, it is a constant process, which is why frequent staff huddles and meetings are necessary. And recognition that the needs for approaching practice in this way actually expands as you grow.
This is why our 12 secret programs are so powerful, and our practice makeovers are so very effective. It’s because they force you into detailed analysis and corrective action.
As you introduce something new, you must devote time to study, implementation, marketing, pricing, and potential rough spots with implementation.
Here are just 5 things on my list that too often get overlooked:
- Dedicated doctor study, admin and planning time.
- Dedicated staff time for marketing and admin.
- Clear instruction or policies for patients.
- Effective pricing and collecting at the time of service.
- Conveying to the patient everything about your office, from your website to your treatments, that constantly reinforces in their minds they made the right choice!
The docs that pull this off behave emotionally and physically as effective CEOs.
Mastery vs. dabbling: in this world, your choices will be readily apparent.
But so will be the results! A powerful, profitable private practice and enviable lifestyle that you so deserve.
Join the conversation with fellow clinicians and YOUR potential patients!