Posted on May 19, 2014

Set the Timer and Get Started Right Now

Managing a practice is tough work! Finding time to implement small changes that can greatly improve your practice can be tough. You have something that you know is a great idea but you just can’t find the time to stop and actually put it into action. We understand. So here are 5 things you can do right now that will make a difference. Set your timer for 10 minutes and try just one of these things. Then pick a new one for tomorrow. By the end of the week you’ll have made 5 small changes that will make a big difference in your day to day practice management.

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1. Delegate

Sometimes the hardest thing to do can be not doing. Saying “no” constructively is a vital skill that takes time, patience and planning to master. So how can you get started? Delegate. It’s so easy to get caught up in all the little tasks throughout the day. Is there something you’re about to spend time on (or a few things!) that someone else could easily complete? Consider sending an email to two or three team members asking if anyone has some time to help out. Mention that you want to place your focus on a priority task and that you’d be happy to try to take something off their plate in the future when you have a slow day. As new tasks come in, consider whether you’re the best person to take over or if you’d be better off to pass it on to someone else. Sometimes people may be asking you for help because they don’t know who the best person is to ask. They may simply be looking for direction and not necessarily completion of the task. Skim your to do list right now and pick at least one or two things you can delegate right now.

2. Reward Employees with Incentives

Having a tough time getting your employees excited about a project or task? Finding that many of them aren’t completing their compliance training? Really sick of the company kitchen being a mess? Develop a simple rewards program. Something as small as having an incentive really helps boost excitement about otherwise uninteresting tasks. It can be as big as a pizza party for lunch one day or as small as a $5 gift card for the person with the most “points” for something over a designated time period. Not feeling creative? Ask your employees for their suggestions! In fact, delegate this to them! Give them a budget and ask them to set up the program they’d like and then discuss it with you for approval.

3. Get Online

According to William Gibson “The future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed.” It’s time to move away from the cumbersome binders and folders full of paper cluttering your shelves and drawers. Online programs such as MyChart and online OSHA compliance training portals are being adapted in most practices across the nation. These online alternatives are not only space-saving, they have many other benefits as well. In addition to being safe from the elements, they are more secure as well. Plus, online solutions can be accessed from multiple devices almost anywhere at any time. Last but not least, an online program makes it easier to organize information and locate it in the future. So go ahead, sign up for MedPro’s online compliance portal right now and try it for free!

4. Get Social

In addition to taking your files and documents online, it’s time to get your practice online as a brand as well. Not only does selectively and carefully using social networks in the healthcare industry build your brand and increase your overall visibility but it helps develop a more meaningful relationship with your patients! Instead of having patients come once or twice a year to a practice that feels foreign and possibly scary to them – help them get to know the practice through photos and posts all year long. You can have contests, have interviews with your nurses and post photos of employee events or holiday parties. Simply posting “Happy 4th of July!” from your practice page will help remind your patients that you’re there. So pick one social network right now and get started on your profile. Just remember: keep it professional!

5. Communicate – Confirm Appointments

Finally, communication is key. This includes communication with your patients and also with your employees. How do your employees communicate with one another? Do you have an inter-office chat or do you just email? A good rule to go by here is that email is for confirmation not communication. Encourage your employees to get up and talk to one another as much as possible (without getting chatty of course). In today’s highly technological world we often forget that the best communication still happens face to face. If there is tension between employees, sometimes the best thing to do is to step away from the screen and go get some coffee! Now what about communicating with patients? Well, of course confirmation emails are a great idea. In fact, confirming appointments is one of the best things you can do. Whether you do this via email, phone calls, texts or all three, it’s highly beneficial to get confirmation from patients. No shows are frustrating and result in wasted time and wasted resources! So pick one of these issues to tackle right now: employee communication or patient confirmation. Now what are you waiting for? Get going!

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Have questions about these suggestions? Have suggestions of your own? Share them in the comments section below!