Several important—in fact, irreplaceable—factors make up a great podiatry practice: a good doctor, a great staff, and efficient practice management. You really can’t afford to miss a single one of these aspects, and yet many podiatrists today don’t know how to manage their practices efficiently and effectively. The good news is that you can learn practice management.
Efficient, effective practice management does take time and investment, but it is always worth it in the end. Here are ten quick tips (in no particular order) for your practice management that you can begin working on immediately to give your management a boost:
- Set up your protocols – Give 10 people vague instructions, and you’ll get 10 different ways to accomplish something. Make sure your whole staff has a “playbook” of very clear protocols to follow so that tasks are completed properly and nothing gets missed.
- Train your staff – Training doesn’t just happen when new people get hired, it should continue throughout employees’ careers. Not only does this give them a chance for development, it helps keep your staff on top of your protocols.
- Communicate clearly – So many issues develop because of communication breakdowns. Make any expectations or instructions clear!
- Be a “giver” – A “giver” has a giving attitude that makes every situation not about yourself, but about others. Give your patients and your staff your attention, your passion, your gratitude, etc. every day.
- Listen to your patients – This should be a no brainer, but don’t interrupt your patients to “get to the point.” Listen to them, ask clarifying questions, and pay attention to nonverbal cues like body language. This makes them feel heard and appreciated, so they’re more likely to return.
- Listen to your staff – Listening goes for staff, too. Give your staff your full attention when they talk to you, and ask questions if you need to clarify the communication.
- Build relationships with patients – This key for getting patients to return. Build relationships that show you care about your patients, and that they aren’t just a number. Make notes on their records if you need to remember things about them.
- Don’t overload staff – Overloading staff happens gradually, so pay attention to their workloads. They can’t be productive if they are juggling too much. You might need more staff or more training to better distribute tasks.
- Inspire your team – Your team wants to be part of your vision for your practice. Let them in on your goals and have them take ownership in your practice’s success!
- Make sure everyone knows their value – Staff in active, visible roles can begin to resent staff in less visible or less active roles, and vice-versa. Make sure your whole staff knows their value and how everyone fits into the “grand scheme” of things.
Of course, effective podiatry practice management goes deeper than these ten tips. This is only scratching the surface on a topic that can cover dozens of articles and many more discussions. That might seem overwhelming at first, but it doesn’t have to be—little changes build up over time.
That’s why Top Practices has the Virtual Practice Management Institute (VPMI). If you’re looking to really invest in efficient and effect podiatric practice management, this program is for you—with a huge library of resources and expert coaching and mentoring from Tina Del Buono and Dr. Peter Wishnie. Check out more about the program to see if it’s what your practice needs to get to the next level and beyond.
Don’t take your practice management for granted. It’s such a vital part of your business, and enables you to serve your patients and community more effectively. Investing in practice management can seem overwhelming at first, but it is always worth the effort. Contact us if you’d like to learn more about practice management, or you’re interested in our VPMI program. Use our request forms or just call (717) 725-2679.