When we just starting out or we have a small team the clinic owner is usually wearing a number of hats. He or she is probably the lead clinician, head of marketing(if there is any marketing being done), accounts person, in charge of HR, lead trainer etc.
The clinic usually relies heavily on them to run. All the systems are usually stored in the owners head who probably doesn’t even recognise them as systems. They are just the way they do it. This is fine if it's just you in the clinic and maybe you have a receptionist.
However this is not a way to scale and you need to scale to make more profit. Here are the 4 Top Tips to get your clinic to begin to work without you…..
Every single thing that is done in your clinic can be systemised. To systemise in simple terms means writing out how you want it done. This ranges from how you answer the phone to how you treat a certain condition.
If you think about it for a moment you probably say the same line whenever you answer the phone and it's probably the line that your have found works for you. Well if your write out this line and how you want the possible resultant conversation to go in an easy to follow format you have a system. You can then teach the system to any member of your staff and they can then do this task just the way you would have done it.
The more systems you develop and implement/train and the more certainty that things will be done the same way regardless of them. This helps to make your business dependant on systems not individuals allowing you to begin to replace your need to perform certain tasks.
Automation is a vital part of replacing yourself in your business. Now in my clinic we use Infusionsoft, Google Drive and various other technologies to automate how we run our clinic. However you do not have to get all techy to automate your clinic. A simple white board on the wall with tasks on them will do the job.
The idea your need to understand is that your need a format to automate the day to day tasks you need your team to perform to ensure the smooth running of your clinic and its systems.
A simple daily and weekly checklist in whatever format works best is a great place to start. Placed in a prominent position and checked regularly by the clinic manager(probably you to begin) will ensure that all the things you want done are carried out as they would if your were there to do them.
In reality if this simple step is implemented, and followed up on by you, it will revolutionise your business and allow your to step away from the grind of daily tasks.
In my clinic this is all done on the cloud allowing me to check that all the tasks are done automatically even if I am in another country. We even have a 4 month training plan for new graduate podiatrists all delivered online automatically including homework for them to email back demonstrating that they have completed each part.
When you are in the early stages of your clinic it's just you treating patients, or maybe one other part time. However to truly earn more you will need to scale up, ie take on more staff to deliver more billable hours. There are only so many hours in the week that your can see patients and even then most clinic owners are burned out treating patients and trying to put out fires all over their clinic.
This is no way to live long term. You need to get others to help. This can be very hard for some to start as they “know what works for their patients” or worry that patients will only want to see them.
The answer is to train your staff to use the systems you have developed, automate it as much as you can and once your have this done “Trust Them”. No one will ever do things 100% like you would and to expect this is unrealistic.
But what's the alternative...you do it all. We know that that will inevitably lead to burnout. If should aim to have your staff deliver your systems to 80% of the way you would. Trusting them to do so is the only way you can free yourself from micromanaging
When your first start to step away and want your staff to carry out more and more of the roles your did before it can be difficult to let go. Regular patients will often resist switching to a new face.
The answer is to just not be available. When I first stepped away from clinical work I told all the staff to say I was taking a 6 month rolling sabbatical from clinical work. This meant that both they and my patients had to get on without me doing the hands on work. Because the staff were using my systems and I trusted them to do so it all worked fine.
I remember the fort time I took a full month off ( after 10 years slogging) all my patients got the same level of care and in fact the clinic had had its highest ever turnover that month all while I was 300 miles away.
So take that first step and start your journey to a clinic that can run without you.