I Bet You Dropped the Ball Today – I Did!
Entropy is the way of the universe and hence the way of business.
Without constant energy put into a system, it will fall into decline.
The struggle therefore is to put enough energy into all the right areas of the system to avoid catastrophic issues. This is an ongoing and constant struggle, is it not?
For example, just when you think you have a good number of regular new patients coming in the door for a few months in a row isn’t it easy just to relax a bit on your chiropractic marketing and referral generating activities in ‘the hopes’ that the machine is oiled and gassed up well enough to run on its own? What happens when you stop doing what at one time worked so well? Entropy in that area!
In my attempt to be the best practitioner, office manager, clinic owner, employer and businessman, I find that a few minutes of my attention every day has to be placed on trying to find the cracks in the systems.
What Am I Missing?
What do I not see deteriorating because I am so focused on certain aspects of the business or too busy putting out other fires?
That question alone, if asked regularly and over time, will yield you unmatched results in the growth of your business and the fighting off of the entropic nature of your business – let alone decrease your daily stress significantly!
I liken it to looking into a crystal ball and trying to see into the future. We subconsciously do this all the time but it’s usually tied to when we are worried about something or some big change is on the horizon.
But think about how powerful it would be to enlist this tactic on a daily, planned, basis.
Try to take a third party, unbiased look at your systems. For simplicity sake, let’s divide these systems into the 3 pillars that we use at SuccessfulChiro.com.
Those systems are:
1. Clinic Management
2. Chiropractic Marketing
3. Business Expansion
Now obviously we break those down much further in order to really try to uncover the missed or problem areas but let’s look at a few randomly.
Some areas that might be worthy of a deeper look on a regular basis are:
– What are the weaknesses that my employees have that are holding back our growth?
– Where do our best new patients come from, and am I maximizing that resource?
– Where is the weak link in our billing process and protocol that is affecting our bottom line?
Obviously the examples could be quite numerous.
So, where did I drop the ball? What prompted me to consider this topic worthy enough to write about? Earlier this week I stopped by one of my clinics and a non-essential staff member mentioned to me in passing how awesome it was that they have had a rush lately of patients coming back in that haven’t been in the clinic for 6 months or more! (Sounds good so far, right?) AND, (get this) how awesome it was that they were bringing insurance checks in from way back when!
Well, I am not sure if you caught the sarcasm in my words there but yes, of course it is always great to collect ‘old’ money, HOWEVER, I have a very highly paid and extremely effective (usually) insurance department and given the systems that we have in place there should never be money sitting out there in the hands of a patient for that long. Proper insurance monitoring and follow up should have caught those checks months prior.
This is where I dropped the ball. I missed thinking about this particular part of my system and entropy settled in. Had I been monitoring the protocol that I have set up between my office manager and the billing company that ensures that these things don’t get missed then it would not have been missed!
But, I dropped the ball, and without me requiring the constant accountability the staff started to let these duties slide – at the obvious overall detriment to this clinic.
If left unchecked, virtually everyone will let certain parts of their responsibilities within your systems slide either because they didn’t realize the impact it might have, didn’t want to do it or even just forgot about it as other tasks and thoughts clouded their mind.
The point is, everyone will drop the ball with some aspects of their chiropractic clinic at different times. The goal should be to not let it hit the floor or at the very worst only let it bounce once!