One of the words being thrown around a lot these days is “unprecedented.” But what does it mean?
In the context of COVID-19, this word is usually negative and scary. But maybe it’s time we reframe how we approach “unprecedented” times – especially in connection with reopening your practice.
Let’s look at “unprecedented” a little closer. If you really look at its definition and at its synonyms, you will find words like these:
• one of a kind
Suddenly “unprecedented” starts to change into something exciting and … dare we say … even optimistic?
Here’s something else to think about. If you find yourself wishing you were NOT in “unprecedented” times – take a look at what the opposite meaning of “unprecedented” is:
Are these words you’d like to use to describe … well, anything in your life? No, we didn’t think so – and especially not anything to do with your practice or your reopening.
At the Scheduling Institute, we believe that it is far better to embrace the word “unprecedented” and reframe it as an opportunity to apply a one of a kind and outstanding approach to running your practice. These “unprecedented” times are a golden opportunity for your practice to stand out from the crowd and apply revolutionary approaches to safety, patient well-being, and team performance.
Reframe Your Mindset
Reframe your thinking and orient it on what you CAN do, how your practice CAN grow, and what your practice CAN become.
Here is a little checklist you can use:
1. Do not wait for your competitors to act. Be bold!
2. Do not compare the current fiscal quarter to last years’ fiscal quarter.
3. Stop obsessing about all those things that are outside your control.
4. Set new goals and focus on them, not your old, pre-pandemic goals.
5. Stop feeling sorry for yourself. We are all in this together.
6. Remember that your competitors are struggling right now as well – your practice is not the only one going through tough times.
7. Decide to act, not react.
8. Never cut corners when it comes to safety – yours, your team’s, and your patients’.
9. Make every decision based on what is best for your patients.
10. Stay positive! Stress is, quite literally, deadly.
Next Look at Goal Setting
You probably began this year by setting goals for 2020, whether that is a target for collections or the number of new patients that you will acquire. Then, of course, the pandemic hit.
But instead of fixating on not meeting your targets, why wouldn’t you reframe your goals? Isn’t it better to focus on what you HAVE been able to achieve even though you have had to temporarily close your private practice?
Instead of focusing on the goals you might not be able to hit, it is far better to set your sights on what you can accomplish. As our CEO Jay Geier said, “Right now, it’s time to clarify your expectations, and the best place to start is by comparing your current “low” with your previous lows, not your previous highs.”
Take a moment and think about what you CAN do to get your future plans back on track. For right now, set goals around improving your website, revising your marketing strategies to relevant messages for today’s realities, and training your team so there is nothing common and unremarkable about your patient experience when you reopen.
Think – and Act – As a CEO
When the CEO of a Fortune 500 company must make a decision that will affect thousands of employees, that decision cannot be influenced by emotions or feelings. The job of a CEO is to do what is best for the company, and that means looking at things objectively so that a rational decision can be made. And that’s even more true when difficult decisions need to be made.
The same is true for your private practice. Regardless of the other hats that you may wear, at the end of the day, you are the CEO of the business. That means you need to be proactive about making decisions instead of having decisions forced upon you.
Are some of those decisions going to be tough? Yes, they are. But you are the captain of the ship, and now, more than ever, a steady hand on the wheel is needed. Now is the time for you to create a revolutionary vision with your team for what the future of your practice could look like – and make plans to achieve it!
Safety, Safety, Safety
Jay is a huge advocate of safety and is going above and beyond to communicate its importance and what our new procedures are going to be – you should be doing this too! And it is important to remember that safety encompasses more than just physical safety. It is also about the psychological well-being of your team members and patients.
A lot of people have built up quite a great deal of anxiety concerning this virus, and they are going to need a great deal of reassurance to feel safe. Every little thing that you can do to increase the trust level of your team members and patients will help. Now is the time to communicate the one of a kind safety protocols you’ve put in place.
Open Those Lines!
Prospective patients are out there, right now. But can they reach you? And do not think that having your team answer the phones the old way is going to get your new patient numbers up.
Get ahead of the curve by investing in training for your customer-facing staff. Now is the perfect time to take advantage of our revolutionary 5-Star Certification Program so that you can increase the number of new patients at your practice by 10-30%, all without doing any additional marketing, in 90 days or less.
Of course, we know that doing all the above is easier said than done. As Jay says, changing yourself is a step-by-step process, not a one-day makeover. But you already know that you are willing to make that effort to change and reframe your point of view. So why wait? You CAN do it!
Click Here to take the 5 Star Challenge and complete the New Patient Opportunity Assessment.