A good football coach meets with his player before the game to inspire them. This should take place daily. Lunchtime is halftime; review how the first half of your day went. The end of the day is post game. Did you Win or Lose? Review your day, prepare your troops for another day, another game tomorrow.
DAILY PLANNING SESSIONS
To create teamwork and comradery, MBA encourages a daily planning session. These daily planning sessions occur before patients enter the office and are 10 minutes or less in length. The purpose is to organize the day, assign any unassigned daily tasks that may have arisen, increase staff communication, improve case management, and encourage teamwork and a good attitude during the day. Suring the session, be sure to accentuate the positive and reserve confrontation, correction, or difficult tasks for weekly staff meetings or private meetings. Since this daily meeting occurs before you see patients, it is imperative that everyone leaves with a positive attitude. As a result, the first topic should be a review of yesterday’s activities, pointing out the good things that have happened and the patients who have had good results. Second, cover goals for now patients, patient visits, collection, and services rendered for the day so that each staff member can keep an eye on the goals throughout the day. Third, review the patient’s charts, paying special attention to any patient who is not progressing well or has other concerns with their treatment of card. Also note any changes in treatment plans and specific patient needs. Toward the end of the meeting the doctor should delegate a “Do It” list to each of the staff members that will lighten the doctor’s load throughout the day and allow him or her to see patients more efficiently.
Finally, the doctor should close the daily planning session with some motivation, encouragement, or praise for the staff. Daily planning sessions can be viewed as a huddle in the football game prior to each play. It organizes and encourages.
WEEKLY STAFF MEETINGS
Weekly staff meetings are imperative and should be held by every office without exception. Decide on the day of the week and time that will be most logical for the office to meet. Have an agreement that a staff meeting will be held at the same time each week regardless of rushed schedules, absent employees including the doctor, or any other unforeseen circumstances. Most offices have had staff meetings at some time during their history. However, due to lack of good procedure, many offices have stopped meetings on a regular basis. This inevitable contributes to a plateau in the office. Do not adopt the attitude that, “We will have a staff meeting it there’s something to discuss.” Instead,
Adopt the attitude that “There will be a staff meeting each week regardless of the amount of material that needs to be covered.” You will find that once you are in an organized staff meeting, there is always adequate material to cover.
MBA finds the best time for holding a staff meeting is in the middle of the day, and a day at the beginning of the week. During one day of the week the staff will use the first hour to go out on their own and have lunch and will return the second hour to have a staff meeting. Do not combine your staff meeting with a meal. In almost every case this proves to be counterproductive.
Your staff meeting should last no longer than an hour. Good staff meetings cover the following topics in the following order:
1. A recap of the positive activities that have occurred during the last week or month.
2. A review of the staff meeting notes from the previous week. MBA suggests that you appoint one staff member to take staff meeting notes. Those notes should be typed up in a positive, friendly way immediately following the staff meeting and posted in the employee lounge or a location where all employees will have an opportunity to view the notes without concern that patients may read the notes. During the week as each employee reads the notes, they initial the bottom of the staff meeting note pate to indicate they understand and agree with the summary of the staff meeting. If the staff meeting notes from the previous week agree, read at the weekly staff meeting and if an employee has not signed the staff meeting notes, they should initial the notes at that time. Those notes should be kept in a file for future reference. Also, any tasks that were assigned and not completed during the week should be reassigned and a notion should be made in the new staff meeting notes.
3. New business should be handled in the following way:
All staff members are encouraged to keep a file in or near their desk entitled “Staff Meetings.” Throughout the week as questions arise, the employee should jot down the question or concern and place it in their staff meeting file. When you assemble for the staff meeting, everyone should bring his or her file to the meeting. During the new business portion of the meeting, the doctor should start with reviewing all questions, concerns, and new business that he/she has brought to the meeting. After he/she has completed his/her new business, the meeting should progress and each employee presents his or her new business. As this new business is discussed, it is important to complete each cycle. Be sure that as you leave a staff meeting you have discussed the new business and created a plan of action for handling any problems or concerns that may have arisen.
During the staff meeting three major rules apply:
1. The staff meeting is not a gripe session.
2. Never present a problem without a possible solution.
3. All staff members should participate in the staff meeting unless the employee is a new staff member. All members who are present at the meeting should contribute in some way. If a staff member never presents any problems, concerns, or questions to be addressed at the staff meeting, we must decide whether that staff member has value to the organization. Staff members that are always a silent bystander or only complain during staff meetings probably have the same effect on the work being done in the clinic.
After all new business has been concluded, the staff meeting should then be directed toward the monthly goals and the progress the clinic is making toward those monthly goals. If the clinic is ahead, staff should be encouraged and praised and if you’re behind with your monthly goals, the staff and doctor should discuss corrective measures to place them back on track to meet their goals.
If the staff is not totally trained in the philosophy and education of chiropractic/wellness, a case of the week should also be included in your staff meeting.
Again, weekly staff meetings should not be longer than one hour. Staff meets are not about length of time but quality of service. A great leader is a great communicator. Staff, just like yourself, needs to be kept on purpose, kept focused. They must see the light at the end of the tunnel. Set goals, bonus your staff, make their job fun. If you do this you will win at the GAME OF WORK.
Dr. Eric Kaplan is the CEO of MBA, Inc., one of the nation’s largest multi-specialty consulting companies. Dr. Kaplan ran and operated five of his own clinics, seeing over 1000 patient visits per week. He is the best-selling author of Dr. Kaplan’s Lifestyles of the Fit and Famous, endorsed by Donald Trump, Norman Vincent Peale and Mark Victor Hansen. He was a recent commencement speaker at New York Chiropractic College and regularly speaks throughout the country. For more information about Dr. Kaplan or MBA, call 561-626-3004.