How to Maximize Your Golden Goose in 2015

There’s no use sticking your head in the sand.

Capital investors ARE coming, and they are going to pressure you into selling your Practice for much less than it is worth… They are going to use your FEAR of the future against you.

They want to buy your Golden Goose for practically nothing and sell it again for double or triple that price. Chances are, you’ve already been made an offer.

If you only take one thing from this article, take this: DON’T fall victim to this. There is no question about whether or not it is coming, only WHEN… And trust me, you don’t want to be in a financially vulnerable position when they do come knocking.

So what’s the best strategy for getting yourself in a secure position? Go ALL IN. Really focus on making your Practice the BEST it can possibly be… Be intentional about making 2015 the best production year your Practice has EVER had.

I know that might sound pretty lofty, but if you work hard and trust the process, I promise you it’s completely achievable. Let’s start with what I mean by “going all in.” I mean things like:

1) setting measurable goals

2) creating an incentive plan for your team members

3) assessing your capacity for growth

4) investing in training for your team and

5) making a plan for when you’re going to expand.

The time and energy you spend on any specific step will be dependent on your VISION…. So, what’s your vision?

Some of you might think you have a pretty solid vision already in place. If you want to know without a doubt that your vision is at work, just test it out! Interview your staff and your patients to see what THEY think your Practice’s vision is, because their answers will reflect exactly what’s been presented to them… And if there is a lack of clarity, then it’s your fault.

Trust me, they’ll have some idea of what the vision is— it just might not be what you WANT it to be. You wouldn’t believe how much influence your daily behavior and attitude have on your staff members and patients. YOU completely determine how they feel about the Practice.

So ask yourself: does your Practice currently have an INTENTIONAL vision that is leading your team to success?

 If so, when was the last time that you refreshed that vision? In the many years I’ve worked with Practices, I’ve seen a lot of doctors accomplish their vision, reach an all-time high of engagement and success, and then experience a surprising let-down. Once they’ve reached the target, they completely lose direction. They become unsure of their next move.

That’s why you need to refresh and amplify your vision constantly.

If you have one— great! Make it the biggest, boldest version of itself and clearly articulate it to your entire team. Make sure your leadership knows they are responsible for delegating to others to assure that goals are met and your vision is achieved.

If you DON’T have a clearly defined vision, start thinking about what you want it to be. 2015 has just started… What direction should you take to maximize your Golden Goose? Use this year as a catalyst for progress. Make whatever changes you need to make— new carpet, new paint, new facility, new team member— to position yourself for success ten, twenty, even thirty years from now.

You need to understand that seeing your vision to completion is not going to be easy. It isn’t going to be comfortable. There are going to be days when you want to punch a wall. But putting measurable goals in place and clarifying your vision for yourself and others is going to allow you to reach a whole new level of success… And keep away the vultures that are hungrily circling your Practice!

I’m not saying you’ll never want to sell— I’m sure some of you are already considering that option. All I’m saying is that you want to sell to the RIGHT people for the RIGHT price… when you’ve gotten as much as you possibly can from the Practice and negotiations are on your terms. I can tell you one thing— you don’t want to sell to these consultants and large group MEGA-Practices that are going to nickel and dime you.

This topic is one that I feel extremely passionate about. If you would like my help getting your Practice to a more financially stable position, call 866-917-2808 today, and tell my team that you were referred by my blog.

Until next time,

 

jaysig

Jay Geier

 

 

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Do You Need to REDEFINE Your Marketing Action Plan?

Here’s a helpful hint. If you fumbled for an answer for more than ten seconds, the answer is YES. With 2015 just around the corner, building a solid action plan is absolutely essential to starting the new year strong, and setting off on a path to success.

Try thinking of your marketing plan as a glorified to-do list. “It’s a cinch by the inch!” Basically, if we break down monstrous tasks into smaller pieces that we can digest, the whole process becomes much less overwhelming. It will also help you to get started faster, rather than procrastinating your marketing tasks.

Take a second and picture the hinges on a door. Isn’t it true that a tiny hinge can open a big door? The same is true of your marketing! If you commit TODAY to making even a small change in how you go about your marketing, you’ll soon notice a surprisingly large result. All it takes is CONSISTENCY.

I’m going to walk you through some basic steps to creating a solid marketing plan. Keep in mind that the PURPOSE of having a clear plan of action is to increase your New Patients and to make marketing less painful… Ideally, you want your marketing to run on autopilot after some initial test drives. But first you have to establish some rules.

 1) Identify your referral sources. You have streams of patients coming in every day. Find the source behind the flow! Every single person in your office must KNOW and be able to DEFINE your referral sources. They must understand why categorizing a referral from the appropriate source is so, SO important—it is a source of power and information. Everyone must be on the same page or this will backfire and you’ll be left with inaccurate data… which is worse than no data at all!

2. Supercharge your goal setting… Right now– let’s say your goal is 40 New Patients– you post your goal graph and track your statistics on a daily basis. That’s great, but it’d be even BETTER to start setting your goals by referral source. Ask yourself: “If we put more focus on this particular referral source, how many more New Patients could we get?” Then pick a number. I really want you to focus on the EASIEST sources of referrals. Increase the amount of time energy and money you spend to produce those referrals.

3. Create a marketing to-do list by referral source. Create a to-do list for each category of goals. Look at your Practice’s marketing history and see what has WORKED in the past. Maybe a welcome letter, or a New Patient audiotape that details the benefits of getting care and treatment and promotes referrals… Monthly newsletters, nutrition classes for patients, the options are endless. Be creative!

4. Recycle successes. If your tracking is consistent, you should be able to look back at the results of what you were able to do each month last year. Once you try out a marketing piece and track the results, it is officially in your “tool belt”… which means you can bring it back out and recycle it! I promise that your patients don’t remember what you did a year or two ago… If it worked—keep it. Some doctors are so focused on always hitting a home run that they totally neglect base hits… But MOST of your success will come from base hits!

 5. Create a calendar action plan. First create goals, and then get out your marketing calendar… My personal suggestion is to get a 60 or 90 day dry erase calendar and fill it up! One-by-one, take each step off of your to-do list and put it on the marketing calendar.

6. Build a swipe file of pieces that work for patient referrals. Learn to take advantage of the marketing pieces that bombard your office and home. Take the stuff that really grabs your attention and put it in a “swipe” folder. At the end of the month, bring this to a marketing meeting, and review the pieces together. What elements work, and which ones don’t? Use these examples to help you create your marketing plan for the following months.

Because it is such unfamiliar territory for so many of our members, marketing tends to be one of the MOST overwhelming elements of running a business. Just remember, something as simple as consistently tracking your results can save you an ENORMOUS amount of time, energy, and money. If you’d like more information on ways to supercharge your marketing, call my team at 866-917-2808 or visit www.SchedulingInstitute.com.

Until next time,

 

jaysig

Jay Geier

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8 Ways to Roll Out the Red Carpet for Your New Patients

Today I want to change the way you think about a New Patient’s visit to your office.

It is one of the most basic elements of your entire business, but it is so easily neglected. Think about this: one of two things will happen when a patient leaves your office after their first visit…

1) They instantaneously tell a friend or family member about their extraordinary experience. 2) The experience was exactly what they expected– Average. They go about their day as usual.

I want you to realize that changing how you handle New Patient experiences will drastically (and I mean DRASTICALLY) increase the likelihood of producing immediate referral(s). If you make New Patients a priority, your New Patients are going to make your Practice a priority… and your return on investment will go through the roof!

The steps are simple, but first you need to understand the reasons behind them. Have you ever heard the saying that good or bad first impressions are formed within the first two minutes of meeting someone? Well, the same is true for your Practice!

When a New Patient walks into your Practice, they are LOOKING for things to go wrong… They are sizing up the room, the decor, your team, and then YOU. They are trying to determine if they’ve landed in the “right place.” It isn’t always a rational thought process. Honestly, about 90% of it is based on raw emotion. But you need to assure them that they’ve landed in the right place, and that they want to COME BACK.

There are a lot of strategies for triggering positive emotions in your New Patients when they walk in the door, but I’ll just go into a couple.

1) Try to touch all five senses by the time they leave the office: Touch, scent, sight, sound, taste. The five senses are the foundations for the human experience. The more senses you touch positively over the course of their visit (especially in those first few minutes when they walk into your reception area,) the greater the likelihood of GENERATING REFERRALS.

2) Think like a New Patient: Look at your physical office space objectively. If you can’t be objective, have a spouse or a friend walk in as though they’re a New Patient and tell you their first impression. Notice the parking lot, the bathrooms, the signage, how the reception area looks. Hire a decorator to help you spruce up the physical space of your office– carpet, paint, furniture, whatever it takes. The return on investment will be HUGE, I promise.

3) New Patient Gifting: There is something very important about having a New Patient leave your office PHYSICALLY HOLDING something. Whether it is a mug, or a goody bag, or a folder full of testimonials with something special inside, make sure they walk out with something in their hands that has your Practice’s NAME on it.

4) Something for the kids: Just like New Patient gifting, treats for kids is a BIG plus. Having grab bags full of dollar store toys, stickers, temporary tattoos, and pencils is incredibly cheap and gets kids excited. Excited kids at a doctor’s visit means parents who are RELIEVED, HAPPY, and ready to make referrals…

5) Give a Letter: When a patient comes to your office for the first time, they are more than likely going to be tense. Diffuse the tension by having your Front Desk team hand them a letter with a handwritten envelope. The letter should detail how experienced the staff is, how excited they are to meet and serve the New Patient, and how happy your team is to help with any special requests, etc. Make the New Patient feel like an old friend… And give them a good impression right out of the gate!

6) Create Value: You can create value not ONLY by over-delivering on service to your patients, but also by making them feel like they are part of a special and unified group of people… A community. Have a staff member say this to a New Patient: “If Dr. X accepts you as a patient, we will look forward to working with you and your family!” In one sentence, you have created a whole new perspective. No longer is your Practice ordinary…  It is somewhere that people have to QUALIFY to be members, which creates value! You’ll be amazed how powerful this simple statement can be.

7) Introductions and Endorsement: One of your staff members should endorse you to the New Patient before you ever enter the room. Something like, “You’re going to LOVE Dr. X… He has a lot of experience with X.” Then, when upon entering, your staff member should professionally introduce you and the New Patient to each other, and ask if either of you need anything before leaving the room. This is a sign for respect for authority.

8) Involve the Spouse: If a New Patient has come in for a COSTLY form of service (implants, etc) make sure to involve the spouse. More likely than not, they are going to need the spouse’s approval before making such a big financial commitment, and you will meet with much higher compliance rate if you involve them early on in the process. Consider having the spouse come in for the case presentation OR sending the New Patient home with a folder full of treatment information and testimonials especially for the spouse.

Remember, you only get ONE first impression… So you really need to knock it out of the park and convince your New Patients they are in the right place. If you follow these strategies, I guarantee you will see an increase in referrals AND retention. Call 866-917-2808 for more information on my New Patient Experience trainings, and to boost your New Patient numbers anywhere from 12- 60%!

Until next time,

jaysig

Jay Geier

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Which Office Would You Bet On…. Office A or Office B?

Let’s say you set out to complete a triathlon… there would be necessary training, hard work and dedication all leading up to the event, right? Right. So then let’s fast forward to 6 months later… do you honestly think you’d be able to go out and a complete another triathlon just like THAT… without ANY continuous training? For most of us, the answer would be ‘definitely NOT’!

It’s the same concept for training your team. You can’t just have one training, and think they’re good to go… forever! You have to be consistent and train them regularly, just like you would for anything else worth doing.
Take a look at the image below… OfficeAvsOfficeB

As you can see above, the first row is a quarter. Look at Office A. Envision this office working for 20 days straight… 20 – then another 20 – then another 20. Office B takes one day off, trains their team, then works 19 days – then 20 –then the other 20.

If you had to pick one, which office would you actually bet on to produce higher results?Would you bet on Office A because there are more working days?

OR would you bet on Office B because they did something intentional?

Well, here’s what I know. I would bet on Office B every. Single. Time.

Office B is INTENTIONAL about their results, and takes one day off of production each quarter to train their team! That means the doctor in Office B is training his team 4 TIMES every year.

Think about the last 7 years that you’ve had the Practice… You’ve probably spent most of your time and energy putting out “little fires” as they occur. That’s being REACTIVE, not PROactive!

You need to be intentional! You need to INVEST in your team so they can over-deliver for you, AND for your patients! You said so yourself – you’d bet on the office that gets quarterly trainings. That’s how you KNOW that this is a safe bet. Your team will be more focused, more engaged, and on a results-driven mission.

The truth is, if you want an office where your patients leave and think, “WOW, that was a GREAT office,” you are going to need to UP your commitment. You need to develop a culture of growth and excitement in your office, and the one way to do that is by consistently training your team. You need to let them know that you are committed to their growth both professionally AND personally.

So promise yourself to make the commitment in 2015. Make it a New Year’s Resolution, write it down somewhere visible in the office, whatever you need to do… But START TRAINING YOUR TEAM! And I don’t mean every once in a while… I mean regularly! Because, like triathlon runners, if you expect your team to be the best of the best, you’re going to have to give them the BEST training. If you want them to have CONSISTENTLY good results, you are going to have to give them CONSISTENT training.

Make 2015 different. Call 866-917-2808 today to schedule your next On-Site Training, and give your team the strategies and resources they need to come in First Place.

Until next time,

jaysig

Jay Geier

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Are Your Fears Keeping You From Success?

I recently asked a group of some of my most successful clients to write down the top three things that were holding them back from achieving everything they wanted to achieve. I wanted to know the TOP mental obstacles that my clients are facing, so I compiled the list and printed it off. Do you know what was number one on the list?

Fear of failure.

We are terrified of messing up. That we are terrified of trying something, and not being the best. But can I take a minute and tell you how many times I FAILED while on the road to where I am today?

The only way to eliminate the fear that you will FAIL in the future is to leave your past failures behind. It’s like emotional baggage— and everyone is carrying something.

You have trunks and double expandable suitcases crammed full of emotion all around your feet, weighing you down. Maybe you even are a two trunk kind of person, and you have to drag those huge suckers every single place you go. Some days, it’s visible in your posture, your attitude and your mood.

You have carried all of the JUNK from your past into the present with you… Unless you change something, you will continue to carry it into the future. And let me tell you something: with that kind of luggage, you aren’t going anywhere.

You are STUCK.

Do you know why failure exists?  It exists because every time you make a mistake, you receive a LESSON. In fact, I think it’s crazy when people don’t do something because they’re afraid of failing. I know that if I NEVER failed, I wouldn’t continue to grow and improve and knock it out of the park the next time!

There is only ONE way that you will ever shrug-off this mountain of luggage. Every time you make a mistake, unzip that oversized suitcase, dig around a bit through all the chaotic emotion and fear, and find that one little wallet-sized lesson. That is the ONLY thing you should be taking with you into the future!

If there is one thing I’ve learned, it’s that we have to leave things behind. For some reason, humans have an incredibly difficult time with this. When you collect a messy history, full of mistakes, emotion, and regret, you have no room for new habits and perspectives.

If what I’m saying is hitting home with you, then you’ve realized your future is being LIMITED by all of the crap that you are holding onto.

So, I want you to do something symbolic, something that will materialize this realization for you. I want you to do something to mark this moment as the start of a CHANGE that will impact the rest of your life.

Take a piece of paper and, for ten minutes, think about the heaviest burdens— the really BIG ones that stick in your brain late at night. Think about your luggage, and what it looks like. Think about where it came from.

Write down on your piece of paper the three things that are holding you back from what you could accomplish… Things that you should have left in the past, and that are negatively affecting your future. 

After you write them down, give them a good, long look. The last look. Take that paper and destroy it— burn it, or tear it, or flush it down the toilet. Whatever will mean something symbolically to you.

Picture yourself walking away from a pile of luggage that you’ve been dragging around for far too long, and into a future where YOU are in control. 

I’d like to help you create a strong plan of action for your future, and your Practice’s growth. Call me today at 866-917-2808. Don’t “wait” your life away.

Until next time,

jaysig

Jay Geier

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Are You a Leader or an Adult Babysitter?

Do you want to know your absolute BIGGEST problem in life? The thing that is most likely to slow you down and get in your way?

Just look in the mirror.

Alright, hold on— keep looking… Do you also want to know your greatest advocate, your strongest asset, and most compassionate supporter? Right there, staring back at you.

Here’s the tricky part: you are BOTH things. You are so much good, but you are also the bad. And at the end of the day, the only person that you have ANY hope of controlling whatsoever is yourself.

A term I like to use for people who really understand this truth is “self-managing.” For example, if you are self-managing and you become emotional, you wipe up your own tear. If you need something done, you do it. If you fall down, you pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and remind yourself that everyone falls down.

You don’t wait for someone to come pick you up, dust you off, and solve all of your problems. If you are self-managing, you are not a believer in “knights on white horses.” You are your OWN hero. You take care of yourself.

The opposite type of person is one that requires an adult babysitter.

Think about how awkward those words sound together… Adult babysitter. Try saying this aloud— “I have to talk to my adult babysitter about that,” or “Hang on a minute, let me go check in with my adult babysitter.” Doesn’t that sound completely ridiculous?

Here’s the hard truth. If you constantly need someone to pick you up, solve your problems, and tell you what to do next— you NEED to be honest with yourself right now. You are someone that requires an adult babysitter. And it isn’t going to be an easy habit to break.

On the other hand, (and I direct this especially to all team leaders,) if you micromanage your team members, hover over them, and won’t let them fail— you have most likely created a group of people that require an ADULT BABYSITTER! And that’s exactly what you’ve become, leading not by example but by CONTROL.

And to the doctors: do you really want to pay a bunch of grown adults who require adult babysitters? Are you okay PAYING other adults to babysit them? It is such a strange, strange phenomenon occurring in businesses, but let me tell you— it is very real.

Once you’ve realized that this is happening in your Practice and diagnosed the situation as a PROBLEM, you’ve actually taken the first step towards the solution. You are looking in the mirror at the only thing you CAN control, and deciding to take action.

Think of it this way… Five years down the road, where do you want your Practice to be? What level of success would make you truly happy? And can you get there with a team of fully grown but DEPENDENT people pushing their umbilical cords into your side?

Make the decision TODAY to become a LEADER instead of an adult babysitter. Call me at 866-917-2808 to schedule an On-Site Training that will transform your staff into motivated and self-managing team players, or get more information online at www.SchedulingInstitute.com!

Until next time,

jaysig

Jay Geier

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How to Shrink Your Biggest Problem in One Simple Step

Do you have that one friend who talks about their problems constantly? Or maybe they have one really juicy problem, and it’s almost become part of their identity… They talk about it, tell stories about it… Maybe they even introduce themselves as “Hi, I’m so-and-so, and this is my problem.”

If they are a particularly skilled problem cultivator, I’m sure they’ve also perfected the oldest trick in the book: the one sure-fire way to reduce the possibility of solving their problem to ZERO.

All you have to do is blame it on someone or something else! Voila, your chances of solving that problem are now nonexistent.

Well, what if instead I told you that there’s a strategy PROVEN to shrink your problems! Do you want to hear it?

Convert your problem into a question.

Instead of focusing all of your energy on the PROBLEM and elaborately describing it to everyone you know, ask yourself a question that will lead to a solution. The human brain is such a cool resource; the second you ask yourself a question, it opens the door to so many possibilities you’d never considered!

For example… A few years ago, I was stuck in traffic on the way home from our Training Center in Atlanta, and wondering how on earth I was going to sit in this kind of traffic a few days a week without losing my mind. I mean, I probably sat there an HOUR and I wasn’t moving an INCH. (If you’ve ever visited Atlanta, I’m sure you can relate…)

But then I saw a helicopter way up above the interstate, free from the depressing mess of traffic.

Suddenly, the wheels were spinning. My brain cranked out the first question… What do I need to do to get a helicopter? I know it might sound crazy, but I got as excited as a kid on Christmas. So I researched it, googled it, excitedly shared it with my wife, and she shot it down like she was holding a freaking machine gun. Too expensive. Not practical. Etc… Ok, so onto round two— could I RENT a helicopter? Turns out, I could!

The bottom line is this… Every second you spend developing your problem without asking yourself a QUESTION is another second wasted. Instead of saying, “I can’t afford it,” ask yourself “HOW can I afford it?” Do you see how much more productive that is?

Whether you like it or not, the great determiner of your future tends to be your history. So if you have a problem from the past, and you constantly drudge it around with you in the PRESENT, you are significantly limiting what you can accomplish in the FUTURE.

And what’s worse is that you are probably blaming your problem on someone or something else… which means your chances of solving it are currently at 0%!

So here’s my challenge. Starting today, you need to promise yourself to take responsibility for ALL of your problems. If you’ll just admit that it’s YOUR problem and convert it into a question, you’ll find out that your brain holds the key to the solution.

I even go so far as to take responsibility for the problems of the people that work for me, and honestly, I think that every leader should. When your team sees you taking responsibility for problems, (even those that aren’t just yours,) they’ll dive in to get a piece of the action.

It’s pretty hilarious— I’ll tell my team something is MY fault, and they’re all instantly competing to take part of the blame. But that’s how it should be!

Take it from me: converting your problems into questions will become a habit. Like any good habit, it’ll take self-discipline, and a whole lot of practice. If you have a problem in your Practice and would like to discuss your QUESTION, give me a call at 844-242-1992. Or, check out http://www.schedulinginstitute.com/ 

Until next time,

jaysig

Jay Geier

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