In a previous blog, we mentioned that happy employees are the “lifeblood” of the practice. Before a patient meets the doctor, they make first contact with an employee through the phone or in person. If that first encounter is less than desirable you are at risk of the prospective patient choosing another provider or if they do decide to come, a negative review. Here are five strategies to keep your employees engaged and your patients happy.
1. Define Your Expectations of Employees
It is important to let your employees know exactly what your expectations are. Set the rules early on and you are less likely to have a problem with them. Document your expectations on paper so that everyone can keep track. If you expect your front desk assistant to arrive at the practice 30 minutes before opening to help set up for the day, make sure he or she knows to avoid conflicts down the road.
2. Say Thank You
There is no greater feeling for an employee who does a task than to receive a thank you from their employer. It does not matter if it was a daunting task or an easy one; it is the fact that you acknowledge them that is important. When you repay your employees with gratitude (verbal or monetary), they are more likely to stay engaged.
3. Set Goals
Every year, you probably set practice goals that include increasing patients.. Are you setting goals for your employees too? It is highly important that you set time aside and discuss goals with them. When they have a goal, they will be motivated to achieve it.
4. Communicate with Employees
This is quite obvious but many practices lack in the communication department. A doctor should not make all the decisions. Your employees should take part in the decisions you make. Empower them to be part of the solution, not the problem. If you want to start a new rewards program, talk to your employees about it. Do they think it’s a good idea? Do they think it will help with patient retention?
5. Develop Relationships with Employees
Every practice should aim to be a business that has employees that look forward to coming to work. Relationships with employees should be built over time by checking in on them regularly. By being involved with your employees, you can understand what it takes to keep them engaged.
Keeping employees engaged is not an easy task. Implementing these strategies is only the beginning and time must be invested to keep it going. If you need any help implement this strategy, contact Mindstream Creative.