Just think we are only one month into the year and we already doing a show about staff management. It keeps coming up, and we’re gonna go deep into it. We’re gonna have a discussion about the three easy steps you should take to become a better boss.
Tonight we’re talking about what are the three steps he can do to become a better boss. It is hard to say no to employees and sometimes to be a good boss and get the job done, we have to. But it but it’s hard we have to work typically pretty close quarters. Most of us have typical staff size is six or seven people sometimes one or two, sometimes 35 or 40. Even super big gigantic practices 50 or 60 but it’s not 25,000. You get to know your employees pretty well cause spend all the time with them.
Sometimes it’s hard to say no so we don’t and openly run into problems. So this episode tonight is not about how to say no, it’s talking about how do you become a better boss and recognizing that doing so effective leadership/management skills have a direct impact on your bottom line. Very few of us choose to get into optometry specialty practice because we love managing people, far from it. If you talk to veterinarian they usually joke around one thing they love about the job is and never have to talk to people. They have to talk to clients who have to talk to the pet owners but don’t have to talk to patients.
In our case, of course, we have to talk to patients, and it is pretty easy for most of us, most of the time we have to talk to our staff and many of us our methodology of being the boss is just not to talk about and hope that it goes away. Of course, we know that never works in almost any circumstance. When we talk to our doctors about hiring they say staff management is frequently their biggest challenge and it’s on the bottom of the scale of things that they like to do. They also recognize they are pretty bad at it but they know it’s important, but they don’t like doing. When that happens it quickly gets tiresome. It’s annoying and eventually distracts from patient care.
Let me give you an example of that in just a minute. But you have a choice, if you want to have a successful practice, your staff has to be managed, there’s got to be a boss that’s important, doesn’t have to be you. If you are a practice owner listening to the show tonight, it doesn’t have to be you but someone needs to be in charge. I feel very strongly that somebody has to be calling the shots from top-down to managing staff if it’s 100% totally distasteful to you then hire somebody to do it for you and move on with your decision. There is a perfect linear relationship between how well staff is managed and a practice’s bottom line.
I have been consulting for a long time and consultants report back to us all the time. A happy staff is an obvious bottom-line, and there are a couple less obvious things from having a well managed, well-maintained good boss-employee relationship. Employees stay around longer when you have higher employee retention and you have better morale. Employees that have an incentive, they feel compelled internally in their DNA just to go the extra mile for patients. It doesn’t have to be something that’s a policy of chronic meeting discussion, once you have the extra mile, they just do it.
It only happens when you have the right relationship with your good boss. There is a reason in some practices their best-performing clients have really strong staff because they put a lot of energy into effective training, recruiting training, keeping them happy, motivated, and productive.
It’s a concerted effort to do all that and our best-performing clients really get the proof at the end of the month, the quarter, the year, that it pays off. You want people that are protective of the boss, have a sense of loyalty, they want to go the extra mile for you, they want to do it to keep the practice successful. You don’t want someone where they are always grumbling about looking for the next job. You walk by the computer initially, Craigslist is open, that’s the exact opposite direction want to go on. So hopefully I have convinced you that it’s important, I think it might be intuitive that you need to be a better boss to have a great staff, but there’s obviously, beyond anecdotal things you might see wrong with your practice or hear from colleagues, we have data to support that those practices where the employees rate the bosses, typically the owners hired, are the higher performing practices.
We are going to take a short break and we’re going to go into the mechanics of the three very easy quick things you can do to be a better boss.
We are talking about three easy things you can do to be a better boss. So I wanted to give you a little scenario – a little question and I’m curious, I want you to listen to it carefully and think about what the answer to this, might be. So I’m going to tell you a story, let’s pretend it’s November 1, not February, its November closing in towards the end of the year. Let’s assume you’re the doctor listening to this and about to walk into an exam room, you have your hand on the door handle, you are about to turn and walk in, the optician taps you on the shoulder and said, Doc before you go in, I have a question for you, I just noticed that Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, are we gonna get paid for the holiday? Your response is hmm I’m not sure, let me go inside and take care of this patient. The patient tells you that they lost their reading glasses, I want you to listen to this carefully. They lost their reading glasses, they can’t find their old pair of Ray-bans but they think they might be somewhere on their boat. And your practice just last week, attended an educational event on how to sell premium eyewear and in particular how to sell multiple pairs, second pairs of glasses put on by a major frame company. Your staff loves that they got a lot out of it it went really really well. so let’s review again patient lost the reading glasses can’t find all pair Ray-bans they think they’re on the boat staff just got back from a great educational event that selling multiple pairs of glasses. My question is how many pairs of glasses does the patient buy? Getting some Jeopardy music do do do doo… kettle drums Tiffany’s closing out.
So what your final answer? How many pairs of glasses did the patient buy? I am giving my answer, 0. They lost the Ray-bans on the boat they, they think they lost the reading glasses they can’t find Ray-bans, they didn’t get any, pair of glasses you know why? From the question, the optician asked Christmas for Christmas falls on a Sunday this year we pay for the holiday Doc? Hmm I am not sure I need to check. So what happens is the optician is now wondering if he will get paid. The doctor comes out brings a patient over optician still want to know if he will get paid while the exam was going on he says to the receptionist I asked him were not sure getting paid what that means that they’re not going to get paid seen over the stories going to. Dr. escorts patients at the optician do the classic handoff, we don’t do it that way at Power Practice. Talk about clustering glasses can’t find Ray-bans get them fixed up with some new glasses patient without the glasses. I’m not saying that the that the optician did not sell any glasses out of spite because they didn’t get an answer about Christmas but what I’m saying is not getting the answer really affected the kind of mojo the communication, even if these same words that they learned at that selling seminar, just to come across with the same enthusiasm and emotion and sincerity as had they would’ve got an answer, absolutely will get paid for Christmas or no, absolutely not going to get paid on Christmas. But there was no answer which is kind of hung out there yet course if you said you can pay for Christmas he got up or we can be happier but the point is there was this sense of uncertainty in the office.
When we talk about things that should be done to make you a better boss, one of them is to eliminate uncertainty, especially in policies and procedures. Just like the stock market doesn’t like uncertainty neither does anybody else including your staff, especially when it comes to things like your policies on vacation, time pay raises medical benefits, CE, dress code, personal sick days off, paid holidays, all that sort of stuff. The way to deal with that is to have a complete and very frequently reviewed which are rarely is if ever policy manual. You can have a procedure manual that talks about when to do retinal photography based on insurance, and at what age do we do NCT, do you want kids or do you not want kids. Those are procedural things I am talking about. Office policy manual, it’s very clear rule splayed out, all spelled out, and has been reviewed by your attorney who knows the labor laws in your state.
So everything is as it should be and gets reviewed frequently. At least once you read through and make sure everything is still the same. The reason you want this is for the select question would never have come up because it would’ve been addressed or said something like if a normally paid holiday falls on a day customarily don’t work you will or will not be paid. This is not the goal of the show, it’s not to answer that question specifically to convince you that you should have a record policy that everybody can look at and then having that policy that is less need for the boss to play the part of the hero or the villain and more importantly, it eliminates preferential treatment for certain staff members.
will we mice okay just this one time were to do it a great way to get involved with labor lawsuit is preferential treatment of certain staff members I can as we saying jersey Garrett freak and Tia(??) at that can come back to be a problem so a complete and frequently reviewed policy manual can help you get past that. The second piece for being a better boss and easy piece to do is keep it professional. I’m not talking about like, I am not going to say something the opposite don’t intimidate your staff don’t be harsh at being a nice person should be pretty straightforward is common sense of it’s a question of how friendly do you become what I say keep a professional it’s okay to go with your staff go out for lunch every now and then when it crosses over to kind of been one of the guys and hanging out for beer after work that might be crossing over a line and can give you problems because as a said somebody needs to be the boss and staying authoritative position so this is probably the most difficult of the three to negotiate to decide in any in any business OD practice or any business hard decisions have to be made and a lot of times those decisions will affect your staff if you keep a distance somewhat of a distance from your staff and things are right things are and out comes a little bit easier and you don’t have to go back and always address the personal issues a top you said that one time we were hanging out the bar but that wasn’t going to happen so like I said to keep it’s a fine line globally FISA TV vices keep her professional that can give you some guidance on how friendly and kind how data we decide to get with your staff in Italy this is tough is one to do you want to keep friendly atmosphere in the office but there has to be a line subway station across.
The last one is that there is a delicate balance between being a boss and being part of the team, but there are really none because being part of the team means “if you’re the leader you are part of the team.” There’s no balance. You’re part of the team you can be the leader and be a part of the team when I say a delicate balance, is really not your part of the team which are the leader, it’s pretty obvious you have to pitch any have to do anybody else would do the key thing as the leader is to talk about, like the encore manager why was a piece of paper on the ground why was a tile missing and what can we do about as a team to ensure it doesn’t happen again what could we do as a team to make sure that the phones are not ringing off the hook I picked up the phone totally cool picking up the phone what can we do that make sure that the phones get picked up within our brand standard which is in three rings I dispensed a pair of glasses is not beneath me as a doctor to dispense classes but how did that happen that the patient was waiting around for 20 mins to pick up the glasses nobody was available let’s address that as a team I’m okay jumping and I’m okay doing the work let’s together let’s think about how can we work on it so it doesn’t happen again so to review our top three things you should be doing to make it better boss have a complete and frequently reviewed policy manual keep her professional stay friendly but don’t cross the line and keep that balance between being the boss being a team leader and jump in and be a team member who is not afraid to literally get their hands dirty.