What to do during the quiet times in Private Practice.

 Do you sometimes experience quiet times in your Private Practice?

I remember when I was starting out, experiencing lulls at certain times of the year.

It used to make me nervous.

Now that I’ve built up a thriving practice, it’s all about where can I squeeze the bloominpatients in?

Whilst this is a nice situation to be in, it does mean I’ve less breathing space.

So, my message to you is, if you are experiencing less patients and referrals into your clinic in the summer weeks, don’t panic!

Now’s a great time to take advantage of diary space, so you can get stuck into some of the following:

 

 

Reflect on your patient numbers and what you’re earning, where.

This is particularly important when you’re working at more than one clinic site.

When you’re busy, and dashing between clinics, you probably don’t have the mental bandwidth to sit down and ask yourself how is my Practice actually performing?’.

It can seem that you’re ‘doing OK’, but I’m willing to bet that one clinic site outperforms the others.

I’ll give you an example of what I mean.

Recently I was coaching an orthopaedic surgeon who works at four clinical sites.

If you know anything about my thinking on this, you’ll already know that I think there is a bit of a myth about your ‘footprint’ in Private Practice.

Many people believe that if you’re present at many different locations, then the increased size in ‘footprint’ means more patients. This is true to a certain extent, but I’m going to stick my neck out and argue that two sites, in different locations is ALL that you need, and you probably shouldn’t go for more. Why is that?

Well, for starters, people go to work, and then they go home from work. They can’t be in the same place at the same time. There’s little point having a morning clinic in the city, and then dashing out to say, Wimbledon, in the hopes that you are going to get an afternoon’s worth of city people there. You just get different people, and sometimes, fewer, different people.

We tell ourselves that because we’re seeing people at the second site, it must be working.

But guess what?

You just had to spend an hour commuting there, when you could have spent that hour in the clinic you started out at, and not lost that hour’s revenue.

If you’re thinking that you could use your lunch break as your commute, I’d make the argument that you are still probably going to lose half an hour (you have to fire up the computer and have a pee etc). Wouldn’t it be nicer to spend your lunch break having a quick brisk walk, followed by lunch that wasn’t a sarnie and a soft-drink-between-the-knees affair on the sweaty tube?

Secondly, being at several sites makes it really difficult for you to get ‘known’ by staff and other potential referrers, because of the lack of ‘face time’. Hanging around after work for a beer with a new colleague (who could introduce you to other clinicians) is much harder if you then have a lengthy commute home from clinic number five.

Many people make the mistake of opening yet another clinic site, when the locations they are currently at are ‘a bit slow’. Instead, they should figure out their best one or two clinics, and work on growing those.

 

So how do you choose? The answer is to reflect on your numbers.

 

How many patients are you seeing at each clinic?

Which clinic provides the most overall revenue?

 

For instance, if you’re a surgeon or a dermatologist, or a physio who carries out shockwave therapy, which clinic serves you up the most operations or interventions?

This often dependant on the different kinds of patients in your different locations.

Weekend warriors who bust their ACLs or hammer their Achilles tendons might arguably be found at their city desks in the day time, whilst you might find there are less surgical conversions out in Nappy Valley in the afternoons.

The numbers will tell you, and if they’re more favourable in one clinic than other, seriously consider just working from the one clinic.

You should be able to number crunch to a stage whereby figuring out the patient income and renumeration from procedures, minus room costs and commuting, can lead to an average patient appointment revenue figure for each clinic.

How did this work for our surgeon? He’s going to ditch a swanky clinic in Chelsea and increase his time in the City. It all seemed obvious after he’d thought about it for a while, but unless he had taken the time to sit down and reflect, he’d never have come to that conclusion.

 

 

Go hang out in clinic with other clinicians.

It might seem like the whole world goes away for six weeks in the summer, but it’s unlikely that clinicians who could become your potential referrers will go away for more than two. They need to earn money for day care after all!

Make a list of five clinicians you want to connect with and go spend a couple of hours with each one, by the time school’s back.

Diarise reconnecting up with them, and revisit Consultants, GPs or Osteos you haven’t seen in a while. Remember, it takes more than one meet-up for you to be memorable. I spoke about this in a recent vlog – if you haven’t seen it, it is well worth a look once you’ve read this blog. Click here.

Sort out the holes in your GDPR compliance.

We help many Clinicians to become GDPR compliant, and the excuses about not being GDPR compliant that we hear include ‘I don’t understand how to go about it’ and ‘I don’t have the time to figure it out’.

Being GDPR compliant is a legal obligation, and the quieter days over the summer give you time to plug some of those GDPR non compliance holes.

Have you carried out a ‘Data Flow Audit’ (which then allows you to construct a Privacy Notice), and have you got your Data Breach Policy and log set up? Do you have GDPR compliant email?

Have you got Data Processor to Data Controller agreements in place for all the companies that provide services for you? U

Are you still using G-mail to run your clinic? Note, for those of you using personal Gmail, Hotmail etc – you’re breaching the GDPR already. You must sort this out!

Not sure what the hell I’m talking about?

 

 

Click here to Book a FREE TECH OR GDPR CHAT with Jules (GDPR Ninja) and find out what you need to do to get compliant.

 

 

Plan, write and record some blogs and vlogs.

You’ve heard me say many times before that patients are online researchers, and we need to be producing content for our websites and social media that answers the questions they are searching for on Google.

If you’re sitting down to write or record, willynilly, it’s really difficult to write or record off the cuff. You’ve got one hour of free time, and the first thing that happens is, you get stuck because you don’t know what to write about.

Imagine if you had already created a content plan, which mapped out a lovely schedule of topics (that you knew patients were searching about) and then the moment you pressed the record button, you knew exactly what you were going to be talking about?

It makes it sooooo much easier, and if we look ahead at what’s coming up in the schedule, our subconscious brain gets to work on pulling in ideas before you even start writing or recording.

Need help with figuring out a content strategy for your Private Practice or how to market your Practice?

Then get in touch.

Email me directly on css@privatepracticeninja.co.uk, and let’s get building your successful, happy Private Practice!

 

Now it’s time for you to grow your Private Practice.

 

 


 

 

 

                                                                               

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