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Twenty Tired Excuses

1.  That‘s the way we‘ve always done it.
2.  It‘s not my job.
3.  I didn‘t know you needed it right away.
4.  It wasn‘t my fault that it‘s late.
5.  That‘s not my department
6.  No one told me what to do.
7.  I‘m waiting for approval.
8.  Someone should have told me not to do that.
9.  Don‘t blame me it was the boss‘ idea.
10.  I don‘t know.
11.  I forgot.
12.  If you had told me how important it was, I would have done it.
13.  I‘m too busy to do it.
14.  Someone told me the wrong thing.
15.  I thought I told you.
16.  Why didn‘t you ask me?
17.  No one invited me to the meeting – I didn‘t get the message.
18.  My team dropped the ball.
19.  Nobody‘s followed up on me; it can‘t be that important.
20.  I told someone to take care of this.

To overcome this we must dump the ―who-done-it definition of accountability. This may shift the spotlight for the moment but it does not get the job done. The team accountability involves the fact that accountability works best when people share ownership for circumstances and results.

The seven steps for accountability are:

See it
They strive to see the situation clearly and honestly, recognizing and acknowledging the full reality of the situation.

Step 2
Own it
They come to ―own‖ the situation and the expected results. They do this not because the boss wants it this way, they do this because they have a sense of doing the right thing. Accepting responsibility for the experience and pave the road to action—ownership of you circumstance isn‘t circumstantial.

Step 3
Solve it
The team player solves problems with solutions and removes obstacles, changing the circumstances by implementing solutions and use pre-problems strategies.

Step 4
Do it
Having the commitment and the courage to follow-through with the solutions you identified, and having the latitude to make certain decisions with reportable results.

Step 5
Keeping the commitment
Keep the promises that are made. Stick to what you say and walk the talk. Set examples for the rest of the team.

Step 6
Reporting tends to occur at the time the commitment should have been completed. Set it up to win and follow through.

Step 7
Own the results that come from actions of the commitments
Own the things done successfully, make it easy to repeat. In an office that learns, there is the ability to replicate the successful procedures and tasks. Celebrate the team and celebrate the

15 Points to Ultimate Practice Management

1.  Watch over the changes taking place in chiropractic.

See what is happening locally in your immediate region.

Watch for opportunities to be a participator in community events or outreach activities.

Let your community know how active you are in your field – become the expert (i.e. CV on tables – advertising).

Make your profession your life by making it interesting to your patients.

Ways to achieve this:

  1. Be interested in your patients, not interesting.  Take their side of the conversation.
  2. Read more and watch TV less.  Stay away from newspapers and TV news slants.
  3. Read books pertaining to your profession, self-help, business and motivation.

Mentoring or Brain Trust:

When you have the opportunity to learn from others that are doing better than you – take that opportunity.

–Become involved two days per month with your profession or colleagues.

Fall in love with the chiropractic adjustment.

Learn to make your adjustment a life-changing experience every time not just once in a while.

Have absolute technical certainty when you deliver and stay focused.

Constantly be looking for improvement in your technical skills.

Put responsibility on you – discipline is constant.

 2.  Become accountable for your actions.

–  Accountability.

Keep yourself focused on the high priority issues to meet your goals.

The stature among your colleagues as a “doer” will make you worth more to the profession.

Your associates and chiropractic assistants will know that you mean what you say and say what you mean.

You will have more responsibility put on you. If you want to get things done, give them to a busy person who is accountable.

 Becoming Accountable:

Take initiative to achieve what is a continued deadline.

Know to whom you are accountable.

Do everything from the end result backwards.

Don’t assume that things you are responsible for are getting done.  Make sure you have deadlines and assume full responsibility for your actions.

3.  Have the courage to make the decisions.

A decision that goes unmade will cause problems.  A decision should be one that when made, creates solutions.

Make your decisions high priority.

Small problems – small solutions.  Do not wait to make decisions.

Effective decision-making creates confidence and the ability to trust you as a leader.

You become the expert.

Decisions that are made will help to clear the mind and will relieve stress.

Techniques to decision making.

  1. Write down the problem and ask yourself:
    1. Is this my decision or someone else’s?
    2. What do I have to decide?
    3. When do I decide?
    4. Do I have enough information?  (Don’t over analyze.)
  1. Make the decision.
    1. Assemble facts and information.
    2. Think and listen to your innate.
    3. Do not use irrational thoughts.
    4. Put the solution into effect.

4.  Present-time clinical consciousness (PTCC)

Downtime – when you’re not seeing patients.

Oversee what is happening in all office departments.

Pay close attention to office details.

Visualization of staff to reach goals.

Simulation – practice scripts in all practice areas.

Right people for the right job.

Cross-training your staff to multi-task and to understand the different departments.

Writing down questions and assignments to make them accountable for their actions.

Knowing the answers to questions pertaining to their department or knowing who knows the answers.

Obvious things are often overlooked:

Start with high priority to low priority issues in each department.

Procedures for PTCC:

Focus your mind on the day’s tasks and what you would like to get accomplished.  This is best achieved using one-half hour daily before practice startup (i.e. 8:30 if practice starts at 9:00).

Staff meetings – clinical department reports.

Find stopgaps that are holding you back.  Ask the appropriate people why.

Remember, it is not up to your staff to find the stopgaps – you have to find solutions yourself.

Ask questions and follow-up with solutions.

5.  Job descriptions and understanding job responsibility.

Make sure staff is trained and understand their job.

Make their job second nature.

Commitment to excellence.

Less time for you to have to oversee them.

More time to create and do your work.

Description of jobs.

–   What they need to do and what needs to be done.

–   Who is responsible for what.

–   When it has to be done.

–   How the job is done.

–  Use simple and concise language with job descriptions.

–   Make sure when you discuss any directives with the staff, have them repeat it back to you so everyone understands.

–   Encourage any questions that need to be addressed.

6.  Delegate to those around you.

–  Respect that they are doing their job and do not micro-manage low priority things.

–   Concentrate on what you need to get done.

–   Instill initiative and accountability in your staff.

–  Give latitude, but maintain control.

–   Thorough training and simulation with qualifications.

–   Responsibilities in bite-sized pieces will create step-by-step actions.

–   Catch them doing something right and don’t look for the negative.

–   As they progress, give them higher priority responsibilities.

–   Use the “One Minute Manager” praises and reprimands.

–  Delegation and accountability are signs of good management.

–   If you need to give them assignments, write them down with expectations and timelines.

–   Be precise, state clearly; add any action blocks and financial budgets if needed.

7.  Raise the bar for your performance.

–  Questions to ask yourself:

–   Are you causing solutions or problems?

–   Are you using all available facts and resources?

–   Are you paying attention to details?

–   Do you act overwhelmed or anxious?

–   Are you finishing one job or task before you start another one?

–   What are your actual results from your delegation?

Do your own performance review.

–   Be honest with yourself.

–   Work on your weaknesses.

–   This helps to bring out strengths.

8.  Set high goals, but make them achievable.

–  Your strengths.

–   Don’t accept less when you know it will not get you to where you want to be.

–   Lead by example.  Give your maximum – others will too.

–   Increase profits– overhead goes down.

–   Lower stress levels.

–  Ways to make this happen:

–   Achievement comes first from your mindset.  Don’t compromise what is necessary.

–   Re-assess yourself.  Is this really what I want?

–   Be specific as to where you are going.

–   Make it all worthwhile and attainable.

–   Increase priority thinking.

–   When you reach it – everyone involved succeeds.

9.  Use integrity, loyalty, and honesty.

–  Say what you do and do what you say.

–   You will be trustworthy.

–   You will be someone to depend upon.

–   Truth has its own force, good or bad, one lie creates 15,000 more.

–   When you tell the truth, you won’t have to remember what you said.

–  Courage to confront.

–   Say what you mean and mean what you say.

–   Don’t make promises.

–   Have an “I Will” attitude, not “I Will Try”.

–  Do everything only for the right reason.

–   Always put others first and foremost.

–   Carry out the spirit of the truth

–   Take the blame if you are wrong.

10.  Manage by good example.

–  Employees are watching you.

–   Get the best out of them by being the leader.

–   Good examples are in every part of your life – not just the office.

–   Out work – out think.

–   Show the increased level of initiative in what is necessary.

–  Always upgrade your performance.

–   Seeing what needs to be done and taking the necessary action to get it done.

–   Whistle while you work.

–   Remember to think in terms of “This is so easy.”

–   Every day is Super Bowl Sunday – the greatest show on earth.

–  Remember the importance of self-talk and what you are affirming.

–   Keep it positive.

–   Three times a day.

–   Say it out loud.

11.  Share the vision.  Be respected and loved by your staff.

–  Be yourself.

–   No false front.  Be who you are.  If that is a problem, act as if and ye shall become.

–   Truth is more important to maintain than fluffing or puttying to your staff.

–   It is not about being popular – it’s about getting done what is necessary.

–   Be serious in times of seriousness and have fun and acknowledge the caring you have for those who work with you.

–   No sarcastic humor.

–   Don’t spend party time or social time with your staff.

–   Enforce discipline, with no special favors.

–  Do not allow negativity.

–   No favoritism between employees or associates.

–   Don’t try to be liked by making popular decisions.

–   No compromising your integrity or position with them.

–  Be a positive influence.

–   Always be professional.

–   Have a sense of humor by using PC.

–   Be loyal, but don’t cross the line.

–   Treat everyone as they would treat you.

12.  Ask for advice and help from staff.

–  Make them part of the team.

–   You will find out who wants to participate.

–   Creates a sense of importance.

–   Creates a sense of knowledge and expertise on their jobs.

–   Staff meeting at least once a week.

–   Opportunity to use their imagination and creativity.

Gaining your advice and help by:

–   Using them to add input, not take away time from their jobs.

–   Rewards for their ideas.

–   Follow them with good ideas.

–   Encourage individual thought.

–   Creating mutual respect and giving them confidence.

–  Give them responsibility and authority to get the job done.

–   Have them talk to you only if there are stopgaps in what needs to be accomplished.

–   Cuts supervision time down by allowing them some authority.

–   Hold them accountable for the results with time lines accordingly.

–   Support their decisions.

13.  Are you constructive (not destructive) with criticism?

–  Always attack procedures – not the person.

–   Don’t find fault in the person.

–   Clarification of facts and statistics.

–   Make sure you do this in a private setting.

–   Keep personalities out of this – no temper or sarcasm.  Respond – don’t react.

–   Praise first about the right things the person is doing.

–   Listen to all sides of the story.

–   Share in the responsibility of what has happened.  Ultimately, it comes back to you.

–   Forgive and forget…however, three strikes and you’re out.  If the person continues on the same path, suggest specific steps to prevent reoccurrence.

14.  Address employee complaints or concerns.

–  Know and understand the needs.

–   Communicate with employees on issues within the boundaries of the office.

–   Everyone must be cohesive and work well together.  No talking behind backs.

–   Create interest by being interested.

–   Listen and gather facts, then make the decision.

–  Be approachable.

–   Allow them the ability to come directly to you.

–   Explain the procedure in the Office Policy.

–   No judgment – just listen.

–   Show true concern.  Make sure these are only high priority issues involving the clinic.

–   Turn anger into satisfaction by creating a sound solution.

15.  Keep your staff in the loop.

–  Ridding your clinic of rumors.

–   If it comes directly from you, there is no miscommunication.

–   Keeps everyone on the same page.

–   You will find out who will support any changes or decisions that are made.

–   Creates cooperation, willingness, and respect.

–  Let them know where they stand.

–   Helps them advance to high priority.

–   Allows them to voice their own ideas and thoughts on issues they feel important.

–   Praise them when you like what they are doing.

–   People will know what you think – not what they think you think.

–   Keeps them abreast of changes or new developments in the clinic.
Your Practice Needs a Leader!

What does it take to be a leader?  Do you have to be smart enough, fit enough, comfortable at making decisions and have good people skills? Do you have to be born a leader or nurtured as one?  Or, are leaders simply in the right place at the right time and ready take advantage of a golden opportunity?

Some may argue that in the past leaders were always born, but in modern societies leaders can be elected, appointed or rise to office because they have displayed certain qualities.  There are also many people who are placed into positions where they are required to lead. These people sometimes lack the qualities necessary in assuming a leadership role at first, but develop the ability and the aptitude to acquire the skills needed to become a leader.

Some of the qualities a leader must possess:

  • Vision
  • Strength
  • Dominant
  • Extrovert personality
  • Charismatic
  • Inspiring
  • Motivating
  • Capability to galvanize others into action.
  • Mastery of persuading and convincing others to follow their way.

Not all the qualities that leaders possess like charisma and personality are innate; many can be learned and instilled in us as we grow up.  Integrity, character, strong mindedness and the will to command respect are definitely traits that can be developed as we start assuming a leadership role.

Budding leaders may be reluctant and first and just need to take a few steps to gain confidence in their leadership skills. Everyday life offers us countless situations where leaders are needed to help shape a community and the qualities needed are as diverse and myriad as life itself.  The external world is always demanding change and improvement.  A leader has to always be a pulse ahead of everyone else.

To lead you have to be ready with information and practices that can help guide and problem solve daily tasks.  The spark of a leader is all that is needed to ignite essential ideas to uplift and revitalize a team, organization, group of employees, practice, community, or any group of people who will respond to strong leadership abilities. Your practice and the Chiropractic profession need leaders who will step up to the plate to lead.  It is time for the ordinary people to become extra-ordinary and step up as leaders!

ARE YOU READY TO LEAD?  Your practice and profession needs you!