So Much To Do, So Little Time
Physical therapy is challenging, especially if you’re the one running the show. The essential skills that a busy PT private practice owner must have to survive in the industry aren’t often highlighted with any certainty. At times, running a clinic feels like juggling on a unicycle through a ring of fire. And even seasoned practice owners are looking for ways to make their work-life more favorable.
The busier we get, the more we leave in our wake. Organization and management, even for the busiest physical therapist, are essential engines for business longevity. The good news is that implementing these strategies won’t slow you down one bit.
Let’s take a look at some premium tips for those who want to improve overall productivity for their staff, themselves, and most importantly, their patients.
Whether practice owners are just beginning their clinic, or they’ve been in business for a while now, management is one of the essential pillars of productivity and profitability. Here are a few of the most imperative management tips for the busiest PT private practice owners:
Prioritization & Delegation
It’s no secret that physical therapists must overcome a whirlwind of busywork, tedious patient therapy, and adherence to stringent protocols each day. The question is, how can practice owners get the most out of their staff?
Prioritization of tasks and delegation of authority is what separates good from great. Practice owners who consistently make great choices accomplish time-sensitive endeavors more effectively and empower their staff to do the same.
80/20 | Productivity Meets Pareto
Vilfredo Pareto, a famed Italian economist and sociologist, coined the 80/20 rule and applied it to the disparaging wealth gap in the late 1800s. However, since then, the rule has been tested in various industries and definitely plays a role in managing private practices today.
The rule states that 20% of your efforts are the most impactful, valuable, and game-changing, affecting 80% of your outcomes. When Pareto’s principle is applied to practice management, it boils down to prioritizing the most important concepts of your business. Using the needs of patients when formulating this strategy grows patient volume, keeps people happy, and carries the needs of the company with your efforts. So what’s the 20% you should prioritize? It differs depending on the individual, but practice owners can highlight which actions are most impactful to produce significant outcomes.
Can someone else perform this task 90% as well as I can?
Delegation is a powerful method of management that requires a great deal of skill. Physical therapists are professionals and have a great deal of knowledge in their field. Practice owners might have more experience, but putting out every little fire in the clinic is enough to drive them crazy.
Ask yourself, “can someone else perform this task 90% as well as I can?”
Suppose the answer is yes, delegate, and move forward. There are high priority tasks around every corner. It’s easy to miss ample opportunities and let overall productivity drop by not allowing your staff wiggle room to solve problems. Not to mention, practice owners have additional time to focus on the 20% that can alter the trajectory of the business.
Set the Bar Reasonably High
Busy PT private practice owners are likely to set goals for their staff—typically in the form of performance metrics. However, if those goals are too lofty or not followed up, how can we spark meaningful employee growth?
Setting the bar reasonably high and following through on feedback is something that can get lost in the chaos of running a clinic. And if PTs are just getting into practice management, they need to discover where the bar is in the first place. It’s imperative to make time for mentorship, as personal growth is likely at the top of most employees’ values.
Physical therapists who stay organized are empowered and free of unnecessary constraints. Patients feel at ease when they walk into a clinic that—for lack of better words—has its junk together. Here’s how the savvy practice owner can clean up shop.
Create Theme Days
When practice owners batch a group of tasks together, they get results. Why not apply that strategy over the week? To-do lists aren’t habitual, which makes them poor choices for longevity. Sort out the week by assigning a group of tasks to each day. Each practice will have a personalized schedule, but it should look something like this:
- Monday – Market on Monday with blogging, website development, advertising campaigns, and other marketing pursuits
- Tuesday – Take Tuesdays to rotationally meet with staff members for a feedback and goal setting session
- Wednesday – Why not brainstorm? Wednesdays could be a session where anything goes, invite the staff and engage with the team
- Thursday – Thorough Thursdays where the focus is client paperwork, charting, and session notes
- Friday – Finally, Fridays used for wrapping up office administration, financials and anything else you deem essential to close out the week
It’s easy to see how utilizing goal shaping habits can help a clinic stay organized.
Outsource Burdensome Tasks
Practice owners have enough on their plate, trying to manage every moving piece within the clinic. The best solutions for busy private PT practice owners include outsourcing specific channels of business or utilizing an all-in-one software solution. Physical therapy software can masterfully handle scheduling, billing, telehealth services, and even track invaluable outcomes. By taking these important, but medial tasks off the table the focus can be on providing excellent care, developing an unstoppable team, and increasing profit margins immediately.
If your system feels a bit clunky—whether it’s marketing, billing, or another problem in the clinic—why not address the integral systems? If patients aren’t making appointments or the clinic is having a tough time with compliance, it’s time to shake the system.
By condensing procedures—making them simpler—practice owners can separate themselves, swiftly, from the competition. Imagine you’re a patient booking an appointment from start to finish at your clinic, what would you think?
These revelations could come during your Wednesday afternoon brainstorming sessions or from offloading tasks into a smart software solution.
The Bottom Line
Practice management and organization is tough, no matter how you frame it. Physical therapy owners are experiencing that truth now more than ever. Be this as it may, patients count on PTs to get the job done. Whether you’re rethinking the foundations of your clinic, learning new skills, or including a once-a-week paperwork session, there are more than enough creative ways to get results.
If you’re a practice owner and want to offload some of these responsibilities into a powerful software solution, check out MWTherapy. It’s an all-inclusive physical therapy powerhouse program that immediately makes running a clinic easier. Check out the free live demo and see for yourself.