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My #1 Tip for Managing Staff at Your Physical Therapy Practice

Here’s an issue that’s come up with many of the Physical Therapy private practice owners I’ve worked with:

“I want to grow and scale my PT practice.  We’re doing everything just like you laid out.  We had some growth initially.  But now, we’ve kind of plateaued…I’m telling my staff what to do, they’re just not doing it.”

If you have staff, this may sound familiar to you, too.

It’s tempting to put the bulk of the blame on your employees. And it’s true that every organization occasionally makes a bad hire.

But most the problem comes down to vision.

At your practice, you’re the Chief Executive Officer.

And likely the Chief Operations Officer.

That in itself is two MAJOR roles in your organization.

Frankly, when we’re wearing too many hats, we tend fall short in some of our responsibilities.  We simply don’t have the time and bandwidth to be all things to all people.

But we can prioritize and focus on the work that’s going to have the greatest positive impact. Here’s what that means for you and your PT practice.

Managing Tips for Physical Therapy Practice Owners

What It Means to be a CEO (And Where Many Owners Fall Short)

Where many owners fall short is confusing what being a CEO means…and ultimately what a CEO does.

A competent CEO paints a vision – a picture of the destination – and coordinates the entire team (whether PT, billing, reception, finance, PTA, marketing, legal, compliance, or PT tech) working in harmony toward the realization of that vision.

Being a CEO is NOT about getting to tell people what to do.

A Big Takeaway from an Exclusive Breakthrough PT Marketing Members Only Session at Bootcamp

Transitioning from an “I-told-you-so” entitled leader to a competent CEO involves a transformation.

And to give you a glimpse of that transformation, I want to share a behind the scenes look at a one of our Bootcamp sessions from a past event.

The subject was “How to Get Your Physical Therapy Staff on the Same Page.”

The audience was advanced Breakthrough PT owners and their staff who are presently growing and scaling their practices. 

The reason we started covering topics like this is because as Physical Therapy business owners solve the marketing problem – their schedules become full – and other problems rise to the top.

Or as Dan Kennedy puts it: “For every one problem you solve, two others will come up.”

For example, once schedules are full, most owners now focus on hiring PTs and other staff.

Not the easiest thing to do in today’s market with so much competition.

After that, it’s revenue cycle – getting paid quickly for what we do.

After that, it’s typically motivating staff – getting everyone on the same page.

So, to start this session, I asked, “What are you struggling with right now in getting your team on the same page?”

Here were a few of the responses: 

  • I can’t get my staff to buy in to weekly meetings.  We only meet once every other month right now.
  • How do we roll out financials for our staff?  How do we start sharing that information?
  • How do we get our team to keep doing Green Ink Letters?  7 Step Killer Exams?  Killer PT Testimonials Machine?

Take a step back and look at the above list.

What stands out for you?

What jumped out at me was delivering the change – the new process or idea – with the “WHY” – the reason we’re not making the change.

That’s not happening in the list above…

If we deliver the WHY in a compelling way, one that appeals to our teams, then those problems go away.

That list is not the REAL problem.

The real problem is the ability of the CEO to paint the vision then explaining the chess moves to get there – including the reasons why we’re making the chess moves.

What the Best, Most Effective CEOs Do

Just to recap, the best CEOs paint the reason “why” when introducing changes. 

Typically it follows this format:

  1.  “Here’s where we’re going.”  Paint the Vision.  (You’ll get bored doing this.  Persist.  Don’t quit.  Repeat it until your team can tell this story).
  2. “Here’s what we need to do.”  Most of us nail this part.  It’s really directives and/or delegation.
  3. “Here’s why we need to do this.”  Connect the directive with why it’s important to taking a step towards the vision.

Sounds simple, right?

The next time you feel frustrated as a CEO, go back to this formula and adapt it to the area where you are trying to make progress in your Physical Therapy practice.

Now, if you’re still dealing with marketing problems and want to work on filling your schedule, check out my newest training at LearnWithBreakthrough.com.