We live in a service oriented society. Just ask anyone and you’ll always get the same answer: They want service and to be served. So serve them. Give them what they want. In our particular profession, that service or commodity is health, and that’s what people want.
Please do not misinterpret what I mean about doubling your services. I do not mean giving the patient services that he/she doesn’t need. The services that I’m talking about are absolutely necessary for correcting the cause of the subluxation. These services will make a difference in the patient’s overall health, the speed at which they recover and their much improved view of chiropractic.
The best part about doubling your services instead of the number of patients you see is that it doesn’t increase your overhead or your workload. When I was first in practice, I had a goal to double my practice within six months. I was going to go from 100 to 200 visits per week. I made the goal in less then three months. What I didn’t count on was, when you double your patients, you can easily double your overhead. For example, you use more paper goods, supplies, stamps, X-rays, etc. You need more staff, you need more phone lines, you spend more money on marketing, your equipment wears out faster, and, last but not least, you usually need more space.
When you double your services, your overhead stays about the same. There is usually no additional staff needed, you do not need more space, virtually no advertising expense, your paper work stays about the same as do your staff meetings.
When I doubled my practice, I was working longer and harder hours with twice the headaches. More staff meetings, double the paper work, double the insurance reports, double the phone calls, etc. Oh, sure, you can hire an associate. Most of us have been there and done that. It isn’t a pretty sight. When you double your services, your workload stays about the same with virtually no headaches.
Another excellent reason why doubling your services makes sense is that, when you spend more time with each patient, you have a greater chance of helping them to recover and to refer.
When you are seeing people so fast that you can’t remember their names, let alone their conditions, you tend to get careless. This can and will thwart results. I remember, when I had my best weeks for patient visits, I would come home feeling miserable. I knew I could have given each patient a lot more, and that I was diluting quality for quantity in the name of more visits. It’s hard to carry on a conversation when you’re running around your clinic like greased lightening because of patient overload. I wouldn’t want to be treated that way.
Finally, another excellent reason why doubling your services makes sense is that when you spend more time with each patient you get a greater share of unique chiropractic cases. Your practice becomes a safe haven for the truly sick and debilitated. These are the patients no one else wants to deal with or has been able to help. They have been through the medical maze of health care, including other healers and other chiropractors. But these are the cases that make your practice unique and extremely satisfying. Give me a difficult case and I help them recover, that’s what practice is all about. It’s like winning the super bowl. (Well, not exactly); but you get my point. It’s not how many visits you have, but how many people you’ve touched and helped that day, week or month.
Dr. James P. Cima teaches seminars and has created a software package for the doctors to help them assess their patients’ nutritional needs. For more information, call toll free 1-877-627-2770 or fax 561-624-3871, or e-mail Dr. Cima at [email protected].