Sometimes a job just gets a little old, and even the best employees need a little something to get them re-engaged and excited again. Try one of the ideas below at your practice and let me know in the comments the ways you keep your staff energized and engaged!
1. Provide a career track and offer multiple levels of learning jobs. For instance, break the receptionist job into steps (see below) and set time lines for attaining those goals. You may want several steps to be accomplished at 90-days, more at 6-months, and more at 12-months. There may be monetary awards, honor awards, or qualifications for other acknowledgements.
- Pre-registering patients by phone – demographics
- Making appointments & mini-register for new patients
- Registering patients face-to-face – demographics
- Understanding insurance plans and registering their insurance
- Taking photo ID or taking photos and explaining the Red Flags Rule
- Collecting co-pays
- Answering basic patient questions
- Answering advanced patient questions
- Reviewing the financial policy with patients
2. Offer certifications and credentials – support staff emotionally, time-wise and financially so they can attend face-to-face or online courses.
3. Offer specific responsibilities and the title of lead person for that responsibility – don’t assume you know what staff are or are not capable of – they might surprise you!
4. Meet every 6 months or every quarter to set goals. A job can be a drag if there’s nothing new to learn or to accomplish.
5. Set up process improvement teams to work on problems that everyone complains about – give them the responsibility to come up with solutions and try them out.
6. Involve them in social media marketing of the practice. Make sure they understand your social media plan ( you do have a plan, don’t you?), give them guidelines to work within and let them work on your website, your blog, and your Facebook page.
7. Install a wiki (many are free) and have them work on loading all the practice knowledge into the wiki. Have different staff responsible for different parts of the wiki and set goals for adding all the information that runs your practice every day.
8. “Walk a Mile in My Shoes” – this is also great for getting the clinical and administrative staff to understand each other better. Have the staff shadow each other and take turns seeing parts of the practice they don’t know much about. I recently participated in this at my hospital and shadowed a nurse (and asked a million questions) for about an hour. It was wonderful! I felt better equipped to work with my hospitalist service after having been on a patient floor for just a short time.
9. If you are a practice that receives referrals from others, have staff responsible for regularly touching base with staff from referring practices and asking how service can be improved. Teach staff about relationship building and remember that it’s the staff that often choose where the patient is referred to instead of the provider.
10. Have staff take turns going with you to meetings, seminars and local events where you represent the practice and introduce them to everyone.
11. Forward listserv discussions to employees and have them monitor the discussions and bring things to you that they want to know more about.
12. Encourage employees to become the practice expert in a payer, an employer, a referrer, a process or a protocol and help them learn about their topic by sending them information from the web or your professional organizations.
13. Have the staff put together an internal or external newsletter and help them with concepts of internal and external marketing.