Quarterbacks fall into throwing slumps. Golfers fall into putting slumps. And small businesses can fall into productivity slumps. It's not uncommon for a small business to run into a slower than normal quarter. There are a lot of things that could cause a rut in your eyecare practice. Employees taking a lot of back-to-back vacation time in the summer, or the holidays at the end of the year are both a couple of instances where your practice might experience decreased productivity.
You might be able to anticipate a slump, and in those cases we have a few suggestions of things that you and your staff can do to quickly avert your practice from falling into a rut.
Don't Let Your Optical Practice Fall into a Rut
Think about The Future
One way to help you and your staff escape a rut is to regroup and look at your long term goals. Are you falling behind? How can your team make adjustments during this time to get back on track? If the long term goals look too far off, set some smaller goals in the meantime so that your staff can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Celebrate the success of these small goals that will hopefully pull you out of the rut and give you a better chance to meet those long term goals.
Put an Emphasis on Marketing
If you find yourself in a rut, spend a little more time on marketing. Dedicate daily time to being active on social media, or create a contest to get your patients more involved. Plan an email send around a special promotion to get more patients in your office doors. Volunteer at a local event or organization to get your brand some more awareness in the community. If you're noticing decreased productivity you might find yourself having a little more time to focus on these needs of your practice.
If you're feeling the rut, it's likely that the rest of your staff is too. Come together as a team and find a common source of motivation to get your practice through. Think about your practice's mission statement, culture, or maybe even a song or quote that your staff can all get behind to find that extra little motivation you're all looking for.
If your rut is being caused from employees taking back-to-back vacations, or high turnover, it can be tempting to tell your staff to power through, but maintaining that balance in your practice is important for everyone. If your staff gets too overworked they'll get frustrated and could end up taking their frustrations out on patients. While it's nice to be accommodating to your staff's time off, make sure that you have a plan in place when asking for time off so that you can avoid overworking the rest of your team.