If you are reading this blog, it is probably because you have come to the conclusion that being a practice owner is hard work! Don't worry this means you are on the right track to achieving your practice goals. We have all been there, feeling like there just aren't enough hours in the day to complete all of the tasks needed to run our business. Sometimes it can feel overwhelming. It almost seems like in times like this, it is frowned upon to ask for help. However, a smart business person knows this is the time to reach out for help. Asking for help from the right person(s) can be a turning point for you and your practice.
Let's go over a few things before we get started on how you can benefit from having the help of a VA for your practice.
Before you start the hiring process for a virtual assistant, seek guidance. Bringing someone on to help with the management portion is a very serious decision. If done correctly the first time you can take advantage of all of the benefits that come along with having a VA. However, if you mis-hire on the first try it will discourage you completely from the whole virtual assistant process. This can be damaging to your practice for a few reasons. 1. If you really do need the help and you do not reach out because of a bad first experience and you continue to take on the roles of many positions in your practice I am sure the road of burnout is where this decision will lead you. I have seen it happen many times when coaching practice owners. 2. You also run the chance of stunting the growth of your practice or even worst you find yourself making the wrong decisions because you are so overwhelmed and your practice starts to fall apart. These are real situations that I have coached my practice owner clients through as well.
So before you hire your first assistant, get with a practice management consultant that can help you with the step of making the perfect hire. There is a specific way to go about the hiring process. Someone that specializes in this area can help guide you on these important practice decisions. Now on to the good stuff.
What are the benefits of having a VA for your practice?
You are able to focus on the important tasks for the practice- You have a role when it comes to running a practice. As your practice grows you will start to see that your roles will change. The most important role is focusing on the tasks in the practice that only you can do. Like progress notes, building local referral relationships, P&L reports, quarterly audits to assess practice needs, and many other tasks that are appropriate for practice owners. While you may have started a practice answering the phones, chances are you are now in a position that you will need to let someone else answer the phones so that you can focus on the tasks that grow your practice.
You are free from burnout- I will tell you a quick way to the road of burnout. Do everything yourself! Yes, that's right, if you continue to do everything yourself you will become burnout, FAST! Being a business owner does require you to wear many hats, yes. However, it doesn't mean that you can not request some extra help. Especially if it will help you avoid one of the main reasons practices fail. A virtual assistant is a practice need, not a luxury.
Offer outstanding customer service- Being a private practice owner is a competitive market. With more people now than ever realizing they have mental health needs, it can be a good thing and a bad thing. Setting yourself apart from the competition is needed. A great way to set yourself apart is having someone always answer the phone with a cheerful attitude. Responding to emails promptly, handling billing issues like a pro, and making scheduling an appointment a breeze. When you are able to offer services that are above the rest you will start to see that it makes a difference in your practice.
You are in control- Having a VA does not mean you hand over the keys and put on a blindfold. You need to position your office as you are in control. Most practice owners are very hesitant to hire a VA for fear of losing control of their practice. Please, I beg of you, shift your mindset when it comes to this. You will always be in control of your practice because you will give the VA you choose procedures to use to manage your practice. You will also have a system in place that will allow you to effectively manage your VA in as little as 30 minutes a week. I work with practice owners often just preparing them to hire a VA. This is work that is vital to the growth of your practice.
You get back your TIME- You will start to understand when you are in a great flow with your VA how much more time is added to your schedule! You may even take up this crazy thing called self-care. You will then be able to operate from a state of calm and make even better business decisions. This is one of the biggest positive effects I see that happens when my private practice clients hire a VA.
Making your first hire can seem intimidating. So if you feel this is an area that your practice needs guidance with feel free to reach out to me. I would be more than happy to guide you through this process. My experience with managing practices along with my experience as a business owner of multiple businesses would be a huge benefit to this process.
Not sure if you are ready to hire an assistant? Take my assessment test to find out!