How often have you found yourself saying “If I just had a few more techs like (insert name here).” Every clinic seems to have that one all-star technician if you are lucky maybe even two. The go-to tech that can scribe with any physician, can work-up patients efficiently with a positive attitude, is always on time and never calls off. This technician has the desired qualities that you just can’t seem to train your other staff to have. A great technician is worth their weight in gold and as hiring is becoming more competitive it is important to not lose focus on staff development. You may have a few more good techs than you think.
The field of Industrial and Organizational Psychology studies how to bring out the best in every staff member alongside proper succession planning. Industrial/Organizational psychologists promote management to think outside of traditional norms as the modern workplace is an ever-changing environment. One basic principle is that management should engage routinely with each employee under their supervision. A manager who understands what makes each individual tick is equipped to get the most out of their staff. This does not mean having a formal meeting at the end of the day, but rather a simple “how are you doing today?”,” how was your commute in?”, “How are you feeling about the patient load today?” I still remember my first boss as a new manager tell me to learn one thing about each employee’s personal life in order to make a connection with him or her.
You may have a technician who barely meets expectations because they feel overlooked by management. An engaged clinic manager makes for an engaged technician. An engaged technician is a motivated technician. Research shows us that a motivated employee is less likely to look elsewhere for employment and is more efficient in the workplace. What if that tech that barely works up seven patients in a half-day is your next all-star?
You might want to take another look at that technician that you may have already labeled as being lazy. What is demotivating them in the workplace and how can you turn that around? Every good team has a good leader. Are you that leader? By simply engaging your staff you can identify who needs help in what area.
Ensure that employees understand that you have an open-door policy and that they can address their concerns or just say a quick hello. Follow up with an employee’s complaints, it may be that others are feeling the same way. Putting out that spark before it turns into a fire shows your staff that you are actively participating in their success. Help each technician create professional goals and work with them to achieve those goals. Creating a positive and efficient culture in your clinic starts with a simple conversation. Take the time to re-evaluate each technician and you may find you have more all-stars then you thought.