This article may not be very popular and to be taken as advice only… Some people get an adverse reaction to the word “modernization.” They take it to mean “Liberal” or “Revolution.”
In this article I’m speaking in terms of this definition: “To adopt modern ways, ideas, etc.”
And for the word “MODERN” I reference this definition: “Characteristic of present and recent time; contemporary; Not antiquated or obsolete.”
Why is modernization of your business important? Your business appearance in all its aspects represents you and your business as a whole. If your appearance is highly professional, then first impressions of your business would be similar in the eyes of your clientele.
Here’s my advice on how this might be done and several areas to look at:
GENERAL PRESENTATION: Your business appearance should be updated or somewhat modern so step back and take the view of what a new customer might see or notice when they arrive. Walk through the entire office and do this at every section your clientele might enter or exit through. Make yourself a checklist of items to handle and then prioritize this taking into account the costs of each.
Check your sign on the face of your building – is it clean, and easy-to-read? Freshen the interior if it tends to be a bit outdated with fresh paint, clean windows and clean and attractive office furniture; (there should be no visible signs of disrepair – look for chipped or badly worn items). Artwork would be pleasant for the general public eye and somewhat new in content – this is something where slight changes may make a world of difference – I’ve also seen an office changing their artwork with the change of seasons! Plants should be alive and well trimmed! Even check your staff and their clothing / uniforms from time to time – all would be clean and pressed with their hair nicely groomed – including the facial hair of men.
COMPUTERS: These should be kept in good working order and cleaned regularly as visible dirt on keyboards and monitors is a huge “thumbs down” in the public’s eyes! Do you need to update any equipment? (This may include newer software programs to automate some of your administration and free your time for more executive / patient-care duties.)
PATIENT / CUSTOMER CARE: Your therapists / staff would be trained on the latest methods as well as any new equipment. All equipment should be in clean and “like new” condition; There would be fresh water available and located in a place where your customers would have access.
CONTINUED EDUCATION: These MUST be kept current where applicable of course! These normally address the realm of patient treatments and don’t usually address several other important factors of business such as: improving administrative efficiency, communication and interactive skills among both co-workers and customers, marketing techniques and campaigns, advanced referral development, etc. These are skills that EVERY business works at to continue to stand out from your competition.
BUSINESS STRUCTURE: In this modern and computerized era where administration can be structured in a highly organized manner shouldn’t your personnel be on the same level? The business structure would be posted along with the names of all staff and each of their duties. This structure would display which staff are senior to others and their areas of responsibilities. In this way your staff stay coordinated and makes it much easier on new staff to learn the lines.
INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS: There are easy ways to implement email, instant messaging, text alerts and reminders, etc. that can keep the office relatively paper free as far as your internal communication lines go.
It also works best to have a centralized center where each staff has a place to receive their individual mail and other written communications.
MARKETING EFFORTS: This is one of the areas of business where the old-fashioned ways still work! Physical mailings, (actual mail, not email) are still used today. Take the old pieces you’ve used and modernize them as well. You should also add links to your website, blog, social networking, etc. Why? (stats provided by 2011 Reach Local, Inc.)
- There are 240 million Internet users in the U.S.
- Consumers 18-44 spend more time on the Internet than with offline media.
- Users spend an average of 18 hours a week online.
- In the last 5 years, web surfing has grown 121%.
- Users spend twice as much time on social media sites than any online activity.
Now of course there is an age range that does NOT use the Internet this often, but never say online advertising, blogs and social networking isn’t important – in today’s society that may possibly be like a shot in the foot!
Here’s some educational sites with step-by-step instructions to set up such accounts:
There are professionals for hire to oversee online campaigns, advertising and Search Engine Optimization, (SEO) if you are completely unable to do so.
I recommend you start this on your own; YOU can do plenty I’m sure to increase the public awareness of your business with some simple improvements as above given a bit of spare time.
I hope I have helped you to consider modernization in its various aspects! Don’t fall behind the times… you don’t want to be known as the business straggling behind your competition, do you?
We’ve assisted Private Practice for over 25 years now and would gladly take the opportunity to explain how we might assist you too. Just call us at: (800) 834-0357.
Craig Ferreira, CEO Survival Strategies Inc.