The first thing would be – have they helped increase referrals for colleagues of yours? Are these colleagues willing to tell you specific details about their experience?
The next thing you want to know is if they have a fully worked out methodology or is it just a chancy list of successful actions that worked out pretty well for ‘Joe Blow’? This is important; as well-codified methods that are proven will probably work for you too!
Another thing to consider is the purpose of their method. Is it to obtain physician’s referrals from an established relationship or is it done through massive mailings or written materials? This is probably the most important factor as this regulates continuity of referrals.
In my experience with helping physical therapists with physician referrals, lots of promo and written materials can get physicians to try you out by referring one or two patients. Unfortunately, it usually stops there. Now, developing a relationship through personal contact, follow-up and continuity will ensure the following; after they have tried you out and were satisfied with the service you provided to their patients, they will continue to refer more patients to you. Last, but not least, they will also see how closely aligned the patient’s health goals were in the outcome.
I know you must be willing to take a big plunge when it comes to hiring a consultant or coach, so what I’ve covered here are some important points you may want to consider. I have found that reviewing past situations and even future scenarios against these points brings to light the value, or lack thereof, of such offered programs.
I hope the above ideas help you make your decision with a little more confidence. More importantly however, once you have made your decision, give it your all. Because this is the most important element!