What do you find most challenging about managing your practice? If you are thinking about the difficulties of motivating staff, or having staff do things the way you want, or keeping talented people, then you are not alone. These are just some of the myriad challenges of managing staff. And the more staff you employ, the more perplexing it can be. Don't despair, read on and learn some strategies you can use to engage your people (and therefore, lessen your stress).
As a physician seeing multiple patients everyday, you already know that their personalities can be as varied as their physical attributes. Some patients are gregarious, talkative, and cheerful. Some are timid and quiet. Some are fearful and guarded. Others are assertive and provocative. Add to this mixture that every patient that walks into your office has a unique set of circumstances that further impact how they show up in your office. And you probably find that you relate more effectively with some and less effectively with others. That's because you have your own set of personality traits and tendencies that get added to the interaction.
Like your patients, your staff also comes to work with their own personalities and circumstances — and you probably notice that you relate better with some than with others. Just like no two people are alike, we can also see that no two brains are alike. That means that every person will be motivated by different factors, will feel threatened by different triggers, and will see their world through a unique set of lenses. That means that how you relate to different people will impact them differently. So let's start to untangle this web of complexity.
Often, physicians find it difficult to manage staff because they inevitably treat people the way they themselves want to be treated. Instead, the secret to successful interactions is to remember that how you want to be treated is far less important than how they want to be treated! In fact, the number one dynamic to consider is that the more you can understand about what is important to a person, the more effective you will be in your ability to impact and influence others. And isn't that what you would like to be able to do?
So here are some key approaches to consider:
1. Get Curious
Find out what is important to every person on your staff. How can you do that? Start by asking good questions. Get curious about what matters to them. Ask them what they need to be most successful at work. Ask them what they find most rewarding about their job and what they find most challenging. Find out what strategies they use in their lives to cope with difficult and stressful situations. Ask what tends to bring out the best in them. Find out what motivates them and what causes them to feel threatened or triggered.