Strategic planning with the team a win/win proposition.
Typically, the thought of creating a strategic plan is daunting and overwhelming. You may consider dividing this project into smaller, bite-size pieces to accomplish this important goal. Read more for valuable statistics, tips on creating a strategic plan and how to involve your team in the process.
Stith Keiser, a dear friend and owner of MyVeterinaryCareer, wrote this about strategic planning and missions;
” Strategic planning starts with developing a fully formed organizational mission. When I first started my business, I remember thinking to myself, ‘I don’t have time to put together a mission statement; I need to make money.’ Contrary to my initial beliefs, studies have shown that businesses that operate with a strategic plan—starting with a mission statement—increase revenue by 10% to 12%. “
You may find it difficult to get your team on the same page when it comes to presenting a professional, consistent image at your veterinary hospital. You are not alone in this endeavor! Managers ask me about motivating their team, knowing how to engage them and what makes them work together as a team. A lot of times my answer is simply, “Have you asked them?”
Building a culture which allows for open dialog, problem solving and engagement seems to elude a number of managers. Please read a recent article created for My Exceptional Veterinary Team: How to Discuss Professionalism with Your Team.http://www.myevt.com/columns/how-discuss-professionalism-your-team
I strongly suggest, with the ENTIRE team, the week before you set down to create and initiate a professionalism policy or guidelines, you lead with the following exercise, which you can download from GoalInstitute, a Professionalism Quick Test: http://www.goalsinstitute.com/professionalism-quick-test.php
Make this exercise fun, lively and light. Put up a flip chart, grab colorful markers, ask your team characteristics or traits of a professional. Then have them fill out the Quick Test. Lead by example and explain your score (I came in as TOLERABLE, offering a large opportunity for improvement) and how you plan on improving your score over the next couple of weeks. Ask if someone else is willing to share their thoughts and ideas for improvement.
You will also find a Team Development Worksheet with MyEVT’s article. Use it for various other topics, both low and high risk topics. Start out with rather simple exercises (dress code, parking etiquette, etc) and move onto more challenging topics (smoking policies, socila media guidelines, etc).
The point is, LISTEN to your team, ask them what they want guiding their daily directions and offering help in the creation and discipline of issues that directly effect them. One common trait found amongst GREAT LEADERS, they were GREAT LISTENERS!
Cheers, here’s to your team creating their own guidelines for professionalism! RR