Preventative Maintenance for Your Practice – Dr. Cathy Wendland-Colby

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Welcome to ChiroSecure’s Empowering Women In Chiropractic, the Facebook Live show, for successful women by successful women, proving once again, women make it happen. Join us each week as we bring you the best in business growth, practice management, social media marketing, networking, leadership, and lots more. If it’s about women in practice and business, you’ll hear it here. Now join today’s host, Dr. Cathy Wendland Colby, as she talks leadership, community and juggling it all. Now, here’s Dr. Cathy.

Hello and welcome to Empowering Women In Chiropractic. I’m this week’s host, Dr. Cathy Wendland, and I’m so excited to talk to you this week, because listen, ChiroSecure has been helping us make sure that our practices are practicing safely and successfully. Whether or not you’re able to see patients right now, we’re going to talk about preventative maintenance for your practice. Let’s dig in because I know that for all of us, as they keep saying, this is unprecedented times because it is, but for all of us, this is also unpredictable times. This is also uncomfortable times, and this could also be scary times because whether your office is open, limited hours and limited patients, or your office has been forced to close, or maybe was just allowed to reopen, things are not the way they were.

No matter how many years you spent building your practice, the last six or eight weeks, depending on what your state that you practice in, those last six or eight weeks might have tanked your practice. They might’ve seriously hurt your finances, your patient base, they might’ve hurt your staff, they might’ve hurt your family. There’s a lot of worry and there’s a lot of concern. Today I want to talk to you about a couple of things that you can do to ease some of the concern, and to push on that gas pedal in the right direction, so that we start steering the ship back as safely and as successfully and as quickly as possible. Let’s jump in.

When it comes to preventative maintenance, we typically think about our patients, but I want you to think about your practice. What are the things that you would recommend to your patients? Then how can we convert that for our practices? If you would recommend to your patients that they come in and get adjusted on a weekly basis or every other week or two times or three times, whatever your care plan is, that’s part of it, but what else would you want your patients to be doing at home? Probably minimizing their stress. Probably making sure that they’re getting adequate and restful sleep. Perhaps making sure that they’re eating nutritious foods, and moving their body every day.

Now you might not be a personal trainer, and you might not be teaching them exercises, but you know that that’s good for them. You might not be a nutritionist, and you might not be teaching them about what foods are healthy for their body, but you understand that that’s good for them. What’s good for your practice? Whether they’re coming in right now, or like some of my patients who work in hospitals and are just exhausted and are going straight home to shower and go to bed so they can turn around and get back in the next day, your practice is shifting and changing.

When the people start going back to work, not only are their priorities going to be changing, but their finances will have changed, because not everybody’s getting a paycheck right now, and not everybody’s getting that unemployment promise that they were promised, and not everybody is going to have disposable income. Hopefully they view you as not only a priority, but a necessity. How can we position you as that necessity? How can we position you as essential? That’s the preventative maintenance. Use this time right now to reach out to people. I’m not talking your typical Facebook post. I’m not talking your typical share, something that someone else did. Do that, yes, absolutely, but that’s not enough.

Now is the time when you’re a little bit less busy, and you have a little bit more time, and you might be in your comfy clothes at the office, and you might be running around with sneakers and jeans on, which I never do, but you know what? Now is the time to sit down, pick up the phone, and make a personal phone call to your patient. It’s not a phone call that says, “Hey, I haven’t seen you this week. Where are you? Are you coming in? I’m going to be here. Hurry up, get yourself in here because I’m leaving at 7:00. Make sure you get in.” No, that’s not the phone call. This is the time for a personal phone call. Meaning, “Hey Jill, it’s Dr. Cathy. I was just thinking about you. I’m hoping that you and your grandchildren are doing well, and I want to make sure that you’re doing everything possible to keep yourself not only healthy, but to keep yourself sane while you’re trapped in the house with your couple of little two grandchildren that you’re taking care of,” or whatever the conversation is, have a human being conversation.

As part of the conversation you can let them know, “You know, we have altered our schedule for the time being, for the next few weeks until things start to pick back up. We’re going to be in the office these hours on these days. I just want to let you know if you ever feel like stopping by, if you’re getting out of the house, this is considered going to the doctor, is considered essential, and you’re welcome to leave the house and come here. I would love to see you when you’re comfortable.” Everybody has a different comfort level right now because everybody is being brainwashed on different levels.

Some of your patients are glued to the TV screen, the idiot box, and they’re getting completely brainwashed right now. They’re embedded in this fear which is being embodied inside of them, and so now they’re fearful of everything, and they’re worried. What we do is empower people. What we do is give people hope. Maybe in that personal phone call, just remind them that, “You know what? I know that your body is strong, and your body is brilliant, and your body is capable, and your body has healed you through so many sicknesses in the past, and so many paper cuts. Remember when you broke your arm a couple of years ago? Remember, and you came in with a cast, and they said it would be on for eight weeks, but after six weeks that cast came off because you did such a beautiful job of healing yourself? You know what, Mary? I know that your body is strong. I trust in its ability. Make sure you’re doing all the things that you need to do to keep yourself healthy, but remember that chiropractic is a big part of that.”

Just have a human conversation. It’s not a sales pitch. It’s not a sales presentation. It’s not begging them to come into the office. It’s not insisting that, “I haven’t seen you, and you have to get in here right now.” No; it is not that kind of conversation. It is the I’m a human and you’re human, and I genuinely care about you, or I care about you and your family, and I really wanted to just check on you, and see if there’s anything that you need right now. I can’t tell you how many of the patients are so excited to get that phone call. Some of those phone calls are two minutes long. Some of those phone calls are 45 minutes long. You know what? It’s okay, because now’s the time to make those phone calls.

Now is the time to really do that preventative maintenance on your practice. It’s the time to reach out to the people who’ve been your best patients, but maybe right now they can’t get in, or they’re afraid to leave their house, or they have an elderly or immune-compromised person living in their household and they don’t want to go out and take any unnecessary risks, as the media has made them believe. Whatever the case may be, be human and understand that while you’re not in their shoes, it’s okay for you to appreciate that they are. I’m not saying go into their shoes and feel their pain. I’m saying appreciate that that’s where they are.

One of the most important things that I think we, as chiropractors, do is we meet people where they are. We don’t always try to bring everybody right to where we are day one. We meet them where they are. We give them a better understanding of health and healing and how their body functions, and allow them to ascertain the information that they need to make better decisions. As long as you continue with that mindset of, “Let me provide you the information, the education, so that you can make better choices for your health. When you’re ready, I’ll be here.” I know, for some of the patients, they’re not coming out of their house. I get it.

My elderly patients want to wait outside. They want to wait until everybody else is out of the office. Even though I’ve got 3,000 square feet and plenty of space for distancing. Some of them want to wait outside and wait their turn. What we do, is when we have other people that are coming in, we just say, “We’ve got somebody who’s waiting, and we’re going to take them next.” Do that, because it makes them feel comfortable. Then you have the families who just want to come in like it’s every single day, and nothing has changed for them. Honor that as well. Meet the people where they are. I promise you that if you can use this time to regroup, and think about all the things that you were doing in your practice that maybe weren’t serving you, and start doing them on a more human, more basic, more loving, serving, giving method, then watch how this unfolds.

My mentor was Dr. Sid, and I remember being taught many, many years at different seminars from DE to Life Vision, to New Beginnings, that it was all about be, do, have, in that order. You have to be the person who’s willing to do the things in order to have the life and practice of your dreams. So many times we get that messed up. I don’t have enough patients coming in, and I don’t have enough money coming in, and I don’t have enough hours or I’m not allowed to do what I normally do, because I’m not allowed to have my office open, or I’m not allowed to do what I normally do because my space isn’t big enough to fit people, or I’m not allowed to do what I normally do because I can’t have that many people in my office, and by spreading them out, it’s just making my practice volume down.

Don’t focus on the have, and don’t focus on the do. Now’s the time to focus on the be. How can you be that beacon of hope? How can you be that person that shines brightly? Knowing our principles, standing true on our philosophy and knowing that you know that you know that when we keep people adjusted, and we keep the brain cells connected to the tissue cells, that their body is going to function at a better level. Just reminding ourselves, even if we don’t remind our community. Maybe now it’s just the time to remind myself above, down, inside, out. This is not the time to conform. This is time to transform. Conform, to me, means outside in. Transform, to me, means inside out.

When you look at your practice, now is the time to not conform and change who you are and what you do outside of your comfort zone, but it’s the time to transform how you do, who you be, and what you have, by making sure that you’re giving, loving and serving so that you can get out there and truly make your people feel. Right now, I get it. Right now. I care about you. Right now I’m here for you when you feel comfortable, or I’m here for you when you need to come in, or when you feel like it’s time to come in, because maybe you’re not comfortable following a schedule or maybe you’re too chaotic and stressful with your kids at home trying to homeschool and work and all that kind of stuff.

Just reach your people on a human level. As you do that, as you do this form of reaching out, just to keep your connections alive, just to keep your people knowing that you care about them, just to keep people knowing that there is a place for them and there is hope for them and that their body is smart and that the body is strong and that their body is capable and that their body can heal and function at optimum levels when it is allowed to function with the nervous system that is flowing freely with no interference. When you remind your people of that, whether they’re coming in today or next week or next month, you will have done the preventative maintenance to keep the practice going. It may be a little bit slower right now, but it’s better than letting it grind to a halt and then having to start it back up, which is tough. Just keep it going.

Make a vow to yourself to make two phone calls a day, three phone calls a day, five phone calls a day. Whatever feels right to you. Start at the beginning of the alphabet, go to the end. Start at the bottom, work your way back up. Go through your inactives. Whatever works for you. Hit your families first, hit your favorites first. Whatever method works for you. Reach out to people and let them know that you care and remind them of the amazing benefits of chiropractic for themselves and their families. When you do that, watch how your practice comes back to life, how the energy and the vitality and the vibrancy comes back into your office, how you feel energized and you feel ready to serve your patients. You, like me, are probably looking forward to the days when you’re in the office because it’s an opportunity to connect, as extroverts that most of us are, to connect with the people that you love and get to share with and get to talk to and see how they’re doing. Use this time wisely. This is a time to plant. The time to reap will come.

Ladies and gentlemen, say that 10 times fast. I did my hair today for the first time in many, many weeks. I wanted to say to you, I know that it’s difficult, it’s challenging for all of us. We’re all in this together. Chiropractors, nurses, our dentist friends, our contractor friends, our patients that are in marketing and our patients that are in telecommunications, we’re all in this together. Everybody’s feeling the same crunch, but if you can just rise above and be that beacon of hope and continue to shine your light, you will continue to attract people to you. Give them the information that they need through education and then you’ll retain them. It’s attraction, education, retention. You can do that even during this unprecedented time in our history.

Thank you so much for joining me. I look forward to seeing you next time, but don’t forget to check back next week because I know we have another amazing show lined up for you. Take care everybody.

Join us each week as we bring you the best in business growth, practice management, social media marketing, networking, leadership, and lots more. If it’s about women in practice and business, you’ll hear it here. We hope you enjoyed this week’s Facebook live event. Please like us on Facebook, comment and share. We look forward to seeing all of you next week for another episode of Empowering Women in Chiropractic. Now, go ahead and hit the share button and tell your friends and colleagues about the show. Thank you for watching. Have a beautiful day. This has been a ChiroSecure production.

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