Some ‘key’ mistakes while developing your practice plan can cause your new clinic to fail; lack of research and lack of preparedness. Avoid becoming another failed clinic by making sure you don’t commit to those mistakes and the following:

• Failure to establish clear goals and objectives

1. Your clinic goals serve four basic functions;
2. they provide guidance and direction,
3. facilitate planning,
4. motivate and inspire employees and contractors,
5. and help the practice evaluate and control performance.
Your clinic goals inform employees and contractors where the practice is going and how it plans to get there. When employees and to a lesser degree contractors need to make difficult decisions, they can refer to the clinic’s goals for guidance.

How many of you honestly really know your clinic’s goals and objectives? How many of you know where to find the clinic’s goals and objectives?

When employees and contractors understand what needs to be done to succeed, it’s much easier for them to contribute. It’s also tremendously easier for Practice Managers to do their jobs, to improve productivity, and to manage proactively, rather than waste their time stamping out small fires after the fact. Clear purpose helps everyone succeed and, bottom line, that’s what we all want.

Goals affect individual performance through four mechanisms;

1. goals direct action and effort toward goal-related activities and away from unrelated activities.
2. goals energize employees (and contractors). Challenging goals lead to higher staff effort than easy goals.
3. goals affect persistence. Staff exert more effort to achieve high goals.
4. goals motivate staff to use their existing knowledge to attain a goal or to acquire the knowledge needed to do so.

• Misunderstanding what patients want
• Underestimating the competition
• Inadequate financial planning
• Lack of strong leadership
• Ineffective procedures and systems
• Absence of critical business skills
• Inability to change
• Failure to communicate the plan to your staff (clinicians & reception staff)