My name is Terry Hess and I am a Podiatrist in Olympia, Washington. I have been in practice for 8 years. I joined a practice when I first got out of residency. My practice grew SLOWLY. In looking for ways to improve my situation I heard about Sterling. My partner and I took some of the courses offered through Sterling and found the material very useful. Our practice began to grow.
Podiatry Practice Management
Sterling is the most successful company of its kind in the world, because our clients are among the most respected and accomplished professionals in the world. Our podiatry practice management program is designed to put you in the driver's seat and help you achieve a smooth-running practice.
Last year, I took the plunge and went out on my own. I was happy to be in the driver’s seat. I reconnected with Sterling. The turning point of my “new practice” was in March of this year. My consultant had suggested my office do an on-site training/implementation program, as we did not have a very good handle on production/collection. We agreed. Everyone involved in the office took part, and within a month everything turned around. It was incredible!!!!
The on-site training helped to define roles and give each of us our purpose. We are all now playing “the game” and winning. We are reaching and exceeding goals that we have set for ourselves.
I am able to enjoy my practice like never before.
I believe that staff is much happier and feel more a part of the practice.
We have opened an Ambulatory Surgery Center, hired a new office manager, and things are expanding like crazy!!!! It’s awesome.
The more we use the technology the better we get.
Terry E. Hess, DPM, Washington
I graduated from Chicago’s Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine in 1980, after which I had a chance to do a surgical residency with one of the real pioneers in the field. Following that residency I moved to Fresno, CA where I took over an existing practice. My technical skills were good, but I didn’t have any real organizational skills. I would just shoot from the hip, handle problems when they came up and give very little direction to the employees.
After six years the practice was generating maybe $150,000 to $175,000 per year. It had hit a plateau and I wanted to move it to the next level. At that time I received something in the mail from Sterling. I was the president of the local podiatry association and I invited them to give a talk at one of our meetings. I signed up for Sterling’s program that night and have been a client now for many years.
Using what I learned I immediately started to take more control and monitor all aspects of the business. I started directing the activities of the business rather than just letting the employees do whatever they wanted. The practice started taking off and it’s been nothing but continuous growth since. Last year the income hit $750,000 and this year is even better.
One of the valuable skills I learned is how to manage personnel. This has led to a very stable practice. I have six support staff, four of whom have been with me an average of seventeen years and one who has been with me for twenty-two.
I also learned new ways to communicate more effectively to both patients and doctors. This has resulted in developing strong relationships and getting a steady stream of patient referrals from both. Largely due to these referrals we get an average of twenty to thirty new patients per week.
When I started with Sterling in 1987, my goal was to move the practice to a new higher level. I’ve done that, more than quadrupling it’s size and I’m taking it even higher.
If you’re interested in expanding your practice and taking it to the next level, getting Sterling’s help is the way to do it. It certainly worked for me.
Larry Scortt, DPM, California
After I’d had my practice for about seven years, I felt I was hitting a bit of a plateau. Things were a bit out of control, just because I didn’t really know how to run a business. And I wanted to be in control, and I wanted my practice to grow.
So when I got a brochure, I went to one of their (Sterling’s) introductory seminars. I’d heard of and experienced consultants from other companies taking over part of the practice, and that didn’t appeal to me. But the Sterling speaker talked about how they’d give you the data to grow and you could apply it, be the boss of your own practice and run things more than before. It made a lot of sense to me, so I called some other podiatrists who had done Sterling’s program. One even turned out to be a former classmate of mine. And what they had to say turned me on. So I went out to Sterling’s headquarters in Glendale, California.
I liked the Management by Statistics Course, and Basics of Organization. And I went right back and applied it: I put statistics into the office, hired an office manager, got more good help, and the production statistics started going up right away.
We wanted the practice to grow, and this was the way. I wouldn’t want anybody around me who wanted to hold me back anyway, and with my staff there wasn’t any problem. In any practice, you have to create the vision; some doctors may have a problem communicating that, but Sterling will even help you with communication.
Although I think any business would benefit from Sterling, podiatrists in particular sometimes need to promote themselves more than they think, not just get referrals from M.D.s. They want to be part of the ‘good old boys’ network, get 90% of their referrals from M.D.s. It’s fine to get those, of course, but you need to get more referrals from your patients and your friends.
Another thing, Sterling is a very ethical organization. Nothing they ever told me went against my own beliefs about patients, and how I treat them. In fact, it has helped me treat my patients better.
A warning though: with the Sterling program, if you don’t implement it, it won’t work for you. On the other hand, the more I implement the program, the better it works. That’s so much so that if someone is doing better than I am, it’s usually because I’m only implementing 60% and they’re implementing 80% of what Sterling gave them!
Sterling helps you to be a better boss, and a friend to your staff. Then your staff respect you and themselves, and they do better at their jobs.
Jim Anderson, DPM, Colorado
I knew I needed a solution to my office management; I knew I had to learn how to run a business. I simply did not have the knowledge and skill to make a practice expand and I knew that Sterling did have that know-how. My primary concern was to learn how to run an office correctly, so I went with Sterling.
Everything that they did made sense. It was a matter of understanding it and putting it together.
When I got back to my practice, I started applying a set of formulas – steps that cover the really necessary actions which you can use for the various conditions in a practice or part of a practice. We also gave everyone a very exact post, which is to say a set of staff responsibilities and products to get. And we ensured that each staff member was trained to do those actions and they could do them over and over again, so that there is real consistency.
As a result, I saw a four times increase in our income! Was I surprised it worked that well? Yes I was, to say the least, but the rules of the Hubbard management technology were very definite, and very workable.
We did lose one lady, who frankly was being covertly destructive. She had been with me for a long time, but when we got down to business and started tightening up the ship, she left in less than a week.
Frankly, some of the people in the office were a little nervous at first, but after they understood the basics of what we were trying to do as a group, the remainder of the people decided to stay and work as a unit.
Now the office is fantastic. It is well run; it’s organized; we get the product out and the patients are delivered their service the way they are supposed to.
The quality is first class: people travel quite a distance to get their services here! And I think it’s great. Every day I come here and I love getting people better!
Sterling helps organize things so you can deliver service with the least amount of aggravation on the business side of the office.
It’s been a phenomenal experience!
Bruce Freedman, DPM, Virginia
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