Practice management homework for optometrists

August is a great time to get a head start on your practice management to-do list.

Now is the time to recall families so that young ones can get their eyes checked before the school season. Grown up kids heading back to university should also be recalled before their semester starts.

It is also time to plan for the busy fall season before that busyness takes over. Practice management should be a priority that doesn’t get sidelined. The best way to ensure this is to plan ahead.

Your practice management planner

Invision Magazine’s practice management to-do list for August and September has planned out what optometrists should be managing over the next two months.

With a task per week, the list breaks down practice management priorities in an achievable manner.

I encourage optometrists to use the list as a guide and adjust the tasks to the needs of their practice. To make sure the list is as effective as possible, I also recommend adding some S.M.A.R.T. goals to each week’s task (a goal that is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely). Each task should also be assigned to a specific staff member.

Here is an example:

Last week, Invision’s practice management list suggested reaching out to local schools and encouraging teachers to check students for signs they might need glasses. I think this is a fantastic idea. It ties in too with encouraging parents to do the same.

A S.M.A.R.T. version of this task might look like this: let’s reach out to every elementary and secondary school within a 10-kilometre radius of our practice by the end of the week. Our recaller(s) will call each school and we will follow-up by email with a back-to-school promotion that can be forwarded to class lists.

Another idea might be: have our administrative assistant coordinate three short lunch-and-learn sessions with teachers at local schools as a professional development session that will cover how to identify some of the signs of eyesight challenges.

More ideas to consider

Check out Invision’s latest list for some great ideas around promotions, marketing, staffing and operations. (Take note of the suggestion to begin preparing staff in September for December holiday coverage!)

Here are some other practice management items to consider slotting into your schedule:

  • Recalling families ahead of the school season
  • Recalling college and university students before their semester starts
  • Ensuring your database is up-to-date ahead of the busy fall season
  • As families head back to school, begin booking patients for September
  • Staff training to brush up on skills or learn new ones
  • Team-building activities while the sun is still shining