12 Traits your Practice Manager Should Have
We all know it takes a strong leader to manage a practice. Without one in place, there are always going to be challenges. I know firsthand how important this role is as I was a managing partner of a medical spa in Beverly Hills that was underperforming. I had to find the right practice manager to lead my team. With this real-world experience, coupled with the hundreds of practices I have consulted with over the past 12+ years, I can say with 100% certainty that in order to be set up for success and contribute to the overall practice profitability, your practice manager must have:
1). The right culture
2). The right expectations in place
3). The right accountability
4). AND the right training
As an owner, you’ve chosen to be an entrepreneur. That means in addition to great patient outcomes and results, you also must focus on building a dynamic team, setting goals, having a forecast, managing your budget, understanding your revenue per hour and industry benchmarks, etc. As an owner, you must know these things and be able to articulate what you expect of your practice manager. Otherwise, they will just show up for work, do the best job they think they can do with the information they have.
Leading a practice is such an important role and can be such a rewarding experience. There is so much credibility, knowledge, expertise, and joy that can come out of this role which is very critical to the success of your business. Your team can be your greatest asset or can be your biggest expense. So having clear expectations and goals, investing in solid training and education, and holding your team accountable is crucial.
So, let’s dive in today and talk about some of the top traits a practice manager should have.
Top Traits a Practice Manager Should Have
1. Driven – You want someone who is driven, a self-starter, and resourceful.
2. Leader – You want someone in this role who can earn the respect of the front desk team and providers. Respect and trust must be earned, so you want them to set the tone to establish a culture of trust and communication.
3. Coachable – I always say good leaders don’t know everything. They don’t have to be the smartest person in the room, but they are willing to learn from others.
4. Analytical mind – They must be able to understand data, understand how the practice management software works with all the ins and outs, what data needs to be extrapolated from it and what data needs to be entered, know what reports to run as well as understand industry benchmarks so your practice can achieve maximum potential capacity.
5. Problem Solver – You want someone who is solutions-focused not problem-focused.
6. Effective Communicator – You want someone who can run meetings and have an intentional agenda.
7. Customer-Centric – Your practice manager must have a customer-centric mindset. They have to understand what makes your practice different. They have to go the extra mile to help patients have the best, five-star experience possible.
8. Skillset/Educated in Aesthetics – When hiring a practice manager, you might get applicants with other management skills, but learning the aesthetic space involves learning about every treatment or procedure or surgery. It means being able to speak about every laser, every injectable, know the categories of service so you can speak about every competitor product or treatment, know each retail product you sell and the features/benefits, etc. I know this sounds overwhelming, but our APX Sales Training Course goes into depth to educate your practice manager as well as your entire team so they understand the full spectrum of services you offer and the specific category of service they fall under.
Think about how many sales are lost when someone calls your practice and asks if you offer a service like Ultherapy, and your front desk team member says no I’m sorry we don’t. Click, goodbye. You might have lost $3,000 right there.
9. Open-minded – A practice manager wears many hats. The job requires somebody who is flexible, agile, can change and get uncomfortable, but be open minded to all possibilities.
10. Self-Aware – A practice manager must be aware of what’s going on in all facets of the practice and what’s going on around them with patients, the owner, and the entire team. Their vision must be circular and not linear.
11. Be ALL IN – As a practice manager, the person in the role should have an ALL-IN attitude. That means if they need to do some work at home, they do it. If they need to complete training after hours at home, they do it. They are willing to role play. They are ALL IN to be coached. They are ALL IN to seek expert advice if they think it is necessary to get the practice to the next level.
12. Strive for Excellence – The world is full of mediocrity. It is hard to find good talent, but you want to find someone with a deep, personal desire for excellence. Someone who is not willing to settle for just good. They want to be great.
The Responsibilities of the Practice Owner
Whether you are a business owner or a physician owner, you must outline clear expectations for your practice manager. Running the ship requires a time commitment. It requires work to be put in. It requires analysis of information. It requires the ability to identify a strategy or to seek areas of opportunity. It requires you to say I must hit my revenue per hour benchmarks. I’m not going to discount. It is being willing to look at your perceived value and brand recognition. It’s asking yourself what kind of people do I want to hire? What do I expect of them? Are they willing to take training courses after hours? Will my team respect this person?
I say this often, but there is no MBA school of aesthetics you can go attend to learn how to run a business. That’s why my team and I developed APX Platform. It was born and developed out of us taking the opportunity during COVID to look at how we were helping practices as consultants. We wanted to help aesthetic practices be better, and have on-demand access to sales, financial, and operations training for practice managers as well as every other role in your practice. To learn more about APX Platform, book a discovery call here.