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Find your ideal employee, build a better team, and help more patients

If you're tired of hiring duds, it's time to find your ideal employee and duplicate that over and over. And there's ONE thing that will make a HUGE difference.

When I joined Mike in our practice in 2012, I hated going into the clinic!

The people who were supposed to be our team members were low energy (think Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh) 9-5er's happy collecting a paycheck for doing the bare minimum. I found Mike constantly working from 6 am - 11 pm, pushing things forward. Did the practice expand in 2012?

Heck yeah! The practice doubled in size!

But one or two people cannot be the only ones pushing things forward because it's exhausting! Over time, it just isn't fun anymore. After months of trying to motivate the staff, training them, retraining them, encouraging them, playing games to make it more fun, I realized we were trying to 'put energy into the practice and the staff', and I had ENOUGH!

So, from June - September 2013, I completely cleaned house in our clinic.

No, I'm not talking about filing papers or cleaning up things we didn't need. I replaced 75% of our staff in three and a half months (nine people, in case you're wondering).

It was so liberating to let go of people who weren't on board! AND...I replace those nine "staff" with seven team members who were "all-in" on our dream.

We had a team of individuals who enjoyed being there and had the purpose of helping others. Once again, the practice expanded!

But with a great team that's able and willing to produce and creates value for their patients, the practice will need to expand.

You might be wondering why I said: "but."

I'll be honest. I got lucky when I hired each of them because I didn't have a real hiring process, and we just did what we always did. And so, as we expanded further beyond our core team, we were back where we were in June 2013, with some additions who were happy working that 9-5 job, collecting a paycheck, not invested in our dream….and that started affecting our core team members and bringing them down.

Does this sound like someone on your 'team'?

So, in late 2014, I found myself in a similar situation to late- 012 - mid-2013 again. I had to come to terms with the fact that I needed a way to hire better and faster. But I also needed a way to find people who fit well with the rest of our core team and had the same values and ideals as Mike and I do.

I created a specific hiring process to weed out those who didn't fit our ideal employee profile. However, I was still struggling with finding the "right" team member, someone I enjoyed being around and who would fit in with the rest of the group.

One day, in early 2015, I was chatting with a good friend about how I was struggling to find PTs to fit with our team.

I was asking people to apply, but when I interviewed them or when they came for the in-office interview, they just didn't gel with us.

And as we were talking, she asked me who my ideal employee was. Like who they REALLY were. I gave her a list of credentials, the amount of experience we were looking for and a bunch of other information.

And she stopped me right then and there and said, "NO! I want to know what they look like, their personal qualities, what they say when you ask them if they can help out today, what their values are, what they do when a patient shows up late." This list went on and on.

She told me to hang up, sit down, put on my big kid pants, and write down a list of ALL the things that would make someone ideal for our practice. "And do not stop until you have a list of EVERY single thing that comes to mind. And then hang it where you see it every single day. Continue to add to the list whenever you think of something else that would make them a great fit for you and your ideal team."

I did what she said, and things completely changed for us right away. My hiring program was complete, and it was like putting the last piece in the puzzle and finally figuring out what it was. No more wasted time hiring the wrong employee.

We now had the complete package and I was finding team members who were in sync with our core values.

After that, hiring got a lot easier for me.

I knew the ideal employee I was looking for and built a team around our values and ideals.

I recently worked with a friend and client who's also a practice owner. She has been using my hiring program for over a year, but the one thing she still needed to complete was this part. She started using it last year, but things changed. When that happens, you need to update your list, make additions, and constantly redefine what you need. So, I had to write up a whole new list that laid out her ideal employee and all of their attributes.

A photo of her board is below so you can check it out.

Now, here's what you need to do next to find YOUR ideal employee.

  • Pull out a piece of paper OR go to your whiteboard (you want this to stay up where you can see it, this list isn't meant to be erased).

  • Write down ALL the qualities and personal attributes of your IDEAL team member.

  • If you wrote it on paper, post it where you can see it. If it's on the whiteboard, don't erase it.

  • Keep adding to this list as you think of new things in an ideal employee that meets your values and ideals.

  • And as you're hiring, use this list to qualify your potential team members.

  • Ask yourself throughout the hiring process, do they fit? Do they still continue to fit? Is this an ideal employee?

  • And as you bring them on, don't be afraid to qualify them against this list as you train them.

list of characteristics of an ideal employee

Here's her board. She has it where she can see it every day and she continues to add to it.

She had a qualified applicant immediately after making her list. And, after working through the hiring process with her, she was certain she was the perfect fit and hired her right away!

Now, two weeks after doing this one thing, she has an amazing new hire who meets the qualifications of her ideal employee, who's already training, and loving being a part of their team!

NOTE: If you really want to take things in your practice to a new level, sit down and qualify your current staff. Do they fit your current ideal employee? If not, that could be holding you back. (I do this with my own team).

So don't wait, get this done. You'll be happy that you have a path to follow as you hire new staff and find a team of ideal employees.

Wishing you the best, today and always, Dee


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