Article Date: 11/1/2013

End Staff Training Excuses
PERSONNEL POINTERS
training

End Staff Training Excuses

Overcome four perceived barriers with these resolutions.

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REBECCA L. JOHNSON, CPOT, COT, COE

Atotal of 72% of practices experience turnover during the year. Therefore, it is likely you must train a new employee in the near future.1

Failure to provide adequate training leads to an increased error rate and decreased patient satisfaction, which also leads to turnover.

Here are four reasons staff members fail to receive adequate training, along with suggestions to overcome these challenges.

1 A busy office

The daily responsibility of running a busy practice can make it difficult to find time for training. However, from my experience, making the time to properly train staff allows offces to run more efficiently, thus saving time in the future.

Suggestion: Host a weekly learning lunch in which you pay staff for the hour and buy their lunches. This accomplishes the goal of fitting training into a busy schedule, and your team will look forward to and appreciate it, which will motivate them.

In addition, have your staff rewatch online tutorials provided by practice management software companies. Once they are more familiar with the programs, the tutorials can provide more value.

2 Staff disinterest

This is usually a misconception based on one negative individual who complained training was boring or not worth the time. The truth: Most employees want to excel at their jobs and appreciate opportunities to learn.

Suggestion: Explain that training is important to the overall success of the practice. Also, increase training interest by quizzing the group and rewarding correct answers with fun prizes, such as chocolate.

If your “Negative Nellie” continues to be resistant toward the training, determine the real reason behind this behavior, and explain that the negativity is affecting the success of the team. If there is no improvement in the employee's attitude, decide whether this person should remain employed.

3 Lack of staff trust

If you’ve always conducted every part of the patient exam, including visual acuities or documenting patient history, you may have trouble trusting your staff will provide the same quality of care. However, your technicians will pleasantly surprise you with their ability if you invest the time and effort into training.

Suggestion: Realize that training your technicians allows you to see more patients, which increases your practice revenue.

4 Well-trained staff leave

Some practitioners think well-trained staff members will leave for more money elsewhere. My reaction: What if you don’t train them, and they stay? This alternative could be even worse for you and your practice.

Suggestion: Implement performance-based compensation to tie accomplishments to bonuses and pay increases. This produces well-trained and motivated employees and a high profit margin.

Equipped for success

Your team members are your most important assets. Your success depends on ensuring that each person on staff has the necessary training. OM

1. MBA Staff Management Survey: February 2011. Management and Business Academy. http://mba-ce.dev04.jobson.com/Data/Sites/1/downloads/MBA_S taff-Managment_0711.pdf. Accessed October 15, 2013.

MS. JOHNSON IS THE FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT OF EYETRAIN4YOU, AN OPHTHALMIC STAFF COACHING AND DEVELOPMENT COMPANY. E-MAIL HER AT REBECCA@EYETRAIN4YOU.COM, OR SEND COMMENTS TO OPTOMETRICMANAGEMENT@GMAIL.COM.



Optometric Management, Volume: 48 , Issue: November 2013, page(s): 44