10 Tips to keep your business running smoothly over Christmas
20th Dec 2017 | Laura Shaw
1. Sort rotas out well in advance. That way you don’t get the last minute panic and moaning. Make sure your skeleton team are competent in all tasks they are going to come up against. Use your Training-progress to identify skills gaps which could cause additional stress during the festive season.
2. Ensure all routine processes and payments are lined up in advance where possible so they take as little time as possible when you are working on reduced staff numbers.
3. Make sure your reception team (in addition to your clinical staff) are prepped on how to handle typical Christmas calls. Take inspiration from the advice we all put on the Facebook pages, e.g. chocolate and Christmas cake poisoning in dog (or Labradors eating glass baubles!) Set these elements for review on your training-progress system to make sure everyone has read the protocol recently. Your whole team should sound confident and informed when an emergency call comes in. A well-schooled reception team and reduce delays in treatments.
4. Make sure your staff have access to other protocols (beyond their training profile) – use the library search function of Training-Progress for this. Then, if a team member is unable to work their tasks, defined in written processes, will be accessible for other team members to use as reference.
5. Make sure your working staff feel supported. What do they do in the event of an emergency? Who should they call? There should be a list of ‘what if…?’ scenarios available to all team members
- What if the phones do down……?
- What if the power goes off….?
- What if the computers fail…..?
- What if there is a problem with the anaesthetic gases?
- What if the water goes off….?
- What if the heating fails…?
This information needs to be accessible from everywhere in the building. It is worth ensuring it is also accessible in the event of power or internet failure. Having Training-Progress bookmarked on mobiles or a charged practice ipad (with 4G) ensures constant access to this information.
6. Keep the rota fair and balanced. Make sure senior team members do their share of the festive shifts. And try to pair more seasoned team members with those with less experience.
7. Communicate your opening hours. Share this with your clients over social media and with your team through the Urgent news feature on Training-Progress. Ensure your whole team knows when you will be open and what services you are able to provide. Thoughtlessly booked routine procedures, when there are not personnel resources to deal with them, cause resentment.
8. Make sure your team know the opening hours of any laboratory or external clinical services you use. Again, send this via your urgent news feature so you can check that everyone has got the message.
9. Make sure you thank your staff for hard work and difficult shifts – turn up with a plate of mince pies and award team bonus awards through Training-Progress.
10. Remember to relax. If your business is well prepared then you can enjoy your time off – ready to return refreshed in the New Year.
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