5 Ideas to Enhance Your Physician Relations Success in 2017

By: Kriss Barlow, RN, MBA | kbarlow@barlowmccarthy.com

Cue the party hats, confetti and one more glass of bubbly…  the new year is here and with it, the warm glow and anticipation of what’s to come. One of many things I love about my role is the opportunity to watch how talented people embrace the new year. It’s that time of year when we each get to consider how we want the year ahead to turn out and where we’d like to end up in our professional growth. Here are five suggestions that may make your party at the end of 2017 even better!

  1. It’s the year of YOU, set a success goal

Take the time to write a personal goal or two that you would like to achieve in the next year. Once it’s written, put it in a place where you’ll see it on a regular basis. Maybe you put it on bright paper or you laminate it. Put it inside your desk drawer or inside your car door pocket or inside your sock drawer at home. The point is, it should be some place where you’ll see it and be reminded.

Once it’s in writing, map out your plan to get there on a calendar. Take advantage of your January motivation to look at what it will take to attain your goal and use a calendar to define your progression. For example, if I want to earn more referrals to our cardiologists from family medicine doctors in 2017, each month may have a specific action that you call out in your calendar in advance.

  1. Cultivate inspiration

Many professions have frequent team-involved conversations creating opportunity for daily learning from others. This role is interactive, but idea sharing in the field visit is the exception. Reps are often alone with the audience and there is a great deal of “alone time” driving, waiting and waiting some more. I find my best inspiration and new ideas from people. Find someone who helps you consider new approaches or learn new things about the organization and its internal stakeholders. The right person for you may not be looking for this relationship so you’ll need to initiate.

  1. Find the right limb, go out on it

The best idea to support a doctor with growth is likely one that none of us have thought of yet. Find new ways to make a connection or to add value to a practice. Test a new approach to get internal traction with that individual who never returns your call. If you’ve tried the same approach over and over and it has not worked yet, then try a new approach. Change might be just what you need to feel better personally and get the result you want professionally.

  1. Flavor of the year, positivity

Vow to let the cycle of complaints be a 2016 action that does not carry into 2017. Naysayers can make you crazy, but why should they control your mood? If you are in a situation that is emotionally draining, surround yourself with people, processes and messages that fortify your spirit.  This job is tough and we all need to be valued and have a good belly laugh now and again. Find a way to take care of you and feed your needs in a positive way.

  1. Do work!

Hard work does not always get you the result you want, but it sure helps. It’s the right blend of working hard and working smart. Assuming you have a good plan, you are the right talent, and you have a deliverable that deserves to grow, throw yourself at the job with all you’ve got. As you do, assess your impact, evaluate how you feel, consider next steps and really evaluate what seems to help you progress your efforts.

What do you think?  I hope at least one of the five gave you some ideas as you consider 2017.  Weigh in and let me know what you are hoping to achieve to make 2017 a fabulous year at work.

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