Entrepreneurship in Healthcare Part 2: Grow Through Focusing on Core Competencies

Entrepreneurship in Healthcare Part 2: Grow Through Focusing on Core Competencies

May 30, 2024 | Practice Management

It’s common for a healthcare practice owner to think it’s best to personally handle every aspect of the practice to ensure quality care and growth. This common assumption may be the main thing holding you back from taking your practice to the next level.  Growth-oriented clinicians take a hard look at the numerous tasks that demand their time and attention to match business demands with their core competencies.

Are you assessing important aspects of your practice and putting your time and efforts into the tasks that only you can do? 

Thinking like a CEO

As a healthcare provider, you may not consider yourself a CEO, but the decisions you make as the leader of your practice can set you up for long term success. Successful CEOs know forming the right team is essential to building a strong business.   And sometimes assembling the right mix of employees, technology, and resources involves third-party partners who are experts in their core competencies.

The Right Strategic Partner – A Smart Move to Grow Your Practice

Your practice can grow even while you focus on patients and lower the stressors, expenses, and hassles of running your practice.  In the coming year, strategic partnerships are key for healthcare practices struggling to meet rapidly growing patient demand while dealing with the decline in employee reliability and the job market applicant pool.

This is only a short list of the numerous advantages resulting from finding the right third-party partners:

  1. Maximize your most precious resource – your time!

Take inventory of your core competencies – the skills, abilities, and passions that matter most to you – and consider the time you spend not working in those areas.  Pouring your time, money, and energy into delivering quality patient care is a full-time effort.  Offloading activities not directly related to your core competencies gives you more time to treat patients, manage your practice, and grow your business.  This in turn leads to more positive patient outcomes, and more patient referrals.

  1. Improved cash flow management

Adding new technology or modalities to offer patients more complete care uses valuable resources, especially time and money. Those investments can be smart growth opportunities for your practice, but the impact of tying up cash must be carefully considered. 

One example is the carrying costs for supplement inventory, where you may experience slow-selling products, high shipping costs, product expiration, and shrinkage, all while cash is locked up in inventory that cannot be leveraged elsewhere.

  1. Effortless scalability

As your practice grows, the need for additional support increases.  Strategic partners can help you scale your practice without proportionally increasing your expenses. 

If you’re selling supplements out of your office or running your own supplement fulfillment, as your practice grows, so does the need for more resources of time, labor and money. With the right partner, outsourcing supplement fulfillment alleviates this burden, allowing you to easily scale with almost no impact.

  1. Better features and choices

Trusted third-party partners bring flexibility and choices you may not have capacity to offer yourself in a cost-effective manner.  This provides additional value to your patients and gives them opportunities to monitor or manage their own care and be more adherent to your protocols and health regimens.

If you sell nutritional supplements, you’ll want a dispensary partner with an extensive breadth of high-quality brands and products so you have access to what you need, when you need it, instead of playing the inventory guessing game. This also relieves an implicit pressure some providers feel to sell down existing inventory before it expires.  Patients will appreciate the ease of ordering any time as well as other features such as an Auto Ship program, product notifications, and helpful customer service.

Risks and What to Ask

Using a third-party service provider comes with risks.  Here are some potential pitfalls and ways to mitigate your risk.

  1. Loss of control

Handing over control of certain aspects of your practice to a third party can be stressful. When researching a third party, make sure you’re comfortable with how the patient relationship and interactions are handled and what constraints exist on communication and marketing to your patients without your knowledge or input.  Find out how you can track patient activity as well as what processes and communication are in place when things don’t go right.  You’ll want a partner that is working with you as your back-office staff would – always keeping you in the loop.

  1. Representing your “brand” and shared values

The third-party partner you choose will be a reflection of you and your practice, or your “brand”.  Bad service or quality from a partner may reflect poorly on you.   Therefore, choose a partner who cares about your patients as much as you do, and is partnering with you to support your brand, not detract from it.

Interview partners to find a team that complements your practice, and trust your gut!  When you interact with a third-party service, are they treating you how you’d want your patients to be treated?  How well do they seem to understand your needs and the needs of your patients? Do they seem genuinely interested in driving positive patient outcomes, or do they seem primarily motivated to “close the deal” and grow their own sales? 

  1. The fine print

There’s a balance to seek between making an informed decision and analysis paralysis.  You don’t have to get hung up on every detail, but make sure you understand the things that are most important to you.  

For supplement sales, ask essential questions such as:  Who pays for Auto Ship, credit card processing fees, and free shipping on qualifying orders? How is sales tax handled?  How are returns and refunds handled?  Will the partner keep you in the loop when issues arise?  How often are products out of stock?  What order accuracy rate does the company regularly achieve?

  1. Getting support

In our fast-paced world, no one has time to sift through help pages or interact with a “dumb” chatbot.  Ask a third-party company what communication methods are available, including speaking to a live person.  Take notice of whether you are getting prompt, thorough, and helpful responses when you interact with the company…

By assessing your core competencies and outsourcing elements of your practice that fall outside that list, you’ll be set to grow your practice while still offering exceptional care to your patients.  Take your healthcare practice to the next level with reliable, experienced partners.

About Doctors Supplement Store

As a leader in the functional and integrative health industry since 2010, Doctors Supplement Store (DSS) offers the kind of personal attention that’s rare these days. In running online supplement dispensaries for healthcare providers, DSS makes it easier to focus on improving patient outcomes and growing your practice. Customers appreciate working with our friendly, enthusiastic and knowledgeable team. Click here to get started today!