Seize the day with the ‘7 C’s of chiropractic success’ to create your own modern chiropractic success story
This article has one singular purpose. That purpose is to give you the exact tools you need to rise, in practice and in life, and write your own chiropractic success story.
Chart your course to “Navigate the Seas/C’s” to your full chiropractic potential. It comes down to your ability to communicate what you are and what you do in the shortest amount of words possible — communicating how you as “The Doctor” are best prepared to treat the patient in front of you and why you can base that on science and facts.
Do not be fooled. You are being judged. From the moment your patient is introduced to you and, yes, even before they meet you. If you are “game-ready” and understand that you get only one chance as a chiropractor to potentially save your patient from dangerous opioid drugs, risky epidural injections and often unnecessary surgeries, then let us begin.
Here are the Seven C’s:
Clarity for your chiropractic success story
Your verbiage must be exacting. Record your patient communication. Then ask yourself, “Can I have responded in a cleaner, clearer, more concise way?” Here is the key. Start asking better questions of your patients.
Do not just rely on the classic “O.P.Q.R.S.T.” method of patient consultation. Be creative. Engage and dial into PTC (present-time consciousness). What is my favorite question to ask a patient? Here it is: “Ms. Jones. Have you been under any real stress lately”?
You would be shocked what you hear from patients after you ask this vital question.
This comes down to one simple thing. The patient “must know how much you care before they care how much you know.” It is been said that “intellectual bonding is good; however, emotional bonding is great.”
How do you achieve this? Simple. There is an old saying that “like favors like.” Have abundant video patient testimonials on your website. Patients instinctively know who can speak from the heart and will connect with patients who may have been dealing with a similar health problem.
Once patients know they are not alone and that you have positioned yourself as a “go-to specialist,” then a great doctor-patient relationship can begin.
It has been said that “patients want a doctor who’s friendly, not a friend for a doctor.” Why? It comes down to the fact that as their doctor you must take control.
In lieu of a typical chiropractic monologue upon meeting a new patient, you must create a dialogue. Upon asking a patient a question, your response should simply be two words: “I understand.” Avoid the “C words” of correct and cure. Instead, utilize the “C words” control and contain.
You are the captain of your ship and the commander of your practice when it comes to writing your chiropractic success story. Patients crave control, especially when done with the heartfelt desire of you as the doctor and your team to help them. That is how you create momentum.
The “capture” is the entry point for the new patient in your practice. When done correctly, it is a seamless transition. When it is not done correctly, then you have work to do.
The biggest mistake a chiropractor makes when it comes to the capture can be addressed with one simple question: How familiar is the new patient with who you are, what your specialty is, and why you are positioned above and beyond other doctors as the best doctor for that individual patient?
If the first time a new patient hears you or sees you is in person in your clinic, then that is a mistake. Direct all new patients to your website. Ask them on the phone if they have visited your website. Direct them to specific videos and pages on the website. It is there where a patient often first sees you, hears you and gets excited as to when they can be scheduled to see you. You can even send a radio interview of the doctor to the new patient, which they are encouraged to listen to prior to meeting you. We call this the “heavy lifting,” and when the heavy lifting is done up front, the table is now set for…
The conversion is the bridge between the patients’ understanding of what you do and the transition to the facts. You see that many patients have a preconceived idea of how few visits or what level of treatments they will need.
Sometimes they are correct — however, when treatment is based upon the facts, which include a proper history, a thorough examination and the appropriate and medically-necessary diagnostic tests (i.e. X-rays, MRIs, etc.), then and only then can you “prescribe” (not recommend) the appropriate treatment plan a patient will require.
When communicated properly, the conversion takes all the facts, findings, subjective and objective data and presents it to the patient in a clear, clean, concise way, as well as communicates the consequences of not starting treatment now (i.e., further degeneration, progression of damage, response to treatment, possibly increased costs, etc.). The conversion then sets the stage for the…
The close is a fancy way to simply say “the financial.” When done properly it will be a seamless transition for the patient to initiate care and to have the business part of this process behind them. When not done properly, it can often delay and even prevent a patient from starting treatment in your office.
One of the best ways to handle the close properly is to utilize the right forms. You can utilize a single sheet with big, bold, easy-to-read fonts that outline exactly everything that the patient will be receiving as well as the three options for payment. These include cash, insurance and cash, and patient financing.
You see patients will often sense value. Patients will pay for treatment often, even up front, if they know that what you do is specific, unique and specialized to their individual situation. They will readily pay for care when they know your individual level of training is regarded as being at the top of your profession.
When they know the treatment you provide is a cost-effective option and can save them from extensive medical costs in the future by addressing the problem right now, then as we say, that’s “The Big Idea.” This finally leads to possibly the most important part of this process….
Some are born with it, most must learn it, but it is confidence that patients want more than anything else in their doctor. Confidence is communicated through your staff, your office aesthetics, your energy, your gleam, your dress, your tonality, your pep in your step, and lastly your results.
The secret is to always under-promise and over-deliver your patients.
Confidence is what makes you magnetic. Confidence is why a patient will choose you after driving past 100 doctors to get to you. Confidence is the single most important quality any individual can have in any relationship. Confidence is earned, and as it was said in the movie Jerry Maguire, “You had me at hello” — that is how the best long-term doctor-patient relationships are rooted.
As much as you believe that you chose to be a chiropractor, the reality is the profession chose you. Now what are you prepared to do to put your best foot forward, raise your game, write your chiropractic success story, and fulfill your potential to be the chiropractor of your dreams?
Your patients, your team, your family and your peers thank you for your commitment to excellence. The world is waiting for your best you. Follow the Seven C’s, navigate the chiropractic seas to success, and seize the day.
Perry Bard, DC, is co-CEO and president of DISC Centers of America, the largest group of nonsurgical spinal decompression centers in the world. A 1986 graduate of Life College, he is a state and chiropractic university CEU national lecturer. He serves as co-chairman of The International DISC Education Association (IDEA). He can be reached at 888-990-9660, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or at TheChiroEvent.com.