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Friday, October 16, 2020

How 5-Minutes Could Save You $75K in Annual Cash Flow



Every medical business office knows that it takes time and energy to complete the claims collection process. You have to login to each portal, or call every insurance in order to get an update on your claims. Then, you have to record all of the updates so that during your next meeting with the rest of the business office you are able to present the status of the accounts receivable (AR). 

If you are like most medical billers, your responsibilities include:

Enriching
  • Solving resident or resident’s family problems
  • Ensuring the care and safety of your residents
  • Ensuring the financial health of your skilled nursing facility
Mundane
  • Entering Charges
  • Posting Payments
  • Submitting claims
  • Claim Status Follow-Ups
  • Corrections/Denial Management
  • Monthly finance meetings
  • Month End Close
As such, it is likely that you must schedule your follow-ups around these other responsibilities. In addition, if you are like most billers then your primary focus is addressing the resident’s concerns. This means that you push your follow-ups until you have posted the remits or before the next month end close.

Now, let us say you have planned to follow-up on the claims for next Tuesday. You wake up, head into the office, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, sit down at your desk, download aging report, pull up your notes and begin to plan your follow-ups. 

You decide that you will be checking your Medicare claims first. Just as you are about to log in to the portal your MDS coordinator walks in and needs your help. For the next thirty minutes, you attend to their needs. 

You get back to your desk, and your coffee is cold. You have to go heat it up. You sit back down and log in to the Medicare portal. You enter in the first member number and dates of service. You locate the claim and start to record the status. The phone rings – it is a resident’s family and they need your help with understanding their statement. For the next sixty minutes, you review their questions and relieve their concerns.

Again, you sit back down and because of the inactivity, you need to log back into the Medicare portal. In addition, your meeting with the therapy department starts in the next thirty minutes. You know that you need to get your notes updated but you do not have enough time to login, check each claim, record the statuses before the meeting begins. Now you are in business office limbo.

You have your meeting and decide to resume your updates. You log back into the portal, and you forgot to record the first update from earlier in the morning. You re-record your notes. You repeat this over the next several minutes. The phone rings – again. Another family and another fire to put out. 

By the time you finish this call, a pop-up appears on your screen. It is the reminder that the finance meeting is tomorrow. You need to have updated notes ready for tomorrow’s meeting. You need to look prepared for your presentation. 

Throughout the day more distractions and disruptions occur until it is time to go back home. You realize you will not be prepared. You need a glass of wine (I would recommend a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon, 2014 was a great year) in order to relieve your stress and frustration.

What I have described is the typical business office manager/biller’s day. When compounded, the business office follows the path of disruption --> stress --> confusion and/or frustration. The result – the facility’s accounts receivable grows until it is no longer collectable and you must write off the balance.

If you are a biller, business office manager or an administrator then you deserve a solution that will help you eliminate disruptions, prevent your AR from growing and allow you to stay focused on your more fulfilling responsibilities. 

As you read this article, I want you to imagine still being able to drink that glass of wine – not in frustration but in relaxation. Specifically, I want to share with you the benefits of our application, which allows you to bypass distractions and never have to worry about your AR growing again. 

REVEX Application

The REVEX application is a cloud-based software that allows for seamless communication between billers, payers and the business office. This means you have a simple and interactive AR portal that allows you to retrieve claim status information in one location – rather than having to synthesize the information across multiple platforms and billers. That is what makes our application unique; it integrates the complexity of automation with the reliability and talents of skilled medical billers.

First, we have over thirty billers on staff to address specific payers. This allows us to help you fix claims should the need arise. 

Second, we incorporate hyper-automation into the claim follow-ups. The hyper-automation design reduces the burden of mundane and repetitive tasks such as logging into a portal, updating notes and so on [1].

By blending these two items together, we are able to streamline the follow-up process, which allows our team (and customers) to focus on their core responsibilities.

How we use it to tackle the mundane

Most billers underestimate the actual time it takes to check on claims, correct claims and document their follow-ups. In many instances, very few of us (myself included) have ever really taken the time to record how long it takes to flip between screens, save notes, etc.

Although flipping through screens may only take a few seconds – these seconds build up over time. If you have one hundred claims you need to update then you may budget about two hours to check the status and update your notes. Add in all of the disruptions and those two hours are spreading out throughout the day. 

Therefore, we decided to design our hyper-automation program ROXY (we named her ROXY – because of how she ROCKS at updating claim statuses) to take on the preliminary follow-ups.

For example, let us say we have one hundred claims to check with Medicaid. Once I hit the “run update” ROXY will review the corresponding notes, check the claims and record a new note – all in a few minutes. So, instead of me spending anywhere between sixty to ninety minutes checking on these claims ROXY achieves this in a fraction of the time.

The Advantages of Hyper-Automation

The first advantage of hyper-automation is that it increases the accuracy of the follow-Ups. Once you define the steps, ROXY must follow each of them in order to complete the updates. This means that each account will be updated exactly the same way and reflect the information available in the portal. 

  • For example, every claim reported in the PAID status on the insurance portal contains a unique claim number and EFT number. These numbers can be fifteen digits long. ROXY will make sure each digit is transposed exactly as it is in the portal.
Additionally, ROXY has a database of automated responses. This means the notes will be free from typos and clerical errors and guarantees the information recorded in the notes will match the information from the portal.

Likewise, ROXY has a built-in database of notes to use based on the situation. For example, if a claim denies then ROXY’s note will be different from a claim in the PAID or PENDING status. This means that regardless of the day or time of the update you can be sure your notes reflect the exact claim status. 

  • For example, if the Medicare portal indicates a claim is being denied for invalid qualifying hospital stay date then ROXY will add the built-in response (Next Step – Claim denied for invalid QHSD. Need to double check with Admissions/Medical records for hospital dates).

Fourth, hyper-automation allows you to continue working on your other responsibilities. As we mentioned previously, as a medical biller you have other responsibilities and these usually conflict with the time needed to complete the updates. While ROXY runs through the updates, you can focus on your more fulfilling responsibilities – like addressing resident questions, entering payments or leading meetings with the finance committee. 

Why Automation is Critical to the Follow-Up Process

Did you know that 5% of claims, on average, are denied each month? Likewise, did you know that most skilled nursing facilities will write-off about 1-3% of their accounts receivable each year because of these monthly denials[2]? As an example, if a facility has $210,000 in monthly charges this means a facility will plan to write-off $75,000 by the end of the year.

The primary reason for the write-offs boil down to one critical component – not having time to correct or resubmit claims. 
The standard work-month in skilled nursing is as follows:

  • By the second business Day – submit Monthly Medicaid Claims
  • By the fifth business day – submit the Part-A and Part-B claims
  • By the tenth business day – complete payment posting and month end close.

As a result, the typical business office manager usually will dedicate a few days to follow-ups. Generally, these follow-ups will take place right around month end close or after they post payments to their patient management system.

The problem; however, is that by waiting until they have posted the payments they are missing the opportunity to address the claims earlier in the payment schedule.  In addition, the new month’s billing cycle will be starting on top of trying to address any of these denials. 

With hyper-automation, and the REVEX application, you are able to run multiple updates throughout each month to pinpoint the claims that you need to address. This will allow you to correct or resubmit claims earlier and prevent your AR from rolling over month-to-month. Imagine having an extra $6000 each month. 

How does life look like after hyper-automation?

You are happier! All kidding aside, your life will include a cleaner AR report. Instead of waiting until the remittances are posted you will be able to run an update and re-work the claims earlier in the process. This will allow you to prevent unnecessary write-offs for untimely filing.

You will have less frustration. Instead of being pulled in multiple directions and unable to maintain focus you will be able to reinstall direction to your workflow. All you need to do is allow REVEX to complete the status updates, and complete the next steps on any denied claims. You can even have REVEX fix any denied claims for even more maximized efficiency.

You will have a more efficient and accurate process. Instead of manually checking each claim, flipping through multiple screens and recording your notes one at a time you are now able to simply log in to the REVEX application and read your status updates.

In sum, REVEX supported through the careful blend of automation and skilled billers will allow you to have clarity in the next steps you need to take to keep the AR as clean as possible. All it takes is five minutes – you click update, and five minutes later, you can have all of your accounts updated. With your accounts automatically updated you can save $75K in write-offs and endless headaches. 

Please feel free to comment your questions!

Also, don’t forget to subscribe for email updates right above this article!

Thanks so much for reading!


[1] https://www.investopedia.com/terms/r/robotic-process-automation-rpa.asp 
[2] https://managemypractice.com/the-right-way-to-do-write-offs/ 

Thursday, September 24, 2020

The 7-Steps You Need to Take to Achieve Your Goals!


 The 7-Steps You Need to Take to Achieve Your Goals!

Have you ever set a goal that you didn’t achieve? Have you ever imagined a better future but weren’t sure how to get there? Whether you have professional or personal goals, all of us have set out to improve our livelihoods.

The real problem; however, is that many of us have a hard time in setting proper goals and taking the actions needed to achieve them.

If you struggle with defining proper goals or need a framework to help align your goals, then continue reading today’s blog. I’ll be sharing with you 7-steps you can take to develop your goal achievement process.

As you read today’s blog, I invite you to imagine how successful you want to be. In fact, by the end of the blog, my goal for you is that you grab some paper, a pen, sit at a desk and begin drafting the future you. 

1. Assess Your Current Reality.

The first step to setting your goals is to assess your current reality. This step involves being honest with yourself and thinking internally about how you work and learn best. The first set of questions you should ask are what are my strengths and weaknesses. As you start to sift through what you do well you should begin to see how your strengths deliver things that bring people value [3]. 

Additionally, you should assess your reality by addressing these questions:

  • What are your what current level of skills?
  • What are three of your core responsibilities [2] ?
  • Is my organization ready for change [2]?
  • What resources are currently available?

[1] The answers to those questions will help you identify areas you either need to address or help explore opportunities that improve your well-being. Likewise, they will help you consider where you fit within those trends and how you can take them to address your customer’s (or your boss’s) needs and expectations.

As you finish this step, your objective should begin developing a plan that expands on your strengths and improves on your weaknesses.

2. Visualize the Future You Want to Create.

One of the best ways to set goals is to imagine what life looks like after you achieve those goals. Goal setting requires you to make choices based on how best to use your existing resources. In addition, it requires you to consider the future and develop strategies to help you achieve the future you want for yourself [3].

Several articles, sermons, and discussions have alluded to having the “rocking chair” moment. This is the moment where you are outside on a nice warm summer day, sipping lemonade, in your rocking chair and looking back on all of your accomplishments.

It’s where we all want to be. To know that we have done well and that because of our focus we were able to achieve our goals and dreams.

That said you would want to take the trends you found in our first point and apply them to building your plan and how you will create a positive outcome. Look at the bigger picture to understand what you are trying to achieve [4].

In this step, what’s important to remember is that you should be creative and use your imagination. You need to take risks in this step. You should not be burdened by the need of guarantees and safety. More importantly, you’ll want to picture what you’d see if you were successful in advancing in all three of your core responsibilities [2].

3. Set Your Goals.

Once you know where you want to be you’ll be ready to set the goals that help you get to your “rocking chair” moment. One of the most commonly use goal-setting practices is the SMART method. This method stands for (S)pecific, (M)easurable, (A)chievable, (R)elevant, and (T)ime Bound [5]

First, you want your goals to be specific. You should know exactly what you want to accomplish, why the goal is important and what resources are involved. An example of a specific goal might be I want to reduce accounts receivable by 10% within the next 60-days.

  • You should set about 3-5 goals that will guide your performance throughout the year.
  • Each goal should feed into one another and help you achieve your larger goals.

Second, you want the goals to be measurable. You need to have a way to track your progress and be able to ask yourself how you know accomplished your goal(s). Assessing your goals (which we will cover later on in this blog) are important because they help you stay focused and motivated, as you get closer to achieving your goal.

Third, the goals should be achievable, realistic and attainable. In medical billing, all too of often our customers (and billers) will set goals that may not be as realistic as they may sound. For example, they may set goals with the intent to “get the promotion.” I have fallen in this trap before of setting un-attainable goals. What makes “getting the promotion” un-attainable is that there are factors behind our control that can prevent achieving this. Instead, our goals should be “I am going to get the experience to be considered for that promotion [5]

Next, the goals must be relevant and align with matters most to you. As you evaluate the goals, you should be asking whether they seem worthwhile, if it’s the right time, and is it applicable to your current situation. 

Finally, your goals should be time bound. You need to assign specific dates, deadlines or timeframes you are looking to take specific actions. For example, the timetables should be set weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc. 

4. Determine the Steps Needed to Achieve Your Goals.

Now that you have set your goals, you need to develop your action plan and strategy. This plan will include the specific actions you need to take to achieve results. Remember, this should be a reference guide and not a systematic project plan [2]. Your plan should consider how you’ll use key projects or processes to achieve your goals.

First, you will take your goals and organize them based on their deadlines and how they contribute to your dream life. For example, if your goal is to reduce your billing office’s accounts receivable then you can organize how you follow-up based on when claims will approach timely filing and which accounts can be addressed later.

As you develop your plan, you will want to consider all of the challenges you might face along the way. This will help you understand how to manage your time and what resources you will use to fulfill your goals [4].

5. Assign an Appropriate Timeline.

The next step to achieving your goals is making sure you assign an appropriate timeline. Specifically, you will want to evaluate how quickly you can tackle your goals. What makes this step important is that it will help you stay focused and accountable to achieving your goals.

As we discussed in Step #4 (above), you need to organize your actions in order of importance. This will give you the best chance in advancing your goals along your timeline.

Therefore, in this step, you will want to be commit to the time you plan to invest in each activity and when you expect to see results. Furthermore, you will need to organize 

You should be dedicate another portion of your time to evaluating and reflecting on your progress. I’ll cover this more in-depth in the next section.

6. Review your progress.

The sixth step in achieving your goals is reviewing your progress. As you work through your goals, you should routinely review your progress. You’ve been working hard and now you need to assess how well you are doing. This step is important because it helps validate your strategy while offering insights on whether you are on track. 

As you and I review our goals, it is important to reward yourself along the way. For example, if you achieve one of your milestones then go out and get a bowl of ice cream. 

Another great way to review your progress is to remember why you are working so hard in the first place. One of the best suggestions I was given was to write down your goals and review them daily. Every morning I will look over my goals and action plan to ensure that I’m still on track to fulfill my weekly, monthly or yearly goals.

One of my close friends is great at framing reminders in the “remember when life was tough” perspective. This constant feedback helps me get right back on schedule and stay focused on getting through my goals.

7. Revise Your Plans.

The final step is to revise your plans. In the step above (Step #6 – Review your progress), we discussed that you need to review how well you are doing. As you assess yourself, you can re-evaluate approach and if those actions still make sense [1].  

After you have evaluated you can back off the goals that are going to be a stretch to achieve and add new goals that are more attainable. Again, these goals should still align with your vision and be adjusted as needed. 

In conclusion, set attainable goals and stay committed to your plan. When you stay committed, you will be able to achieve your rocking chain moment and enjoy a more fulfilling life. 


Please feel free to comment your questions or goals you have for yourself!

Also, don’t forget to subscribe for email updates right above this article!

Thanks so much for reading!












[1] (https://benefitsbridge.unitedconcordia.com/4-tips-on-setting-performance-goals-in-the-workplace/_ )

[2] https://www.forbes.com/sites/hvmacarthur/2019/02/07/how-to-set-goals-that-actually-work/#3b4ef36a48e3 

[3] https://the-happy-manager.com/articles/goal-setting-in-the-workplace/ 

[4] https://engagedly.com/7-steps-to-setting-workplace-goals-and-making-them-happen/

[5] https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/smart-goals.htm 

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Tired of Turnover? Here are 3-Ways on Keeping Your Team!

 Tired of Turnover? Here’s How to Keep Your Team!


Are you tired of hiring employees just for them to turnaround 6 months to a year later and quit? Employee turnover is a vicious cycle of hiring, training, and replacing which I know you and your company’s bottom line are tired of.  What have you tried to break this cycle?  Last week's blog discussed How to Hire your Forever Team, now we would love to help you KEEP them!

I hope you enjoy reading my blog and feel free to comment any questions or additions you may have to the content!


Hire for Forever


The hiring process is crucial in building a team that will stick around.  When it comes to hiring a forever team, you need to have a solid team structure, develop your company culture, consider outsourcing vs in house options, establish a hiring structure, know what you want, be fair & consistent, and you MUST transition the new hire in the best way.  Check out last week’s blog, 6 Steps to Hiring Your Forever Team, for a deeper dive into overhauling your hiring process to lower turnover!


Aside from revamping your hiring process, another way to ensure your prospects are a great fit for your team is to include current employees in the interview process.  Not only does this give you a chance to see how the prospect interacts with future coworkers, but it also gives them the opportunity to meet the great people already working in your office.  With multiple people in the workplace meeting potential hires, you will also learn more about the prospect from varying points of view.


Develop Great Management


A company’s most direct influence with employees is through their managers.  The managers oversee hiring, training, conflict resolution, project organization, and so on.  They are very hands on with employees which is why some of the top reasons employees leave companies is due to their interactions with management.  Training management to retain employees is very important to creating your forever team and will also save you time and money in the long run (hiring, training, hassle, etc.)


When it comes to developing great management, you must train supervisors to instill respect, responsibility, and individuality in their employees.  Respect ensures the employees are spoken to and treated like esteemed assets to the company.  When employees feel valued and seen by higher ups, they are much more likely to stay with a company.  When a manager gives their employees some autonomy and responsibility, rather than micromanaging them, employees feel less pressure and are apt to be more productive. 


Great management makes certain that their employees are heard.  One way to practice this is to survey employees anonymously, which eliminates any threat to their person or position in their eyes.  Personally, I favor the idea of “making rounds” through your department.  This concept is similar to how doctors or nurses make rounds to check on patients, rather it is a manager walking around the office in a more casual approach.  When a manager walks around the office to chat with employees in a more casual manner, they may come across more honest feedback, nonverbal responses, and simple observations.  This can be crucial in recognizing the needs and happiness of your employees to make adjustments and keep them on board longer.  


Great management also needs to focus on the aspect of team morale by holding employees responsible in a consistent manner.  Low performers need to be held accountable and treated differently than high performers.  This is not to be taken in a negative way, but acknowledging those that are high performers and treating them with a bit more regard while the low performers get more resources and hands on help will help employees feel recognized and cared about.  This will also boost performance because focus on employees needs is where it should be. 


Lastly, make work/life balance a priority in your management style.  Another major reason employees will leave a position with a company is because they are feeling burnt out.  When you give employees time with their families, adequate days off, and some leeway in leaving work if their kid is sick or something comes up- you better believe they will pay it back with loyalty.


Initiatives. Enough Said.


In psychology, operant conditioning is a method which utilizes rewards and/or punishments to associate with desired behaviors.  You may have implemented operant conditioning if you were potty training a puppy at one point, when they go potty in the house, some people rub their nose in it and say “bad dog.”  When the puppy goes potty outside, you reward them with a treat and say “good dog.” Now, I don’t mean to compare your employees to puppies, even if they are just as cute (lol), but a similar method of operant conditioning can be applied in the workplace- incentives.  


Rather than giving employees cookies when they do a great job on a project or task, reward them with bonuses for reaching certain goals and/or milestones.  Bonuses can be anything from gift cards, to paid time off, or even a free lunch.  By offering incentives, you are not only rewarding your employee for great behavior, but also giving them some control of the benefits they receive.  This can be a great motivator for productivity in the workplace, especially if some of your employees are competitive.  


If you do want to consider giving your employees more time off work, either to help maintain burnout or as an incentive, consider implementing a plan for them not to fall behind.  At REVEX, we offer a non-committal subscription service where we can be a healthcare facility’s “back-up.”  We get setup with the facilities medical billing programs in three simple steps, after this, we are available for them on a pay-as-you-go basis to help cover any employees that are out of office.  This is a great option to keep your employees are worry-free when their off and come back all caught up on their responsibilities!


In conclusion, invest in your employees.  Invest in making your processes effective, invest in making management optimal, and invest in your employees.  When your employees are happy, taken care of, and heard they will be loyal and work hard for you.  Yes, this does mean spending some money and time with new processes and benefits, but when it comes to bottom line you will be saving money by lowering turnover.  It is worth it.

Thanks so much for reading!

P.S. Remember to subscribe for email updates right above this article!


Thursday, August 20, 2020

6 Steps to Hiring Your Forever Team


Are you ready to create a team that is going to work hard and stick around for the long haul? Do you want to work with dynamic, hardworking people every day? Have you reevaluated your hiring and retention processes lately? These processes might just be the key to your “dream team”!

If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, it may be time to sit down and revamp how you hire to get the most optimal team together for your company.  Let us help you find your FOREVER team with these 6 considerations!


 1)     Establish Team Structure & Company Culture 

When it comes to hiring your forever team, having company culture and a team structure in place are crucial.  An established team structure ensures there is a hierarchy in place and minimalizes unnecessary problems like power struggles and chain of command confusion.  The team structure also guarantees a cohesive workflow amongst team members where everyone understands their roles and responsibilities.[1] 

Company culture is important for establishing a forever team because it ensures everyone’s core values are inline not only with one another, but with the company as well.  The company culture sets the tone for respect, office norms, and expectations in the workplace.  Key steps to establishing company culture are:

1-     Define or Re-define your company’s mission statement and core values

2-     Understand and embrace diversity

3-     Show care for employees

4-     Consistency in practices

For more tips and explanations on establishing company culture, please check out REVEX’s blog, 5 Ways to Revamp Communication in Your Workplace!


2)     Consider Outsourcing and In-house Options

It is important to contemplate all options when you are beginning to expand your team.  This means considering hiring a third-party company for either staffing your new team or to take on the tasks of the position you need fulfilled.[5]  You must also consider in-house options such as promoting employees to fill positions or combining/distributing the tasks of the position you need filled amongst employees already in the company.[5]   

When it comes to outsourcing, you must consider utilizing a staffing agency depending on the position you need filled.  If you have a position that is high-turnover, this may be a feasible option so your valuable time is not spent on interviews for a position you know you will just continue to refill in the future.  However, high turnover positions are not great for a company when it comes to return on investment, so putting in effort to invest in a long-term employee is well worth it.  Stay tuned for our blog next week on lowering employee turnover where we will expand on this topic!

Outsourcing a third-party company may also be valuable to fill a position due to labor costs, efficiency, and expertise.  For example, if you were to outsource your medical billing needs, rather than hire an on-site biller, you could save money on labor, benefits, turnover, and human error.  Outsourced companies, like REVEX, often have experts on hand and automate many of their processes to lower the room for errors.  There is also opportunity to save money on PTO, benefits, workman’s comp, and so on because the third-party company is managing its own employees.  Check out our blog, In-House or Out-House? …I Mean, Outsource!, for more benefits on both hiring in-house and outsourcing!

 

3)     Establish A Hiring Process

The structure behind a company’s hiring process can make or break how well the hiring committee can read a candidate’s potential fit into a company.  A multi-step interview process that fosters a high-touch rapport, dynamic questions, and multiple people on the hiring committee has proven to be very successful when it comes to hiring a forever employee.[3]

For example, Pro Athlete Inc., is an ecommerce company which sells baseball gear online, with only around 50 or so employees, they compete with big names in the sporting goods industry.  Pro Athlete Inc. employs a 10-step interview process which includes an aptitude test, video interview submission, video-conference interview, in-person interviews, task challenge, hiring committee meeting, and more.  They do this to ensure they get a well-rounded understanding of the person.  With so many different methods of communicating with their candidates, Pro Athlete Inc. makes certain they can recognize the candidates strengths incase they communicate more effectively through various methods.  This is an extremely thorough hiring process and because of it, Pro Athlete Inc. has an extremely low turnover rate and is incredibly competitive in the labor market.

As I was researching the hiring process and best ways to find the optimal employee for a position, there was one point that popped up no matter what article I read.  HIRE FOR ATTITUDE, CHEMISTRY, & POTENTIONAL OVER APTITUDE.[2]  Obviously, some job position are going to require a certain level of knowledge or training, but for the most part, if a person meets the basic requirements, their attitude, chemistry, and potential are going to carry them much further than someone who exceeds the requirements but is not a good personality fit.  An employee who can be a team player, communicate effectively and be coached is extremely valuable to the growth of a company.

There are also some other small things that may help you to get better insight into candidates during interviews such as assigning them a job-related task, asking very open-ended questions, and asking about their passion.  Sometimes questions not directly related to the job position can give understanding to the thought process of the candidate in a more veiled manner.[4]


4)     Know What You Want

Flexibility in the hiring process is a must because as you meet candidates, they may express qualities you find valuable that were not necessarily on your “must-haves” list.  However, it is necessary to understand what you want out of a new employee.  If you have specific qualifications such as experience, education, and characteristics then have a checklist of important qualities as well as deal-breakers.[5]  This will help you to not forget some key elements that may get lost in the interview process, help you keep your candidates straight, and also help you to prioritize what you are looking for in a candidate.  Priorities are important when hiring because you will have different applicants with differing qualities and you need to know which are most important to your team.  You can’t just go into the interview all Willy-Nilly!


5)     Be Fair & Maintain Consistency

Be fair in the job description you are posting.  Many times, employers will try to mislead employees with a job description because they are having are hard time hiring for that position and want it to seem more appealing to applicants.[2]  Although they will get a higher turnout, they will also have higher turnover because the individual hired was misled into a position they did not want.  This also diminishes trust in the employer immediately.

Be sure to post an accurate job description, even though some duties may not seem favorable, in the long run the employee will know what they are getting into from the beginning.[2]  Also, be sure to answer any questions as honest as possible because sugar-coating things will eventually come to light and build frustration within the hired candidate as well. 

Consistency is also important when it comes to the interview and hiring process.  Be sure to maintain the same behavior and attitude in the interview as you do in the office.  The more transparency and consistency present on your end, the more you will see consistencies and discrepancies in the candidate’s behavior as well.  If you are making formal phone calls to follow up with candidates, but sending informal emails, and then a mix of both for in-person interviews, this will confuse the applicant on how to conduct themselves.  They will then be confused on the atmosphere of the office before they even make it into the company.


6)     Transition, Transition, Transition

Transitioning your new employee can make or break their success in their new position.  If there is not a smooth transition, the employee may not ever be fully confident nor comfortable in the workplace.  A smooth transition into a new job entails the supervisor giving them a proper introduction to their coworkers and others in the office.  This will set the tone for their interaction with colleagues for the foreseeable future.  Try to make introductions personal or one-on-one rather than bringing the new employee in front of a large group.  This will help them to remember names and connect personally rather than feel the pressure of an “audience”.[2]

Training is also crucial to transitioning a new employee.  A proper training program is well organized, efficient, and makes the employee comfortable asking questions and for help.  When an employee must constantly second-guess their work and what is expected of them, they are much less likely to stay in a job.  Make sure processes and expectations are clear.  We highly recommend a training manual the employee can take notes in and refer to for help.

 

In conclusion, creating your forever team is a process which does not simply rely on just a good interview and decision, it is an active and lasting effort that must be nurtured through the search, hiring, and retention of employees.  You cannot simply hire a great employee and expect them to stay forever without lasting support from you and your company.

 

Also, don’t forget to subscribe for email updates on the left-hand side of this article!

Thanks so much for reading!



Dani Barry 
Marketing Manager 
REVEX


REVEX is a Medical Billing Service & Software Company serving the Healthcare Industry. 

(Specifically, Skilled Nursing Facilities)

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[1] Dyck, B. (2017, September 18). How To Hire Your 'Forever' Team. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2017/09/18/how-to-hire-your-forever-team/#375cf5b01e67

[2] How to Attract Candidates Who Will Become Long-Term Employees: Part II. (2019, October 21). Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.celarity.com/blog/how-to-attract-long-term-employees-part-2/

[3] Ternynck, J. (2014, September 29). Hire for the Long Haul: 6 Tips to Find Candidates Who Will Stay. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.inc.com/jerome-ternynck/hire-for-the-long-haul-6-tips-to-find-candidates-who-will-stay.html

[4] Wofford, M. (n.d.). Tips to hire employees who'll stay longer, complain less, produce more. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.reliableplant.com/Read/7231/hire-employees-produce

[5] Zipkin, N. (2019, April 23). Use These Steps to Hire the Best Team Every Time. Retrieved August 20, 2020, from https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/332606

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Coach & Be Coachable!


Strategic Growth Intensive Day - 13th October 2016 - Executive ...

A Harvard poll revealed that 3 out of every 4 adults played a sport at one point in their life. Yes, this includes soccer when you were just 4 years old.[4] This means 75% of people have experience with coaching.

The workplace is a great opportunity to cross-reference this foundation of being coachable with your employees.  On the transverse, it is also important to know how to be a great coach so your employees can be optimally coachable!  

My personal experience in writing this blog comes from my experience as a collegiate athlete, a former coach, as well as a professional in the medical billing industry working mainly with skilled nursing facilities as well as other healthcare entities.  

I have separated the blog into Coach and Coachable. I believe it’s important to see both perspectives of being the coach and being coachable to create understanding and empathy on both sides.  I hope you enjoy reading my blog and feel free to comment any questions or additions you may have to the content!


Be Aware & Receptive

Coach: When it comes to coaching, not only does the “player” need to be receptive, but the coach does as well.  While coaching, pay attention to your employees’ reactions, body language, and feedback.  Being a team is all about working together and though you may be the coach, paying attention to your employees’ needs and how they learn best is going to benefit you in the long run.[3]  Some people work best when their coach gives them “tough love” and tells them how it is, while others need more coddling and positive interaction.  Now, I’m not saying you need to coach every single person completely different and change your style to match each individual on a personal level, but noticing what works best for them and making an effort will go a long way.

Coachable: When your superior is coaching you in the workplace, be open to their feedback, delegation, and constructive criticism.  Understand that they are not personally attacking you, rather pushing you to be the best at your duties for the success of the team.  It is important to acknowledge (by nodding or gesturing) that you understand the feedback your coach is providing. If you do not understand, don’t be afraid to ask questions and continue to build communication with your boss.[1]  

Both: Being aware and receptive also entails being cognizant of your own body language, verbal responses, and other behaviors you may be projecting. Interpersonal communication is all about reciprocity. Therefore, the person you interact with, whether you are the coach or the coached, feeds off your behavior just as much as you feed off theirs.

If you are coaching with a smile, eye contact, and friendliness the employee will perceive your words differently than if you have a stern brow, closed arms, lack of eye contact, and shortness in conversation.  Of course, these are both extreme but you can see how a simple conversation can be perceived very differently with both.[1]

Be Proactive

Coach: If you are only pointing out when your employees are doing something wrong, coaching moments are going to continually be in retrospect and have a negative association that you always point out “what they did wrong.”  Instead, try to be proactive and coach employees in tasks and responsibilities before they “mess it up.”  This means having a great training program in place for new hires to feel confident in their duties and lower needs for corrections is crucial.  If employees understand and execute duties most efficiently because of great training, a coach can then focus on facilitating collaboration and process/product improvements.[2]  

Coachable: The best way to be proactive when it comes to being coachable is to ASK QUESTIONS![1]  Do not wait for a supervisor to have to correct you, try not to guess at something you don’t know how to do, just ask!  Another way to be proactive is to do something before you are told.  If you see something that is incomplete, a mistake someone made, or something nobody considered doing- jump on it!  Not only will this make life easier on the team, but it will make you stand out as a hard-working employee and your “coach” will account for this when it comes time for review. 

Both: Be proactive in communicating conflict, if there is anything going on behind the scenes that one party is unaware of, talk about it.  A lot of times when there is conflict, one party may be oblivious, and it can continue to build and anger the other party.  Communication, especially before something blows up into a major issue, is huge in a team and helps build trust and foster cohesiveness.[3]

Build

Coach: Develop a “coaching” culture in your workplace.[2]   This means be consistent in giving feedback, being open to receiving feedback, positivity, constructive criticism, collaboration, and the importance of teamwork.  When you instill a coaching culture in the office and maintain a consistent and healthy coaching method, your employees will know what to expect and will feel supported.

Also, build up your employees.  Offer resources for expanding their toolbox, to improve skills for their responsibilities, gain certifications, anything that will support their growth.  When you support the growth of your employees, they will support the company’s productivity and grow for their personal professional future as well.  Offering your team valuable growth resources shows you care as a coach and fosters a great team relationship in the long run.[2]  Check out the REVEX Blog, 4 New Training Programs to Help You Unlock Your Team’s Potential, for some great training ideas!

Coachable:  Just as your supervisor, or coach, is investing in growing your skillset, invest back in them with effort, positive energy, and a willingness to learn.  Be open to growth opportunities presented to you and get the most out of resources your coach provides.  

Additionally, as a supervisor is working to instill a coaching culture in the workplace, support that with a coachable attitude.  Teams are all about collaboration and support, and the more cohesiveness there is in the workplace, the higher the morale and easier it is to show up to work every day! 

Make Change Stick

Coach: Making change last is going to rely tremendously on the coach’s role in the workplace.  The coach is the source of authority who is instilling the company culture by remaining consistent and providing standards of what is expected.  This does mean discipline is a big factor in coaching as well.[3]  When you implement change, such as a new method to procedures, and train your employees on the change, you must maintain these changes and sometimes that requires discipline of both yourself and your employees.  Discipline needs to be fair and consistent with what behavior is being punished across employees.  On the contrary, there must also be positive reinforcement and rewards.  As your employees are making changes and being coachable, the positive reinforcement will carry these changes on, so they don’t get lost in translation![2]

Coachable: Keeping the change is reliant on the team! The employees! THE COACHABLE!  When your coach is teaching and guiding, it is imperative that you take that guidance in and maintain the changes necessary.[1]  If there are issues with changes or coaching, communication needs to be an open channel, conflicts resolved, and the appropriate changes need to be implemented from resolution on out.  A cohesive and dedicated team is invaluable and will undoubtedly be rewarded by a coach when they see their changes are being maintained.


In conclusion, learning to be a great coach and to be coachable is an ongoing process involving a lot of open communication, effort, and consistency.  Both parties rely on one another to perform their duties optimally and for expectations to be clear.  Coach and Be Coachable!


Also, don’t forget to subscribe for email updates right above this article!

Thanks so much for reading!



Dani Barry
Marketing Manager
REVEX

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[1] Anderson, D., & Frey, A. (2018, February 12). Seven Ways to Become More Coachable. Retrieved August 13, 2020, from https://www.digitaldealer.com/dealer-ops-leadership/dealer-management/seven-ways-become-coachable/

[2] Hoppen, D. (n.d.). Coaching to Engage: 12 Rules to Effective, Ongoing Employee Coaching. Retrieved August 13, 2020, from https://www.quantumworkplace.com/future-of-work/12-rules-for-effective-employee-coaching

[3] Hunt, J. M., & Weintraub, J. R. (2007). The Coaching Organization. The Coaching Organization: A Strategy for Developing Leaders, 1-26. doi:10.4135/9781483329062.n1

[4] Poll: Three in four adults played sports when they were younger, but only one in four still play. (2015, June 15). Retrieved August 13, 2020, from https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/press-releases/poll-many-adults-played-sports-when-young-but-few-still-play/