Practice managers have a difficult job to do.
But you knew that already. “It might as well be tattooed to my head, Matt!”
And now you don’t just have managing the day to day running of your busy GP practice to worry about. You’re also expected to be an effective leader, motivating staff and maximising their productivity in a stressful environment.
With the introduction of primary care networks and collaboration being the order of the day, it’s never been more important to invest in your development and skillset to successfully steer and navigate your practice ship.
So today with my GP and trainer hat on, I wanted to share what I believe makes a good leader in practice and how the right GP practice manager training courses can help you maximise your potential and get the most from your staff and colleagues.
What Makes A Good Leader?
Experts agree that there are a number of factors that are essential for managers to become the best leaders. These include:
- Coaching employees instead of driving them
- Cultivating goodwill without relying solely on authority
- Generating enthusiasm rather than inspiring fear
- Using “we” not “I”
- Fixing problems instead of blaming others
- Leading by example – showing how things should be done instead of simply telling others how to do them
- Developing people rather than using them
- Giving credit instead of solely taking it
- Asking instead of commanding
In my experience, the key to good leadership and effective GP practice management has to be good staff morale.
By giving your team ongoing training, career development, personal support and well-structured appraisals, by acting on feedback from staff members and targeting problems efficiently, it’s possible to run a positive and productive practice. The right primary care training for practice managers is therefore vital.
Taking Steps To Good Leadership And Effective Practice Management
Here are a few steps which can pave the way to effective practice management and good leadership:
- Celebrating staff achievements and rewarding good work. Staff will work harder when they know their efforts are appreciated. Even the little things. I used to know a practice manager that gave out Creme Eggs to reception staff who had gone above and beyond that day, together with a note ‘Thanks for being a good egg!’ She had a huge stash of them in her desk drawer; goodness knows how she wasn’t tempted to scoff a couple!
- Setting coherent goals. Staff need to be aware of the aims and values of their employers. With the right mission statement, employees can have a better understanding of why they do what they do.
- Knowing the way in which your employees work. Effective people management must adapt to the needs of different individuals and their own unique working styles. Some people like to take things away to read and process, others are happy to jump right in with change. It is only by doing this that each individual’s performance can be optimised and the productivity of the team can be increased.
- Encouraging staff strengths. Encouraging those who have particular skills in specific areas is vital to improving moral while also helping them to make a greater positive contribution to the GP practice. You never know; you might have a social media extraordinaire, a pushy patient pleaser or a web guru amongst your team if you ask.
Finding The Best GP Practice Manager Training Courses
At the moment, there are few development and training programmes tailored to meet the specific needs of GP practice managers in primary care networks in particular. Today’s NHS is a challenging and changing environment as we know, so finding the best ways to meet patients’ needs couldn’t be more important.
Practice managers must be well-equipped to take the lead, steering their staff in the right direction to enhance the patient experience and to provide first-class care. They can only do this if they have the right primary care training to teach them these vital skills.
Orr Medical Training’s Leadership In General Practice course represents an ideal solution which of course I’m going to say but we’ve seen amazing results through it. Aimed at meeting the training needs of those in GP practice management positions, this interactive workshop is designed to explore the ideas of practice leadership while also exploring a range of management styles and concepts and the ways in which they can be most effectively applied to their responsibilities and work.
The great benefit of this course is that practice managers can return to their workplace fully charged and equipped with the essential knowledge they need to motivate their teams, to boost staff morale and to improve patient experiences. Get in touch and learn more today.