Just Ask for Help

Have you ever had one of those days when you wish so badly that you could have “a do over?”

Yesterday, while working in private practice I had such a day. I had made some crucial mistakes that put my team and I running behind, and more importantly – made for one very long appointment for my “special needs” patient and his mom. When I analyzed yesterday’s “disaster” (or shall I say tossed and turned over it all night) I know that most of it could have been avoided if I had done some things differently, but most simply: IF I HAD JUST ASKED FOR HELP!

We have all had this happen. We look at our schedule, preparing for the day ahead, and we see that there is the possibility of a difficult situation yet we don’t want to bother or inconvenience any of our other teammates by asking for help.

Or along in the day, we have an unforeseen obstacle and major setback take place and we make the crucial mistake of not stopping what we are doing to get help – creating an even worse situation.

Here are some CRUCIAL TIPS to help avoid these situations:

  • Be Prepared: Morning huddles where everyone comes prepared and immediately alerts the team to potential obstacles or needs during the day.
  • Good communication: Be direct and clear on what it is you need. Don’t make people guess.
  • Ask: Most teammates don’t have a problem being asked for help. We all know that everyone gets behind, and no one benefits from you “trying to go it alone” – especially the patient.
  • Offer: If you see that one of your team members is working through her lunch, offer to help put in her notes, bring her back something to eat or break down her operatory while she dismisses the patient.

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