Lost A Sale, But Initial Phone Consultations — A Big Part Of Brilliant Customer Service
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Exploring and Learning from the Gift of Life
I'm grateful to have had the opportunity to teach cadaver dissection classes and workshops with Stephen Cina at the New England School of Acupuncture over the past seven years, first through the Sports Medicine Acupuncture Program and later as a NESA elective course.
Lower-Extremity Overuse Injuries: Primer on Causes and Corrections
From ankle sprains to stress fractures, shin splints to plantar fasciitis, the research is clear: These common overuse injuries of the lower extremities – among dozens of others – may be related to abnormal foot function in your patients.
Medicine as Metaphor
The practice of medicine is both an art and a science. We study and learn the system so that when the time comes to apply it, there is a greater possibility of successfully helping others.
News in Brief
Support of F4CP Continues With Latest Donations; Walter Reed Honors Dr. William Morgan; Recognizing 40 Years of Public-Health Activism; Allstate Decision Reversed.
Treat Every Patient as an Athlete
Frontal-plane movement pattern dysfunction can set the stage for musculoskeletal injury. Frontal-plane stabilization is essential during the normal activities of daily living: think single-leg stance and gait cycle.
The Art of Creating a Healing Space
I always advise my graduates to examine their group practice or treatment rooms with fresh eyes after they leave my CE workshops. I tell them, "Ask yourselves - is your space qi filled, welcoming and healing? Or is it cold and clinical?"
Abdominal Acupuncture for Eye Healing: The Sacred Turtle and Ba Gua Map
Our ideas about western medicine have shifted in recent decades, while the public is asking more from health care providers.
Melatonin: A Promising Natural Agent in the Prevention of ALS
A number of years ago, experimental studies suggested melatonin could block key steps in the development of Alzheimer's disease, primarily by acting as a brain antioxidant and inhibiting the build-up of beta-amyloid plaque in the brain.
Can Acupuncture Treat Knee Pain?
Recently, an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that, "neither laser nor needle acupuncture conferred benefit over sham for pain or function" among older chronic knee pain patients.
Aetna Updates 97140 Policy
In a development the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors is calling "a resounding victory for chiropractors nationwide," Aetna Insurance Company has updated its national reimbursement policy regarding 97140 (manual therapy), reaching an agreement two years after the association filed a declaratory judgment suit in federal court against the insurer.
Data: The New Frontier in Health Care
Your practice is empowered with the data you need to improve patient health, run a more efficient (read: profitable) practice, get paid in timely fashion and help show the efficacy of chiropractic on the national stage in the midst of sweeping changes in health care!
The Source-Luo Point Combination, Part 3
Dr. Nguyen Nghi (NVN) was born in Vietnam and is one of the most important scholars, writers, teachers and practitioners of modern time. Many of his theories and applications are the source of modern teachers from Europe and the United States.
Online Marketing Basics: Google Ranking, Part 1
We all know there is so much opportunity with online marketing. And, let's face it, if you don't have a presence online with a website and social media, you are probably not where you want to be.
The Roots of TCM in Depression Treatment
In traditional Chinese medicine, there is historical precedent for the treatment of so-called "Shen" (Heart-Mind) disorder, or disorder/dysregulation of the spirit, which is also considered as distinct but not separate from the cognitive function of the brain.
Making Public Health a Chiropractic Priority
As highlighted in this edition's News in Brief, Rand Baird, DC, MPH, FICA, FICC, editor and occasional author of our long-running column, "Chiropractic in the American Public Health Association", was recognized by the organization recently for 40 years of membership.
A War You Can Help Patients Win
The average American consumes approximately 60 percent of calories from sugar, flour and refined oils. A donut is a good example of a so-called "food" that represents these calorie sources.
Treating LBP in Golfers: Beyond Basic Assessment
The drive to master the most efficient swing demands a tremendous amount from the lower back. Maintaining stability in a flexed posture, supporting torso rotation and repetitively supporting the golf swing all put the lower back in a vulnerable position.
ICD-10 Is Not Scary (and Not About Billing)
In my 13 years of consulting with doctors on billing and coding matters, ICD-10 has aroused the biggest combination of misguided fear and ignorance I can remember.
Colon Health and TCM
I still remember many years ago, the loud "Yuck" from my wife at the time when we were together watching the Chinese movie "Last Emperor."
The Integrative Medicine Puzzle: Putting the Pieces Together
The conversation is changing in the broader healthcare community with patients actually moving the discussion toward more integrative topics. Patients today want to know their options.
Adding Microneedling to Your Clinic for Results and Profit
Microneedling has taken the beauty world by storm over the last 10 years. Under the names dermaroller, microneedling or skin needling you will see these treatments listed in the services of nearly every fashionable beauty salon and day spa in the country.
Technology Meets Practice: Chiropractic Every Day
About a year ago, I had an interesting conversation with a DC who made house calls. When I asked why, she was quick to explain she learns much more about her patients when she sees them at home than she could ever observe in the office.
May, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 05
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry. The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend of the author.
Well, the opening of your new day spa is just two months out now, and you're going crazy trying to get everything together.Don't worry; that crazed feeling you have is natural. It wouldn't be a true spa opening if you didn't feel like you were juggling at least a hundred balls in the air at once.
I must admit - you really "take the bull by the horns" when you need to get things accomplished. The job descriptions you've created for The Spa House are exactly what you needed to keep things on track as the business gets up and running. Without a clear understanding of what's expected, employees have a tendency to make their own rules, regardless of your best, albeit unstated, intentions.
Job descriptions are usually most effective in spas when they are included in a manual that you hand out to each employee. That means each employee benefits from reading the job description of every other employee, as well as his or her own. It is most important for you to include a job description for yourself and your partner/co-owner Barbara, as well as the people who will work for you. That way, you'll be perfectly clear about your role regarding authority, boundaries, and responsibilities.
There are just a couple little things I would change with the job description you created for Jeanie, your lead therapist.
When writing job descriptions, it's important to remember that employees will often take them literally. So, it's important to include a level of detail that cannot be argued with or interpreted in different ways. For example, in Jeanie's description you say: "The lead therapist shall be responsible for the conduct, demeanor and appearance of the other therapists and estheticians." This can be taken several ways. Does that mean Jeanie can then reprimand the other therapists on these issues? Does she have the authority to send them home if one of the guidelines is broken? Does she have to come to you or Barbara first before making any disciplinary decisions? Is there some kind of logbook into which she can record infractions?
Each job description needs to list specific actions that employees can perform to satisfy their duties. For that, you will need to spend a little more time fleshing out the details. Then, when you have finished, you can insert all of the descriptions into the manual, which will include a list of general guidelines that all employees can refer to.
One other item in the job description that I thought could use some clarification was this: "The lead therapist shall be available to fill in for other therapists if they are sick or otherwise unable to perform their normal functions." First of all, this seems a little onerous to me, as it should really be your own responsibility, ultimately, to make sure the customers are happy and that somebody is available to perform their treatments. Passing this off to your lead therapist gives her a little too much power. This might make her resentful of the imposition on her time, and that resentment might lead to an abuse of the power you've given her.
I would suggest you strike this part of the description entirely and instead say: "The lead therapist shall be responsible for creating and monitoring the weekly work schedule for the massage therapists or estheticians, according to the guidelines written in this manual. He or she will report illnesses, requests for time off scheduling conflicts and potential uncovered shifts to the owner/director in a written report on the first day of the pay period every two weeks."
I think you get the idea. So, it's back to the drawing board on those. Sorry to load you with more work! But guess what? There is yet another form you'll need before opening The Spa House. It's called the "client intake" form.
It's very important that you safeguard yourself against potential lawsuits. Regardless of how professional your staff is and how closely you monitor every aspect of your spa's operations, problems can still occur. Remember when you were working in the medical day spa and that client complained that she'd been injured by one of the mechanical massage techniques you performed? It turned out to not be your fault, but it sure felt good to have that liability insurance provided by the professional massage association you're a member of, didn't it?
To that end, it's important to include in your guidelines that each and every one of your therapists and estheticians carries his or her own liability insurance, usually via an association. And it's a must for all clients to fill out an intake form before anyone on your staff touches them. The intake form should give you an idea of each client's general health and any specific problems that you may have to look out for when your therapists and estheticians apply products and procedures to them. Thus, it must be customized to complement your particular offerings.
For example, I've been working with Biotone lately, and have developed an intake form that addresses the specific concerns related to treatments performed with their line of spa products. (View this form at www.royaltreatment.com/Intake_Form.htm.)
In other news, I was happy to hear that the hotel down the street has approached you asking to form a strategic alliance. It has customers in need of a spa; you have a spa (or will have in two months) in need of customers. It seems like a marriage made in Heaven. But how will it work?
I recently counseled another friend opening a spa, on the same issue, and I recommended that she get a written agreement from the hotel stating exactly how they would promote her spa. (Will they have brochures or table tents in the rooms, for instance?) In return, she agreed to offer each guest coming from the hotel a 10-percent discount. The guest receives the benefit, and you receive the business. It's "win-win-win." This, I believe, is a more effective strategy than charging full price and then giving the hotel a percentage of your income.
Keep on charging forward, Lou. You'll have your spa up and running sooner than you think!
Until next time,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
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