resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
January, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 01
Cutting Back Does Not Mean Cutting Corners
By Angie Patrick
With the new year upon us, now is the time to make some observations, commitments and resolutions about the way you do business. As our economic climate is changing globally, the effect to our practice or small business can be felt. Cutting back does not equate to cutting corners. Making changes in some of the current ways you promote yourself, promote your professionalism, and conduct your everyday business can net you additional assets rather than liabilities. Making sound choices appropriate for your business, your image, and your wallet can only assist you through these uncertain times, allow you a measure of consistency in the execution of a sound business plan and help provide greater financial stability.
Let's look at how you operate your business. Are you a mobile therapist? If so, do you keep an accurate record of your mileage? Have you kept your automobile maintenance receipts? Do you have a gas card that pays you a reward of some kind, be it airline points, discounts on future purchases, or free gas? Do you make all your business purchases with the same credit card, also allowing for reward points, cash back or some other benefit? If these are things you have not considered, you should. These things help you to manage the expenses and provide relevant and accurate information at tax time, often resulting in some deductions you may be missing!
Do you have a brick-and-mortar location? If so, have you considered renegotiating your lease with your landlord? With so many businesses sitting empty, the last thing your landlord will want to do is lose a good tenant. They may opt for a reduction in rent rather than be faced with possible vacancies. It certainly cannot hurt to broach the subject when your lease is up for renewal. This can potentially be a savings of hundreds of dollars a year, which can provide you with extra money you can funnel into other areas of your business that may need attention.
Do you buy your own supplies? If so, consider bulking your ordering to see if you can obtain any additional discounts. If you typically order monthly or bimonthly, consider ordering quarterly and buying in bulk. This often results in a decrease of your supply expense, and all it costs you is a bit of pre-planning and storage.
Do you do any advertising? If not, consider making the investment in your business, and get the word out to the public. You do not have to run out to the newspaper and take out a full-page ad; you can use smaller venues to build your business. Consider placing ads in church bulletins, and in community publications. Perhaps you utilize community sponsorship opportunities to get your name in the community. Little League teams, Girl Scout events, Fun Runs and charity events all reach your target market, and can help you establish yourself as a mainstay supporter of your community and a subject-matter expert.
Can your customers get in contact with you easily? If not, then you run the risk of having them make another phone call and go to a competitor. When people are ready to book an appointment, they do not want to wait for a return call in order to confirm. They want immediate gratification and the satisfaction of knowing their appointment has been made.
If you book your own clients, it is often difficult to timely manage the inbound calls when your services are booked the majority of the day. It may be advantageous to look into an online service to manage bookings for you. This would be a Web site service that enables your clients to book their appointments themselves online, and keep you from always being behind the eight ball in returning calls. One such service I have seen is www.bookingcalendar.com, and from what I can tell, it takes all the stress off of managing a client book.
Are you contacting your customers on a regular basis? If not, you may be missing opportunities for bookings for birthdays, anniversaries, client gifts, thank-you gifts and bridal parties. Taking a moment to touch base with your client base once a month by phone, e-mail, newsletter or postcard can help put your business at the top of their mind when it comes to gift-giving and celebrations. Not to mention that it can prompt them into a rebooking of your services for themselves!
Are you as organized as you should be? Do you keep receipts in the glove box, loosely in the desk drawer, or tossed in a shoebox? Are your customer contacts in a database or file for easy reference? Do you have updated client intake forms filled out for each client? Are you appropriately recording all transactions for tax purposes? Do you have billing up to date? Are your expenses managed appropriately? If not, consider working toward bringing these items in line with a concentrated effort to de-clutter, organize and manage these very real business needs. You are a professional, and a professional runs their business; they do not allow their business to run them.
Take a few minutes to consider these issues, and see if your business could benefit from making some changes. The chances are it will, and could help you achieve a better result for the time and energy you expend to make your business work. The goal here is not to be cheap, but rather to streamline and organize to maximize your growth potential in tighter economic times. By tweaking a few things, you will see the positive difference you can make, and it will encourage you to look into new ways to trim the excess, and make the existing processes more efficient. With greater efficiency comes greater profitability, and making more money doing what you enjoy is a very good byproduct indeed.
Click here for more information about Angie Patrick.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.