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Today, I am excited to have a long time friend and colleague on the blog to discuss some his thoughts about managing a PT practice. Please welcome Jordan Mellinger to the blog today! I think you will find his perspective encouraging and impactful as he shares some of his success and difficulties since jumping into management. Enjoy!
What is the name of and where is the clinic that you work at and manage?
I work at and manage the Ortho Sport PT clinic down in Albany, GA.
How many people do you manage?
I oversee 5 other employees.
What are some of the unique challenges that you've had to work through in your role as clinic manager?
I have been in management for a few years now and have experienced many successes and challenges. For me, one of the biggest challenges early on was trying to develop rapport within the clinic both with the therapists I managed as well as upper management and physician relationships. I learned coming into an established practice and wanting to make adjustments takes time. I needed to build trust and develop a plan for what changes I thought should take place. I found that some of the things I was passionate about or felt would be best did not fully line up with other therapists or upper management, so navigating those waters at times was difficult. One of the other challenges that comes to mind was learning how to be a manager of a group while still being a busy clinician with a full caseload. As a clinician, I was able to come in and focus my care and thought process almost solely on the patients I was treating each day. As a manager, I needed to learn how to keep that same focus of patient care at the forefront while also multi-tasking the needs of the other staff, dealing with clinic issues that arise during the day, and keeping upper management up to speed on how the PT department was performing. This proved challenging early on because I was not able to shift focus quickly from one area to another. Multi-tasking and being able to make progress on different fronts during the day was crucial for me to start to improve in order to be effective as a manager while still being effective as a clinician with patients.
How has your Christian faith helped you work through those challenges?
My Christian faith has absolutely helped me work through these challenges. Some of the things that quickly come to mind are learning humility and putting that into practice during the day with my interactions with my staff and upper management. My first response can often be defensive when something I've done or decided is criticized. I have needed to be reminded again and again to be a good listener and take criticism with humility. I have also seen a tremendous benefit of the truth from Proverbs 15 in controlling my words and tongue to ensure I am building others up and being gentle with my responses. Finally, and most importantly, my faith has continued to help me realize that I can not be an effective manager without relying on the Lord to continue to renew me each day. My purpose, my worth, and my focus must remain on Him in order for me to continue to grow and develop as a manager in order to have a positive impact on those around me.
How do you create a culture of faith within a diverse workforce and patient population?
The biggest attitude I have tried to focus on to create a culture of faith is making sure everyone who comes into our clinic, whether it is staff or patients, knows they are valued and that we care about them. I think in today’s culture being genuine, showing love, and going the extra mile is noticed. Often, the attitude we display towards others will lead our patients to make comments about how the environment in our clinic is different in compared to other clinics. With that difference comes the opportunity to speak as to why that difference is evident. Then, that can open up the door to discuss faith.
What are a few key scriptures you rely on and attitudes you display to create that culture?
Qualities of an overseer: Titus 1:7-8 - Qualities of an overseer
Humility: Philippians 2:3-4
Controlling the Tongue: Proverbs 15:1
Work Ethic: Colossians 3:23
I hope you find these verses helpful to you and your management practices and I hope you are encouraged by some of my testimony in moving into a managerial role.