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Understanding Your Clients’ Needs: Offering The Right Tools For The Job

By News Creatives Authors , in Small Business , at July 27, 2021

World-renowned, leading expert in Myofascial Pain, Electrodiagnosis, and the Co-Founder of Hands-On Companies.

If this isn’t a business maxim, it should be. If you do the right thing, the right outcome usually happens. In other words, companies that cut costs too severely tend to produce inferior products. Eventually, the public notices, the customer or client suffers and, once they find a new place to do business, the company suffers.

The company that invests in its customers and clients and goes the extra mile, on the other hand, tends to do well.

It can help to keep that in mind because it isn’t easy investing in your business. Profits may be tight and you may not want to rock the financial boat with investments you fear may or may not pan out. You also may be tempted to try and pare back some of your services and hope that nobody notices.

But when you invest in your business — provided the outcome is that you’re going to be able to offer better services to your customers — you’re going to see your profits increase. At least, that’s been the case in the corner of the health care field I’m in. When the physical therapists we work with add diagnostic tools to their practices, a typical PT practice will go from insurance billings around $70 to $100 per session to $550 per session.

But how do you find the right tools for your customers, clients, patients or whomever you are serving? After all, your pockets are only so deep, and you may not be able to invest in every facet of your business you would like to. I have a few suggestions.

Focus on the customer’s end goal.

For a physical therapist, the reasons patients come into a practice are numerous, as you can imagine. They may be trying to reduce or eliminate pain or recover from a stroke or are hoping to avoid surgery by healing from an injury. Somebody may simply want to improve their mobility or manage their diabetes.

You can invest in a lot, from expanding your parking lot to modernizing your waiting room. And sometimes you need to make those investments, but ultimately, you’re in business to serve your customers. So, it makes sense to offer your customers the best care your money can buy. Because if somebody is coming in about a knee that isn’t operating very well, they really don’t care about the color scheme of your lobby. But if you can offer them the latest and greatest techniques or technology that can help you accurately diagnose and treat their knee, they’re going to return to your practice again and again.

Find a better way to do what you already do.

This should be every business owner’s end goal, whether you’re in health care or selling TV sets.

Often, physical therapists try to determine how to manage a patient’s pain through a variety of manual therapy and pain management techniques and approaches. The way a physical therapist makes a diagnosis for a patient is through the use of physical examination tests. Unfortunately, these tests are not as reliable as more objective tests, such as tests that use ultrasound technology. The old ways of doing things are often not bad ways, but the new ways are sometimes far better.

So, whatever your business is in, ask yourself whether to invest in new equipment so that your business operates faster or so fewer errors are made. Or maybe you or your staff need new training? You may find that you don’t need to invest in anything but that an audit of how your practice performs is in order. Often, we’re so busy getting the day-to-day or hour-to-hour work done that we never stop to question whether we’re actually engaged in best practices or simply doing something because that’s the way we’ve always done it.

Understand how your customers think.

The better you know your customers, the better you can help them reach their end goal.

It isn’t difficult to get to know your customers, especially in health care, since it’s a one-on-one process where the medical professionals question the patient. But conversations definitely need to be happening, whether you’re talking directly to your customers, surveying them or analyzing data, such as spending patterns.

It’s by doing this that you may find out that what you’re offering is exactly what you should be doing. You may learn that your patients, guests or customers feel that you are the best at what you do, but there are some little things you need to work on, like actually fixing up your lobby or repaving your parking lot.

Because sometimes, that is what your business needs. But if you’re looking to improve your bottom line, start with asking your customers what they need and focusing on giving it to them. In the end, the more you help your customers, the more you’ll end up helping your business.

Forbes Business Council is the foremost growth and networking organization for business owners and leaders. Do I qualify?


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