The role of the practice head is to lead an organization’s defined area of practice, including winning clients and delivering within their expectations. They, further, offer intellectually transformational managerial leadership in the internal teams they lead.
A practice head’s role offers you the chance to train, grow, advance excellent practice, and even build a better reputation in their sector as an upcoming shaped up leader and innovator. It involves crucial client-facing roles and is thus key in the organizational outlook.
What are the key accountability points for practice leaders?
- Developing practice areas
- Bring in new clients and develop business
- Spearhead practice work delivery
- Create channels for thought leadership and develop the organization
- Collaborative team leadership
How to become a successful practice manager
To know how to become a successful practice manager, you need to begin at the point of knowing your roles very well. Engage your ability to influence team members to willingly strive towards getting all goals achieved.
Your effective management skills will be manifest if you can be a good planner, set your priorities right, manage staff assigned to you to efficiently meet every deadline. Below are five key aspects of successful practice management:
1. Understand all the practice manager tasks
You must know your job. Even if you have assumed it as a new role, as a practice manager you must be able to receive slack and feedback that can help you train on the go. Slack quickly runs out. In rather difficult tasks, everyone will be looking up to you.
Planning and monitoring are key components in mission accomplishment as a practice leader. Strategizing is key in achieving objectives. As a shaped up practice manager, you must develop excellent planning skills, anticipating requirements, priority planning, and meeting crucial deadlines.
3. Real-life application implementation
Once you have your planned priorities as a practice manager you must consider imminent deadlines, and seek to meet them without fail. There’s no day you’ll have the luxury of single tasks.
Simultaneous demands on you will take a toll on your overall performance if you can’t set the right priorities. Methodical daily approaches to tasks lead to motivated team members, top performance, and efficient practice.
Always avert negativity in crisis.
4. Monitoring progress
An excellent plan that works is also closely monitored. Conscious inspection keeps assumptions at a minimum. Be personally involved.
High morale and inspiration are by-products of mission accomplishments- in milestones or ultimately. Good practice management drives everyone in the team to high inspirational top-notch performance- with, in, and without challenges.
Apply administration, delegation, and servanthood principles to transform your team. Your ability to motivate others to voluntarily be enthusiastic to the very end is proportionate to your skill level in practice management.
Communication is key in the daily schedule of practice managers. Composing emails, external correspondence management, and internal communication are all within that role.
What is the desired skill set of a Practice Manager?
- Administration Management
Employers regard administrative management skills as top-rated when on-boarding practice managers. Basic administrative processes must not be a huddle for you. Demonstrate above-average office administration and workplace team management skills- it’s what tells of your qualifications.
- English Fluency Skills
Basic grammar, spelling, composition, and fluency in speech arguably the next top qualification in practice management.
- Customer Service
Depending on the organization, practice managers may function as the company’s public face. Their customer service skills must be exceptional. Understand all customers’ needs, serve, and seek improved client satisfaction levels in your management practice.
- Clerical Work
Practice management involves secretarial roles also. You must up your filing, transcription, and data processing and retrieval skills for effective practice management.
- Human resource skills
Even though this depends on organizational size, it’s not rare to have integral human resource roles lined up in your profile. For instance, sick and annual leave management of a team or some departments could be under your management.
What challenges do practice managers face?
i. Client satisfaction
With any organization, customer satisfaction ultimately makes or breaks everything- reputation, profitability, name it. A practice manager’s challenges, naturally, start here. Keeping high customer satisfaction scores in a breakneck competition market is no longer easy.
Customers have myriads of options. Sticking around one organization requires measures that are way out of what’s ordinary.
ii. Administrative Pressure
A practice manager often has multiple roles. Besides being the company’s face, administrative chores often overshadow all other roles. Pressure mounts with demanding administrative responsibility.
Recruitment, documentation, delegation, follow-ups, feedback, complaint handling, rewarding, etc, are common demands that you’ll face. Without proper balance, your clients’, employees’, and stakeholders’ expectations will easily wear you out no matter how competitive a practice manager you once were.
iii. Employee Turnover
Increasing trends in employee turnover in the last few decades are alarming. By 2025, 40% of current employees will have changed jobs- see this Forbes report. Some studies show that 69% of current employees plan to leave their employers in the next 5 years. The recruitment and retention duties of practice managers then become a real challenge. Besides the cost implication, training recruits are pretty time-consuming.
Positive work environments, competitive compensation, and solid human resource relationship with employees is a huge plus for any practice manager who’d like to minimize employee turnover pressure. Can you do it?
A practice head often has numerous roles. Besides customer experience management, administrative, human resource, clerical, and a host of other roles will fall into a practice manager’s role profile- depending on organizational size.
With such a diversity of roles comes also challenges. Chief among these is customer satisfaction, administrative pressure, and employee retention. As a shaped up practice head, you must be up to these challenges.
To become successful in practice management, you’ll need a firm understanding of all your roles, be a strategic planner, be very practical, learn to seek feedback, and always inspire your team. You are centrally placed in the communication docket, and your conduct is extremely important. Go ahead and seek further online or college leadership courses if you ever feel inadequate in executing your duties. Sharpening the saw is ever a career advancement plus.