The legendary college football coach Lou Holtz has famously said, “If you aren’t growing you are dying.” I couldn’t agree more with this idea. My biggest successes in life have come after some of my biggest periods of growth.
No Growth = Death
When we first moved into our house there was a young tree, probably 8 feet tall, in our front yard. We moved in September and it had a few leaves on it before winter hit. The following spring as all the other trees around grew and sprouted leaves, this young one did not. It wasn’t healthy, it didn’t grow, and it died.
I see so many DC’s that have been in practice for 30 years and have nothing to show for it. If you have been in practice for 30 years in the same town and don’t have a booming practice something is seriously wrong. You have to be growing yourself and your practice.
Growth through Pain
I have done my fair share of growth through pain as well. This next story is a bit embarrassing to share, but I think it will help you grow. When we first moved our practice to a new town, we had a really hard time finding and keeping good staff. Part of it was one or two bad hires but a bigger part of it was that I was a crappy boss. I micromanaged people and wasn’t passionate about my business.
It came to a head when I made a snide comment to an employee who had only been with me for a month or two. She came into work the next day livid. She let me know how I had been a bad boss and said she was quitting. I convinced her that I could change and asked her to stick around. She agreed, I became a better boss, she feels like family now, and she has worked for me for over 5 years. It was a painful conversation to have but I grew and became better because of it.
Growth on Purpose
This last growth strategy is the best way to go. We have a very important job as chiropractors. Nobody can do what we do. Nobody looks at health the way we do. If we aren’t growing personally so we can grow our clinics we are doing a disservice to humanity. Here are a few things I do each day to grow myself:
- I turn my car ride into a personal growth class time. I used to listen to the radio even talk radio, but then I realized that my time is much better spent on podcasts and audiobooks. There are so many free podcasts out there about marketing, leadership, and business management that you would be a fool to not take advantage of it.
- I take CE’s seminars that matter. I once did a continuing ed seminar that was all inclusive for $49. 20 hours for $49. It was horrible. I have never been back. Do yourself and your patients a favor and attend high-quality CE seminars.
- I take classes outside our profession. I have taken classes about email marketing, social media marketing, and even paid for classes to deepen my knowledge of the Bible (I am a Christian). There are lots of classes in the world of chiropractic, and they are great, but I think sometimes you need to get an outsiders perspective on managing a business.
- I read a lot of books. Harry Truman said, “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” Click here to see my top 5 books every chiropractor should read.
In summary, if you aren’t growing you are dying. You can grow on accident but it may be painful, so why not be proactive and grow on purpose?