As many of you know, I work in a medical practice. Things are quite different now as we are reopening and trying to keep everyone safe practicing physical distancing and extra sanitization of the office as each patient leaves the practice.
There is a lot of new practices and protocols we are having to figure out and perform each day. Communication has become more important now than it ever has been, and it always has been #1 on my list. We take more time now talking together as we are working through “new” daily procedures deciding what works and what needs to be changed.
Together as a team we discussed the two points below in detail, sharing what they mean and giving each other examples of how we can get to know what each other are thinking. We are asking questions and trying to understand each other’s comfort zones and boundaries and general feelings during this pandemic.
- Take time to communicate: We are so rushed these days, with all that we have to accomplish at work and at home. It is essential that we take those extra few minutes each day to ask those we work with how their day is going, and what is going on at home and how they are feeling. It is important to get a little personal (within the boundaries of each person’s comfort zone). Trying to get to know where your co-workers is at during this time is a way of showing that you care about them and that is more than just work, it is a bond you are creating with one another.
- Listening is just as valuable of a skill as talking: Take those extra moments to listen, what exactly are your co-workers saying? Ask questions, and “listen between the lines” to what is being said. Develop your skills of understanding, this means that you need to be quiet, and seek understanding as to where your co-worker may be coming from. Do not assume that you know, it is better to ask for clarification, so you really know what is being said.
As our conversation was taking place you could feel everyone begin to relax as they listened and talked with each other. It certainly is worth the invested time upfront to hopefully prevent misunderstandings for the future. We will continue to meet each morning to check in with each other and ask questions and seek answers.
If you work in a medical practice you might want to join my partner Dr. Peter Wishnie and I this Thursday as we do a Facebook Live talk on “Getting our practices back on track” This event will be held on the Top Practices Facebook page at 8:00 p.m. EST. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and hear what others in the medical field are doing to reopen their practices.