Working in healthcare is a tough gig right now. Whether you are within the NHS framework, a private organisation, or a mixture of both, the pressure can be immense. As a manager, any department failures on your watch could prove disastrous – the buck stops with you.
Time management, therefore, is critical, to allow you to see what is occurring and to give you the time to identify and act on problems before they become dangerous. In today’s brief guide, we’re going to look at some basic time management techniques and apply them to a healthcare setting. Let’s take a closer look.
You need to be careful about setting goals in a healthcare environment, as every day will be different and every patient will have different challenges. However, over the course of time, you will start to establish various patterns in the long-term. Use these patterns to estimate how long it will take you to achieve your overall aims, and schedule on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis accordingly.
Technology is another tricky area in healthcare because whole systems need to be locked down for privacy reasons. There is little flexibility in the systems you use – but that is not to say technology will be irrelevant. Nothing is stopping you from organising your day – or the schedules of your healthcare team – using first-class organisational tools. Try to automate as much as possible – the fewer minutes and hours you spend juggling with paperwork and writing notes, the more efficient your processes will become.
Embrace the art of delegation
Everyone in your team is there for a good reason, from doctors and nurses to admin and support staff. Don’t be afraid to delegate to them. Not only will it free up your time to focus on business-critical activities, but it will also help your staff feel valued. Be careful not to assign too much to the medical teams, however – they will have enough on their plate on most days. But, don’t be afraid to call for their assistance to help with relevant matters if it is quiet.
Improve your inventory control
Keeping a close eye on your inventory will help you stop serious issues before they arise. It goes for hospitals, doctor’s surgeries and any other medical environment you can think of. Without the right equipment, your healthcare team will be unable to do their jobs – it’s as simple as that. Make sure that you are working with the best, most reliable suppliers you can find. The likes of BF Mulholland or similar vendors provide dental equipment, for example, and it is imperative that you use suppliers who guarantee speedy deliveries.
Learn to say ‘no.’
There will be times when you reach your limits trying to manage a healthcare facility – and you just have nothing more to give. It is critical, then, that you can say ‘no’ when you need to. It will help you set boundaries and put a halt to tricky interruptions. And, most importantly, will stop you from underperforming and suffering from burnout.