Now that tax return season is out of the way, you can begin to focus on what your vision and goals are as a practice for the remainder of the year.
But a question I’m often asked by clients, is how to get their team to buy into the vision of the practice.
You see there’s no point in having these ambitions, if your team aren’t 100% behind it. You can’t do it alone, so you need to get their buy in.
So how do you do this?
Let’s start by looking at the common mistake most practice owners make.
They sit their team down, and they say this is the vision and goal for the practice in the next 3-5 years and this is how we’re going to do it. The team sit there with expressionless looks on their faces. They haven’t bought into it.
This kind of top-down approach doesn’t work when you want to get your team involved in the goals of the practice.
If you want to them to buy in, they have to have a part in creating it.
When managing people, there is a rule…
‘The person who says it, owns it’. Or ‘the person who creates it, owns it’.
And what this means is that me telling you what we’re doing, and me asking you what you think we should be doing, will result in 2 very different responses and outcomes.
If I tell you, then ultimately, I am the one who owns it. You might be the one doing it, but seeing as it was my idea, I take ownership of it.
In contrast, if I ask you, then it’s your idea that you take ownership of so it’s much more likely that you will follow through with it.
Bearing that in mind, here’s my suggestion for getting your team to buy into the vision and goals of your practice:
Start by giving your entire team the day off (yes really, it’s one day in the entire year that is absolutely necessary if you want to get this right).
Book a nice venue with food and drink for the day, and lock yourself and your team in a room away from the office – no phones, no emails, no work, no interruptions.
This is purely a strategy/vision day.
You can give them a destination e.g. you want to retire in 3 years, you want to increase revenue by £350K, you want to be the leading practice in your area – and then ask them what they think the practice should do to get there.
Or, you can ask them to help you first figure out the destination, and then also how they think you should get there.
Next is the part where you keep quiet, and let them brainstorm 101 ways you can get to the agreed destination.
If at any point you hear an idea and think “I don’t quite like that” or “I don’t want to go there” you simply say, “Hey fantastic idea, but let’s park it for now, what other options have we got.”
And by the end of the day, if done correctly you will have coached them to come up with the answers that you really wanted to tell them in the first place.
Or, most likely, they’ll surprise you and come up with much better ideas than you even anticipated.
Once this exercise has finished, you should not only have a plan for achieving your goals and vision, but also a team of people who are all 100% bought into it, because they had a part in creating it.