Dear Bill | Staff Won't Follow Through

Posted by Bill Esteb on Mar 3rd 2023

Dear Bill

After repeated reminders a staff member refuses to follow one of our accepted procedures. I've pulled her aside to discuss, but her performance isn't getting better. Any suggestions?

One of the more important aspects of staff follow through, or even patient follow through, is enrollment.

Enrollment is the process of receiving an agreement, commitment or emotional investment in a pursuit or activity. Such as enrolling in a college course. Or enlisting in the armed

Doesn't sound like your team member is enrolled.

Often, a lack of enrollment can be traced to a couple of possibilities.

  • The individual sees the procedure as unnecessary or unimportant
  • Perhaps they don't understand the importance of the procedure
  • Sometimes they may prefer own procedure

These are rational reasons why you may not have enrollment. But if you've explained the procedure and repeatedly requested that it be followed, look for an emotional issue. Such as:

  • Doesn't feel competent performing the procedure
  • It requires too much emotional fortitude to execute
  • Feels that it exploits or is unfair to patients

What might be the issue? Ask.

While it's tempting to simply demand that a procedure be followed, a more productive approach is to uncover the actual barrier that is preventing its implementation.

Granted, if you tend to be on the bossy side of things, it may preclude you from uncovering what's really going on. But persevere. Show up curious. Soften your heart. Be prepared to learn. Consider this an opportunity to promote personal growth—for your employee and you!

You may discover that your team member is merely trying to “protect” your patients. Or believes such a procedure will increase the likelihood of a poor Google review. Or some other consideration that may not even on your radar screen.

Remember, all of us, you, me, your staff, patients, and even your children, behave in ways to remain congruent with our beliefs and core values. Start here if you want to unleash the fullest potential of those whom you've hired and trained.

Thanks for the question!

Ask Bill your question.

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