In the Practiceology program, one of the metrics we use to track our clients progress is called “The Freedom Score“.
The “Freedom Score” is the number of hours our clients actually need to be at their clinics each week – usually used in reference to the number of face to face consulting hours our clients spend treating patients..
This single number give our owners an instant read on how they are progressing in the Practiceology program, as the higher the “Freedom Score”, the more time the owner is spend at their clinic each week.
In my live events, when we were able to hold them, I often ask this question at the start of the session:
“How many hours do you physically have to be at your practice each week treating patients“.
In my events, it is not uncommon to have owners respond with numbers in the 50’s, 60’s, and even 70’s.
Imagine spending 70 plus hours a week treating patients, AS WELL as doing the extra owner tasks such as recruitment, marketing, team training and financial management.
Is it any wonder, so many health business owners feel chained to their health businesses and spending little, if any, time with their family and friends.
I suggest all health business owners check your freedom score at least every three months, to make sure your number of consulting hours is not increasing.
In “Practiceology” we talk about the concept of “Creep”.
“Creep” is the gradual increase in many business costs or metrics, with no obvious or definitive decision leading to this increase.
We see “Creep” a lot in practices regular expenses – such as a gradual increase in insurance premiums, clinic supplies or cleaning costs – simply because the fees the companies charge for these services gradually increase over time.
This “Creep” can also occur in admin wages, you used to have 40 hours of admin coverage per week, but Mary filled in on a few shifts for Brian, and before you know it Mary and Brian are on the same shift together and your admin hours are up to 50.
However, the biggest “Creep” concern is is the Freedom Score – where owners typically respond to any staff or financial crisis by increasing their personal consulting hours.
One of your therapists can no longer work past 4pm – so the owner steps in to make up the extra hours.
Another team member takes a few weeks off, so the owner steps in to make up some extra hours – however, the owner continues these increased hours, even once the team member has returned from holidays.
So keep an eye on “Creep” with particular reference to any creep in your Freedom Score.
Be aware also, the value of your practice to a potential buyer increases dramatically, the lower your “Freedom Score” is.
Practice buyers want certainty the business will maintain its profitability if the former owner steps away from the practice, which is much easier to prove if the owner is not actually seeing many patients.
So calculate your FREEDOM SCORE and check it each quarter for any CREEP.
If you want to find out more about Freedom Score , Creep and have not yet attended one of my FREE and LIVE Practiceology Demonstrations – click on the link below to register for either of the upcoming sessions.
I hope this helps you in your health business.