This week several of us in the billing office had the pleasure of taking a day to re-evaluate our leadership skills.
Business coach Jim Riviello of Leadership X University, author and business motivator, spent a memorable day with us as we examined our impact on the EMS billing industry basically from the inside out.
Part of our day centered on approaching our duties from a beginner’s mindset.
What if it isn’t?
If you are open to new ideas then you most likely have harnessed the power of the beginner’s mindset. Think back to when you were brand new to EMS and how your mind was asking questions every 5 seconds.
But now that you are not a chronological beginner, are you a mental beginner? If you have the beginner’s mindset then you’ll be eager to re-think every single process you own.
What you have been taught to believe may be true- but WHAT IF IT ISN’T?
As we worked through applying this to our EMS billing world, the concept not only relates to the office but also to many aspects of this life-saving thing that we do on the outside in the field, too.
We encounter people we work with all the time that are dug in and very much a creature of habit- even to the point of protecting processes just for the sake of protecting them. We all know that in EMS in order to be effective we must continually question our practices and the things we do every day.
Had we not questioned the things we do over the course of many years, we’d all be running around in a Cadillac with nothing more than a scoop stretcher and an oxygen tank.
The same holds true inside, too.
There’s no way that we can navigate the EMS billing world using the same tactics and routines of even just a few years ago. Times change and we must adhere to the following steps in everything that we do in EMS.
Ask More Questions
Think about it, asking questions is at the center of EMS.
If you are good fashioning effective questions then you’ll be good at assessing your patient, good at treating your patient, and by extension good at documenting your run effectively too.
Then the EMS agency you serve will be well-served.
Foster an environment within your EMS agency where asking questions are center to the culture. Stale ideas and the inability to ultimately change will torpedo our systems.
I think our billing office is really good at asking questions. Is your’s?
We look to test, measure and tear it all apart if needed because we must serve our clients and the communities they serve in order to bring in every dollar to save the next patient’s life.
Welcome and Embrace Change
When ICD-10 was mandated on October 1, 2015, few billing offices (ours included) were doing anything but “embracing” change. We all were grumbling and fiddling with our billing systems to accommodate the new mandate.
We made it happen because we had to make it happen. But embrace it? Probably not and simply because it was CHANGE (big change!)
Two years later this is the one example that still sticks in our heads because it was personally painful. Change often is painful, but then again so rewarding.
To embrace change is to welcome it. To embrace change is to promote it, teach it, let it grow and weave like a vine into every thread of your EMS agency’s culture…from the street to the office.
The opposite of embracing change is fearing change. When the fear of change invades an organization, like a cancer it chokes off the life of that organization. No one is motivated to find new answers. The same old thing is done day-in and day-out. Performance suffers and morale dips.
Ultimately not much energy flows. Only entropy reigns.
Open to Help and Assistance
We all must continually learn each day.
Our office is learning all the time.
We achieve better results when we share our thinking.
EMS is a team effort.
The providers can’t do their jobs without the mechanic that keeps the truck running. The administration can’t manage the organization without the insights and respect of the people that make up the system.
The billing office can’t bill without precise, detailed documentation from the providers. Likewise if the billing office doesn’t do everything in its power to bring in the biggest buck, then the street providers won’t be paid and the equipment will become dated and ineffective.
Release Past Limiting Beliefs
You must empower yourself and others in your organization to help you create the future of EMS, rather than to hang onto the “glory days” of the past.
So when the billing office asks everyone to get together for some documentation training, be available to join in the discussion. Likewise, if your billing office is demanding things from you that you know will not serve the organization well, then ask the question Why?
Approach your EMS world like you did when you were a beginner and you’ll be surprised at the potential you uncover!