The pandemic has caused many changes in private practice, affecting everything from the way we see our patients to what we expect from our employees. Although some of these changes serve us well, others may feel like a barrier. While attendance issues are not new to practice owners, dealing with them in this new post-pandemic world can feel impossible. We have adapted to state and federal mandates, faced illness that would put our patients and employees at risk, and now we are worried that calling out attendance issues may put pressure on our employees that could cause them to quit.
So how do we address employee absences and other disruptions without rocking the boat?
If regular attendance issues have become part of your practice culture, changing them will require some forethought and a strong communication plan. The silver lining here is that we see these behaviors crop up under good intentions of support and sympathy, so you haven’t done anything wrong. And they are simple to fix!
Through my own experience, I have learned a few things:
So, what is the simple fix? It can be broken down into four steps:
Although the response here is simple, that doesn’t mean that it will be easy. Make the time, get ready to be uncomfortable if you are conflict averse, and understand that you will have to conduct ongoing conversations about attendance to promote change. But over time, you will see alignment and growth in your team.
If you find yourself struggling with the day-to-day challenges of team management, including issues like employee attendance, our team of HR experts is here to help. Reach out to IDOC HR Consulting and we will coach you through the process so you can set your employees—and your practice—up for success.
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