Okay, y’all, I’m back with another beginner practice launch episode. This loosely titled series marches on. Today’s episode is all about hiring admin help, and more specifically when you might want to hire admin. If you haven’t listened to the previous few episodes in the beginner practice launch series, the previous three episodes, I believe, have been dedicated to this topic. So certainly, I encourage you to go check those out.
As we get started today, I will invite any of you in this beginner time period to check out the Beginner Practice Mastermind at thetestingpsychologist.com/beginner. The next cohort is enrolling in April or May. I’d love to chat with you to see if it’d be a good fit.
Okay. Let’s get to this brief discussion about hiring admin help as you launch your practice.
All right, everyone. We are back. I think today’s episode is going to be relatively short simply because my stance on when to hire admin help is quite clear, and the answer is very early. The title of this episode is, is it too early to hire admin help? My answer unequivocally is no. The only argument I can make for waiting a bit to hire admin help is to give yourself some time to understand your own processes and establish your own processes so that you can teach those to someone else in a relatively clear and concise manner.
I’ve said many times on the podcast before that I waited way too long to hire admin help. It was probably 3 to 4 years into launching my practice back in 2009 before I decided to bring someone on to help, the reason being, we do this for a lot of reasons, but I think one of the main reasons is that we feel that we are the only ones who can do a task the way that we would like it to be done. Maybe there’s some truth to that. Maybe the reality is that you are the only one who can do the task 100% the way you want it done. But what I found is that the incremental improvement between 98% and 100% is not worth the time that it takes for you to do all these tasks yourself.
So that was my reason for a long time. I didn’t feel that someone could answer the phone, that I could trust someone with emails, that I could trust someone to schedule or do billing. The fact of the matter is that many of these skills are quite teachable. And as long as you put in the time and the effort to teach someone how to do them well, it can be very, very helpful in your practice.
Now that I’ve answered that question, is it too early to hire admin help? The answer is likely no, definitely not. I would be thinking about bringing on an admin support person, even for just two hours a week from the very beginning of your practice. And be thinking through that lens or looking through that lens as you develop your practice materials because you want to be writing out standard operating procedures from the very beginning with the intent or with the idea, with the goal of knowing that you’re going to try to communicate those standard operating procedures to someone else relatively soon in your practice journey.
What are some of the things that you might look to outsource from the beginning? Well, an easy one is sending questionnaires for evaluations. This is a very easily taught task. It’s a pretty rote task. It’s something that could be accomplished with a simple shared checklist where you can communicate which questionnaires to send out electronically to your reporters for your evaluations. So that’s one thing to think about. It’s an easy way to weigh into having an assistant.
If you want to step up your game a little bit, you can bring someone on to collect payment, do your billing, to process insurance claims. Those are relatively easy steps that you can teach someone. And if you want to go a step further, you can even bring someone on to answer your phones and do your scheduling. These are probably the top three tasks that I see folks using virtual assistance for. When I say virtual assistant, I just mean remote assistant. If you want someone in the office, that’s totally fine too, but with the work-from-home culture these days, we’ll see whether that changes or not, virtual assistants can be very helpful.
So, those are just three things to think about when you’re thinking about outsourcing. Now, I’ve done more in-depth episodes in the past around tasks that you can outsource to a virtual assistant. There are tons of things that you can outsource in your testing practice, but these three are, I think, easy things to wrap your mind around and just simple, straightforward tasks that you should not be doing in your practice.
And again, the rationale for this is that your expertise lies in the clinical realm, and you get paid really, really well to do what you’re trained to do, to do these clinical tasks. So anytime that you’re engaging in administrative tasks or anything outside of clinical work, you are essentially paying yourself your clinical rate or losing that money that you would be paying yourself for doing clinical work, which makes you the highest-paid assistant that you would ever hire.
So if you’re doing administrative tasks, I just want to let that sink in, if you’re doing admin tasks, you’re essentially paying yourself your hourly rate for clinical work to do that task. No administrative assistant is making $100 an hour, $150 an hour, $200 an hour, or even higher. So don’t waste money. Don’t waste time. Think about it from the very beginning how you might bring someone on to support you in your practice.
There’s a lot more to say around this, but I will keep it short and sweet. Again, this is just for those who are launching. I recognize that it could be a lot to think about bringing on someone in your practice right off the bat. So I just want to plant that seed, get you thinking about it, get you checking out some of the other episodes where I’ve talked about hiring admin support, and just start to wrap your mind around it.
If you’d like more intensive support, you can check out thetestingpsychologist.com/beginner and schedule a pre-group call to see if a mastermind group would be a good fit for you. The next group is starting in April or May, and we would love to have you.
All right, I’ll keep it short for today. I look forward to talking to you next time.
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