gamification for employee engagement at physical therapy

How Gamification Can Improve Employee Engagement in Your Private Practice

“The best way to spread holiday cheer is making your employees smile from ear to ear.” 

It’s a playful twist on “singing loud for all to hear,” but we aren’t against sending Christmas Carolers throughout your clinic. The point we’re trying to make was first said by Steve Jobs: “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”

So, who is in charge of keeping a pulse on company culture at your clinic? Are they using this festive season to tap into the inherent good cheer that this time of year produces?

This, as you have undoubtedly guessed, is a job for your Patient Care Representative. 

What is a Patient Care Representative?

To start, it’s someone you can’t afford NOT to have! Your PCR is devoted exclusively to the patient experience in and out of the clinic and the marketing resources outside of your office to refer patients to your practice. And what affects those things most, the employees!

Without a PCR, your patient numbers will go up and down and you’ll ride what we call “the patient roller coaster” whenever someone isn’t devoted to bringing in patients. In the past, you may have heard Brian mention that there are three must-dos for your PCR:

  1. Make sure every new patient gets a “Welcome to the Practice” folder. These include administrative and operative information on the clinical side.
  2. Survey every patient – once at eval, again two weeks into care, and once more at discharge.
  3. Request testimonials and reviews from every patient who claims their care is working and they are getting better. That way other patients can hear their stories!

But there is another very special way to utilize your Patient Care Representative this time of year. PT Owners can lean on their PCR during the holiday season to create a welcoming atmosphere and encourage patient compliance during this busy, festive time.

Use Gamification to Increase Employee Engagement

Since poor engagement leads to poor performance – it should be a priority to always focus on boosting morale and engagement to create the best patient and business outcomes.

Typically your staff will lose interest in their work due to four factors:

  1. Lack of purpose
  2. Lack of recognition
  3. Lack of challenge
  4. Lack of reward

Luckily, gamification can counteract these negative trends and motivate your staff to a higher level of engagement and performance. By turning normal KPIs into a game, creating competition, showcasing a leaderboard and even getting the patients involved – you positively affect employees by connecting them to achievement, affiliation with a group and an overall sense of accomplishment and competence.

Consider these stats of U.S. workers organized by FinancesOnline in a 2020/2021 Study:

  • 87% feel that workplace gamification would increase their productivity.
  • 80% are more engaged with gamification-based learning than traditional training.
  • Overall, Gamification increases employee engagement by 60% and productivity by 50%.

So, if gamification is a great way to drive productivity at your private practice, where do you start?

Holiday Gamification Tactics for Your Physical Therapy Clinic

Since it’s always a good idea to tie your gamification tactics to particular seasons or incentives, there’s always something extra motivating about tying it to end of the year goals and this special holiday season. Based off your teams’ interests, you can come up with a big prize (or multiple prizes) and use these games to see who wins them.

  • The Referral Game – In December, you can hold a raffle where all staff have a recurring opportunity to receive raffle tickets based on their activities. For example, you can arrange for 3 entries for every referral, 1 entry for every time you hit your efficiency metrics each week, 1 entry for percent of kept appointments, 1 entry for every testimonial or review, etc. The raffle will determine the winner(s).
  • Decorate your Door or Cart – Your PTs can showcase their unique, festive side by decorating different areas of the clinic or their cart. At the front desk, a voting section can be set up where patients can vote on their favorite decorations. A special prize will be delivered to the PT who receives the most votes. 
  • Toys for Tots or Winter Coat Drive – It’s always fun to connect your people to purpose. This ongoing event gives your staff an incentive to deliver a toy or coat for charity or a local shelter and they receive a raffle ticket in exchange. The raffle will once more be the means of awarding a winner – though the real winners will be the charities that you have helped support along the way!

Whether you use these tactics or develop your own fun game, the goal is simple: Motivate your team members to have fun and drive more results at the end of your year. 

To learn more about how a Patient Care Representative can keep your team engaged all year round, check out our private practice personnel and marketing programs in MEG Academy!

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