Metrics vs. Statistics: How Do You Manage Your PT Staff?

(This blog was originally published on Feb 7, 2019 titled “Metrics Versus Statistics: What’s The Difference?” and has been updated with relevant content)

Are you managing your Physical Therapy staff based on personality or statistics?

Statistics provide an objective way to measure your PT staff’s performance. When an employee is onboarded, they should fully understand what is expected of them and what their purpose is within the company. This is their product. In order to determine if they are achieving their product, they should be tracking the stats that support that product.

This is opposed to managing by how much you like the personality involved: Do they bring you coffee? Do they laugh at your jokes? This approach to management is ineffective and ultimately results in lost production, inefficiency and poor company culture.

Clearly, one will be more effective than the other when it comes to driving results for your business.

Remember: if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Some good daily examples of this are with your bathroom scale for weight management, how you did on your morning run (measured by time/distance), and even your patients’ progress in the clinic (measured by ROM, muscle strength, etc).

The same holds true for you as a Physical Therapy practice owner. If you cannot measure the performance of your staff, then you will struggle to manage them. Managing by personality is not effective since you can’t measure your practice’s productivity by how well you get along with someone!

Ultimately, you want your PT staff to care about the business as much as you do as the owner – eliminating the “What’s in it for me?” attitude.

At MEG Business Management, we instruct our new and veteran PT owners alike to aim for hiring and training PT staff who are passionate about hitting their targets and metrics – only then will your whole team win.

What Stats & Metrics Matter for PT Clinics?

What is a Statistic? 

This word might transport you back to your high school math class, but that’s not exactly what we’re talking about here. Business statistics involve evaluating one thing against another in a new unit of time to measure progress and growth. 

Stats for a PT clinic can be used for quality assurance, finances, production, and operational analysis to measure the performance of each individual or division. There are established key statistics for evaluating your practice that every business owner should know and hold their team accountable to, even in the post-Covid environment.

What is a Metric?

Business metrics are quantifiable measurements that are taken and used to monitor the success or failure of various business operations. Metrics are the benchmarks (*see chart below) for your business to thrive. In MEG Academy, our clients have access to all the metrics you need to know for your practice.

What’s The Difference?

Listed below are some of the key statistics and metrics that the top 10% of physical therapy practices around the US know and understand while managing their practice:

How to Apply Statistics and Metrics in Your PT Practice

First, 35-45% of your PT staff statistics should be pulled from your EMR system. The rest can be pulled manually from all statistics entered into a shared Google or Excel Spreadsheet for efficient tracking in both numerical and graphical form. 

But how do you use these to bring about a positive result in the products that they measure? Your supervisors should have a weekly meeting to review the statistical trend with the team who is responsible for producing their respective products and services.

As the CEO, your practice will run in accordance with the level of training that you employ with your PT staff on their stats & metrics, and how they will be measured. 

Having a comprehensive onboarding and orientation program for new team members, as well as having professional enhancement training (LMS), will keep your PT staff invested in the products that keep the business flourishing & prospering. Stats & Metrics will help your staff understand their place in the 5 Division Org board, and motivate them to perform to the best of their ability within it. 

Know the stats and metrics to measure, and you will know how to effectively manage your practice and the people who drive its bottom line! 


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