Giving Thanks for Tough Times

November 6, 2011

We wanted to drop you a quick note and keep you updated.  

You may have noticed fewer updates on Facebook, Twitter, and this blog as we’ve cut back on the social events and focused on our mission to get through this economy.

Despite early success, we’ve had to scale back on our growth plans and “hunker down” while the demand for healthcare professionals has slowed.  In some cases, this has meant not filling open administrative positions so we can keep our costs down and run an efficient enterprise.

What changed?

The economic environment has not been favorable, and many of our respected competitors have chosen to close their doors.  The primary issue is national unemployment rates and the loss of insured patients. However, we’re stable and continue to enjoy making a difference in the lives of our nurses, therapists, and HIM professionals in the field each day.

We’re still finding a way to change the world, one person at a time.

One of the biggest lessons we’ve learned is that taking care of our team members, clients, and partners is job #1.  We’ve made some mistakes while reorganizing and have recommitted ourselves to maintaining strong relationships that will set us apart as other companies continue to cut their service levels.

We’re thankful for the lesson.

We’ve also learned humility, frugality, and other characteristics that should serve us well in the future.

The tough times aren’t always bad.

The future is bright.  Thanks for helping us change the world.

– Your friends at Clear Medical Solutions and Clear Medical Network

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Clear Medical Network Annual Cruise!

May 28, 2011

We are working with a couple other groups right now to organize the next annual healthcare cruise. Here’s what we know so far:

  • Price will start at a discounted price of $389/person (plus taxes/fees)
  • All food and most entertainment is included
  • 7 nights & 8 days long
  • We’ll be leaving from South Florida in early January
  • Friends and family are welcome to join
  • No work, just fun

If you’re interested in more info, we’ll be sending out official invites soon. If you’d like one, just let us know your contact info by registering for free at ClearMedicalNetwork.com (we don’t spam or sell your info).

You may be wondering what “the catch” is.  Besides the fun and new friends we meet, there is no other benefit to us.  Payment and reservations are handled through the cruise company.

We recommend going to the Clear Medical Network page on Facebook and browsing through the pictures, videos, and stories of fun from our previous 4 cruises.  It originally was started to provide a break and help reduce burnout for medical team members at Clear Medical Agency, but the last couple years it’s been opened up to medical professionals around the world and their family members.

Let us know if you have any questions.

– Trey and the Annual Cruise organizing committee

2010 Annual Cruise


7 Steps to Take after Graduation

May 14, 2011

Congrats!!  It’s graduation time!  Are you a little nervous?  Here are seven tips to follow your dreams, find success, and make a difference.

1)  Commit to something bigger.

There is no sugar-coating it, healthcare is tough!  Odds are that within the first year, you’ll either quit or think about quitting. However, it’s hard to quit on something bigger than yourself. Have a goal. Be on a mission. Change the world. Save a life.

If you want to succeed, you must commit yourself to a bigger cause.

2) Figure out what you love.

I guarantee you will not truly succeed if you’re doing anything you don’t love.  Healthcare is just too hard  if you don’t love it.  Find your calling and chase it!

3) Start doing it. Now.

If you don’t love what you’re doing, make a change.  Don’t put it into your 5 year plan.  Start today.  Even if you have to get/keep your day job until you can do what you love full-time, get started!  Volunteer or do per diem work on the side to gain experience.

4) Meet others who love what you love.

Few people can win alone anymore.  The world is too complex and we need people to pick us up when we’re tired, broken, and failing.  It’s a war out there, and you will fail, fall, and need help.  Find others, learn from them and win.  Together you are stronger.  (If you need help finding others in your specialty, check out the free Clear Medical Network forums on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin)

5)  Make long-term plans, not short-term ones.

If you’ve committed yourself to something special, keep your eye on it.  Make short-term adjustments, but focus on the big picture.  It’s too easy to get distracted these days, so you need to be working towards long-term goals.  Don’t waste energy on achieving short-term goals. Everything should lead toward the end goal.

6)  Don’t be selfish.

You will need to give things, thoughts, and time away before you get anything in return.  I’m not sure exactly why, other than people like nice people and are willing to help them in return.

Give, give, give.

7) Take your magic step.

If you will succeed, there will be one magic step only you will discover.  The very nature of our world is that we cannot all have the same path, the same steps towards our dreams.  You will need to take a unique step along the way, and it will be something that only you will find.

Call it magic or whatever you’d like, but you’ll need it and I can’t tell you what to look for.  We all have a step in life that we will need to take to achieve our dreams.

When you see yours.  Take it!

Let me know if we can help.

Have a great day,

Aaron@Biebert

__________________________

Aaron is a former nursing home administrator, HIM Director, and consultant.  He is also the creator of the Clear Medical Network and an 8pm Warrior.


Hire a Horse

May 3, 2011

If you’re in a horse race, hire a horse.

Not an elephant. Not a cheetah.

Elephants may carry a lot of people, but they’re not fast enough. Cheetahs have the opposite problem.

One nurse made a great comment on another post about bright, innovative people getting leadership positions without knowing how to lead. It’s like hiring an Elephant for the horse race just because it’s great at carrying things.

Superb athletes don’t always turn into superb coaches. Top medical coders don’t always make top HIM Directors.  A great nurse does not equal a great nurse manager.

I could go on and on and on…

Leadership is a skill, and top leaders will find ways to recruit the right talent for the right position.

If you’re in a horse race, hire a horse.

Have a great day!

Aaron


The Rain is Coming!

March 14, 2011

Right now my wife and I are watching the show “Nature’s Most Amazing Events” and we just finished the section about the annual Pacific Salmon run.  It makes for an interesting allegory for the current employment environment.

Here it is:

Salmon are drawn by instinct to swim against the current, jump huge waterfalls, and avoid massive bears, just to achieve their mission.  Only four out of every thousand salmon make the round trip from their birth place to the ocean and back again.

It’s the challenge of a lifetime!

However, as if that wasn’t hard enough, sometimes the water levels are too low for the fish to even get to the bears, waterfalls, or heavy currents.  They get stuck before the challenge even begins.

Then the rain comes.

Just as many of the fish are starting to lose energy (and hope?), the rainy season begins and allows the fish to resume their journey onward.  They can finally begin the work they were designed for.

Sound familiar?

Many young healthcare professionals are on their way to following their dreams.  We all signed up for the challenges of dealing with difficult cases, managing ornery patients, or the emotional struggles that come with our work.

What we didn’t sign up for was the lack of water.

This economy has dried up many opportunities, and left many healthcare workers looking for work, confused by their situation, and wondering if it’s time to move on to a new career.  Today I urge you to hold on.

The Rain is Coming!

The work we seek will be here soon enough and the days of low census will be replaced with the challenge of a lifetime, caring for our fellow human beings when they need us most.

Keep your chin up.

Aaron@Biebert


The Myth of Teamwork?

February 28, 2011

I just read Skip Weisman’s blog about the “Myth of Teamwork” and was impressed.  Not because I think teamwork is a myth, but because it’s high time someone took a look at why teamwork isn’t successful many times.

It is because individual team members fail.

However, I think that Skip misses the fact that teamwork is more than just the actions associated with working as part of a team.  It is a culture, a mindset, a way of working and winning together, not just as individuals.

But it does start with individuals.

The Problem of Teamwork in Certain Cultures

A teamwork mindset requires confidence in others.  Continual failure by fellow team members creates  a disincentive to rely on someone else, the very foundation of teamwork.

Therefore, for it to be effective, members of the team must do their work effectively and earn the trust of their peers.  Otherwise, people resort to depending on themselves primarily (“it’s faster if I do it myself” mentality), a fatal blow not just to the concept of teamwork, but delegation and collaboration as well.

Organizations that hire great people and teach those great people to understand and trust each other, incubate more than just a teamwork culture.

They incubate success.

On the flip side, teamwork is a joke in organizations that hire sloppy people and then allow poor performance to continue, while at the same time preaching that people need to work together.  The second part of teamwork is “work”, and it needs to be done well for teamwork to succeed.  Otherwise, they’d be better off letting their few “All Stars” do the process or project themselves, rather than introducing broken cogs into the system.

I can’t count how many times leaders in organizations I’ve assisted have lost focus on cleaning up poor individual work performances, and have instead brought in consultants to help do fruitless team building exercises.

Without individual success, teamwork is indeed a waste of time.

One Idea for Team Building

We have to listen to our staff and actively seek their feedback.  If your team is dysfunctional, it’s time to ask your team why.  When dealing with team problems, I always start by interviewing everyone involved and asking what the problem is.

Nine times out of ten, they have the answer already figured out.  They almost always know if they should trust their teammates to finish their part correctly, and encouraging them to “work together” is frustrating and pointless.

For true team building, leaders must hold their individual team members to a high standard first (build trust in performance), then help them see the excellence they each bring to a project (understanding).  Only at that point will the handoffs  be smooth, the communication open, and synergies will begin to appear.

Have an excellent night,

Aaron Biebert


Pushing Our Limits

December 28, 2010

I’m now writing a personal blog at 8pmWarrior.com and wanted to share a post that I recently wrote. 

I speak for our entire leadership team at Clear Medical Solutions when I say that we spend every day (and many nights) flying, pushing, climbing towards the upper limits.   We’re not perfect, but we are passionate and driven.

___________________

Pushing the Limits

There are two ways a person can go about pushing their limits:

1)      Dive for the bottom by constantly thinking of ways to do the bare minimum to keep their current position, relationship, or income.

This is the easy way to push.

In a busy world, very few leaders will investigate everything their employees say or do (I won’t).  It’s easy to sneak in a couple half true statements, half baked ideas, or half finished projects.  Excuses are cheap and easy to find.  It’s easy to dive for the bottom.

2)      Flying. Pushing. Fighting towards the upper limits of what you can do by giving your absolute best to everything you do while ignoring the siren’s call to dive to the bottom.

A much harder path.

I believe that there is a limit to what a person can do with their life.  However, you’ll never find it if you waste your life diving.  It’s a different way of thinking, and one that explains why there are 8pm Warriors all over the world right now pushing their limits.

The upper ones.

  ___________________

If you’re interested in learning more about our 8pm Warrior mentality, you can also subscribe to the free 8pm Warrior blog, follow 8pm Warrior on Twitter, discuss issues on the 8pm Warrior facebook page, or network with other 8pm Warriors on Linkedin.

Have a great day!

– Aaron


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