Showing posts with label Survival. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Survival. Show all posts

Monday, November 13, 2017

Seven Steps to Survival - How to Keep Your Agency Afloat in Challenging Times

Seven Steps to Survival - How to Keep Your Agency Afloat in Challenging Times

Advertising & Marketing Communications spending is one of the first things companies decide to cut when faced with slowing sales. Advertising agencies have already started feeling the pinch. Ad people are anxious and scared as well. So, what do you do to survive this critical phase and come out victorious. You must fight back! Here is your survival guide:

1. Promote your agency more aggressively - Doing nothing only leads to failure. This moment is the test of your leadership. Go out there, and face the recession head-on. Promote your agency more aggressively than ever before. Relentlessly pursue new business leads. Re-negotiate costs with your vendors, IT providers and even with your landlord! Generate great business-building ideas for your existing clients. All these will fuel you and your agency with renewed energy.

2. Be there for the client - Do not take your clients for granted even for a single day. Make sure that you personally visit each of your clients in the same month. Your clients need your help like never before, for they're now seeking answers to kick-start their sales and get rolling. If their agency stands by them in this battle, enabling them to invent new solutions, they will most likely never forget you once the good times resurafce.

3. Create opportunities - Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. Don't wait for the chance. Meet as many people as possible. There is always an opportunity to capitalize on. Collaborate with your partners, tie up with complimentary service providers and forge strategic alliances. Remember, somewhere a potential client is planning to take advantage of the downturn. Keep your eyes and ears open. If you just sit back and wait for the next new-business win, you are simply waiting for a disaster to take over.

4. Think Smart. Work Harder - In your efforts to fight back the downturn, be sure your agency's work is as smart as it can be. Put in those extra hours. Ask yourself: Is the message as relevant today as it was six months ago? Is it as cost effective? Is there a better and perhaps cheaper medium to communicate the message? Maintain the integrity of your agency's work throughout these times, and you will surely earn the trust and respect of your clients.

5. Don't stop innovations - Slow client spending is not an excuse to go conservative with your work. Don't play safe. If you think you are going to hold on to your clients by being extra cautious with your work, you might give your clients an excuse to switch to another agency that will continue to take intelligent risks. Recession is the ideal time to innovate and experiment. Suggest media innovations. Try your hand and unleash your creativity online through blogs, social media and viral campaigns.

6. Improve internal communication - Do not sit quietly in your cabin and distance yourself from the staff. Get up and mingle with your staff and let them know what's going on with the agency. Feel the pulse of your own team. Better internal communication only makes the team stronger. Also, do not stop looking for the best talent. This economic downturn has put a lot of really good people on the street. Now may be a rare opportunity to upgrade your staff strength. Provide creative stimulation to engage your employees. Keep the spirits up to make sure that the happiness quotient remains high in your office.

7. Stay focused - Just because times are tough, your agency shouldn't move away from the strategic course you set. Be it a plan to differentiate your agency or expand into new services, stay true to your long term goals even if it takes a little longer for them to materialize. When the economy turns around, you'll have the wind at your back.

And finally don't forget: tough times never last, but tough people do.

Kashyap Pandya - Director, Synapse Marketing Consultancy Pvt Ltd. E-mail:

Thursday, September 28, 2017

The "New Rules" for Survival for Physicians in Private Practice - Part 2 in a 4 Part Series

The "New Rules" for Survival for Physicians in Private Practice - Part 2 in a 4 Part Series

In Part I of our blog series, we explained the "New Rules" for physician compensation based on the post-  reform healthcare system. As we stated, physicians are at the epicenter of one of the most dramatic periods of change in America's healthcare system.  The rules and strategies for physician success are changing rapidly, and most physicians are struggling to understand it. 

The U.S government has made their claim on the American healthcare system and offered up their requirements for physician change, as put forth in the Annals of Internal Medicine, noting "physicians will need to embrace rather than resist change". Change is inevitable. Now, physicians will need to decide what they will change into. Will you become the physician our government wishes you to be or will you forge a new path to capitalize on these changes for your own career path? Regardless of your choice, you will need to understand the "New Rules" and change the way you think and practice.


This is the second in a four-part series of blogs that will discuss the new rules for physician practices on four dimensions of physician life:

Physician Compensation
Managing a Private Practice
Changing Patient Demographics and Attitudes
Physician Career Satisfaction

This article will focus on the "New Rules" for managing the administrative side of a healthcare practice.

Managing a Healthcare Practice

Old Rule: Managing a medical practice could be handled by administrative people with general administrative skills.

New Rule: The complexity and risk of managing a medical practice has skyrocketed, requiring highly specialized expertise. 4,000 new regulations per year are created that affect physicians. Physicians cannot find the required level of expertise in one or two administrative persons. Outsourcing to specialized firms will become the norm.

Old Rule: Doctors could get away with being "low-tech".

New Rule: Patients, insurance carriers and the government will expect physicians to be high-tech. Physicians who are not high-tech will be limiting their income and value to patients and become employees of systems that are.

Old Rule: The billing function of a medical practice could be performed by regular administrative staff.

New Rule: With unintentional billing fraud on the increase, identity theft running rampant and regulatory fines on the increase, physicians must ensure that their billing is done professionally by certified coders with multiple layers of protection in place.

Old Rule: A healthcare practice was not considered a "business".

New Rule: Structuring a practice around sound business principles and an understanding of healthcare economics will become increasingly important in order to survive. Those physicians who run their practice on business principles will survive. Those  who don't will be absorbed by those who do.

Old Rule: The duties of contracting with payers could be handled by the regular administrative staff.

New Rule: Contracting will become increasingly complicated from a legal and business point of view, requiring specialized expertise. Outsourcing the contracting function of a practice will become more prevalent. Additionally, for those practices getting into "Retail Medicine", expertise will need to be acquired for pricing and packaging of services.


The administration of healthcare practices has become increasingly sophisticated. The vast majority of practices and administered by under-qualified and under-trained staff. Physicians are reluctant to pay for the level of talent that the practice requires. The post-healthcare reform system will increase in complexity. Success of physician practices will depend largely on the talent managing it.


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Healthcare Networks of America's mission is to drive more patients to the medical practice through our ever growing provider network and provide the latest resources for managing and promoting a successful practice. For more information please visit


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