The reason why countries revolt simply to turn to another dictator, why the spouse of some politician is feted as savior, and why hospitals turn to national organizations to provide items and services as varied as toilet paper to neonatology, is the same: People — all of us, from Joe and Josie on the street to hospital administrators on the third floor — have an innate desire to be led.
That’s why leadership is so important. And why providing it is essential to your development and retention of business relationships.
The key is not to provide leadership designed to advance your own interests, but to provide leadership that’s designed to advance your business partners’ (whether that’s a hospital, a medical group, or anyone else) interests.
But you can’t do this as a ruse or as a scam or as a device. You have to honestly, at your core, believe and understand that you are providing a service or acting or delivering in the other party’s best interests. It’s exactly the same as the relationship between physician and patient in which the raison d’etre is the patient’s health.
The funny thing is that the byproduct of putting the other’s interest first is that it opens the door to you profiting alongside them.
So whether you’re an independent surgeon or the leader of a large hospital based group ask yourself if what you are doing now is the best you can do for your referral sources, for your patients, and for the hospitals and other facilities with which you interact. How can you continue to improve what they are receiving, even if it’s not something that you provide? This is the oil that keeps relationships moving smoothly.
No, it doesn’t always work. Nothing works all of the time.
But if you think about it, what I’m talking about you doing is what your competitor is trying to do to you. To innovate you out of your current business relationships. Isn’t it better that you innovate yourself into continued relationships?