By Jill Scott, Manager of Member Services at The Academy for Private Duty Home Care
So far this year we’ve held web conferences that focused on competitive advantage, caregiver training, efficient caregiver recruiting, and how to retain the best caregivers. Interestingly, as I was reading the most recent issue of Inc. Magazine this week, I came across an article titled “Grow. Hire. Repeat.” that discusses a study conducted throughout 2013 of 100 mid-size US businesses that had shown steady growth from 2007-2012. The pool of companies was originally 100,000, but only 1.5 percent met the sustained-growth standard they wanted for the group, and of that 1.5 percent, 100 agreed to collaborate on the study.
1. “People/talent” and “customer service” were the only drivers of competitive advantage and the core identity of over 50% of respondents (ahead of 9 other factors).
2. “Big change in senior management or leadership” was among the top three factors attributing to a companies growth “breakouts”.
3. Two of the top three challenges or obstacles were “attracting top managerial talent” and “training future supervisors and managers”, ahead of 11 other challenges.
4. “Sharing financial success with your employees” helps a company grow, according to more than 82% of respondents, which was the highest response among six management practices.
5. “Sudden loss of a key employee” was a concern for 81% of respondents, in the category of “unplanned events”.
These five highlights stood out to me, not only because they hit on the topics we’ve been covering so far in 2014, but more importantly that these are companies throughout the US that are across the spectrum in terms of type of company, customer base and number of years in business. Further, when we did our reader survey in January and February that focused on Competitive Advantage, “Exceptional Customer Experiences” and “Caregiver Quality” were the top 2 sources of competitive advantage for the 100 participants in the survey. Now, re-read highlight #1 above. Coincidence? I think not.
We all know that the nature of private duty home care is a unique business; however, the fundamentals of the business may not be as different (or as difficult) as some may believe. No matter what the industry, good customer service and creating exceptional customer experiences keep your business going, whether through continued service to current clients or new clients being referred by current (happy) clients. And, you must have good people to provide great in-home care and great customer service in order to create an exceptional customer experience. Those two factors can help you grow your company, as evidenced by the study in the article and our reader survey.
If you need help executing the strategies you have in place to help your company grow, you’ll want to purchase the recording of our web conference “Execution IS the Strategy” with Laura Stack and Stephen Tweed.