10 Tips For Problem Solving

It’s not me verses the problem. It’s not you versus the problem. It’s US versus the problem!

If you have read this far in this series of articles, you should begin to see a consistent theme forming. We’re building your playbook for success with skills that do not just necessarily apply to the hearing industry.

By and large, Phonak has done an excellent job of letting people know who we are and what we do, both to our customers and to our customer’s patients. The Inner Circle team wants you to be able to share in our success. Phonak built a brand, and now everyone knows what we are about.

We shared with you the importance of building that personal brand and what it can do for you. We discussed the importance of that brand’s messaging and how to relay that to the public at large. We also shared how and why you need to connect with your patients and how those interactions can shape your business.

The next chapter in our playbook for success focuses on problem solving and team building. Even if you are a one-person operation, you still have critical support pieces that you surround yourself with. There are marketing people, IT people, accounting people, landlords, etc. The people who you choose to deal with and how you choose to deal with those people are critical to your overall success. There are a few things that we here at Phonak and at Inner Circle have learned and want to share with you.

1. Learn, Don’t Quit

The best teacher in the world is failure. When you mess up, don’t think of it as wasted time or effort — think of it as sanding down the rough surfaces of your ideas. It can be messy and it can be frustrating, but nothing gets smoothed out on its own. Each step is another step toward the finish you’re hoping to reach.

2. Know When to Defer and When to Listen

Even though you may ultimately have the final say, you are not always the most qualified person to make all the decisions. This is a hard thing for a lot of people to accept. It’s okay to ask for help when you need it — you and your business will be better because of it. Having the willingness to listen is an invaluable skill. It’s important to consider the strength of those around you.

Countless of success stories feature moments in which the primary figure benefited from the input of someone unexpected. Bill Nye, one of our most favorite science guys, once stated that, “Everyone you will ever meet knows something that you don’t.” Use other people’s knowledge to your benefit. This will help you achieve your goals, and you’ll be much better off in the long run.

3. Channel Your Time and Energy Into Something Positive

Having the ability to transform the stress and anxiety of challenging times into something productive is an invaluable habit and skill to develop. This will help you get through those dark and stressful times and then some. Don’t shy away from things just because they become difficult. Face them and go to work. Don’t be afraid to use your support system here.

4. Do Your Homework

No one likes homework. It’s just not all that much fun, but it is crucial in the pursuit of success, from kindergarten to your ever-developing career. You can’t solve an equation without understanding all the variables.

This could mean studying up on a patient before a meeting or configuring a route for a road trip. Establishing familiarity with a subject is key if you want to understand and ultimately excel at dealing with that subject.

5. You Can Have Fun and Still Accept Responsibility

For far too long we have been taught from a young age that being a responsible adult means that you are not allowed to have fun. This could not be further from the truth! These two could easily co-exist. The key to this is having the discipline and knowing when to draw the line.

6. Always Have a Contingency Plan

It’s pragmatic to think outside the box when need be. You have to prepare for the possibility that conditions will change and that you may need to re-engineer a solution to win. There is nothing wrong with having a Plan B and … C, D and E.

When faced with a problem consider the options beyond the traditional and obvious. Not only will this preparation help in the future (if your contingency becomes necessary) but thorough planning can also help ease the feelings of fear and anxiety in the present by alleviating concerns that you may not be sufficiently prepared.

7. Don’t Hesitate, Especially in a Crisis

 You have to make decisions, and you have to keep making decisions, even if they are the wrong decisions. Because when you stop making decisions, things will rapidly begin to fall apart. Your willingness to be decisive in a tense situation may not always guarantee a perfect ending, but the price of inaction is far higher.

On top of this, if you have done your homework and have contingency plans in place (as suggested above), your decisions will be well informed and likely, the best possible ones to make.

8. You Have Value, No Matter What

It’s not your stuff that gives you power — it’s you. You can lose your apartment, you can lose your car or you can lose your relationship, but the reason you had those things in the first place is because of you. Don’t get caught up in changes of circumstances — as long as you’re still around, you have value.

9. Always Remember Your Long-term Goal(s)

It’s very easy to get complacent and/or overconfident after crossing the finish line (personal or professional), but there will inevitably be something else on the horizon which deserves your attention. The process never really ends; achievements only lead to new and greater goals.

10. Find the Right Players

Part of your overall strategy is making sure that you install the right players in the right system. Part of creating that system will involve recruiting the right players. This can be an employee, an accounting firm or a marketing agency.

We’re Here to Help

Navigating the waters within the business world can be treacherous, and sometimes it’s easier if you have a little help. The programs we are designing within Inner Circle are designed to make your life easier.

One of our biggest initiatives this year was to create value for our customers. Through the creation of internal and external advisory boards, we listened to what was most important to you and built our programs around that. One of our proudest achievements was the development and implementation of the Phonak Partner Success℠ Summit program.

These quarterly meetings bring together the industries top professionals from both the B2B and B2C channels. This gathering of the minds allows our professional community to get together and discuss current industry  trends, share best practices, gain insight on new products as well as showcasing our premiere practice services options to strengthen your individual brand and own your markets. Check out our calendar of events today to enroll in the next session.