I had a pleasant surprise today while I was between patients. A doctor from another clinic dropped by with his office manager. He’s the “new guy” in town and so he stopped by to say hello and to hit me up for an adjustment which was really cool.
He mentioned that since opening his clinic in September that he has made a real effort to get out and meet the other chiropractors in town. He has been somewhat disappointed to find that some doctors have been less than friendly.
It really got me to thinking about “the competition”. While to you chiropractic means a good massage and adjustment to people like me it is also a business. Of course we all want to turn a profit and stay in business. I guess there is a couple ways to see the other people practicing around you.
I can choose see other doctors in town as the competition, enemies, frenemies, etc. They could be my mortal enemies in an endless struggle for patients with spines that need adjusting. We could use the size of our patient base, the volume of our collections and the size of our clinics to keep score. Then the point of you coming to my clinic becomes you helping me to be a winner. Help me get rid of the new guy. Help me have the biggest clinic with the shiniest car parked outside of it. Help me. Help ME. HELP ME!
But that isn’t why you go to a chiropractor is it? You aren’t going in to help the doctor prove a point and teach a lesson to those losers at the other clinics are you? Honestly, I thought that would be the motive of the very first patient I saw in my practice. I grew up here and have a lot of friends and family in town. I thought that whoever the first person to walk through that door was would be there with one goal which was to help me get started. Help ME. But I was wrong. Patient #1 needed help. He was in pain… Chronic pain. He wanted to be healthy. His visit wasn’t about me at all. It was about him.
So I can’t afford to have competitors. It doesn’t do anything to further my main motive which is to… HELP YOU! Sometimes that means I adjust you. Sometimes I teach you something you could be doing for yourself. Sometimes it means referring you to a colleague (not competitor). I recognize that I’m not the chiropractor for everybody. But for other people I’m exactly the doctor they need and so there is no competition.
So I welcome a new doctor to town. The message that chiropractic care represents is an important one. I can’t get that message to everybody on my own and so I welcome the help. I choose to cooperate because if I were to compete guess who loses…. you, the patient.