During an email exchange with a friend of mine (he is in the medical industry too) I happened to point out that our clients had a couple of things in common.
For one thing they are consultant surgeons.
And that means they are all supremely qualified. They are right at the top of the game. They have to be because the patient’s life is sometimes – literally – in their hands.
Then my friend made a really interesting point.
He said as a surgeon (he IS one) both he and other consultants are VERY used to asking for a second opinion from another consultant surgeon.
Yet neither he nor I could quite understand why therefore when it came to running their private medical practice AS A BUSINESS, there seemed to be a reluctance to go out and seek the opinion of an expert in running a private medical practice as a business.
That is the second thing our clients have in common!
Therefore we have a paradox.
Maybe its because after all the years of training, our clients are so highly trained and skilled they are almost hardwired to perform in a certain way. What is curious is that other professionals i.e. non medical have a similar tendency.
They too are reluctant to ask for expert help.
And there is nothing more dangerous than someone who thinks he knows but in reality only knows a small percentage.
Worse still when what he knows is wrong or inappropriate.
At what point however does the expert in one field realise he/she is not expert in another?
Normally, after the point has been passed. Certainly when MHM is first contacted to conduct an analysis on how a private practice is performing it is by no means unusual to realise action should have been taken months ago.
So if you are going to run your private practice as a business (and you MUST) two things:
a. make sure you DO run it as a business
b.identify what you DON’T know
c. be comfortable asking for HELP from an outside expert.
Or you can carry on knowing what you know but in complete ignorance of what you do not know.
Or to quote Mr. Rumsfield the 2002 author of the original claim:
“Reports that say that something hasn’t happened are always interesting to me, because as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know.”
But there again, I don’t know or am at best a little unsure if I know what all the unknowns are because I don’t know if they’ve actually happened yet.
I’ll let you know when I know because at the moment I know I don’t (know that is)