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Student Chiropractic Management Programs

Student Chiropractic Management Programs

Chiropractic school is a whirlwind.  The majority of students come into school feeling certain that they are going to learn almost everything they need to be a successful chiropractor.  About halfway through their education most students also realize that they’re going to need a lot more help.

Chiropractic schools do a good job of giving us the basic skills of becoming a doctor, but there’s simply not enough time for them to teach you in depth technique, business management skills, and marketing skills.  That work has to be done by the student doctor on their own, and it usually has to be done with the help of an outside source.

A growing number of students are joining student management groups.  This gives students the ability to get a head start on learning how to do effective patient education and marketing.  Before my wife and I started our own practice I was a part of one of these groups and I’d like to share my experience here with students that may come across this post.

My First Chiropractic Management Group

When I was still a student at Palmer College in Davenport one of my now great friends started a student division of what was then called Body by God.  Today that group is known as Maximized Living.  I was a part of an unusual class at Palmer.  Many of my classmates have gone on to do outstanding things in practice and continue to be leaders in the profession today.  Our student Body by God group got together every day at 6 am to train in the gym at Palmer.

Each of us would practice our day one scripts, our day two scripts, our group talks, outside talks, and communication skills.  We worked on business plans and when we went to the full out BBG seminars we were head and shoulders above the abilities of all the other students.  We thought we were pretty impressive.

What we learned quickly when we got out into the real world was that we didn’t know anything at all.  We were completely unprepared for what was coming at us, and some of the people that I thought were going to do so well failed in practice.  The management group taught us a lot, but there was no way they could prepare us for practice while we were still in school.

The real speaking, business, and marketing skills I needed I learned while working as an associate in a 1500 visit per week office.  Until I was immersed in the daily work that went on in that practice I really didn’t understand what it took to run a successful office.

Should You Join a Management Group?

I think every student should join a management group.  It helps them to overcome fears and improve their communication skills.  I also believe that every student needs to work in a successful practice before they start their own.  No matter how good you are, you are not prepared for practice until you have spent at least six months in a well-run practice.  The skills you will learn there will save you in practice when you are ready to start your own.

By Mike Hamilton