What we at the Institute for Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED) hear from our new practitioner members is that one of their biggest challenges is getting new patients into the office. An extremely effective way to obtain new patients is through physician referrals. In order for other physicians to refer patients to your practice, you need to meet them and give them a reason to do so. A good way to do this is through a “Lunch and Learn.” Lunch and Learns involve a knowledgeable staff person (employed by you) providing a mini-presentation to the staff members of the referring physician(s) during lunch (of which you provide).
Below, you will find a step by step guide on how to set up a Lunch and Learn.
- Choose an articulate staff person with excellent people skills to represent your practice. Have this person contact the office manager of the physician(s) you wish to obtain referrals from and set a date. Your representative should offer to bring lunch and ask for the opportunity to give a brief presentation while everyone is eating.
- The representative should give a talk (anywhere between 5-15 minutes is best) on a specific condition that your practice commonly treats.
- After the presentation, office staff and doctor(s) should be presented with a professional-looking packet that contains personalized referral forms, brochures detailing your practice’s specialties, contact information for your practice, and a laminated list of insurance plans you accept with important physician numbers highlighted (NPI, Tax ID, etc.).
- Your practice representative should leave his or her business card and offer to be the contact for the staff if they have any questions or need additional information.
- Follow up the Lunch and Learn with a handwritten thank you note to the office manager.
Lunch and Learns help referring physicians connect a face with your practice and can significantly increase the number of referrals that you receive. At IPED, one of the benefits of membership is the opportunity to learn and share strategies for increasing the success of your podiatric practice at any stage. To learn more about becoming a member, contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.