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Maximizing Your Medical Practice’s Vendor Relationships

One of the most important questions to consider when running a business is how to get the most from your vendor relationships. In today’s world, there is endless competition but only limited resources of time and money. In order to make the most of each aspect of your practice, you want to ensure you are fully utilizing every tool available. One aspect of business that is often completely underutilized is the vendor relationship. Yet, with a few small adjustments to how you approach your vendors, you could see vast improvement in your practice.
"Vendors have a vested interest in bringing value to you and your team so that you will be motivated to maintain and grow the relationship."

Vendors have a vested interest in bringing value to you and your team so that you will be motivated to maintain and grow the relationship. However, many practices are reactive instead of proactive in engaging and partnering with their vendors.

Although some vendors may not be striving to create a strong relationship, for those that are, it is important to spend the time getting to know the vendor and establishing a partnership that will last for years to come. When creating this relationship with your vendors, keep the following in mind:

Goals

If you are entering into a partnership with a vendor, be sure to have a firm understanding of the ‘why’ behind this decision. How will this relationship benefit your practice? How will you be better able to serve your patients and scale your services? How can their resources solve your practice’s biggest problems? Every relationship has a purpose, and by getting clear on what the goals of this relationship are, you will be able to set a solid foundation for the future.

Plans

Once you have established your goals, now is the time to create a plan. What are your main priorities? What are the steps you need to take to make your goals a reality? Mapping out the steps that will lead you to your desired outcome will ensure that you keep yourself on track and are acutely aware of your practice’s trajectory.

Engagement, Review, Optimization

If you are entering into a partnership with your vendors, you should be engaging regularly. Every four to six weeks, set aside time to review your agreed-upon priorities and how the plans are taking shape. If things change in the practice, be willing to optimize your plan so that it more accurately serves your current needs.