How do you disseminate information to your pharmacy team? Do you try to catch staff as you can? Have lengthy monthly or quarterly meetings where you pay staff extra to come in? Do you email? Rely simply on word of mouth?
Let’s face it. Meetings are no one’s favorite thing. Certainly, they are a necessity for doing business. Information must be shared. Training must be completed. But is your mode of communication effective? And what is it costing you if you don’t get it right?
Many years ago, RMS adopted a daily huddle formula to replace lengthy meetings. The daily huddle is a favorite among businesses of all sizes. While it can’t replace training, we quickly discovered that the need for a majority of our traditional staff meetings vanished. It proved it’s worth as an effective way to share information with our entire team while avoiding all the pitfalls of the classic boardroom style meeting.
Our team also fell in love with our daily standup, as we call it, for several other reasons. And we think that the daily huddle is as important for our pharmacy customers as it is for our team here at RMS. But if you’ve never adopted a strategy like this before, you might have some questions on how to get started, and what to put on the agenda that would be worth talking about every single day.
Here are some tips on creating and running your own daily huddle, curated from years of RMS standups.
- Understand why it matters – And share with your team. It’s not a gimmick. Or a waste of time. It’s valuable time that you’re spending together as a team. Here are just a few things you can expect to share and accomplish in your daily meetings
- Goals -Both short and long term. It can be sales goals for the day, progress on the year or anything in between.
- News – Any kind. Is there a new regulatory change coming up? Or are you making a change at the pharmacy? Do you have a status update on a project you’ve been working on?
- Strategy – As you adopt new business strategies it’s important to share these with your team.
- Training- You won’t learn a new pharmacy POS system during a daily huddle, but you can certainly go over a new feature. Or give quick tips on the right language to use when talking about nutrient depletion.
- Inspiration and team building – Just taking a few minutes to get together and chat is so valuable. There’s no better way to make your team feel like a team.
- Keep it short – Seriously. 5 minutes is all you really need on most days. Just long enough to touch base on important items, share updates, and hopefully a few smiles and high fives.
- Make it a habit – The daily team huddle should be as regular as you can get it. Something that everyone expects and participates in as a regular part of the day. Don’t make the mistake of making attendance optional, or moving it around. It may seem inconvenient at first, but the value it brings will soon override any thought of getting through the day without it.
- Use the schedule that works best for you- Many articles on the daily huddle promote the value of a first thing in the morning meeting. And that may very well work for your pharmacy. But it might not. Choose a time of day that enables participation. Keep in mind you may have to have a couple of huddles a day if you have different shifts that need to be caught up.
- You don’t have to do all the heavy lifting – Slow news days happen. This is when it gets really fun to have a daily huddle. Have your employees prepare topics to share. They can be articles, experiences at other retailers, or ideas. This is inspiration and team building at it’s best. At RMS, we all have a day where we host our standup meeting. We center our topics about how we can better accomplish our mission of making RMS pharmacies the most profitable and customer-centric in the industry.
I hope you’ll give the daily huddle a spin in your pharmacy. You’ll save time, have more confident, informed, and happy employees. It’s a small change, that can go a long way.