Social responsibility can be applied in many ways and is likely a tenet of many businesses. The difficult part seems to be ensuring the public is aware you are doing so, case in point the Timberland example as highlighted in the Cause Capitalism article in which the company gained notoriety and business by informing the public it was committed to environmental sustainability. In the case of a practicing chiropractor or chiropractic business it is my opinion that our entire profession is grounded in social responsibility and as such I intend on ensuring the following as concerns the integration of social responsibility in my business.
The success of the chiropractic profession relies on the public believing that chiropractors have their best interests at heart, specifically providing the highest quality and most relevant health care. It is my social responsibility as a health care provider to recognize my skills and limitations and as such be prepared and happy to refer my patients to allied health care providers as needed. I stress this point as many chiropractors refuse to co-manage patients with medical doctors due to an age old rift between the two professions. As a profession, informing the public that we truly have their best interests at heart by readily working with other health care providers is what I see as the most important social responsibility.
Happy staff, happy practice, happy patients. I want my patients to feel comfortable during every minute leading up to, during and after they leave my practice. This starts from within. As the treatment provider I must be at the top of my game, this is expected. What I believe truly sets apart businesses is how happy the staff are. Well taken care of staff who are proud to be there and care for the business will translate this to each patient, in how they feel when they walk in the door to keeping up with payments. Furthermore, taking care of staff by providing health care plans, accommodating their needs and ensuring their own professional success reduces attrition and ultimately grows the business.
A successful chiropractor is likely a respected member of the community, seen as an expert in their field and someone who makes a difference. Participating in local business forums, volunteering for local food drives and putting on workshops at relevant events, be it running clubs or youth hockey tournaments are a few ways that social responsibility can be demonstrated in a fashion that it is relevant specifically to chiropractic and will undoubtedly grow your practice.