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Three Questions Community Pharmacy Owners Must Ask

Posted by Benjamin Coakley on Wed, May 28, 2014 @ 05:08 PM

Maintaining a hectic pace and managing to succeed in the face of constantly changing and increasingly challenging circumstances is “situation normal” for practically every independent pharmacy owner we work with.

The most successful among them not only rise above the tumult and see their way through to their goals; they also bring great employees along with them.

I believe their ability to triumph personally while helping others prosper comes from a combination of attitude and intention. In thinking about the attitude held by the most successful independent pharmacy owners, I was reminded of the following lines from “Desiderata”, written in 1927 by Max Ehrmann:circles

“Go placidly amid the noise and haste…

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.”

When it comes to intention, the “Serenity Prayer”, written around 1930 by the theologian Reinhold Niebuhr, perfectly captures how most successful independent pharmacy owners approach their business and the achievement of there goals.

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

The courage to change the things I can,

And wisdom to know the difference.”

Faced with the current business environment, it is more important than ever for owners to focus on the things they can control.

Perhaps the greatest capability an independent pharmacy owner can possess is being able to attract, hire and cultivate great employees. Staff development can make or break your pharmacy. Your pharmacy is only as good as the people you have beside you. I am always asking owners if they can leave their pharmacy for a week or two and know things will run smoothly. The most frequent answer is ‘no’ because they do not know if their staff can handle the pharmacy while they are gone.

In order for you to acquire enough confidence to go placidly through the noise and haste, you must take control of getting the right people in the right places, doing the right things, for the right reasons.

These three questions and the advice about what to do with the answers you receive can help you instill the right intention and attitude in the hearts and minds of your employees.

1. Do you want to be the best ___________________ you can be?

You will know if an employee is “all in” when you ask them this question. If they answer “yes” and you know they mean it, then you most likely have a keeper. If they answer “no” or you realize they are not backing up their “yes” with their best effort, then you may need to make a change. NOTE: Failing because of lack of talent, skill or capability is acceptable because you and your employees can work on this. Failing because of lack of effort is unacceptable and not worth your time and effort to try and change.

2. What do you think you need to make this happen?

This is another question you can ask each employee once you know he or she wants to be the best at his or her job/career.  This is important because it will help both of you identify and take control of what needs to be done in order to improve their performance and success.

3. What am I willing to do to make this happen?

This is a question you must ask yourself. If you have the right “horses” in place willing to help you pull the wagon, then it is vital to give them what they need to succeed. Investing a little time, energy and money in great employees creates a tremendous asset for your pharmacy.

If you go forward with the right attitude and intention, and bring the best of your employees along with you, I am certain your universe will continue to unfold as it should.

Click Here to Download the Key Employee Evaluator Tool Here

Why do we do what we do?

Our vision and mission is to help independent community pharmacy owners achieve all their goals and dreams, inside, outside and after their life in pharmacy. In doing so, we are helping community pharmacies survive for many years to come.

When a pharmacist reaches out to us for information and help, we give them as much free value as possible. In addition to providing educational, self-assessment and strategic planning tools, we invite qualified pharmacists into our formal discovery process.

The first step of the process is completing The Inspired Goals Workshop. This complimentary and private 90-minute session enables us to deliver a free, detailed and personal Inspired Independence Blueprint. The blueprint provides a roadmap for achieving your goals and enables you to fully understand the value of joining The Inspired Independence Program.

If you wish to learn more about any aspect of our work, the free value we offer, or to be considered for The Inspired Goals Workshop, visit our web site at or call 843.873.4420 and ask for Ben or Matt Coakley.

At Waypoint Pharmacist Advisors, we take care of you!

Topics: community pharmacy owners, succession development, creative thinking, community pharmacist independence, community pharmacy employees, pharmacy key employee evaluator, community pharmacy exit strategies, family business