Podcast

Episode 403

Feb 25, 2022

Find out what a Standard Operating Procedure Manual is and why your business may need one as Allissa and Michael break it all down. (Spoiler alert, it's probably a good idea to have one.)

Listen to "E403: Do I Need an SOP Manual?" on Spreaker.
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EPISODE 403

Weekly Roundup

Discussion Topic

Quick Tips

Sponsors


Transcript: 

Sponsor message:

ABMP is proud to sponsor the Massage Business Blueprint Podcast. And we are delighted to have them. One of the many, many benefits of ABMP membership is ABMP Five Minute Muscles and ABMP Pocket Pathology. These are quick reference apps designed to help you quickly find information that you need to make a decision about your massage session planning. The Five Minute Muscles includes muscle specific technique and palpation videos for the 83 muscles most commonly addressed by professional massage therapists and ABMP Pocket Pathology can help you sort out contraindications before any treatment. These apps are included with ABMP membership and you can go to abmp.com/apps to access them. And non-members can sample demos as well. Again, that's abmp.com/apps.

Michael Reynolds:

Hey everyone. Welcome to the Massage Business Blueprint Podcast, where we help you attract more clients, make more money and along the way improve your quality of life. I'm Michael Reynolds.

Allissa Haines:

I'm Allissa Haines.

Michael Reynolds:

We're your host. We're still your hosts on episode 403.

Allissa Haines:

We are, we've made it this far. Good job us.

Michael Reynolds:

I guess we'll keep going.

Allissa Haines:

What are you reading, Michael?

Michael Reynolds:

I am reading about moneys scripts. The reason I'm reading about money scripts is as I've mentioned, probably too much. I don't want to talk about this over and over but in my other life, I am an independent financial advisor and I am working on a current designation, the certified financial therapist designation. I'm wrapping up the program and it's really cool because I've long believed that there is so much connection in the psychological, behavioral, emotional side of money, which is often even more important than the spreadsheety math side of money. And so I really wanted to get this designation as a support to what I do. And as part of the program, we dug into money scripts and money personalities. And so the money script side of it, I find very interesting. And there's an article that, I was looking for an article that's more of a user friendly consumer focused article on moneys scripts.

Michael Reynolds:

And I found one from NerdWallet and so I put that in the show notes. And so this is basically it's called What's Your Money Personality, take our quiz to find out and it gives you a really simple primer into the moneys scripts. And this money scripts notion was developed by Dr Brad Klontz, who is a financial psychology professional at Kansas State University. And he developed these money scripts framework. And according to Dr Klontz, there are four money scripts, there's money worship, money avoidance, money vigilance and money status. And all of us likely, I shouldn't do all of us but most of us likely have some tilt toward one or more of these money scripts. And it really affects how we relate to money and how we relate to just going through life in general. And so it's really interesting in how if you take this quiz on NerdWallet, it's interesting, shows you where your money scripts line up and what your most prominent moneys scripts are and also gives you some really tiny little actions.

Michael Reynolds:

If you're a money worshiper, you can take control by doing X, Y, Z, creating a budget, learning different ways to pay off debt, if your money avoidance, here's some ways to tackle your money avoidance and level things out a bit more. And so what's interesting is this relates to our community because I've noticed that in our community, a lot of us gravitate toward the money avoidance money script. And I think it's really useful to understand what that means and how we can integrate our money avoidance script into our massage practices, our businesses, our lives in general. And I think being aware of money scripts is a really good step toward just it. Like I said, integrating that into our behavior is and understanding it and growing with that. So I found it really interesting and this is a really simplified article but it's a really good start into exploring money scripts. So that's what I am into right now.

Allissa Haines:

Wow. I just took the quiz. It's interesting. All right. I'm-

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah, it's a really simplified version but it's really cool to get to know.

Allissa Haines:

I'm not going to give my results on air because it's nobody's damn business. Sorry, now we have to mark this as explicit. I apologize.

Michael Reynolds:

That's all right. I'll just go to the spreadsheet and put the little E in there. No problem. We have a system for that.

Allissa Haines:

We do. I process Michael, it's a process. I have not been reading much this week. Well, that's not true, I've been reading but I've been reading like really light fiction to just take my brain out of my head and enjoying it very much. But I just started one that I really like and will probably share about next week, but I'm not done. So I don't want to share about it yet.

Michael Reynolds:

Okay.

Allissa Haines:

But there's that. Who's our first host? Guest. Sorry. Host and sponsor is the word-

Michael Reynolds:

Jojoba. I was ready despite the fumbling I was ready.

Allissa Haines:

Oh, how mortifying that I can not get my words right this morning.

Michael Reynolds:

Good thing. They love us.

Allissa Haines:

Good job making it to episode 403 Allissa. So let me tell you about ho Jojoba. I love it, I love it, I love it. And I like it because I don't have to worry that somebody's going to have an allergic reaction to it. And frankly, I have enough to worry about in my massage practice and that ain't it. And that's really nice. And I also don't have to worry that it's going to stain in my cotton sheets and I have great and yet affordable cotton sheets from Target that I bought six sets about a year and a half ago when I reopened and revamped and I love them and they are fresh and they are clean. And I love that. Jojoba does not stain them. You, my friends can get 20% off the price of the product when you shop through our link massagebusinessblueprint.com/jojoba.

Allissa Haines:

And actually one thing that I will say is that I have not had to buy Jojoba in a very long time because a gallon lasts forever. Now I used to buy it by the gallon and I would buy not even as frequently as a gallon a year. And then I met with the Jojoba people just before the pandemic. It was late fall, early winter of 2019, just before 2020 I think. They came and we did a little photo shoot and they brought me a gallon for the photo shoot and they left it with me and said, "Here is our gift." Now mind you, they were a sponsor long before they gave me anything free. I always buy my product, blah, blah, blah. I haven't had to buy any Jojoba since then because I had a half gallon already.

Allissa Haines:

And then they brought me that gallon and then we had a pandemic and it doesn't go rancid, it'll last forever on your shelf. You don't have to worry about it aging out. It's such good stuff. So when you go and you look and you're like, "Wow, this costs more than other stuff I use." It's going to last you longer as well. And because of that, it's a really great carrier for essential oil because the Jojoba won't go rancid and wreck your essential oils that are in it. So that's really nice. Again, 20% off when you go massagebusinessblueprint.com/Jojoba.

Michael Reynolds:

It's good for my skin too. In the winter, my skin cracks a lot so I'll put a few drops on my hands and work it around and it really helps my hands.

Allissa Haines:

And literally two drops on a hand, that's all you need. It just, it lasts so long, it's so great.

Michael Reynolds:

Good stuff.

Allissa Haines:

It's really and people get a little shell shocked or sticker shocked when they see the price because it is, if you're buying those five gallon buckets of refined coconut oil for 50 bucks. Yeah, the products I recommend are more expensive but they'll also last you a really long time. And you won't have a allergic reactions and it's just better. Okay. That's enough preaching.

Michael Reynolds:

All right.

Allissa Haines:

Thank you Jojoba. We love you.

Michael Reynolds:

We do.

Allissa Haines:

Okay.

Michael Reynolds:

And speaking of systems, like I mentioned earlier, what's our topic today.

Allissa Haines:

So this is funny because this is one of those topics where I had no idea what the question was at a time. So we had a Blueprint Mastermind community member say, "Do I need an SOP manual? I feel like it's time but I'm not sure how to start." And I had to be like, "What's an SOP manual?" I mean, I Googled it. And then I was like, "Oh yeah, I know what that is." A standard operating procedures or sometimes called protocols manual. It's a manual, it's a guide. It is something you create that outlines all the things you do in your business and how you do them. Now, this is a really important thing I think for any business but especially larger businesses, like big places that have lots of employees. If you've ever worked at Target or wherever and you had to go through employee training, you had a whole video series you had to watch, you probably had some stuff you had to read, little quizzes, all that stuff for onboarding with a larger company.

Allissa Haines:

It's that stuff. But we can absolutely use scale down version for our massage practice. And I'll tell you why I think it's a good idea. That comes second. So the standard operating procedures manual, it outlines everything you do in your business and also how you do it. And I'm talking about intake and scheduling. The questions you ask when somebody calls, the protocol for scheduling an appointment with you, either on the phone or in person or via your online system, your payment processing, how that goes, your gift certificate sales. How you make a bank deposit, what's your procedure for that? Do you have, where are your deposit slips and how do they need to be filled out? And if you're dealing with cash and have to go to your bank, where do you buy your products and equipment?

Allissa Haines:

Who do I need to call if there's a problem with my electric table? Permits and licenses, all the records of that and when they renew and how they renew. Do you need one? Yeah if you have employees or contractors, I would say yes, you definitely need some manual, guide, info sheet about your business. For employees and contractors, you want them to all be accountable for the same process for an intake or creating a client chart or cleaning a massage room. If you have renters, which can be slightly different situation, I would say yes, still need some kind of written operating procedures for things that happen in the office, like your cleaning protocols, utility account numbers and contact numbers for that, opening the office and closing the office protocols, protocols for sharing equipment or supplies or not sharing equipment or supplies, things like that. So why? It makes life easier for you when you're running a business if you have all the info in one place.

Allissa Haines:

It becomes a really nice master source for info that you need. So if you forget which company you have been buying your favorite masks from, you don't necessarily have to search your email. You can go right to your operating procedures and you'll have a list of all your suppliers. So that's really helpful. It also held others accountable for knowing and following protocols. So just like that onboarding stuff I had to do when I was an employee at Target a million years ago, I went through that training. I was given the manual. I was told to read it. I was quizzed on it. And then I was accountable for following those rules. And if I didn't follow the rules, then I could be reprimanded or punished or fired or whatever. It is not saying that's what you want to do with your employees or contractors but having one system and having everybody have to sign off on that, that they are aware of it, holds people accountable and makes it a lot easier if you do have to let someone go. So let some them go.

Allissa Haines:

It also makes life easier for people and for you because it allows them to be capable. It's nice when a renter doesn't have to call me and ask me what to do, if the heat shuts off or something because I already had a written thing and the bad back of the closet door that said which circuit breaker to flip. If they had a problem, we had one tricky outlet in the office and it was really nice to know that every night the heat was going to get turned down and the proper doors were going to get locked because all of my renters followed the, what they do when they walk into the office first or what they do if their last personality office, every night, there was a list on the inside of the door and they all followed it until they hadn't memorized.

Allissa Haines:

And it was very rare to not have things done properly. Excuse me. And it's nice. It gives people the ability to be capable and a little bit independent within a workspace. And most people like that. And it makes it easier for you because you're not getting halls at all random times and you can actually take a day away from the office and know that things are going to function well. So those are the reasons why I think you might want to do it. Michael, I wanted to ask you here, you've run larger businesses. Any other particular selling points on why this could be a good idea for someone to do?

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah. So I think this probably applies to larger businesses but I didn't catch if you mentioned this but selling your business or stepping away from it, makes this really valuable. So if you're thinking of maybe having someone else run your business eventually and working less than it or you eventually want to sell it, which some massage practitioners have done, then having these systems in place makes your business a lot more valuable and a lot more sellable. So that's one thing that comes to mind.

Allissa Haines:

I didn't even think of that. And I had said such a brilliant addition because even if it's a small business, it goes a long way to establishing credibility when you show... And that like your business can stand the test of time and could transfer [inaudible 00:14:15] someone else well because you're like, that's a big credibility thing. And that actually makes me think of a few things I didn't put in here, which would be like your schedule and your protocols for sending email marketing to clients or any of that kind of stuff. That could be a good addition to an operating procedures. And that really demonstrates a lot of credibility and that you have treated your business like a business, which is a big deal when you're separating yourself out from other massage practices in general. So yeah. Thanks for that.

Michael Reynolds:

No problem.

Allissa Haines:

So how do we do this? You start making notes and start making lists. So the things that in like... No, I don't think you're going to sit down on a Saturday and write your entire operations manual, that doesn't seem like it would be a lot of fun or make a lot of sense. I think the beginning are just to start making lists and notes of the things you do and the things you do every day. I would, we're going to talk about ways you can do this. I'm a big fan of using Google Docs and using a template. There's all kinds of add-on templates within Google Docs or whatever, do whatever you do for word processing and open a document and just start making notes of the things you do every day. So when you check your voicemail, check it out and listen to your outgoing voicemail message and make a note of what it says.

Allissa Haines:

And when you call a client back to schedule an appointment or a client calls to make an appointment, make a note of the things you do, you ask name, you ask how they heard about you. You ask about major medical conditions, whatever your intake is like or when you get a new client scheduling via online, what are your protocols there? So mine would be that I send them, they get their automatic email confirmation but then I send them a manual email. And here's what I put in that. And all the things you do, just keep a document open or a notepad handy, whatever works for you and start making notes on the things you do. And even if you don't have time at that exact second to make a list of all the steps, that's okay. Just make a note that you need to include your intake procedure, include your credit card, whatever.

Allissa Haines:

And I think this is something that can be built over a few months because you get through a few months and you're going to get to all the daily, weekly, random irregular tasks. And then my guess is after a few months, you're going to have enough stuff to actually put it together in some organized form. Which is not, I'm not, even then this is not a dissertation, it's a list. It is a list maybe with different sections, depending on how complex your business is. It's a list with bullet points of steps to take and probably a list with bullet points and links to whatever that PPE supplier you like or your oil supplier or whatever. It doesn't have to be massive complete sentences in super correct form. It's a list with bullet points. So you do that over time. You make notes, you put them in an order that you think makes sense or you put them into segments that you think make sense.

Allissa Haines:

My cleaning protocols in one, my intake and chart making in another, my memberships in another, my supplies and equipment in another section and fill it in as you go. And my guess is, after a few months, you're going to have enough information to put this all together. And then you're probably going to add to it for the remainder of a year or so because you'll have different licensing things come up and things that only happen once a year and notes about how you sell gift certificates around holidays. And what's the typical sale that you do, all this stuff. Just make a note. If you're ever going to have to do it again or anyone else might have to do it for you, make a note, put it together. And then if you work with yourself, if you're just working all by yourself, this isn't really anything you need to share with anyone.

Allissa Haines:

Although we always advocate, you have a business backup, like someone who knows enough about your business to be able to shut it down or contact people if they need to or whatever. And somebody should know that this exists, even if you work by yourself but if you work with contractors or employees or renters, share it with them or share it with anyone and say, "Does this make sense to you? Is there anything unclear? Do you think you could follow the steps for this particular task or whatever?" And like I said, you can build it in a template, in some kind of Google Docs template or whatever, whatever makes sense for you. And once it's done or at least strongly drafted, you get it to the people who are going to need it. Employees, contractors, renters and ask for their confirmation that they have read it and sign off that they have received and read it.

Allissa Haines:

And you could do that with a Google form. You could do that with actual paperwork, whatever, whatever works for you and your staff or your situation. I know I've like said this in some quick steps as if it's not going to take any time. It is, it's a project and it's going to be an evolving project that maybe you throw different notes into as your business evolves. And that's fine. If it's just a one person show and the idea of making a manual is too much scale it down. If this feels too scary and too big, just a list, even if it's not segmented into categories, is fine.

Allissa Haines:

Do what fits your business. But I do strongly think that there is a huge benefit to just creating a record and steps of what you do to run your business and being able to show someone all of those steps. If you decide you want a mentor leader, like Michael said, if you want to sell your business, it's super, super helpful. And in the end is going to benefit you by either making your business more sellable, making it easier to run and just reducing the amount of confusion. Having to think back on things, memory recall, decision fatigue, all of that. That is my whole stick. I didn't want this to be crazy overwhelming. I think one small step to creating something like this is enough and that's all I have to say.

Michael Reynolds:

Love it. I love me some processes.

Allissa Haines:

I know you do. I figured you would but also I really want this to be tangible to people. I've started to assemble my various bits of information and lists and stuff and protocols and it is, there's something nice to having it all in loose writing. And again, I don't do complete sentences. We're talking bullet points and it works well for me.

Michael Reynolds:

Thank you.

Allissa Haines:

Thank you, sir.

Michael Reynolds:

All right. Well, before we move on, I am just really excited about our new sponsor. Every time I say it just brings me joy and we're going to talk about Happyface.

Allissa Haines:

We are. And we know that face cradles can be super uncomfortable for a client and that pressure and stuffiness can ruin a whole massage experience or maybe you've got clients who are constantly adjusting the angle of the face rest. So it's not pushing on their eyes or not jacking their neck or whatever. Enter Happyface. It is the most comfy face cradle so you can give the most relaxing massage of your client's life. No sinus pressure, no eye pressure. It's got this funny little heart shape where you put a little point to the heart right between your eyebrows on that third eye area. And it really does reduce eye pressure. It doesn't smudge your client's eye makeup or lashes. Far fewer wrinkles. I got a massage at my office from my office mate and I used my Happyface, face cradle and I liked it.

Allissa Haines:

It definitely had fewer wrinkley stuff like marks on my face. Something about the way the face cradle cover works with it. I didn't have that big line across my forehead. It was just really, really great. Made in the United States of America, Happyface is seamless so it makes it easy to clean. It is the same dimensions as other face cradles, so it's going to fit on all your tables and chairs. It's going to fit all your cradle covers. It's got a full Velcro backing, so it adjusts really well and can fit on any face cradle frame. You can get 20% off your entire purchase at massage, I said it wrong, massagebusinessblueprint.com/happyface. You're going to use the code massage BB at checkout that is also listed on that landing page. So you don't have to remember it right now. Massagebusinessblueprint.com/happyface.

Michael Reynolds:

It's just so much fun to talk about.

Allissa Haines:

It really is.

Michael Reynolds:

All right.

Allissa Haines:

And once again, I am useless in the quick tips department. So what do you got?

Michael Reynolds:

That's okay. I have one that is probably just pretty fringe and unique and may not apply to most people but I have found a trick that is helping me right now. You can migrate from Evernote to Google Docs. There is an app that will let you do this and here's why I'm sharing this because, so I set up Evernote a long time ago and I'm like, "Hey, Evernote's great. You can store things in it." And it is, it's fine. But over time, it's just gotten clunkier and a little slower. And they're always like popping up things, asking me to upgrade and I don't want to upgrade. And it's just gotten annoying to use. I'm just not enjoying using it as much. It's a fine product. Just not enjoying it. I'm really more interested in having everything over in Google Drive.

Michael Reynolds:

That's where I want my world to be. So I'm like, well, I've got years and years worth of notes and notebooks in Evernote. And it sounds really painful to migrate. And with Evernote, it's really weird. If you try and drag stuff out, it gives you some weird .EMX file or something and you can't really import it. It's just a pain. You can't get stuff out of Evernote very easily. And so I was searching and searching and searching. And I finally found this tool called MultCloud. I thought it was multicloud at first because that's easier to say but it's actually MultCloud and it appears to be free. I've used it for a couple notebooks so far and you link up your Evernote account and your Google Drive account. And you just basically create a little task and say, activate this task and you can select a notebook and it'll pull over the entire notebook into a notebook in Google Drive.

Michael Reynolds:

And it preserves PDFs and documents and everything as is. Now one caveat is every note becomes its own little folder with that weird Evernote file inside of it plus the PDF, which is fine. It's just really for backup purposes so I can get over that. But I was really happy to find this tool that lets me migrate. I tried to migrate all at once but it overwhelmed it. So you have to do one notebook at a time. So I'm going to do like one notebook a day and a couple I'll be done. So that's my process. So it's a little tool that lets you migrate. If you're like me and would like to get out of Evernote and into Google drive, MultCloud appears to do the job.

Allissa Haines:

Rock on.

Michael Reynolds:

That's my tip.

Allissa Haines:

You're such a nerd. I love it.

Michael Reynolds:

I know.

Allissa Haines:

I really appreciate that about you.

Michael Reynolds:

Well, I just, I want Evernote off my computer, it just slows it down. It's just, it's just clunky. So I can't wait to get off my computer.

Allissa Haines:

It was good when it worked and it was the only option, but yeah, I've moved out of that as well. But I didn't have run up to actually have to migrate in an official way.

Michael Reynolds:

I have so many notebooks.

Allissa Haines:

Good Lord. You're such an over user of everything.

Michael Reynolds:

It'll take me a month, actually. Not too bad. Yeah.

Allissa Haines:

Just put on some cheesy movie and sit there and do that then.

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah. I'll probably do that.

Allissa Haines:

That's how I get my work done. Yeah. That's it. This was an efficient episode, Michael.

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah. I like it. Let's wrap it up there. Let's keep the momentum going. Hey everyone. Thanks for joining us today. As always, you can find us on the web at massagebusinessblueprint.com. If you're a new listener, there's a lot of stuff to learn about there, including our private member community called Blueprint Mastermind, which is full of the smartest, most supportive, most amazing massage therapists you will ever meet. And we help each other with business stuff, challenges, questions. We have office hours. We have courses. We have lots of great discussion. We have resources. We have so much stuff and you can try it free for 30 days. So go to massagebusinessblueprint.com click on Blueprint Mastermind and we will see you there. If you have a question or a topic for us, email us at podcast@massagebusinessblueprint.com. Have a great day. See you next time.

Allissa Haines:

Bye.

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