How we grew Earworx through COVID by using our operations systems
And saved us from losing it all
In 2017 Lisa Hellwege and Scott Marston came to see Brian and I because they wanted to franchise Lisa’s new business Earworx. Earworx is a medical service specialising in ear care which means their service is geared to an elderly client-base. Close contact is obviously part of the deal.
By 2019, they had put on a corporate franchisor who ran medical clinics throughout Australia. The Earworx practices were added as an additional service in each, and it was Lisa who set each outlet up and trained and managed the Earworx staff. This meant much travel and face to face contact.
When COVID hit in March 2020, suddenly travel and physical face to face contact with both staff and patients was stopped. Lisa and Scott were really concerned about their elderly patients care. And they were concerned about the business as a whole – their entire livelihood was at stake here.
Their saviour was their operations manuals.
The bulk of the day-to-day and clinical processes had been carefully documented by Lisa through our franchise programs. But these needed to be upgraded to meet the needs of remotely training new staff and supporting the whole network. A new video channel was set up and the documented procedures upgraded through day and night work by Lisa and Scott. A new training process was added to the system which also clearly outlined process for setting up new practices.
Lisa then established a process for checking each day the changes in COVID protocols and regulations in each State so she could document these overnight and send them to the relevant Earworx clinics each morning.
These carefully detailed procedures meant Earworx was allowed not only to stay open through COVID giving their clients the service so badly needed but also remotely open new practices and train and support staff throughout the network as required.
Listen to Scott and Lisa tell the story.
They were not only saved from facing bankruptcy, but they were able to build a stunningly successful business which today is looking at international expansion. And as they say, they will be able to manage many of the international parts of the business remotely.
Oh, and by the way, today they are not using the franchise model to build this growth. They found nurses are not the best business builders and so they had to apply other business models, using the operations system as the foundation for making sure every clinic delivers a consistently great clinical care and customer service. Delegation to Lisa’s standards would not be possible without these clear instructions, training, and support systems.
They know operations systems, done correctly are the best way to delegate consistently and take your business through the glass ceiling to take-off, whichever business model you adopt.