Time to shake up your report writing formats

22nd August 2016

Report writing is a powerful marketing tool. For years I have been campaigning to write fewer and fewer reports. Written reports, letters and session notes represent you and your business long after they’re written in. It is time to review your formats, get bold, innovative and stand out in the market place? Here are some tips.

Embrace family centred practice
Capture the parents voice in your writing, briefly write up the relevant information they have provided via interview and questionnaire. Address the reasons for the referrals and the outcomes they hope for.

Highlight the child’s strengths and talents
At times we default to the child’s problems and medicalise the commentary. Throw a light on their interests, extra curricula activities and accomplishments. Define their unique place in their family, school and community.

Use and define jargon
As many of our clients will seek the opinion of Dr. Google, it is best to support them with an understanding of all the relevant terms. This empowers them to communicate with stakeholders.

Help clients get your report circulated
Offer to send additional copes with the original, each with a compliments slip for its intended reader. Alternatively offer to post them out yourself. Develop your electronic signature, sign the report and send PDF report versions to all who require it. Make sure your email signature is uber professional and contains all your contact details.

Write succinctly
Several businesses I coach have invested in writing courses for their staff and others have engaged professional proofreaders. Kudos to these business owners who appreciate the value and power of their written work. I have worked with many business owners to review and re-energise their report formats. Nothing worse than writing up the same formats… for years.

Insert pictures
With parental permission smart phones make this quick and easy. Images will make your reports memorable and unique. Time for more of this.

Tech inspired
Video and audio reporting are new frontiers and ones that I am having loads of fun with. For some families I send audio and video session notes. I store them just as I do my notes. This works so well when you want to leave educators with specific instructions about strategies or suggestions.

How will you review your reporting formats?
Which tips will you explore or implement?
When will these changes be completed?

This article featured in the August Edition of Paeds Biz

Cathy works as a Paediatric Private Practice business coach. Her lived private practice experience and management know how may be just what you and your business need. Get in touch today and book in for a free 30 minute consult.