Over the years of my professional career I have struggled with how to make my resume stand out in the crowd when I have zero connections with a potential employer. I have tried everything from using a professional design company to printing my resume on brightly colored paper. I once even developed a ‘Top Ten’ list as to why a potential employer should hire me. I now find myself on the other side of the interview process.


At Tiller-Hewitt HealthCare Strategies we see hundreds of resumes. We screen the new physician liaison applicants for our healthcare clients. While it is true that a professionally done resume grabs my attention, it is the substance of the resume that keeps my attention.

So what are Top Ten things that will automatically send your resume to the discard pile?

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I don’t think there’s a person on this planet who would not attend a farewell to winter celebration!


Certainly this has been one for the record books! As we welcome in a new season, we’ve created a fun and useful monthly calendar of observances, holidays, and fun days for celebration. It is especially appropriate to launch this in April as our official proof that it is legal to have fun at work. April 1st is International Fun-at-Work Day.

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Cost vs ValueWith the uncertainty of Healthcare Reform and how it will affect the bottom line, many hospital administrators and CFOs are saying “We just can’t afford an additional FTE right now.” When looking at the black and white for any month, that may be true. But leaders don’t become leaders by only thinking of the here and now. The ones with their eye on the prize know it’s about the future – about growth and the sustainability of that growth.

How It’s Done

Unfortunately there is no magic wand. With the right leadership and training, one FTE – a physician liaison – is a long term planning initiative guaranteed to have an ROI that will make eyes, hearts and wallets happy. The number one goal of the liaison is to grow market share. What does that mean for your hospital? More revenue….and possibly leading to even more FTEs.

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As hospital staff, nurses, managers, and administrators, we are all too familiar with the term referrals.

Have Heart

We know referrals are the lifeblood of our hospitals/healthcare systems. We track referrals monthly, determine where they come from geographically, worry when they are down in numbers, and celebrate when they are up. But do we ever stop to think what those “referrals” actually are? People!

That’s right, people that have PCP’s who care for them – in many cases over decades – have trusted us to help aid in their patient’s care!

I can’t help but think, if we thought of and treated these “referrals” as the mother, father, sister, brother, or child that they all are, we would never have complaints because we would do all we could to make the process as stress free and as comfortable as possible.

So on this Valentine’s Day, let’s all remember to have a heart when we are dealing with our “referrals” :

H – Have Compassion
E – Exceed Expectations
A – Appreciate Differences
R – Remember to Listen
T – Treat all with Respect

As I travel around daily, meeting with area physicians, I never really hear negative feedback regarding the reputation of the hospital where I am employed as a liaison. In fact, the hospital has a very good reputation. Our specialists are respected and our nursing staff is top notch. Our patient satisfaction scores routinely rank above national averages. So why, do you ask, do I have a job?

The answer has everything to do with the referral process.

5 Steps to Keeping Referrals

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This article originally appeared on Beckers Hospital Review.

Losing a physician is painful

And costly — for hospitals and health systems. The cost of replacing a physician can exceed $250,000, according to various estimates.

While it is nearly impossible to retain every physician, hospitals and health systems can improve their retention rates through a strong physician on-boarding and navigation program.

“Long-term retention starts way before and goes way beyond recruitment,” says Tammy Tiller-Hewitt, FACHE, chief motivation officer at Tiller-Hewitt HealthCare Strategies and a physician relations and retention expert.

“Effective on-boarding shifts the focus from recruitment to retention, the new paradigm for long-term success. It’s about recruiting to retain, not recruiting as a numbers game.”

Here, Ms. Tiller-Hewitt shares some components and traits of successful physician on-boarding programs.

Read the rest of the article

“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence;
it is to meet the turbulence with yesterday’s logic.”
-Peter Drucker

What’s new?

By far, the most popular question I’m asked. My translation of that question is: What’s the last innovative thing you’ve seen or done?

Like many, I love when people ask that question because it implies it’s common for something to be new, which provides a way for us to separate ourselves from the pack.

I call that our DF or differentiation factor.


The truth is differentiation really only counts when it brings value. In the skies-the-limit, always connected world we live in today, being innovative is neither easy nor for the faint of heart; especially when at the same time we’re also required to stay on the top of our game with the multitude of every day responsibilities. And, that is exactly why we must remain in a constant ‘eyes-ears-heart open’ state of mind!

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Parking yourself in a garage won’t make you a car just as purchasing external data won’t increase your market share. Successful organizations use timely and relevant data to direct and measure their efforts; however the real measureable success comes from what is done “with” the data. Timely and relevant data provide the map or direction, but alone will not provide the vehicle (sales team) to influence or reach your strategic growth destination.


Too many healthcare organizations today are spending a ton of money on external data before using available internal data or having a sales strategy and professionally trained sales team(s) in place.

Internal Data – If you’re Getting Paid, You have Internal Data

Too many healthcare organizations are putting the cart before horse and spending an absorbent amount of money purchasing referral databases/CRM systems before:

  1. Effectively evaluating and using their own [free] internal data, and
  2. Having the right people or team in place to strategically use data to drive measurable results.

Before spending limited resources on external data systems, organizations should make sure their internal data has been exhausted.

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After suffering from a long battle with Alzheimer’s, Pauline Friedman Phillips—better known as Abigail Van Buren, the ‘Dear Abby’ advice columnist—died at the age of 94.

Dear Abby

With the departing of Dear Abby, an idea was born at Tiller-Hewitt. We get calls and emails from so many people just looking for quick advice or comic relief as they face the front line every day. So in tribute to Dear Abby we are launching the 21st century electronic version for Physician Liaisons, recruiters, marketing teams, and c-suite executives dealing with the quandaries and craziness of physician relations and retention.

We’re Calling it Dear Lady Liaison

Our plan, like Dear Abby, is to say more with less; so don’t expect long answers. You’ll enjoy quick, succinct, and humorous if possible, answers to your nagging questions. We hope to entertain, interact, educate, and encourage the masses.

Submitting Questions is Easy

There are several ways to post your questions. You can text, tweet, Facebook, call, or email! We just want to hear from you!

The thing is there really ARE no stupid questions. If you don’t know, you don’t know. The only thing that’s stupid is not knowing and refusing to ask. Bring it on!

Tiller-Hewitt HealthCare Strategies’ Partners – Guest Blog SeriesMallory Wilkins, Physician Liaison, Gadsden Regional Medical Center, Gadsden Alabama.

When I first heard about the Physician Liaison position I could barely spell, “liaison,” much less did I really know what one did. God, however, has perfect timing in all things and I guess that He knew I needed a change in my life and placed an opportunity in my lap.

The opportunity, of course, was to become the next Physician Liaison for Gadsden Regional Medical Center (GRMC) in Gadsden, Al. It would take several weeks (months, etc?) before the puzzle pieces started to fall into place; but when they did, they rapidly snapped together.


Eyes Opened

Working only for a family business growing up and owning my own business later in life (none of which had anything to do with healthcare) I never understood just how competitive this industry was.

I never knew that physicians had loyalties. I never knew what a struggle it was for a hospital to get reimbursed for a hip replacement if the surgeon didn’t document enough medical necessity prior to the case.
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