Advice for the Surgical Specialist – Evaluate mid-year progress. Is your practice on target to reach its annual goals for production, referrals and collections? Do you know what’s working well and where improvements need to be made? For areas that are under-performing, implement countermeasures within the next two weeks.
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Advice for the Surgical Specialist – Respond decisively to conflict. Staff conflict creates stress and can destroy efficiency, so deal with it quickly. Rather than taking sides, focus on resolving differences… and make it clear that there will be serious consequences for anyone perpetuating conflict.
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Project confidence and professionalism. Whatever your role in the practice, your manner will affect the mood for everyone there, including patients. A surgical practice is a relatively small space, so it’s important to set aside personal issues and focus on cooperation and patient care.
Publish social media content that is shareable. If you use social media for your surgical practice, don’t limit your posts to promoting your office. Include informative, valuable information that goes well beyond oral surgery. If you provide patients and referring doctors with items they’ll want to share with others, your practice’s reputation will grow.
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Advice for the Financial Coordinator – Review the accounts receivable process. To determine the effectiveness of your collections process, answer the following questions:
- Does your practice have a documented patient financial management system that is consistently followed?
- Have you been trained on all financial options and collection systems?
- Do you set time aside each week to work on collecting overdue accounts?
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, you have opportunities to improve how you handle accounts receivable.
If you answer the first call from potential patients, establish rapport. When prospective patients call, make them feel that calling your practice was an excellent idea. This means that, in addition to gathering information from the patient, you must also provide information to the patient, which includes reassuring facts about the quality of the doctor, team and practice.
Management Monday: Read a free excerpt from Dr. Roger P. Levin’s book Essential Scripts for Patient Communication. Go here and click on the “Read an Excerpt” button.
Advice for the Surgical Specialist – Don’t take your team for granted. The more you concentrate on your clinical responsibilities, the greater the risk of paying too little attention to your team. As the practice leader, you have the power to inspire and improve your team. Praise them whenever you can. Delegate administrative responsibilities. And give them the training they need to excel.
Friday Freebie: Evaluate your practice’s effectiveness in the 9 Areas of Expertise, with the Practice Performance Matrix™ available here.
Don’t let your cell phone activities disturb or distract you from patients. Confine your use of cell phones to break times as much as possible. If there’s personal business you must attend to, do so out of sight—and out of earshot—to avoid making a bad impression on patients.
Keep track of inventory. What’s hiding in the practice’s supply closet? Needed materials? Or items the office stopped using 12 months ago? Practices should take inventory semi-annually. This will help the office maintain a steady stream of supplies, avoid overages and shortages, and have stronger control over expenses.
New Article: Check out “Get Ready for the Second Half of the Year” by clicking here.
Manage emergency calls more effectively. Your front desk coordinator and other team members should be trained to recognize the difference between a true emergency that requires immediate attention and a case that can actually wait for the next available opening. Use scripting to ensure that patients feel they are getting the attention they deserve.