Halloween is around the corner. Are you the Good Witch or the Bad Witch “Office Manager”?
From the case files of McKenzie Management Advanced Business Training
Suzie M. came to McKenzie Management for the Business Course for Office Managers with an open mind and a commitment to making things better in her practice. Together we defined the areas that needed improvement in all business systems and then we worked on the specific issue of staff management. We changed her title to Business Administrator to dispel the negativity that the title “Office Manager” had implied.
Since she had worked in the practice for ten years, there was some resistance to her promotion. Not every practice has a Business Administrator who is involved with staff management duties. Very often, these duties are that of the dentist CEO. We often find that people placed in this position are ill equipped to handle staffing issues as they arise, but can benefit tremendously with coaching and training.
Before coming to the training, I asked Suzie to provide the practice’s Mission Statement and practice Vision. In order to get this information she needed to meet with the doctors and share with them goals and performance expectations. She found this to be very insightful. Also important to the training was the “Office Policy Manual” and job descriptions for all staff members. “We haven’t looked at the job descriptions for a few years and there are a couple of new employees who do not have job descriptions; our policy manual is very basic and does not cover every question I get from the staff”, explained Suzie.
After defining job descriptions and areas of accountability for all staff members we were able to set up standards for performance measurements. Performance reviews are not salary reviews. A performance review can be given when there is questionable performance and includes a timeline for improvement or on a yearly basis if there are no outstanding issues. McKenzie Management has an excellent Performance Measurement Manual to take the guesswork out of developing this system.
We addressed the Office Policy Manual that they had and identified necessary changes to cover issues of time off, raises, job performance etc. Having a standard office policy establishes a system that everyone must operate within. Studies show that people work more productively if there are standards in place and a clear understanding of office policies.
We next discussed Suzie’s role as the Business Administrator. Developing a “team-building” attitude was necessary for Suzie’s success in her new role. Consider the following when developing a system for meeting the needs of the team.
Very important to “team-building” for Suzie was to get the doctors involved and supportive of the training that she had received. A suggestion was made that the new team attend a Team-Building Retreat offered by McKenzie Management and directed by leadership coach Nancy Haller, Ph.D.
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