Are You Coordinated?A McKenzie Management Case Study
Dr. Delbert Hughes – Case Study #28
“How do I hold my business staff accountable? I work side-by-side with my clinical staff so I know what they do all day. I have no idea what my front desk team does!”
OK…I can see why a doctor might wonder this kind of thing. Not only does the tooth fairy bring money for teeth left under the pillow but she also answers phones, files insurance, schedules appointments, makes plane reservations, keeps up with the doctor’s meeting schedules, cleans out the “frig” in the staff lounge, replaces the toilet paper in the patient restroom, etc. Yes, I am sure that he wonders what they do all day long.
Dr. Hughes’ practice demographics
The Business Team
I assume that you get the picture. They both do everything and neither one of them is held accountable for any of the tasks. Now don’t get me wrong…it was not their fault.
What is the Purpose of a Job Description?
Where certain tasks are assigned to specific team members, it means that they are “responsible” for getting the job done and done correctly. They can certainly “farm out” the task to another team member that is willing to assist when they have time. However, the owner of the task is ultimately responsible. If the person they “farmed out” the task to performed it incorrectly or incompletely, the doctor looks to the responsible party for correction. No more, “I don’t know, I didn’t do it.”
How to Assign Job Descriptions:
Joyce was Extroverted. She enjoyed talking with patients and knew how to make them feel welcome and comfortable. She was also a Thinker. She made her decisions on how she felt about situations and tried not to allow her feelings to get in the way of the systematic way of doing things. Her new job description of Schedule and Financial Coordinator included the following tasks:
Kathy was Introverted and a Feeler. She was better suited and felt more comfortable “behind the scenes” and not multi-tasking. She preferred to complete a task before starting another one. She didn’t feel comfortable talking with patients about their finances because of her own. She was extremely dedicated to her job and was proficient at what she did. Her new job description of Insurance and Hygiene Coordinator included the following:
When anyone in the office has a question (including the doctor), they know who to go to for the answer for accountability. Monthly statistics are presented to the doctor and team by Joyce and Kathy of their own “department”, illustrating their performance and ability to reach designated goals.
I offered a concept to him: “If they are performing and reaching goals – the patients and other staff members are happy because they are team players – so what if they spend a few minutes talking about American Idol? They are coordinated!”
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