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  Sally McKenzie,CMC
 McKenzie Management, Inc.

Sally McKenzie's
Weekly Management e-Motivator

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June 10, 2002


WEB: http://www.mckenziemgmt.com

For a FREE a Analysis of Your Practice by Sally McKenzie...click here

This issue is sponsored in part by:

McKenzie Management - A full service, in-office dental management
consulting company specializing in the business, clinical,and hygiene areas of practices
nationwide.You can find McKenzie Management at http://www.mckenziemgmt.com

CareCredit - More than 30,000 healthcare practices nationwide use CareCredit as an
alternative means of helping their patients finance treatment. You can find CareCredit at

Dental Town: -Never practice solo again! DentalTown.com is a free community,
hosting dentistry's MOST ACTIVE message boards, classified ads and a dental event calendar.
The site is open to dental professionals throughout the world, 24-hours a day, 7 days a week.
Once you visit, you'll wonder how you ever practiced without it!
Log onto http://www.dentaltown.com TODAY!

LaresResearch - Make Your Practice Profitability Soar! SoftCare boosts your hygiene
department profitability to a new level. Treatment of periodontal disease with the
Lares' PocketPro Lasers is easy to learn and offers a quick and dramatic return 
on your investment.   Lares lasers will also make your dentistry faster and easier,
visit us at http://www.laresdental.com/products/lsc/default.asp
or call 800-347-3289,ext. 1 and schedule an educational presentation.

HPSC - Finances, via lease or loan, dental and office equipment, leasehold improvements,
working capital and supply contracts at fixed competitive rates, with no points,
variables or hidden fees. HPSC also offers a variety of financing programs to dental
professionals seeking to set up, expand, buy into, or acquire a practice. http://www.hpsc.com/

INFORMS - Allow InForms to participate in your successful practice by becoming the
"ONE STOP SOURCE" for your front office needs. We carry a full range of products
including: recall and appointment cards, registration forms, exam forms, statements
and envelopes, folders and labels. Call us at 1-800-722-4884 or email us at
informs@bellsouth.net today to receive your catalog.



Sally McKenzie's Weekly Management e-Motivator---Issue #15

Expert Advice You Can Bank(rupt) On

 "...But Sally, everyone knows that you need another business assistant for every $30 thousand in production..." Yeah, right. Everyone also knows that ideal patient retention is supposedly 85%. It's "expert" advice like that that can bankrupt your practice, or, at least, keep you financially strapped. Let's start with the rule of $30K. Determining if you need another business assistant isn't based exclusively on the amount of production.

Look at the number of patients and the time it takes to handle each at the front desk. An eight-hour business day is 480 minutes. Figure that it takes10 minutes per patient. No more than half of a business assistant's day, 240 minutes, should be consumed with patient processing. The other half should be available for non-patient tasks. If you are seeing 35 patients per day, your business assistant doesn't have time to accomplish other essential responsibilities. If you are seeing 15 patients per day, your business assistant shouldn't have any trouble managing the duties of the front desk. If she does, you have another problem to deal with.

So, you say your patient retention is a healthy 85%. And that's really good because the advice guru told you it was. I urge you to duck when that sweeping generalization is coming at you. Rather, do a little simple math to determine what your ideal patient retention is:

  1. Look at the last six months and calculate the monthly average of recall patients treated.
  2. Calculate the monthly average of comprehensive exams for the same period.
  3. Take 50% of the answer in number 2.
  4. Divide the answer in number 3 by the answer in number 1.
  5. Subtract the answer of 4 from 100%.

That is your ideal patient retention.

Sally's Recommended Actions:

  1. Base your decision to hire more business staff on numbers, not on the flustered demeanor of a seemingly overworked business assistant. If the numbers show that one employee should be able to handle the job, she either needs training, is not suited for the position, or the systems she works on are time and motion inefficient.
  2. Throw out the false sense of security that 85% patient retention is acceptable.
  3. Follow the steps above to determine what your patient retention should be.
  4. If your office is falling short, look at your recall system. Is it the practice orphan that no one wants to bother with? Designate someone to be responsible for your recall system. That person should be trained in telephone sales and have at least 10-15 hours of uninterrupted time each week to contact patients.

Check out my book "How to Have a Successful Recall System" for a proven strategy to ensure practice recall success- click here.

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