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Sally McKenzie,CMC
McKenzie Management, Inc.

Sally McKenzie's
Weekly Management e-Motivator

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July 29, 2002

WEB: http://www.mckenziemgmt.com

Interested In Knowing How Your Practice Measures Up?....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
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CareCredit - More than 30,000 healthcare practices nationwide use CareCredit as an
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Lares Research - Make Your Practice Profitability Soar! SoftCare boosts your
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Visit us at http://www.laresdental.com/products/lsc/default.asp
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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.

INFORMS - Allow InForms to participate in your successful practice by becoming the
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Sally McKenzie's Weekly Management e-Motivator---Issue #22

Staff Duels

Like a bad scene out of an old western, you might just as well be smack in the middle of the OK Corral. It’s the “front” vs. the “back,” and they are oilin’ their guns preparing to settle this once and for all. The rift makes the feud between the Hatfields and McCoys look like afternoon tea. A little intervention from Sheriff Wyatt Earp could come in handy right now. But you figure your best bet is to just get the heck out of Dodge and avoid this showdown altogether.

Tensions have been building for weeks. Babs the business manager is routinely wreaking havoc on the schedule, slipping in an emergency patient here, underestimating the time necessary for procedures there, and storming around in a huff claiming that nobody tells her anything. Candy the clinical queen, meanwhile, has decided that information is a commodity to be doled out to the select few and that does not include the business staff. It is nasty and only getting worse. The patients sense the strain and have been slapped around more than once between the right hand and left hand, neither of which knows what the other is doing.

Conflict in the practice generates enormous stress on the team and is a significant drain on productivity. While conflict often appears to be personal, typically it starts with lack of understanding and system breakdowns. An appreciation of diverse personalities, job descriptions, and maintaining basic office systems all can significantly reduce tensions between clinical and business staff.

Sally’s Recommended Actions

  1. Invest a small amount of time and resources in personality testing. Staff members who understand the personalities of their colleagues, including the dentist, are much better prepared to work with them effectively.
  2. Job descriptions are a must. They clearly define job responsibilities. With job descriptions Babs and Candy both know and understand what their duties are as well as the rest of the staffs’. Subsequently, they recognize who is responsible for which systems and can be held accountable for those systems.
  3. Hold morning huddles to allow the clinical staff to direct where emergency patients will be scheduled both today and tomorrow.
  4. Provide front desk staff clear information on time necessary for procedures and charges associated with those procedures.
  5. Give employees regular feedback and establish clear standards for professional office behavior.

Diffuse tensions by addressing those issues that cause frustration among the team. Don’t allow problems to build by ignoring them or you’re likely to find your practice locked in the stockade.


WANT TO KNOW????? How Personality Types Affect Practice Success? SPECIAL OFFER for our newsletter subscribers: MAXIMIZE PRACTICE PERFORMANCE + The Personality Testing Book Please Understand Me.
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