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Sally McKenzie,CMC
McKenzie Management


Sally McKenzie's
Weekly Management e-Motivator

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November 8, 2002

You have 32 work days to reach your year end GOALS . . .
  • Will your production exceed last year minus fee increases?
  • Will your patient retention increase to add days of hygiene?
  • Will you take home more money?

  • The TOP 4 concerns of dentists that will put the brakes on
    TOPPING last year's business?
    •Staffing •Scheduling •Hygiene •Cash Flow

    Will you make it? Find out here!


    Sally McKenzie's Weekly Management e-Motivator---Issue #37

    Maximum Pay, Minimum Work

    No question about it, good employees are hard to find and even more difficult to keep. Consequently, many dentists find themselves settling for a state of perpetual mediocrity and paying handsomely for it as average employees are allowed to stymie practice productivity and profitability. With the words “We’ve always done it that way,” as their mantra, these second-rate performers often discover they have a first-rate deal.

    Take Dr. Placid, for example. His staff has been with him for years, which you would think means they are a great team just hummin’ along. Wrong. The problem: six employees - one sweet deal, maximum pay, minimum work. All receive three weeks paid vacation, plus paid sick time, and “bonus” paid time off when the doctor is out. Each year, Dr. Placid doles out more time off and more money to everyone. Yet there are No goals, No standards, and the practice is going Nowhere.

    To make matters worse, the employees only work 30-hour weeks yet they are paid for 40 hours. As you might guess, this system, or lack thereof, has taken a huge toll on practice finances.


    Sally's Recommended Actions
    • Stop rewarding longevity with more time off and more money. Neither of these motivates employees. Salaries should have a range and when employees “top out,” consider their increases being no more than cost of living.
    • Develop practice goals. The staff must understand that the success of the practice is dependent upon everyone not the doctor alone.
    • Establish performance standards. Just because an employee has been with the practice “forever” doesn’t mean she doesn’t meet performance standards.
    • Hold employees accountable. If you do not hold them accountable, they do not take responsibility for their part in the success or failure of the practice.
    • Have high expectations of your staff. Outlaw the phrase, “We’ve always done it this way.”
    • Recognize enterprising actions and efforts to improve overall production.

    “Entitlementitis” is a chronic problem, particularly among some long-term employees. If they simply cannot adjust to the new standards and expectations, it may be time for them to move on.

    Now is the time to be thinking about setting goals for 2003!

    When was the last time your TEAM came TOGETHER, away from the office, and really benefited … not only for the practice, but the patients and as individuals? Schedule your next TEAM BUILDING RETREAT at The Center for Dental Career Development in beautiful LaJolla, California. Not only will you have perfect weather, relax, have fun, and enjoy but together we will help you build YOUR Continuous Improvement Plan for the next 12 months. The Center focuses on one team at a time, by appointment only … so call today to reserve your seat,
    1-877-900-5775. www.dentalcareerdevelop.com


    Technology Tool Box

    Mark Dilatush
    VP of Professional Relations

    for McKenzie Management


    1-877-777-6151 Ext. 28

    A series of short weekly chores designed to keep the return on investment in technology at its highest level.

    Top Ten Technology Do's and Don't's #7

    Every week we will publish one of the top ten. Unlike the “Tonight Show”, these are not in any particular order. These are compiled from watching 20 years of mistakes and helping to fix those mistakes. We would rather our clients just avoid the mistakes!
    We are either in the process of getting new technology, considering upgrading our existing technology, or currently own at least a practice management system in our dental office.

    Our technical support seems convoluted. Our practice management system supplier supports the management system and our hardware/network/integrator supports some or most of the other components. Who do we go to for what? And, why do they sometimes blame each other?

    What NOT to do:
    Do not assume that your PM system vendor is responsible (or should be held responsible) for everything.

    Do not assume that your PM system IS the problem. The operating system (Windows for instance) or environmental issues (outside of everyone’s direct control) could easily be responsible.

    Do not assume just because you are in your PM system when it happens that it’s your PM system’s fault.

    Do NOT have an adversarial attitude on the phone with the support department! The single FASTEST way to get ignored is to cop and attitude. Remember, nobody wants to quickly resolve your problem MORE THAN the person supporting you.

    What TO do:
    Report your problem to your PM system supplier FIRST. They are the front line and have heard more stories about failures than anyone. They will refer you to your hardware/network/integrator after their diagnosis.

    Be prepared and complete when you call. Have your customer number, the amount of workstations, what type of server, what operating system, a list of any recently loaded software, recently installed hardware, and as detailed a description of the problem as possible. Always try to remember the last thing you (and others) were doing when the error occurred. Do not be surprised if your support person tries to duplicate the problem.

    HAVE a clean (and restored to a different location) backup of your data. Know how to do another one if requested by your PM system support technician.

    Print any and all error messages you see. Hitting the “prt sc” button on your keyboard while in Windows, copies an image of the screen to your Windows clipboard. Paste it into a Word document or email browser for future reference or to send to the support department at their request.


    This issue is sponsored in part by:

    DentalTown - 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!

    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 - The nation's leading patient financing program - offers 3, 6, & 12 Month Interest Free Payment Plans and low-interest Extended Payment Plans for treatment fees from $1 to over $25,000. All plans offer low minimum monthly payments and a revolving credit line for additional treatment or add-on charges, without the need to reapply.
    Call 800-300-3046, x519 and let the representative know you're ready to increase production, reduce accounts receivable, and increase cash flow with CareCredit patient payment plans. Or visit the website at http://www.carecredit.com

    The Center for Dental Career Development - Providing Advanced Business Education for dentists and training for business employees as well as Team Building Retreats for the entire dental team in Beautiful La Jolla, California. You can find The Center for Dental Career Development at http://www.dentalcareerdevelop.com

    Lares Research - 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.

    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.


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    Copyrights 2002 McKenzie Management - All Rights Reserved.