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Sally McKenzie's

Weekly Management e-Motivator


Issue #45

Click here to print this
e-motivator Article.

January 03, 2003

Sally McKenzie,CMC
McKenzie Management

1-877-777-6151 Ext. 11

This month, I'm launching a new series, "Top Obstacles to Achieving the Ideal Practice." Each week, I'll discuss on of the barriers likely to be interfering in your ability to reach your goals. The following week I'll discuss my proven solutions.
- Sally McKenzie,CMC

Barrier #1 “Cross Training” Can Leave Productivity Waning

You’ve heard of four-handed dentistry, but have you ever tried eight-handed scheduling? Well, we don’t recommend it. Think about your practice. Do you have everybody doing everything and nobody’s really accountable for anything? Business employees, assistants, hygienist - are all scheduling patients, answering phones, dismissing and collecting from patients, and conducting consultations. Left hand, right hand, upper hand, underhand, backhand – not a one hand knows what the other hands are doing.

It makes many dentists feel better to refer to this practice pandemonium euphemistically as “cross training” – everyone just pitches in and does what needs to be done. Yeah, right. The bottom line is that no real training is taking place and about the only thing being done well is the art of dodging bullets as they come whizzing past.

While everyone is trying to cover for each other, what is ultimately covered up is the fact that revenues are shrinking and patients are lacking. There is simply no way goals can be established, let alone met, if individual team members are not expected to take ownership of practice systems.

Practices without employee job descriptions and assigned duties often claim they don’t want to box staff in. Unfortunately, it’s practice profit and productivity that is not only boxed in but buried six feet under with this management approach.

Next week, I'll explain how to instill accountability and responsibility in your staff and yield big payoffs for your practice.


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.

If you missed any of the previous issues CLICK HERE.

Reports in Your Practice Management System
False Echoes

Did you ever watch the weather channel radar screen and see rain but there wasn’t any outside? The weather reporter called it a “false echo”.

Your practice management system may or is giving you some false echoes about your practice. You are relying on them to guide some of the decisions you make. Bottom line … you shouldn’t!

Before you go off and call your software supplier, don’t. I’ve been there and done that. It’s not a bug or mathematical error. Their reports are correct; they just aren’t measuring the right thing(s).

McKenzie Management will be providing an electronic solution for this shortly but until then, here are a few of them you should recognize and account for now.

New Patients: Most of the popular practice management systems measure new patients by looking for the first transaction date in a patient’s transaction record and calling it a “new patient”. Well, all of those emergency “one and done” patients should NOT be counted when calculating the overall patient growth of your practice. What you should do (until we provide the electronic solution) is run a production report for your comprehensive exam code (00150). This of course is assuming you use the correct ADA code. Some of you are still using the old code but I don’t want to get off on a rant here <grin>.

Active Patients: Some of the practice management systems look at patients you’ve seen in the last 18 months, some look at a year, some give you control. None of these measurements are what they should be. When measuring the overall patient growth of a practice you should measure the new patient number (above) against the leaving patient number. The leaving patient number is calculated by running a recall report (or list) for the same date range you ran the new patient report. Let’s say you received 100 new patients and there are 200 patients overdue for their recall in the same date range. Your practice has lost a net of 100 patients.

Until we provide a universal electronic solution for this, we want you to make business decisions with correct information. This time of year especially is a good time to look back at 2002 to see how you did.

Good luck!

Missed any past issues of Sally's
Weekly or Monthly Newsletters or Magazine Articles?
(click an item to view archive)

New Year Practice Resolutions 2003

1. Increase Production by 42%?
2. Set job descriptions for staff with performance measurements?
3. Reduce the accounts receivable by 15%?
4. Get a full one hour for lunch?
5. Bring on an associate dentist in the first quarter?
6. Increase perio treatment in the hygiene department by 28%?
7. Equip another operatory first quarter?
8. Increase fees 3% the first of March and October?
9. Teach dental assistants how to make temporary crowns?
10. Have 2 hour monthly meetings with system measurements?

What will yours be?

Find out NOW how you can make your 2003 resolutions … REALITY!!!!

click here

What if ...
Your business staff had the training, efficiency, knowledge, expertise and organization of the
Nation's TOP Dental Management Consultants?

"I have GREAT employees and know they could be even better with the proper training, but that's not my area of expertise. HELP!"

How do I know if my staff needs Advanced Business Training?
Find out by clicking here!

The Center for Dental Career Development
Advanced Business Education for Dental Professionals


Start the year off right!!

Get the BEST of the BEST
Dental Manager's Tool Kit

5 of Sally's Top Selling Books
Cash Flow, Hiring, Hygiene, Performance Measures, Recall

Special Rate for this week's newsletter subscribers. Receive all 5 books for $165!!!

Order before 1/10/03 and receive as an added bonus…
Sally McKenzie's Most Popular Lecture on DVD
Breakdown: The Hidden Signals of Practice Erosion


This issue is sponsored in part by:


Secure Data Express™ (SDX™)

McKenzie Management


The Center for Dental Career Development

Lares Research

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