“Fix the problem, not the blame” is a well-known Japanese proverb. It sounds like common sense – isn’t fixing problems what we all ultimately want? But when mistakes happen, the search for culprits instinctively begins – and with it often comes demoralization and tension. Worse, the search for a scapegoat usually won’t keep problems from […]
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Personalized, customized service has become the norm in our lives as consumers. We’ve come to expect even everyday items like coffee and sandwiches to made to our specific preferences. But when we’re talking about the administrative side of the patient experience, customizing can seem like a much bigger deal. With so many other demands on […]
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Technology for the medical practice front office has many benefits. It can speed up processes, keep critical data safe from fire and flood, allow practice staff to tap resources from other organizations via the Internet, and so on. The list is long and growing. But my favorite front office technology benefit by far is the […]
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Are some jobs at your medical practice just too urgent or important to assign to specific people? That’s the argument some practice managers and physicians make, e.g: “Phones need to be answered by the first available person, whatever their job” “Everyone should keep an eye on the fax machine, and deliver faxes they see piling […]
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Employees who are not always busy working are frequently a source of consternation to physicians. Sometimes, practices attempt to remedy the situation by restructuring staff jobs — not always with good results. Consider the front desk, for example. In almost any practice, front desk workload will ebb and flow.  Depending on variables like patient punctuality, the […]
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I’ve previously recommended Dr. Christian Terwiesch’s introductory MBA-level operations management course on Coursera — and, great news, it’s being offered again this fall. UPenn/Wharton have expanded their selection on Coursera to include four “MBA foundation” courses in operations, marketing, finance and accounting — an incredible opportunity for physicians and practice managers alike to explore these […]
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It might be the toughest message a practice management consultant has to deliver to a physician client: you’re just not working hard enough.  When doctors bring us in to analyze their practices’ profitability problems, they usually expect us to find they’re over-staffed, or that their building expenses are too high, or that their billing service […]
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