Must Do's for New Practice Owners

Many new practice owners tell me the reason they went into business was because they wanted to treat patients “their way” - use their techniques and help people improve, get stronger and get ahead faster. In other words, they had a better way.

Some did and some didn’t complete a business plan. They were going to do most everything themselves but many hired someone they knew – friend or relative to help them get started with handling the front desk. Most outsourced their billing. To their credit, the business grew much faster than expected. 

Those who were helping out and being paid a minimum with no benefits believed the business would not have done this well without them. They were now asking for more pay and started calling the shots regarding what hours they could and couldn’t work. They were complaining that they needed more help and their actions were starting to affect the billing process. It was now becoming more about them than the business and that is not a good thing for the owner. 

Even in this situation, owners acquiesced to the demands of the employees. Confrontation and the thought of letting a friend or relative go was too much to bear. In other words, the focus was not on the success of the business.

If you are planning on opening a new practice, plan for success from day one. Lay the foundation for growth – it’s going to happen and you must be prepared. Some things may seem silly to do when you are starting out but if you don’t plan it will come back to bite you in the end. Here are some must do things for your list. 

  1. Plan for hiring – administrative or clinical staff
    1. Get help with placing an ad and interviewing (you can’t hire for a position you can’t do i.e. front desk, billing etc.)
    2. Provide job descriptions, performance standards, and performance reviews
    3. Offer competitive wages
    4. Provide a basic personnel handbook (as you grow you can add more benefits)
    5. Provide a orientation program
  2. Learn how to run a front desk and how billing is done – get training. If you hire before you start go to training with your new employee. 
  3. Make sure you are properly credentialed and that any new hire is also. Don’t risk your license or providerships by sharing your numbers.
  4. Meet with staff frequently to ask questions, clarify directives and hear problems – address everything immediately. (Show you care.)
  5. Pay attention to your billing, understand the entire process – know where your money is. Ask questions about your accounts receivable. 
  6. Set up systems of reconciliation and accountability.
  7. Find the resources to help you be successful

The stronger your foundation is when you start the more control you will have over your business and your life. Pre planning is key to your success. The bottom line on your business is your responsibility. You are the final decision maker.

​​Diane McCutcheon, President
​​DM Business Management Consulting Services, Inc.
Account Matters – Billing & Collection Services
4 Charlesview Road, Suite 4
Hopedale, MA 01747
P: 508-422-0231  F:  508-422-0234