We want to spend a few minutes talking about the challenges of communication in new environments. This an initiative at HIS that we hold dearly to our hearts. The key to building a successful practice, and the key to building a successful business office that will effectively manage your accounts receivable is insuring there is good communication in the organization.
As I’ve always told our leadership team: I never want to be in a situation where I have to pay a consultant to come in and listen to our employees. Nobody knows the office better than the people in the office.
No one knows better what’s working and what’s not working than the people in the trenches doing the job. It’s essential that we as leaders make sure that our directors, our managers, and our supervisors are good listeners and make themselves available to listen to their staff.
I ran into a dysfunctional office a year ago where things were a mess but the typical response to the director of reimbursement when an individual walked in his office was, “What are you thinking?” He created such a barrier that he made people feel uncomfortable to go in with a suggestion. Again, we really encourage that there is opportunity for your employees to communicate and also we as leaders have the responsibility to make sure we are providing good communication to our staff.
Keep everyone in the office aware of what activities and initiatives are underway from the practice perspective. Again, good communication is essential to building a positive work environment, which is important to productivity and patient satisfaction. We spend a tremendous amount of our time and resources facilitating communication and I can tell you the return on that investment has been very significant. You hear a lot these days about emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is about employing good intuitive skills, but more importantly it is about being an effective listener.
Also, inspect what it is that you’re hearing. Not out of mistrust, but out of making sure that you understand what is truly happening within the practice. If someone says to you, “we’re current on our denials” Ask to take a look so that you can understand what the denials are about. You can see just from the date on the denial what day they’re on. You can see the reasons behind it. I would encourage all of you to utilize the phrase “Show me” to do a lot of inspection with the staff to make sure that you’re kept abreast of what is going on. It’ll make the practice revenue cycle process much better and also it’ll make you even smarter about what’s going on day to day.