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Tips to Effectively Cross-Train Your Team and Grow Your Bottom Line

by Sally McKenzie, CEO

A few weeks ago your Scheduling Coordinator moved out of state, leaving you with a very important position to fill. You haven’t found the right person to take over the roll just yet, and in the meantime you’re expecting other team members to step up and handle the job’s various duties.

The problem? Your schedule is a mess, production is down and you’re ready to hire the next person who sends you an impressive resume.

This is a scenario I see play out all the time. Dentists expect their employees to take over other roles in the practice, even though they haven’t been properly trained to do so effectively. This not only leads to extra stress and frustration, it also hurts your bottom line.

And this isn’t just a problem when there are open positions. Many dentists I’ve worked with think that just because team members have been with them for years, they can step in and take over tasks whenever needed, which could mean answering patient phone calls, managing the schedule or making collections calls. The doctor considers his team members cross-trained and doesn’t think twice about asking them to take on these duties. Unfortunately, when everyone is expected to do everything, no one is held accountable for anything. This leads to important tasks falling through the cracks, finger-pointing when there are problems...

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