Dear Boss: It's time for some improvements

Sept. 18, 2020
This new column, "Dear Boss," is designed for dental office managers to be able to speak their minds by anonymously writing a “letter” to their boss. This OM is tired of being taken advantage of.

Dental Office Manager Digest introduces the new column, “Dear Boss.” This is designed for office managers to be able to speak their minds by anonymously writing a “letter” to their boss. Send your “letters” to [email protected]. Depending on how many are received, your letter may take a while to appear in DOMD.

Dear Boss,

You’re a nice guy, but I'm getting sick of you taking advantage of me. I started working for $15 per hour four years ago and I had 11 years of dental experience at the time. I do not receive benefits and I’ve had no increase in salary at all. This is even though I've updated the office procedures tremendously. I’m able to find important information on insurance company websites, which no one in the practice had a clue how to do before I started. They were scheduling appointments by hand in a book instead of online!

You would like for me to work five days a week, but there’s no way I can do that for this low-paying part-time job with no benefits. Therefore, you now have another woman come in on the two days that I don't work. On one of those days the office is not even open. She works about three hours per day and mainly confirms appointments and then leaves me a ton of crap to deal with when I return to the office.

You also make passive aggressive comments to me when I take off for two weeks of vacation, like you're paying me for the time off. You are not paying me for the time off!

You grew up in this area where your office is located, so you have lots of patients who come into the practice so they can get a break in their fees. This makes me feel just great when patients get huge discounts or free services, but my salary stays the same no matter what I do.

The hygienist is late every morning and returning from lunch, and she takes off the whole month of August and all of Christmas week. She has now been out of the office since March due to COVID. Granted, she is older and has worked at the office for years, but she doesn't even need the job. However, you haven’t given her a deadline to return and you haven’t hired a temp. You just do the perio maintenance yourself, and this has backed up the schedule for weeks. Meanwhile, patients grill me about where the hygienist is and ask when she's coming back. I feel like an idiot when I have to tell them that I have no idea.

Your assistant refuses to earn her x-ray license, so you have to take all of the x-rays yourself. Meanwhile, I come in 45 minutes early every morning, answer the phone before the office opens, and catch up on many tasks. 

You frequently do not send predeterminations in for a couple weeks, or you don’t send them in at all. I can't do this because you have to write up the treatment plan and narrative for me to print. Naturally, patients call after a few weeks to see if we've heard from insurance and I have to listen to their angry rants when I can't give them a price and they're waiting to schedule.

I would definitely like for things to improve for me in this office.


Tired of it

Do you want to write a "letter" to your boss? Send it to [email protected] and watch for your letter to appear anonymously on DentistryIQ.