Defining front-desk roles

September 1, 2006

I have a solo practice, and I have a receptionist with no medical background. She is fast, but she has no initiative. How detailed should her job description be? Do I have to put in writing simple responsibilities such as: water plants daily, organize waiting room in the morning, clean the desk, put cups at the water cooler when it runs low, and open the deliveries?

Question: I have a solo practice, and I have a receptionist with no medical background. She is fast, but she has no initiative. How detailed should her job description be? Do I have to put in writing simple responsibilities such as: water plants daily, organize waiting room in the morning, clean the desk, put cups at the water cooler when it runs low, and open the deliveries?

Answer: No, this isn't really a matter of the job description.

ou -- or, better, your office manager if you have one -- need to have a discussion with your staff member about her role.

If you haven't before, explain that you need her to take authority for the entire front of the house. Give examples such as those you mention. Ask if that's a job she wants. If so, ask what you can do to support her in that pursuit. Reach an agreement. And if she isn't interested, find someone who is. Seek staff who will dive into their jobs, not ones who constantly claim that this or that isn't "part of my job description."