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Committee Chair Letter

Brenda Grumley

By Brenda Grumley

FRICTION! Many of us would prefer to avoid conflict, and yet in any workplace, friction is inevitable, because we are
dealing with people and ideas. In preparation for writing this letter, I came across a definition of friction in the
Oxford Dictionary that really hit home: “conflict or animosity caused by clash of wills, temperaments, and opinions.”
Admittedly, I had some angst around committing my thoughts about friction to paper — and then realized that putting pen
to paper is actually a form of friction for me.

As administrators and the leaders of our practices, we are responsible for facing friction head-on. We encounter daily
friction in our work lives, whether struggling to squeeze appropriate reimbursement out of insurance companies,
mollifying disgruntled patients, or crunching those numbers to find the money for another FTE — thereby making us the
human form of WD-40. Truly. We keep those wheels and cogs greased and running smoothly to alleviate or mitigate friction
in our practices. As human WD-40, we facilitate the smooth running of well-oiled machines by leading in a wide range of
ways:

  • Developing consistent and congruent policies, processes, and procedures gains the trust of our employees.
  • Maintaining an open-door policy sends the message to staff and patients that we are engaged and available.
  • Upholding compliance with healthcare regulations, including coding and billing guidelines, signifies integrity.
  • Decreasing technological complexity by ensuring access to all digital tools, resources, and equipment that support staff
    needs.
  • Finding a new hire who melds well into the team greatly reduces the risk of interpersonal difficulties.
  • Engaging employees as individuals motivates them to take ownership. By spending time learning what excites or concerns
    staff outside of their work, you can decrease potential issues in the workplace. Trust me on this one — spontaneously
    giving an employee an afternoon off to enjoy skiing on a powder day goes a long way toward keeping the machine
    well-oiled.

The goal of the Administrators’ Network is to provide support and networking opportunities through the Administrators
Certificate Program, our free webinars, and joining together at the Annual Conference. As the chair of the
Administrators’ Network, my wish for this amazing group is to cultivate confidence in ourselves, build our skills as
leaders, and share ideas with our membership. May we continue to lead our well-oiled machines and continue our work as
human WD-40.