Don’t be Fooled by Fake IRS Communications

5 things you should know about phishing scams

Be aware that fraudsters are trying everything they can to obtain your personal or business financial information.  I received a call from a doctor client who indicated that she received an e-mail from the IRS stating that they were due a refund for taxes paid.  The e-mail looks legitimate as even indicates an official looking reply to address – office@irs.gov.  The body of the email states the following:

Phishing Scam Warning Sign

Business Intelligence – Using Your Data to Manage Your Practice [Podcast]

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Episode 011

Doctors Business Management Show

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In this episode, Mike DeVries & his guest, Nate Moore, discuss Using Business Intelligence. Using data from your Medical Practice to Manage Your Business Better. The YouTube Video below is a video recording of the show in which you can see the example reports that were discussed during the show.

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Review Your Interest Rates

4 things to check if you refinance your adjustable rate loan

Interest rates have been low over the past many years, which has been most advantageous for utilizing adjustable rate loans. Experts say that interest rates will be on the rise this year – an easy prediction given where rates are currently; how can you go wrong? A better prediction would encompass how quickly the interest rates will they rise? I figure why take a chance; why wait?

Interest Rates

Is your Medical or Dental Practice ready for EMV?

Be ready by October 1, 2015

October 1, 2015, all businesses that accept in-person credit card payments must be able to accept new EMV-compliant credit and debit cards, or risk being responsible for card fraud losses.

EMV Credit Cards

Overtime Changes – Fair Labor Standards Act

3 Action Steps to Take Now

On July 6th, the Department of Labor announced a proposed rule that would extend overtime protections to nearly 5 million white-collar workers within the first year of its implementation. What impact might this have on a medical or dental practice?

Filling the weekly time sheet for payroll

4 Tax Planning Tips & Ways to Avoid Tax Scams [Podcast]

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Tax form operating budget and stopwatch in closeup

Don’t Wait – The Time to Start Tax Planning is Now

Episode 009

Doctors Business Management Show

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In this episode, Mike DeVries & Co-Host, Ben Lane discuss 4 Tax Planning Tips that you can do now and through-out the year as well as Ways to Avoid Tax Scams.  The following are notes based upon our discussion.

4 Tax Planning Tips

  1. Don’t Wait – Start Organizing Now
    • Use a Simple Tax Folder to organize your information during the year
      (I purchased this one from Amazon – Tax Folder)
    • Track your financial activity with computer software
      • I use Quicken – Click Here – (I use an older Mac Version)
      • Ben likes Mint – Click Here
      • Or, simply use a spreadsheet program like Excel
      • Use a system, even if it is a manual system
  2. Prepare a Life Inventory
    • Click Here – for a copy of my “Life Inventory” Worksheet
  3. Prepare a Personal Financial Statement
  4. Schedule a Date with your Tax Preparer
    • Be proactive in reviewing your tax estimates through-out the year

Ways to Avoid Tax Scams

  1. Fraudulent Phone Calls
    • IRS will contact you by correspondence first
    • IRS will not ask you to use a credit card
    • IRS will not threaten you with an arrest by the local police department
    • Treasury Inspector General’s Hotline 1-800-366-4484 Website http://www.treasury.gov/tigta/
  2. Phishing Scams
    • Don’t click on suspicious links
    • Keep your passwords updated
  3. ID-Theft and Fraudulent Returns
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Mike DeVries is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER ™, Enrolled Agent,  and a Certified Healthcare Business Consultant focusing on helping healthcare professionals. If you would like to learn more about becoming a client, contact Mike at www.vmde.com.

Creating or modifying a compensation plan for doctors takes effort on many fronts. The main objective to achieving success, in my opinion, is that the final outcome has each doctor equally dissatisfied. – Michael L. DeVries, CFP®, CHBC, EA

 

Creating Excellence in Your Office

Aerial View of People and Excellence ConceptsIn his book, Hardwiring Excellence, Quint Studer indicated that 27% of employees leave their employer within the first 90 days because they give up on their healthcare employer. Turn over of personnel is expensive and should be avoided by maintaining a good recruiting and training process. Keeping your staff working as a team and cultivating loyalty is also important for maintaining a smooth running office. As a leader of your business, here are some ways to work with your team members to create excellence in your office.

  • Recognition – be sure to let your staff know you appreciate them. Address them by name and thank them.
  • Equip your team – provide them with the tools and equipment they need to do their job. Ask them, what could you use to do your job better? Or even, I want to make this a great place to work – what can I do for you?
  • Praise – Acknowledge employees’ achievements in front of their peers. I have had clients provide awards and dinners for special achievements. You can certainly establish a non-taxable employee awards program, but you don’t have to – a simple word of praise can go a long way.
  • Purpose – Communicate your vision for your practice and make sure employees see how their particular tasks affect the big picture.
  • Meaningful work –  Eliminate “busy work” and maximize your employees’ effectiveness. Sometimes this means that we need to look beyond the way things have always been done and do something that is hard for most everyone – change.
  • Decision autonomy –  Provide the training, skills and authority for employees to fix problems on their own.
  • Participation –  Encourage staff opinions at regular staff meetings. You will be surprised by the creativity and resourcefulness of your employees when you ask them what they like and don’t like about the way the office is run and what suggestions they have for improving it.
  • Flexibility   Consider creative scheduling and job sharing. For example, have a staff member come in at noon and stay later into the evening so that another member might be able to leave the office on time.
  • Diverse experience – Allow for and provide training so your staff members know what is expected of them and realize that their professional growth is important to you. Encourage cross training so they learn skills beyond their usual job description.
  • Measure progress – establish common goals or benchmarks that can be measured each month, quarter, or annually supports the alignment of behavior and recognized behavior is repeated. But don’t get too stuck on the numbers; rather than catching people meeting the criteria for recognition, work towards mobilizing the entire organization to recognize individuals that perform acts of excellence.

Team members that work in healthcare desire to feel a part of something worthwhile. As the leader of your team and business, you have the ability to foster and encourage this desire by growing as a leader and creating employee engagement, which will contribute to memorable patient kindness, profitability, sustainability and patients telling others about your office – an office of excellence.