I am having a few challenging issues with my work office. I struggle with the boundaries of what is my job as a massage therapist employee and what is the job of the office. Problem is the office is busy and the office staff has a lot on their plate. I don’t think the office assistants understand it either. I don’t have a contract lining out what I am responsible for or what they are responsible for. The worst part about it is that I don’t know how to go about getting all this defined. I know I need to sit down with the Doc and figure it out but that is way easier said than done, for me anyway.
It sounds so simple especially to people who are not me. “Don’t do the office work let the office do it. When things fail they will realize what you are worth and either pay you more or do what they need to. That is not exactly the case. See, in the big picture, the office staff could care less if I see my patient today or tomorrow or ever again for that matter. It does not directly affect them in their life like it does mine. They get paid hourly and don’t get paid less if a bill is denied or a client doesn’t get the authorization that is needed. If I don’t do that massage I lose on average a quarter of my daily income. I have tried to help out at the desk when I am available (something I don’t get paid for). When I ask for them to do office type things to make it easier for me I get push back from them and told that I need to check with them first before I adjust certain things to make my job easier, i.e. charting scanning certain docs in to my files. I feel frustrated and stuck.
So what to do? The Doc has asked me if I wanted to be an independent contractor and pay my own taxes and have it be my business but the commission would stay the same. I don’t think that I am good with that being that the commission I pay inpart is so that I don’t have to report my own taxes and have my own business license and such. If I do that I could potentially have more control and the follow up with insurance companies that I do would be my job to handle anyway. Since I already do that for some patient accounts that the office decides not to do it would solve that problem. Problem being the current commission rate that I make is not enough in my opinion for me to do that. Maybe I am wanting too much. I do think that me taking on more responsibility is worth something more than me being an “employee”.I don’t want to sound like the Doc is not paying me enough or anything I just think what I signed up for when I agreed I had other expectations and maybe that was my bad for that but not having a job description or contract outlining what each party is responsible for was a bad idea.
It’s time to change that. What’s frustrating is that there are so many different ways each contract is written and I have anxiety when it comes to this kind of confrontation. I don’t want him to tell me I am not worth more which is what my biggest fear is. If I say I am but he doesn’t agree do I just submit to him and keep it the way it is? Regardless it would be nice to know what is my job and what is the office staff’s job. If the Doc says that he doesn’t want to pay more at if I have a plan to present to him at least I will know what my job is and then be able to decide what I want to do about it. I hate this part of adult life! The Hubs gives me a hard time and gets frustrated with me to the point of major arguments about how he thinks he is the only one I “stand up” to. He says I cower to everyone else and stand my ground with him. Oh, ifhe only know what I really wanted to say and what the things that I hold back really are.
I feel like I am fighting a losing battle when in reality I am probably just having anxiety about this. I have it made up in my head that it is going to be way worse than what it really is. I am scared to be in a confrontation with the Doc that will turn out with me feeling inadequate and not strong enough and not worthy of what I think I am worthy of. Why do I always feel like this? It is so frustrating! The Hubs’ argument is why would the Doc pay you more or accept your offer to pay him a flat fee for rent when all he is getting out of it is less money? …it’s all made up in my head. I have had this discussion many times and I have been met with no over and over again. I know he (The Doc) and I both want to be on the same page. We both want our practice to be more smooth and run better and have better control over what is happening and know who is doing what and what we are expecting of each other.
I have so many irons in the fire most of which are clients and patients who I see on a regular basis for massage, BNI is another and I am building my own ‘brand’ with my massage business name and identity and new logo. Not to mention my family and household that I am responsible for dinners, dishes and washing clothes. Keeeping my relationship in tact with my husband. Yet I sit here worrying about a conversation that I have to have with my boss who is also my friend and pretty approachable so why is it so hard to do this? ANXIETY!
Anyway time to get to focusing and concentrating on how to define my roll in the office and the first anxiety inducing task and that is to figure out when and where to ask him to meet me and then when and where to meet to discuss this….