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    In this episode of the MGMA Member Spotlight Podcast, Daniel Williams, senior editor at MGMA, welcomes Anthony Schier, executive director at Cheyenne Obstetrics and Gynecology, LLC. This private practice has been operational since 1979 and includes four board-certified Obstetricians/Gynecologists, one additional OB-GYN physician, and one Nurse Practitioner. During the conversation, Schier covers employee development, performance management, interviewing, and onboarding topics. He has also contributed to MGMA's newest book, Advanced Strategy for Medical Practice Leaders: Human Resources Management Edition. The following are highlights and strategic insights from the conversation.

    Developing Employees and Fostering Engagement

    Schier emphasizes the importance of investing in employee development, even for practices that may not have had formal programs in the past. He says their strategy is twofold: “How can we improve the employee? And then also, how could their improvement benefit us?”

    One strategy Schier’s practice employs is conducting annual performance evaluations. During these evaluations, they discuss employees’ career goals and identify growth opportunities. “We will discuss their career goals and look for areas where they want to grow. If we notice areas where we think they might excel, we will encourage them or suggest, ‘Have you ever thought about this?’” This approach allows the practice to understand each employee’s aspirations and provide targeted support.

    For example, Schier’s practice has supported sonographers in pursuing advanced training, such as a week-long program on fetal echocardiography. “Ensuring that these techs are well-trained in the latest technology and updated methods is crucial. We recently finished a week-long program with one of them on conducting fetal echoes, a procedure commonly performed in maternal-fetal medicine clinics.”

    Schier also highlights the value of sending staff to local community college programs that cover topics such as conflict management and leadership development. “The whole team [then] gets to discuss what they learned,” fostering a culture of continuous learning and knowledge sharing.

    Retaining Top Talent through Career Advancement Opportunities

    In addition to developing employees, Schier’s practice actively seeks to retain top talent by providing opportunities for career advancement. “I had a front office staff person who was bilingual in English and Spanish; she was also a medical assistant by training, and I had encouraged her to become a certified medical translator. And so we paid for her to do that; she researched and found the online program, and we funded it.” According to Schier, this additional training allowed the staffer to earn a higher wage.

    Schier also shares how the practice has supported medical assistants (MAs) interested in becoming registered nurses (RNs). “I’ve had MAs that, you know, we would evaluate them. If we thought they would be a great RN, we would at least throw it out and say, ‘You would be a great RN.’ And I’ve had a couple that have taken advantage of that. And they’ve gone from becoming an MA to an RN.”

    While the practice couldn’t retain all the RN-trained employees, Schier recognizes the broader benefit to the community. “We see that it does help the community because there is a need for [more RNs].”

    Effective Interviewing and Onboarding Practices

    Beyond employee development, Schier highlights the importance of effective interviewing and onboarding practices to ensure the right fit and a smooth transition for new hires.

    When interviewing candidates, Schier emphasizes the importance of assessing skills, experience, cultural fit, and alignment with the practice’s values. “We dive into the integrity and character of the individual because that’s so important. You can teach skill sets but can’t really teach integrity and character.”

    The onboarding process is equally critical, setting the tone for the employee’s experience and laying the foundation for success. “We have a very robust onboarding program... We give them all the tools they need to succeed and follow up with them regularly to ensure they get the support they need.”

    Schier’s holistic approach to talent management, from recruitment to development and retention, underscores the importance of investing in people to drive practice success. “We believe that all of the employees have something of value. And whether or not they want to take advantage of learning new tools or things like that, it’s up to them as far as what they want to do.”

    Here are the key points to keep in mind from Anthony Schier’s approach at Cheyenne Obstetrics and Gynecology, LLC:

    • Employee Development: Focus on developing your team’s skills and abilities.
    • Continuous Learning: Encourage staff to pursue ongoing education and training to enhance their expertise.
    • Career Advancement: Provide opportunities for employees to advance their careers within the practice.
    • Investing in Your Team: Demonstrate how investing time, energy, and resources in your team leads to mutual benefits.
    • Effective Interviewing and Onboarding: Emphasize the importance of thorough screening and welcoming processes to ensure new hires are a good fit and poised for success.
    • Individual Goals and Support: Commit to understanding and supporting each employee’s personal and professional goals.
    • Motivated and Loyal Workforce: Highlight strategies for cultivating a skilled and committed workforce to contribute to the practice’s success.
    • Prioritizing People: Put the well-being and development of your team at the forefront of your practice’s values.

    New MGMA Book

    For those seeking comprehensive guidance, Schier contributes to the new book, "Advanced Strategy for Medical Practice Leaders: Human Resources Edition," which is an excellent HR resource. It covers various HR topics, including compliance, culture building, employee development, and more. The book is available in the MGMA Bookstore.

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    Let us know if there's a topic you want us to cover, an expert you would like us to interview, or if you'd like to appear on the member spotlight podcast. Email us at If you have a question for our senior advisor, Cristy Good, email

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