5 minutes with... Sally Anthony

BC Advantage (BC): Tell us about yourself and how you started in the medical industry.
Sally Anthony (SA): I have been in the medical field for 20 years and initially started out as a medical assistant. While working in a medical office, I volunteered to learn how to do other tasks within the office. That's how I learned to do medical billing.

BC: Why start your own company?
SA: I started my company because of the flexibility it gives me in my life. I can work around my family's schedule as well as unforseen circumstances that arise.

BC: What are your personal strengths (and weaknesses) in relation to your business?
My personal strength is the determination I have to make my company successful.  My weakness is learning how to be most effective when marketing my business.

BC: What do you think has been a major factor in your business success?
I think the major factor for my success was persistence and wanting to succeed.

BC: What have you been most proud of?
I am very proud of myself for taking on the challenge of starting a new business.

BC: You offer many services to your clients. How do you stay abreast of all the changes that occur in this industry?
I stay current by attending seminars, signing up for newsletters from the insurance companies, which contain updates, and belonging to medical billing and coding forums such as BC Advantage (amongst others).

BC: What do you look for when hiring your staff?
The biggest thing I look for when hiring someone is a person who is detailed oriented and someone who has maintained a job for more than a year.  This shows me that a person is reliable and responsible unlike someone who has had many different jobs over the course of a year.

BC: Are certifications/credentials important to your company?
I think it is important to have certain standards for your business so clients take you seriously. On the other hand, I don't think it is mandatory to have credentials or certifications if you offer quality services and have the experience in the business you are pursuing.

BC: Any advice to give someone who is considering starting their own business?
The best advice I can give someone is to research what is involved in having your own business. Talk to people like me who already have started a medical billing business and then decide if this would be right for you.

Having a business isn't for everyone. It does involve a lot of hard work. You will have to manage your time, keep track of expenses for your taxes, manage employees, do your own marketing, and obtain new clients. These tasks can become a full time job when starting out in addition to doing any medical billing work.

I started my business while still working a full time job. I figured if my business failed, I would still have my job to fall back on. It was tough to do but patience and persistence paid off. After a few years, I was able to do my business full time and quit working altogether.

The key to being a successful business owner is being involved, offering quality services, affordable pricing, having patience, being persistent and really liking what you do.

Sally Anthony is a small business owner who established her medical service company in 2002. Her company, Anthony Medical Services offers a wider variety of services to help meet the needs of a practice from complete medical billing services, consulting, A/R recovery to temporary services. To contact Sally please email antmedserv@msn.com or go to her website at www.anthonymedicalservices.com for more information about the services her company offers.