Prosperident Newsletter #40, Dec 2015

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #40 — December 2015
In This Issue:
    • Embezzlement’s biggest myths (continued)
    • Meet our newest Certified Fraud Examiner
  • Upcoming speaking dates
Jan 15 North Eastern District, Duluth MN
Jan 22 Long Island Dental Forum, Hauppauge NY
Jan 28 Topsfest, Atlanta GA
Feb 24 Morrone and Kaye Orthodontics, Moorestown NJ
Feb 27 Ortho2 User Group Meeting, Las Vegas NV
Mar 4 American Academy of Dental Practice Admin, Beverly Hills CA
Mar 23 Oral and Dental Implant Surgery, Pittsfield MA
Mar 25 Four study clubs, Plantation FL
May 5 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC
Wendy Askins, MBA, CFE
We would like to congratulate Wendy Askins on the completion of the Certified Fraud Examiner designation.
Wendy, who is one of our longest serving team members, heads our Orthodontic Examination Department.
The CFE is the “gold standard” certification for fraud investigation. Way to go, Wendy!
Embezzlement’s Biggest Myths (continued)
Last month we started an article outlining the things most doctors misunderstood about embezzlement. The online news site DrBicuspid.com saw the first part of the article and asked if we would develop it into a piece suitable for its online publication, which we were happy to do.
You can read the full article on DrBicuspid’s web site here.
This Month in Our Web Store
The boss said make it good, so we did. Until December 31, everything in our web store is 50% off the regular price. Check it out at www.dentalembezzlement.com/store
Also, we should mention that the prices for several of our investigative services will be increasing on January 1, so if you think you need us and want to lock in 2015 pricing, please contact us before December 31.
A Note From Our CEO
With the Thanksgiving turkey eaten, and with Christmas decorations erupting everywhere, it’s the time of year when I normally become a bit introspective.
It’s been a phenomenal year for Prosperident; we have progressed in so many areas. Our computer horsepower has quintupled, our investigative prowess keeps growing, and we have reduced the average time for completing an investigation by almost 25%.
We are also excited about our involvement with Shieldr — this affordably-priced embezzlement monitoring software is now testing in a few dozen offices. The Shieldr programming team continues to expand the practice management software that Shieldr can work with (it now monitors Eaglesoft, Dentrix and Open Dental systems, with Practiceworks and Softdent integration imminent). In addition to embezzlement monitoring, Shieldr virtually eliminates a doctor’s dependence on printed reports by elegantly organizing all important financial information on your smartphone.
Even more exciting for me is the people with whom I am privileged to work. Prosperident has collected a team of incredibly talented and motivated people who make working here a joy. In 2015, we have promoted several people into new positions and all have moved capably into their new roles. We have made several excellent new hires.
Sadly, we have also lost some friends this year, including one of our “originals”, Dr. Roel Wyman, who passed away a few months ago.
On behalf of everyone at Prosperident, I hope that you and your family have a wonderful (and embezzlement free) holiday season.
David Harris, Chief Executive Officer
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327

Prosperident Newsletter #41, Jan 2016





Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #41 — January 2016
In This Issue:
  • My Embezzlement Problem is Solved — The Suspect Just Quit…
  • Examiner Profile — Mindy Salzman CFE
  • Upcoming speaking dates
Jan 15 North Eastern District, Duluth MN
Jan 22 Long Island Dental Forum, Hauppauge NY
Jan 29 TopsFest, Atlanta GA
Feb 24 Morrone and Kaye Orthodontics, Moorestown NJ
Feb 27 Ortho2 User Group Meeting, Las Vegas NV
Mar 3 San Diego Dental Society, San Diego CA
Mar 4 American Academy of Dental Practice Admin, Long Beach CA
Mar 23 Oral and Dental Implant Surgery, Pittsfield MA
Mar 25 Four study clubs, Plantation FL
May 5 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC


Examiner Profile
Mindy Salzman CFE
Senior Examiner Mindy Salzman is one of our newest, but also most experienced, examiners.
Mindy is a
Certified Fraud Examiner with 25 years of accounting and dental embezzlement examination experience.

She also knows her way around dental software, having been a trainer for Carestream, Dentrix, Curve, DentiMax, and QuickBooks Pro.
Mindy has also lectured on embezzlement
in the United States, Australia and New Zealand, and has authored numerous articles on embezzlement.
We are thrilled to have Mindy on our team.
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
My Embezzlement Problem is Solved — The Person I Suspected Just Quit…
Occasionally, a dentist who called us with embezzlement concerns
subsequently tells us that, because the suspected staff member has now
quit or been fired, the dentist believes that the “door is closed” on
this matter, and no further action is required.
Are they right about this?
In a word — NO!
It’s dangerous to think that nothing further needs to be done because the employee about who you were concerned has left.

This Month in Our Web Store
If your New Year’s resolution is to see if you are being embezzled, we are here to help.
Our popular Embezzlement Risk Assessment Questionnaire, which normally costs $79, is yours this month for only $19. A pretty small price to look at the likelihood that your practice is being embezzled. Check is out at www.dentalembezzlement.com/store
A Note From Our CEO
Early in December, I got a very frustrated call from a dentist’s spouse. The source of her frustration was that when they suspected embezzlement several months earlier, she had hired a well-known firm of forensic accountants. After investing several months (and many thousands of dollars) with the forensic accounting firm, she felt that she was no closer to having an answer than when she engaged the accounting firm.

In speaking with her, my impression was that the accounting firm really didn’t understand how to look for dental embezzlement and was visibly “grasping at straws”. One of the things the forensic accounting firm billed for examining was how many vehicles the suspected employee owned. Results of such a search are circumstantial– even if the suspect owned several vehicles, this would not prove that she was embezzling, and more importantly, how she was stealing. This oblique approach suggested that this firm didn’t have a more direct way to solve this problem.

This couple decided to terminate the engagement of the forensic accountants and hire us. I’m pleased to report that we were able to deliver the answers that they were seeking within a month, and for less money than they had already been billed by the forensic accounting firm that produced no tangible outcome for them. The clients were pleased with the results we got, and the speed with which we obtained them.

What this reinforces to me is that investigating dental embezzlement is a specialized field, and that even people who understand other fraud may struggle with this work. Our people all understand both dentistry and embezzlement. Mindy Salzman, who is profiled in this newsletter, is representative of our examiners. She has an accounting degree, a formal fraud investigation qualification, and has spent most of her adult life working in the dental field.

Even within our narrow niche, many of our people are sub-specialized. For example, certain dental specialties (e.g. oral surgery and orthodontics) have business processes and software quite different from other branches of dentistry, and we have examiners who specialize in these files. We also have team members who deal with specific situations, like fraud or misrepresentation on the part of a seller in a dental practice sale.

If you are a dentist who is an embezzlement victim, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your situation and how we could assist. Please feel free to email us here and tell us about your situation. We will be happy to schedule a time to chat with you.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident Newsletter #42, Feb 2016





Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #42 — February 2016
In This Issue:
  • Guest Column — Sandy Baird MBA
  • Examiner Profile — Anne Bernacki JS, MS
  • Upcoming speaking dates
Feb 24 Morrone and Kaye Orthodontics, Moorestown NJ
Feb 27 Ortho2 User Group Meeting, Las Vegas NV
Mar 3 San Diego Dental Society, San Diego CA
Mar 3 Dr. Ask Vasanthan Study Club, Sacramento CA
Mar 4 American Academy of Dental Practice Admin, Long Beach CA
Mar 4 Eastern Panhandle Dental Association, Martinsburg WV
Mar 23 Oral and Dental Implant Surgery, Pittsfield MA
Mar 25 Four study clubs, Plantation FL
May 5 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV


Examiner Profile
Anne (Joseph) Bernacki JD, MS
Senior Examiner Anne Bernacki was, as they say, on her way to a successful career as an attorney when she got bitten by the investigation bug.
Like many at Prosperident, Anne comes from a dental family. Her father is an orthodontist and both grandfathers were dentists.
Anne completed her law degree at Duquesne University and has a graduate degree in Fraud and Forensics from Carlow University.
Anne heads our Litigation Support group, which provides assistance to attorneys in matters involving practice purchase disputes, lost income claims and similar matters.
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Guest Column — Sandy Baird MBA
As our regular readers know, we sometimes feature guest columns from people we consider to be bright lights in dentistry.
This month’s guest is Sandy Baird. Sandy is a consultant with broad knowledge and a particular interest in embezzlement. She is also a long-time friend of our CEO, David Harris.
We periodically share our knowledge on how to avoid making hiring mistakes. Sandy recently provided us with an excellent article with the compelling title “How do you Stop an Embezzler? DON’T HIRE ONE!”. This article offers some valuable practical suggestions that may well help you “dodge a bullet” when hiring.
Sandy’s website is www.bairdconcepts.com, and her phone number is 877-511-4759. Thanks for being our guest, Sandy!
This Month in Our Web Store
This month’s offering isn’t technically from our web store. Instead, we are offering a $500 credit against any investigation for which we are retained between now and February 28, 2016.
Simply mention this newsletter to get the credit, which our attorneys insist we tell you cannot be combined with any other offer.
A Note From Our CEO
I’d like to share a letter we got last week, the kind of letter we absolutely love getting. The recipient was Supervising Examiner Wendy Askins MBA CFE. The letter reads:
I wanted to thank you for your assistance in processing my claim with my insurance company after I was embezzled from a couple of years ago. It was an absolute pleasure working with you in spite of the nature of the situation.

Prosperident is a wonderful company based on my dealings with them and they have a gem in having you on their team. I have never known anyone with a clearer understanding of accounting and dealing with different management software to get to the facts in a financial situation. Your skills are amazing to me and you could certainly have a job with me if you ever wanted.

I also appreciated the tact and great people skills you have in clarifying to the accountants and researchers from the insurance company. Sadly, their skills and knowledge of the business was far less than yours as you patiently explained the obvious facts from your research.

I just wanted you to have this letter of recommendation from me for your records because it’s rare that I come across someone like you that I can confidently give my highest recommendation to. Thank you so much for the great work you did for me!
If you are a dentist who is an embezzlement victim, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your situation and how we could assist. Please feel free to email us here and tell us about your situation. We will be happy to schedule a time to chat with you.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident News #43, March 2016





Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #43 — March 2016
In This Issue:
  • What Houdini and Embezzlers Have In Common
  • Examiner Profile — Luci Berardi BSc CFE
  • Upcoming speaking dates
Mar 3 San Diego Dental Society, San Diego CA
Mar 3 Dr. Ask Vasanthan Study Club, Sacramento CA
Mar 4 American Academy of Dental Practice Admin, Long Beach CA
Mar 4 Eastern Panhandle Dental Association, Martinsburg WV
Mar 5 Alabama Association of Oral Surgeons, Birmingham AL
Mar 7 Spartanburg Dental Society, Spartanburg SC
Mar 18 Hinman Meeting, Atlanta GA
Mar 23 Oral and Dental Implant Surgery, Pittsfield MA
Mar 25 Four study clubs, Plantation FL
Apr 5 North Shore Implants & Oral Surgery, Huntington NY
Apr 26 Will County Dental Society, Joliette IL
Apr 29 Port Huron Study Club, Port Huron MI
May 5 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
For more information, or to book a fantastic speaker for your society or study club, please click here.
Examiner Profile
Luci Berardi, BSc, CFE
Senior Examiner Luci Berardi’s two decades of managing large dental specialty practices, plus her Certified Fraud Examiner designation (which is the “gold standard” for fraud examiners), make Luci one of our “go-to” examiners for tough cases.
Luci is also actively involved in the American Association of Dental Office Managers, and serves as the President of AADOM’s Denver chapter.
In her spare time, Luci eats really healthy food.
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
What Houdini And Embezzlers Have In Common
Harry Houdini was probably the most famous magician of all time. His
daring escapes included the “Water Torture Cell” (where he was manacled
and suspended upside down in an oversized aquarium),
and the “Overboard Box Escape”, where he was locked in a wooden packing
crate that was lowered into the water.
While many who watched Houdini’s daring escapes probably believed
that he had supernatural powers, Houdini was a master illusionist.
Since many of his stunts were performed in full view of his audience, he
relied on two key elements to perform the impossible. First, he was
dependent on cleverly constructed props. However, his true genius was
mastering the art of misdirection — getting his audience to focus on his
hands while he was doing something with his feet, for example.
Although embezzlers in your office do not stand in the spotlight in the
same way that Harry Houdini did, they rely om the same two things. Like
Houdini, they have clever props (often taking the form of adulterated
reports on which the embezzler has worked their “magic”). A busy dental
office is an excellent place to introduce some distraction, and
embezzlers become adept at encouraging you to see what they want you to
see.
A Note From Our CEO
This week marks a significant milestone for Prosperident. In the next seven days, we will be giving SIX embezzlement presentations in various parts of the country.
I’m pleased that we have been able to attract a talented team here — these speaking engagements involve four different speakers from Prosperident. The other three are excellent speakers, and I try hard to be as good as they are.
I’m also pleased that our long-held goal of educating dentists about the danger that embezzlement poses to their practices is producing results; dentists are more aware of the problem, and more interested in the solution, than they have ever been.
It is also shocking and sometimes saddening to grasp the enormity of the problem (embezzlement took well over a BILLION dollars out of dentists’ pockets in 2015). I occasionally need to remind myself that awareness does not cause the problem — it just facilitates keeping score.
If you a member of that large cohort of dentists who is an embezzlement victim, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your situation and how we could assist. Please feel free to email us here and tell us about your situation. We will be happy to schedule a time to chat with you.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident Newsletter #44, April 2016

 

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #44 — April 2016
In This Issue:
    • You Just Discovered Embezzlement — Now What?

 

  • Upcoming speaking dates
  • New Service — FraudGuard
Apr 5 North Shore Implants & Oral Surgery, Huntington NY
Apr 26 Will County Dental Society, Joliette IL
Apr 29 Port Huron Study Club, Port Huron MI
May 5 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
2017
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
26 Jan Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
We would love to speak for your group or study club — for more information, or to book a fantastic speaker for your society or study club, please click here.
Introducing FraudGuard
Something that many dentists have asked us for is an examination of the systems in use in their office to identify weaknesses that embezzlers could exploit.
We listened, and are pleased to announce the launch of our FraudGuard service.
FraudGuard is an affordable review of more than 25 systems in use in your practice in five key areas.
We also do something really important — where possible, we test to ensure that your policies are being followed.
You receive a report with detailed recommendations for improvement.
For more information, click here.
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Guest Column — You Just Discovered Embezzlement; Now What?

Darren Kaberna of AccelerateMyPractice is a most interesting man. A prolific writer, Darren has also consulted in over a thousand dental practices. Darren is a true student of human behavior. We are thrilled to have him as this month’s guest columnist. Let’s see what he has to say:

_____________________________________________

The Prosperident team does an amazing job of uncovering and assisting
you in dealing with the legal issues around embezzlement. You now
have this done, are feeling violated and are not sure how to
recover. Now what???

 

 

 

I believe that many doctors sitting in this circumstance
continue feeling jaded and rightfully so! But how does this
impact the quality of your life moving forward? How does your remaining
team, who are also shocked and in disbelief, feel? Do
they now think like you look at them distrustfully? The only thing worse than uncovering embezzlement, would be then to run
your practice the rest of the way into the ground. I am not trying to
be crass with these statements, but your next few months will make or
break your financial future! Choose wisely!

 

 

 

So what can be done to first rebuild a trusting relationship with
your remaining employees and recover from the economic losses?
A Note From Our CEO
If you follow my tweets (twitter.com/fraudguru) you know how common dental embezzlement is, and it’s easy to get the sense that the battle against employee theft is hopeless.
When my team and I built Prosperident, initially we viewed our challenge as to build a top-notch investigation firm. We surrounded ourselves with some brilliant and dedicated investigators, and we developed the infrastructure needed for us to use the considerable brainpower we have assembled here. The result is that Prosperident not only provides the highest standard of investigation, but we can do so affordably and fairly quickly. So far, so good.
But over the last few years, we have felt the need to make use of the knowledge and resources available to us to “get ahead of” embezzlement. So rather than just investigating theft after the fact, can we detect it, predict it or even prevent embezzlement? Our answer was “Yes”!
Prosperident is pleased to have two fantastic tools available to spearhead the war against embezzlement.
The first is our Embezzlement Risk Assessment Questionnaire (available here), a quick and affordable questionnaire that determines the likelihood that you are being embezzled.
And today we are thrilled to announce a second tool, FraudGuard. You can read more about it on the sidebar, or on our web site here, but in a nutshell, the FraudGuard service involves a review (and improvement) of office systems, along with compliance testing to determine if your in-place systems are actually being followed.
So we can now offer you the ability to assess risk and ensure that your practice’s systems are decidedly “embezzlement-unfriendly”. So if you want to approach embezzlement proactively, please reach out to us and we will be happy to make recommendations based on your situation. And if you are past that point and need our investigative services, we are definitely in that business as well Laughing.
Thanks for reading, and we always love to hear from you.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

 

Prosperident Newsletter #45, May 2016





Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #45 — May 2016
In This Issue:
  • The “Hall of Shame”
  • Upcoming speaking dates
  • Wisdom from our CEO
May 6 Ontario Dental Association, Toronto ON
May 13 Eastside Dental Study Club, Cincinnati OH
May 29 Journees Dentiare Internationale du Quebec, Montreal QC
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Oct 21 Business of Dentistry, Ottawa ON
Oct 28 Business of Dentistry, Montreal QC
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
Nov 18 Business of Dentistry, Mississauga ON
Nov 25 Business of Dentistry, Dartmouth NS
2017
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
26 Jan Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
April 7 UCSF Alumni, San Francisco CA
Tired of hearing the same speakers on the same topics? Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”. How’s that for catchy? To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.
Proactivity = Office Protection System
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Prosperident’s “Hall of Shame”

Want to see what happens to embezzlers? Our Hall of Shame immortalizes some of the people who embezzle from dentists.
Click here to have a look. And if you see anyone you recognize, give Prosperident a call.
A Note From Our CEO
Prosperident has been at the leading edge of investigating dental office embezzlement for
many years. We have built a business around knowing how embezzlers steal and conceal.
But for most of our quarter-century existence, we have been using this knowledge reactively — we have been chasing, and catching, embezzlers after they have done their work.
We also have a bird’s eye view on the financial and emotional devastation that embezzlement causes, and we have never stopped thinking about how our knowledge could be used so that that fewer dentists are victimized.
What always restrained us was our oft-stated belief that prevention of embezzlement is impossible; embezzlers are faced with a cornucopia of possibilities, and that blocking a few through controls would result in a would-be embezzler selecting another of their many options.
And then we had the flash of inspiration — if we can’t dissuade someone from trying, could we structure an office so that theft becomes riskier, and more likely to be caught? We realized that we could, and fraudGUARD was born.
Office Protection System begins with a thorough review of the embezzlement “hotspots” in an office. Next, we teach the doctor how to efficiently monitor their practice. And for dessert, the most important part — “compliance auditing”. This is where we test to determine whether your staff are following your rules. I don’t think it would surprise you to learn that if staff won’t follow your basic policies, it is a pretty safe bet that they will also ignore the policy called “don’t steal from me”.
Want to find out more? Give Prosperident a call at 888-398-2327 and we will be happy to help. Or click here.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident Newsletter #47, July 2016

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #47 — July 2016
Live Webinar!
Our CEO David Harris will be featured in a webinar for All-Star Dental Academy on July 12 at 8:00 pm Eastern Time. Space is limited, but you can sign up at allstardentalacademy.com/webinar.
In This Issue:
    • Upcoming Webinar
    • Guest Article –Laura Hatch
    • The “Hall of Shame”
  • Upcoming Speaking Dates
  • A note form our CEO
Prosperident Hall of Shame

We have recently updated our Hall of Shame so that it profiles over 100 embezzlers. Are any of them working in your office?
Aug 4 Alabama AGD, Destin FL
Sep 9 Seattle Study Club, Houston TX
Sep 30 Calgary Specialists Study Club, Calgary AB
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Oct 21 Argyle Group, Ottawa ON
Oct 22 Alberta Society of Dental Specialists, Edmonton, AB
Oct 28 Spectrum Day, Toronto ON
Nov 4 PEAK Education, Novi MI
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
Nov 16 Harbor Dental Society, Lakeside CA
2017
Jan 18 St Helens Shadow Study Club, Vancouver WA
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
26 Jan Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
Feb 24 Chicago Midwinter Meeting, Chicago IL
Mar 9 Greater Philadelphia Valley Forge Dental Society, Philadelphia PA
Mar 10 Pacific Dental Conference, Vancouver BC
April 7 UCSF Alumni, San Francisco CA
Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”.
To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Guest Article — Laura Hatch
David Harris describes his friend Laura Hatch as a “bastion of common sense”. After building several successful offices with her dentist husband, Laura started her consulting firm with the interesting name “Front Office Rocks”.
Laura can be found at: www.FrontOfficeRocks.com
Three Vital Keys to Finding and Training Good Employees
Is it time to bring on a new employee? I know a lot of office managers and dentists are frustrated with the entire hiring and training process. As an office manager myself, I get it. But I have good news: the process doesn’t need to be a negative one, if you go at it the right way. In my experience, there are three key aspects of hiring and training that will make the process less painful and far more effective.
First, step back and check your attitude about the process. If you go into the hiring game with the attitude that there are no good employees out there, then guess what? You won’t find any.
A Note From Our CEO
I was discussing embezzlement with my friend Rick Willeford last month. Rick is a CPA and engineer who founded DentaMetrix, a company that helps dentists and consultants make sense of their data.
Rick was analogizing embezzlement to, believe it or not, bird feeders. He told me that he was having trouble keeping squirrels away from his feeder.
When he tried to buy squirrel-proof bird feeders, Rick was told that they don’t exist. Rick asked the hardware store clerk why.
“How much time per day do you spend thinking about this problem?” the clerk asked Rick. Rick acknowledged that it was less than 10 minutes. “Let’s consider this from the squirrel’s perspective”, the clerk said. “He want nothing more than to steal your birdseed. In fact, he thinks of nothing but that birdseed all day. Of course he is going to beat you!”
Many dentists assume that their considerable intellectual prowess and lengthy education should give them an advantage over embezzlers. And yet we see less gifted thieves successfully embezzle for years, so the bird feeder parable is accurate. Thanks for the perspective, Rick!
Have embezzlement concerns? Want to improve your practice’s protection against embezzlement? Give Prosperident a call at 888-398-2327 and we will be happy to help. Or click here.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Probability of you being embezzled in your career -60%
Probability that you will regret deleting this newsletter if that happens -100%
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident Newsletter #46, June 2016

 

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #46 — June 2016
In This Issue:
    • Podcasts
    • The “Hall of Shame”

 

  • Upcoming Speaking Dates
  • Our CEO’s Rant
Jun 10 speaking and Consulting Network, Santa Fe NM
Jun 17 New Brunswick Dental Society, Fredericton NB
Jul 12 All Star Dental Academy Webinar
Aug 4 Alabama AGD, Destin FL
Sep 9 Seattle Study Club, Houston TX
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Oct 21 Argyle Group, Ottawa ON
Oct 28 Spectrum Day, Toronto ON
Nov 4 PEAK Education, Novi MI
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
Nov 16 Harbor Dental Society, Lakeside CA
2017
Jan 18 St Helens Shadow Study Club, Vancouver WA
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
26 Jan Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
Feb 24 Chicago Midwinter Meeting, Chicago IL
Mar 9 Greater Philadelphia Valley Forge Dental Society, Philadelphia PA
Mar 10 Pacific Dental Conference, Vancouver BC
April 7 UCSF Alumni, San Francisco CA
Tired of hearing the same speakers on the same topics?
Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”.
To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.
For more information, click here
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Prosperident Podcasts
Our CEO has had the privilege of being interviewed by some of the most interesting people in dentistry. Here are some of his favorites:
the hilarious Drs. Jason Lipscomb and Alan Mead– here
Dr. Wes Blakeslee of AGD — here
Dr. Anissa Holmes, social media goddess — here
The urbane Dr. Mark Costes — here
We’ve done lots more — you can see the full collection in our Media Room here.
Prosperident Hall of Shame

Our Hall of Shame immortalizes some of the people who embezzle from dentists.
Click here to have a look. And if you see anyone you recognize, give Prosperident a call.
A Note From Our CEO
I know that I have talked about these things before, but they keep coming up in conversations with doctors, so this month I’ll devote this column to addressing some of the misconceptions about embezzlement that just won’t seem to go away.
 
Myth # 1 — Cash vs. Checks
Almost every dentist I speak with believes that embezzlement is limited to cash theft, and it hasn’t occurred to them that embezzlers have found ways to steal checks payable to the doctor, credit card payments, and electronic funds transfers. Because there are almost certainly some nascent embezzlers reading this column, I won’t spell out here how it is done, but this is something that we see on a daily basis. Practice owners need to know that any form of wealth transfer can be adulterated by an embezzler, and they don’t have to be a Mensa member to do it. A bit of research and a modicum of creativity will suffice.
Myth # 2 — I Can’t Fire Them Yet
Another misconception is that doctors believe that their recourse against a thieving employee diminishes when that employee is fired or quits. I frequently encounter dentists who suspect a former employee of embezzlement, but believe that they have no ability to take action because the employee no longer works there, and others who believe that they must keep an otherwise unsatisfactory employee on the payroll until our investigation is complete.
Let me make this very simple. Stealing is stealing, regardless of whether or not the person who did it is still (or ever was) an employee. So yes, we can investigate the actions of an employee who is no longer working for you, and no, there is no reason to keep an employee you really don’t want anyway while our investigation take place.
Have embezzlement concerns? Want to make your practice better protected against embezzlement? Give Prosperident a call at 888-398-2327 and we will be happy to help. Or click here.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
888-398-2327
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

 

Prosperident Newsletter #48, August 2016

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #48 — August 2016
Happy Anniversary, Prosperident!
We celebrate two anniversaries this month. Prosperident was founded in August, 1989, so this month we have been in business for 27 years.
Also, this is the fourth anniversary of our newsletter. Issue #1 went to about 2,000 people; the current issue will reach over 100,000 readers.
In This Issue:
    • Tell Us Your Embezzlement Story
    • The “Hall of Shame”
  • Upcoming Speaking Dates
  • A note form our CEO
Aug 4 Alabama AGD, Destin FL
Sep 9 Seattle Study Club, Houston TX
Sep 21 Canadian Dental Protective Association, Toronto ON
Sep 30 Calgary Specialists Study Club, Calgary AB
Oct 13 Sunset Study Club, Portland OR
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Oct 21 Argyle Group, Ottawa ON
Oct 22 Alberta Society of Dental Specialists, Edmonton, AB
Oct 28 Spectrum Day, Toronto ON
Nov 4 PEAK Education, Novi MI
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
Nov 16 Harbor Dental Society, Lakeside CA
2017
Jan 18 St Helens Shadow Study Club, Vancouver WA
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
26 Jan Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
Feb 23 Ortho2 UGM Anaheim CA
Feb 24 Chicago Midwinter Meeting, Chicago IL
Mar 9 Greater Philadelphia Valley Forge Dental Society, Philadelphia PA
Mar 10 Pacific Dental Conference, Vancouver BC
April 7 UCSF Alumni, San Francisco CA
Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”.
To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.
Prosperident Hall of Shame

We have recently updated our Hall of Shame so that it profiles over 150 embezzlers. Are you curious whether one of them is working for you?
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Dentists — Tell Us Your Embezzlement Story
Have you been embezzled? Tell us your story here, and receive a $500 discount on our Office Protection System preventative product.
You can learn more about Office Protection System here.
See Us In The Movies

Our CEO is normally pretty camera-shy. If I didn’t think it would get me fired, I’d say that he has a great face for radio :-).
Until recently, he has NEVER allowed himself to be recorded while speaking. So here is your chance, for the first time ever, to see a clip of David presenting — www.prosperident.com/team-member/david-harris/
A Note From Our CEO
Wishful thinking is something I encounter on a daily basis.
Having your practice be embezzled is definitely an unpleasant experience, and it is understandable that dentists will either unrealistically wish that the problem will self-correct, or will cling to the belief that there is a “magic pill” that will somehow provide safety from the scourge of embezzlement.
I hear many justifications for dentists believing that they are embezzlement-proof. A common postulation is that paying your employees well protects you. This assumes that financial need is the catalyst for embezzlement (often it isn’t) and that the extra dollar or two per hour you pay above the going rate will somehow scratch that itch (it won’t — the typical embezzler steals between 2-4% of monthly collections).
Another popular, but misguided, belief is that refusing to take assigned insurance benefits deters embezzlement. I have explained to many doctors that this is simply an internal policy, of which the insurance companies are unaware (and therefore would pay an “assignment” claim originating from that office if received). Also, it is no harder to steal payments from patients than insurance payments.
I had a dentist ask me yesterday if having his spouse sharing front desk duties would stop embezzlement. I mentioned that there are lots of ways for a front-desk person to steal without the involvement or notice of co-workers, and also that the loyalty of a spouse isn’t always absolute, as many marriages end in divorce. I don’t think I made his day.
So what does work? First, most dentists can do a much better job of screening job applicants (check out this article). Second, many dentists have had success in adjusting how their offices function to eliminate embezzlement “hotspots” and to force would-be embezzlers to steal in ways that are more likely to be caught. Our Office Protection System product can help you do this.
And finally, our Embezzlement Risk Assessment Questionnaire is an excellent tool for monitoring the behavior of your employees. For the month of August, the questionnaire is available for half the regular price.
Enjoy the rest of your summer!
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Probability of you being embezzled in your career -60%
 
Probability that you will regret deleting this newsletter if that happens -100%
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com

Prosperident Newsletter #49, September 2016

Prosperident’s Dental Embezzlement News
Issue #49 — September 2016
In This Issue:
  • Guest columnist Laura Hatch
  • Upcoming speaking dates
  • A note from our CEO
Sep 9 Seattle Study Club, Houston TX
Sep 21 Canadian Dental Protective Association, Toronto ON
Sep 30 Calgary Specialists Study Club, Calgary AB
Oct 13 Sunset Study Club, Portland OR
Oct 15 Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists, Palm Springs CA
Oct 21 Argyle Group, Ottawa ON
Oct 22 Alberta Society of Dental Specialists, Edmonton, AB
Oct 28 Spectrum Day, Toronto ON
Nov 4 New Castle Dental Study Club, Wilmington DE
Nov 4 PEAK Education, Novi MI
Nov 10 Carestream Global Oral Health Summit, Las Vegas NV
Nov 16 Harbor Dental Society, Lakeside CA
2017
Jan 19 St Helens Shadow Study Club, Vancouver WA
Jan 26 topsOrtho topsFest, Newport Beach CA
Jan 28 Manitoba Dental Association, Winnipeg MB
Feb 3 Newport Harbor Academy of Dentistry, Newport Beach CA
Feb 23 Ortho2 UGM Anaheim CA
Feb 24 Chicago Midwinter Meeting, Chicago IL
Mar 9 Greater Philadelphia Valley Forge Dental Society, Philadelphia PA
Mar 10 Pacific Dental Conference, Vancouver BC
Mar 21
Greater Woonsocket District Dental Society, Providence RI
April 7 UCSF Alumni, San Francisco CA
Apr 28 Keely Dental Society, Hamilton OH
Our most-requested presentation is called “How To Steal From A Dentist”.
To book us for your meeting or study club, click here or call us at 888-398-2327.
Our Newest Investigator
Prosperident is pleased to welcome Tony Ulbrandt to our cadre of talented investigators. Tony comes to us with a Master’s Degree in Forensic Accounting and a decade of experience. Welcome, Tony!
Probability of you being embezzled in your career –60%
Probability that you will regret deleting this newsletter if that happens –100%
Did you miss a previous newsletter? We archive them here.
Guest Post — Laura Hatch returns!
One of our most popular guest columnists is back. See what Laura Hatch has to say:

Speed vs. Quality: Three Reasons Why Being Productive is Not Your Only Concern

Dentists focus a lot on production. I hear these questions all the time: “How can I produce more in a certain period of time? How can I make my hygienists more productive?” Dentists are constantly asking, “What was our production today versus goal?” As owners or managers of a dental office, we are always looking for ways to become more efficient with the schedule, simply because more production typically equates to more collections.
It’s true that production (along with collections and new patients) needs to be monitored and achieved on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. It’s important to keep those numbers up.
OMG!
When you are in our line of work, it’s easy to believe that you have seen everything. But some recent goings on in the Tulsa OK dental office of Dr. Bert Franklin suggest otherwise. Murder, adultery, embezzlement, 20 complaints by patients, a state board suspension, and two staff members impersonating dentists — all in the same office. Definitely an interesting read — find out more here.
A Note From Our CEO
I had an interesting discussion the other day with a learned (and outspoken) friend. The topic was the possibility of being embezzled by a spouse. My friend lives in the “real world” and acknowledged the possibility, but also found the topic uncomfortable and probably self-fulfilling (in other words, not trusting your spouse makes embezzlement, and its frequent companion, divorce, more likely).
While I can’t fault my friend’s logic, I can recall a number of situations where spouses embezzled. Typically, these do not become public, but an example is here.
The way that humans address trust is interesting. To us, trust is binary — someone is either “trustworthy” or they are not. Also, we have a positive bias in that we want to trust people. And we also want to get the trust question out of the way early in our relationship with a person, never to be revisited.
So we assume that certain people are “above suspicion”. I can always surprise an audience of dentists when I show them examples of:
  • Dentists stealing from each other in group practices — see examples here and here
  • Spouses embezzling from dentists
  • Adult children embezzling from a parent’s office (see an example here)
Similarly, strong religious beliefs don’t mean someone will not embezzle. The story here shows a pillar of the Seventh Day Adventist community going to prison for embezzlement.
Are the majority of people dishonest? Of course not. But we need to resist our human tendency to believe that some personal characteristic makes people trustworthy.
Ultimately, almost anyone can find themselves in a situation where they view stealing your money as the solutions to their problems, and we need to be mindful that trust is a concept that needs to be re-evaluated over time.
Thanks for reading.
David Harris CPA, CMA, MBA, CFE, CFF
Chief Executive Officer
Prosperident — the world’s largest dental embezzlement investigation firm
Visit our website — www.dentalembezzlement.com