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Managing disruptive staff is a tough job, and an office manager needs to do it

Editor's note: This is the first article of a two-part series about disruptive staff.Next month, we'll talk about how to correct and discipline disruptive behavior. Does the following dialogue ring a bell with you? "That's not how I've been billing for the past 15 years," says Belinda Biller. "Well, Belinda, as you know, we changed the procedure four months ago, and you were trained on it. You're not following the new process, and the other staff can't figure out your method. You need to do it this way," says Olivia Office Manager. "No, I don't. Dr. Noargument told me I could keep doing it my way if it works for me. After all, I've been here 15 years, and you've only been here one year. I think I know more than you do about this," Belinda says, as she storms down the hallway to Dr. Noargument's office. Not unlike children who play one parent off another, employees are all too often disruptive because they know they can be-they've asked for and been allowed numerous exceptions. However, as the office manager, you need to rein in all of your staff.

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