A Mind for Business and a Heart for the Homeless:
Sajida Ahmed is Making a Difference
While doctors take care of the many seriously ill patients that come through their private practices due to the Coronavirus, who is taking care of the doctors?
Sajida Ahmed understands that doctors are overwhelmed and beginning to quit private practice in large numbers, siting both physical and mental fatigue. Many in private practice can’t keep up with their workload and the paperwork that accompanies it: Insurance, patient medical records, billing, HIPAA requirements.
But Sajida Ahmed is the “Finance Doctor,” there to help overworked and exhausted doctors to keep doing what they do best: heal sick patients.
Her specialty is medical billing and AR, and she has been able to recover thousands of dollars from AR (Accounts receivables) for cardiologists which they may have had to write off.
Strong and Self Reliant
Born in Kuwait, Sajida went to a boarding school at the age of seven to Murree, a city in a different country from where her parents lived. She says, “I learned self-reliance at a very early age.”
She completed high school at the age of fourteen in Kuwait. “I was a nerd as a kid, not involved in sports, was always at the top of my class. My parents thought since I was so smart, I should skip a few grades, so I skipped grade 2 and then skipped grade 7, that’s how I was the youngest person in my graduating class.”
Sajida went to college in Rawalpindi, Pakistan and received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics & statistics. She finished at the top of her class and received a silver medal for being at the top in a college of three thousand students. While in college she played volleyball and acted on stage in a few plays.
After college she went to Quaid-i-Azam University in Islamabad, Pakistan and got a master’s in Computer Science. She remembers, “At the time computer science was a very new field and there were very few girls. I was the only girl in my class and one of three girls in the entire department of Computer Science.”
She loved to hike and walk for hours around campus and the city. She completed her degree in June, got married in July and five days later moved to the USA to go to school at Iowa State University. There she earned a master’s degree in Computer Science from Iowa State University while working 20 hours a week as a teaching assistant.
She’s worked in three countries and six states. “My first job was in Iowa, then we moved to New Jersey, after that I worked in Rockford, Illinois, then Madison Wisconsin.”
She says, “The first time I became a manager, I found it fascinating that here I was a brown woman managing 10 white men.” She and her husband moved to Texas and worked for Textron the parent company of Bell Helicopter and Cessna Airplanes and worked for Raytheon in McKinney. The couple moved to California where Sajida worked for eBay and PayPal in the Bay Area in California before they decided to move back to Texas.
Helping Doctors Avoid Burn out
Having worked in corporate America in the tech industry for 25 years, Sajida’s last job was as a consultant for eBay and PayPal, where she was managing 1200 people in four continents and working 18 hours a day. She decided to quit and work for herself.
Seeing her sister, a physician, at the brink of burnout, she made it her mission to help doctors in private practice achieve a work/life balance while managing a very profitable practice.
The pandemic has made her work crucial to the many doctors she works with.
Three years ago, she started her business, S2N2 Medical Business Solutions. Her passion is to help private medical practices thrive. She says proudly, “I have very good relationships with my client doctors.” Her goal is simple: to inspire people to do their best and help medical practices be more efficient and profitable.
Sajida is the Finance Doctor. She explains: “I specialize in the financial health of my doctors and improving practice workflow efficiency; from front desk operations to coding recommendations, to billing, to patient statements and collections.” Her business management expertise helps to maximize revenue for private medical practices allowing doctors to do what they do best: heal others.
The name of her business comes from her family’s favorite movie series. “We as a family are huge fans of ‘Star Wars,’ so the name is inspired from R2D2 in Star Wars. Both my husband, Sohail, and I have names that start with “S,” and both our children’s names start with “N,” so the business is S2N2 Medical Business Solutions.”
Sajida says, “I love helping people. Having my own business gives me the flexibility to work on my own time.” Even so, her hours tend to be long: most days she’s at work by 8 a.m. and sometimes doesn’t finish until 8 p.m.
Helping the Homeless
She credits her father with her strong work ethic and passion for helping those in need. “I inherited the passion of helping people in need from my father.” Sajida explains, “I find joy in serving the homeless, especially kids. The joy of seeing a smile on a child's face when we give them a new toy is priceless.” She has committed to donating 10% of her business income to charity every year and has co-founded a non-profit organization to make this happen.
Sajida has been helping the community by giving out grocery boxes to the elderly during COVID, donating to the Children's Advocacy Center, giving toys to children in underserved communities, donating to Texas Food Banks, supplying a Thanksgiving meal to families staying at the Ronald McDonald house and giving clothes to the homeless.
She is also on the board of a non-profit that builds schools in remote areas where there is no internet, no schools and sometimes no electricity.
Once a year she is an integral part of the “Day of Dignity” at the Martin Luther King Center in Dallas. “We bring people from six homeless shelters to the MLK Center to give them clothes, undershirts, socks, hygiene kits etc.”
She has been giving 10% of her business income to charity and is very heavily involved in philanthropic work. Sajida does one project a month with the homeless or food bank or Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Her project for December 2021 was providing a holiday meal to Promise House, a homeless shelter for teens and children in Dallas, feeding twenty-five kids and ten staff members. She also gave out $35 gift cards to each of the seven teen moms at the shelter and toys to the teen moms’ babies.
A hard working, determined to “Do Good” woman, she says she would love to meet Oprah Winfrey one day – another woman who is known for building schools and fulfilling dreams.
Married to her childhood sweetheart, Sohail Ahmed, Sajida says, “We met when I was 15, and we have been together since.” He is an architect and has his own architectural company in Fort Worth. The couple have a son who lives in Wisconsin with his wife and daughter and a daughter who lives in California.
Blessed with two healthy grown children and, “The love of my life, my adorable granddaughter, Nora,” Sajida is generous with others whenever she can help.
She loves to travel and that’s a good thing, since she’s never lived in a state or country for more than eight years. She’s moved seventeen times since being married and since moving to America, has lived in New Jersey, California, Iowa, Illinois and Texas. Her personal goal is to see all the “Wonders of the World.” So far, she’s seen the pyramids of Egypt, Niagara Falls, Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy, and The Coliseum in Rome.
She also loves challenges. She remembers, “In the third year of college, I decided I wanted to major in mathematics, I studied the entire course work of two years during the summer holidays. My professor thought I was nuts and would never be able to graduate in four years, but I not only proved her wrong, but I was also at the top of my class.”
Life has been difficult at times. “Going to graduate school full time, with a
2-month-old baby, while working 20 hours a week and completing my dissertation, all the while applying for a full-time job - it was the toughest time of my life.” But – she survived – and now thrives. “That experience taught me that there are 24 hours in a day, and I have to make the best use of each hour.”
She knows she is driven. “I am a very hard worker; I have two businesses and I work seven days a week.” But she finds time to do philanthropic work and still have fun. “I like to go out, watch movies, attend parties and I love to travel. I still have time left over, so I think to myself, why am I wasting time? What else should I do?”
Need to help a doctor? Or a bit of inspiration? Contact Sajida Ahmed, CEO
Judy Porter, MBA writes about local heroes in the DFW Metroplex.