Why Your Practice Isn’t Living Up to Its Potential – And a Sensible, 4-Step Process to Fix It
Why do some dental practices seem to succeed almost effortlessly – while others seem to struggle month after month, year after year, just to break even?
Why do some practices seem to attract cheerful, hard-working, proactive staff who love their jobs – while others deal with poor performance, low morale, and high turnover?
And why are some practices able to generate seemingly endless referrals, build a sterling reputation, and experience themselves as a vital part of their communities – while others seem to just languish there in the weeds of mediocrity?
Believe it or not, the answers to those questions aren’t all that complicated. The answers aren’t based on anybody’s innate talent, ability, or skill. The answers aren’t based on the location of the office, the town you live and practice in, or the demographics of your neighborhood. The answers are, in fact, quite simple:
Invest in learning what it takes to succeed, and then take action to implement what you learn.
It’s no secret that it takes a whole lot of work to effectively manage a dental practice – often more work than most other traditional businesses. Not only are you managing a team, a budget, and a profit center, you’re probably treating patients at the same time.
There are definite advantages to studying what works by examining the systems, procedures, and procedures of successful dental practices all over the world, and implementing the most effective systems and procedures in your own practice.
Practices typically falter either because they fail to take action on what they learn – they know what to do but they don’t do it — or they try to implement all of the learning at once, get overwhelmed, and quit in frustration when it doesn’t get better overnight.
Successful practices start by looking objectively at what works in their practice and what doesn’t work, then setting measurable goals for improvement, and take the kind of small, measurable actions that help them create big results.
Do what works, and change what doesn’t work – one step at a time.
Have you ever done a complete, objective assessment to see what in your practice is working well, and what could work better? To conduct that objective assessment means you’ll need to find a way to count and measure, well, everything.
- How many rings before your front desk picks up the telephone?
- How many minutes do patients wait in reception past their scheduled time?
- What’s your case acceptance rate?
- What percent of your revenue is in collection?
- How many new patients/referrals do you get in the average week/month/year?
- What’s your staff turnover? What’s your patient turnover?
- What’s your bottom line?
We’ve never met a dentist or practice leader who couldn’t improve their practice and make it more fulfilling and profitable. All it takes is to start by looking objectively and telling the truth about what you need to improve, and then working systematically to make the necessary changes.
Create big results by approaching change in small, measured steps.
There’s an old saying about how to go about eating an elephant: you have to do it one bite at a time. Or ask any marathon runner what it’s like to run 26.2 miles – they run it one step at a time.
Let’s dream up a big goal, for purposes of illustration. Let’s say you want to double your profit in the next year. That would be huge.
Is it going to happen this week? Next week? Next month? Probably not. At least not without examining all of the “moving parts” of your practice that contribute to its profitability. Some of those moving parts include referrals,
What if, instead of focusing on the huge challenge of doubling your profit within a year, you decided to work on improving this week’s profit by 5%? Adopting a short-term goal almost forces a more strategic approach to your everyday tasks. For example, if you wanted to improve this week’s profit by 5%, what might you do?
It’s one thing to make changes in your own behavior, as a practice leader. It’s another thing entirely when you need to get your team members to willingly adapt to sweeping changes in the way they do their jobs.
If you engaged your team in that conversation about what you might do to improve this week’s profit by 5%, you’re now enrolling them in the solution. When they’re enrolled in the solution, they have more of a stake in your success. And you’re not asking them to make huge, sweeping changes all at once.
You won’t double your profit in one day. But you can improve productivity this week. And next week. And over the course of the year, those little improvements add up to big results.
Embrace and work with practice management systems and strategies that are proven to work.
If you know your practice needs improvement, but you’re not sure where or how to start, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Proven strategies and systems exist that are used by successful practices all over the world.
And we’re here to help you learn and work with them.
For more than 25 years, we at P&S Coaching have helped practices all over the country increase their revenue, create systems that deliver proven results, and assist Doctors and their teams to create a Thriving Culture that attracts qualified, dedicated, inspired teams who are thrilled to come to work each day.
Our clients see revenue increases of up to 40% within their first year of working with us. But the real transformation happens over time, as we help you and your team develop the sustainable systems that will grow your bottom line while you consistently deliver a world-class patient experience.
The Secret To Our Success is simple, we know how to get to the root causes of what’s holding you and your practice back.
And we’d love to show you how we can help.
Contact us today to schedule a complimentary Peak Performance Assessment and 30-minute strategic solutions call to give you a snapshot of how well your practice is performing right now, and show you areas for improvement that will help you bridge the gaps and achieve your true potential.