When running a dentistry business within the industry, success relies primarily on two important aspects. These two aspects are crucial to success, yet many manage to completely lose sight of them in the daily business of running a dentist business.
The two aspects are the ability to properly manage both the clinical and the daily management aspects of the practice. Most dentists and practice owners make the mistake of only focusing on one of these aspects, completely ignoring the importance of the other aspect or simply minimising it.
Many dentists inherently understand the importance of improving their practical and technical skills. Several employ the use of additional training, either through personal development courses or a dental technology program. However, even though the dentist can now offer amazing surgery treatments, patients do not only respond to technical skills. In fact, many patients cannot differentiate between dentists with differing technical skills. If a dentist’s clinic management skills do not improve along with their technical skill training, the practice will not grow or flourish. Something that would be a shame for a dentist who has invested time and effort into further training programs and specialised knowledge.
The opposite mistake can also happen. The practice manager invests time and money improving the general clinic into growth. This can be through motivating patients for treatment, gaining new patients and presenting cases. However, while all these tactics are great business and management sense but they are not useful for improving clinical skills.
There needs to be a balance of both technical, clinical and practice management skills. Honing both skills will enable dentists and practice owners to provide exceptional treatment to patients while at the same time motivating and leading staff and patients to optimal dental health. Only by analysing your practice, its weaknesses and the needs of the patients, can any dental practice reach its maximum potential.
Both sections are completely reliant on each other, decisions made for one will have follow-on effects on the other aspect. So a decision to change a piece of technical equipment or train in a specific technique will have direct ramifications on the patients and the overhead control. In the same way, changes to practice management will directly affect the clinical treatment and practical aspects of treating patients.
Changing the technical aspects of the clinic can involve something as simple as the bringing in a faster and more exciting new piece of equipment. Something that many practice managers would hesitate at providing the initial outlay for without proven results. However, by gaining a piece of new technology, it can speed up the treatment process. With more immediate and reliable results, patients are more satisfied, and it frees up treatment sessions for new patients or cases, rather than needing several touch-up results. This then impacts the management, enabling a greater turnover and return on investment with a faster client turnover.
For the practice management aspect, one the biggest ways to improve in these areas is to train your staff in management and run a trained front desk properly. This mix of technical and practice management is the key to success for any dentistry office. When attempting to reach the maximum potential of your practice, it is only by synthesising these two aspects together rather than isolating them, that businesses can move past basic or substandard growth. The result is a happier, more stress-free and productive environment for the entire dental team, from front desk to patient.