By Dr. Greg Grillo
Every dental practice carries unique characteristics and writes its own story. But beyond the clinical space, business principles drive the sustainability and profitability of the brand. We can give the best routine dental care or implant treatment, but if we neglect our role as a manager and dental entrepreneur, we can struggle. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best business practices. Modeling other industries and adapting tried-and-true principles can help us retain patients and reinforce our teams. Over 75% OF EMPLOYEES believe a clear business strategy helps foster a positive culture, and everyone wants to leave fulfilled at the end of the day. Consider these 7 ways that the best names in business integrate into their operations and implementing them for your practice success:
1. Grow Your Practice By Tracking Everything
We can argue whether data or cash flow is king, but analytics rule in every sector. Good information drives sound decisions, and we’ve never had access to so much of it as we do now. Nearly 90% OF MARKETERS USE METRICS to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns, and we need to do the same. LEGWORK DIGITAL MARKETING produces real-time metrics that help practices analyze their internal health. Feedback on patient satisfaction, reviews, recare, unscheduled treatment combines to guide decisions that help make our dental practice successful.
2. Pivot With A Plan
Only 20% OF BUSINESSES MAKE IT BEYOND 15 YEARS . Many reasons pave the downward path, but many of them lack a sound business plan. When they change directions, it’s often based on feelings or limited data. Stop-gap measures are sometimes needed in business, but decisions should align with the long-term vision for the practice. Take time annually to create a detailed plan and include major purchases, CE, marketing, and staffing. Comprehensive solutions that fit your plan help prevent knee-jerk reactions and spontaneous purchases.
3. Adopt Dental Business Convenience
Business innovators have their eye on consumer trends, and they adapt to stay ahead of their competition. These days, we love and demand convenience. Uber Eats and Amazon Prime exemplify today’s consumer mindset. Dentistry involves many touchpoints for patients and just as many opportunities to adopt efficiency tools. LEGWORK ONLINE BOOKING and DENTAL PATIENT PORTALS serve many practices with multi-purpose benefits. Patients find the convenience they need, but practices enjoy efficiency, better cash flow, and a reputation for innovation by offering these types of tools. Make convenience part of your dental services, and the market rewards you.
4. Run A Successful Dental Practice By Rewarding Efforts
Everyone loves recognition, and it reinforces the behaviors we want to see repeated. Employees and patients deserve support, and both groups feed on each other. Nearly 70% OF CUSTOMERS say they leave a brand due to poor employee attitude, and our high-touch professions increase that risk. Find creative ways to reward your team members. For example, we started providing a catered lunch once a month before our staff meetings. Then, reinforce patient behaviors, too. Referrals are the least expensive way to acquire new patients. LEGWORK REFERRALS offers a powerful way to send thank you notes and gift cards to patients who send you their friends and family. And it gives us a systematic way to nudge our patients to suggest us to others.
5. Engage Staff
Organizations with STRONG EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT report 27% higher profits, 50% higher sales, and 50% higher customer loyalty than those with poor engagement. The stats may be different in our offices, but a strong team resonates with our patients. And in a tight labor market, engaged staff members are more likely to remain with us. Monthly staff meetings, morning huddles, and daily conversations help us connect on a human level. I’ve made a point over the years of asking individuals, “How’s everything going? What’s your daughter doing this spring?” These simple conversations show we care. But when we ask, “How can I help make your job easier and more fulfilling,” they know we mean it.
6. Focus Team Effort On Dental Business Ideas
We’re social creatures, and we possess an innate need to contribute to something bigger than ourselves. Develop a mission, talk about personal growth, and share stories about successes in your practice. When your team focuses on dental business ideas and shares experiences, a growth culture develops. Consider giving employees a consistent set of tools that help them stay on the same page. For example, LEGWORK COMFORT provides a pre-appointment survey that asks patients about their anxiety and needs during their appointment. This information unifies the entire team around delivering the best patient experience.
7. Hold Periodic Meetings
In a busy practice, regular staff meetings may get pushed to the backburner. But a recurring date on the schedule to gather as a team helps many of our efforts. There’s time to discuss successes, challenges, new systems, marketing strategies, and more. While there’s plenty of “meeting fatigue” amongst the general population, a small business that encourages collaboration can help keep a team focused and growing. Legwork offers many dental practice management tools that increase productivity, efficiency, and customer service. Consider discussing one new tool monthly or quarterly to integrate into your practice. Staff meetings offer a framework for discussions that keep everyone on the same page.
How To Run A Dental Office Business
At the end of the day, every business involves technical, managerial, and entrepreneurial elements to achieve success. When you start a dental practice, you’ll have mastered dentistry’s technical skills that require advanced professional and academic training. But the underlying business framework reflects many other industries, and we share many of the same principles. When we proactively combine these concepts with proven tools and committed teams, our reputation and practices grow!