If it weren’t for the fact that people actually NEED dental care, many dental practices would likely go out of business due to poor or inconsistent business practices. In the least, many practices greatly under perform as businesses due to this same problem. The age-old issue is that we dentists were not taught business practices … and what we do know we picked up “here and there”.
Here are some very important points for you to consider about your own practice so that you can not only avoid failure (mostly unlikely), but in the least, be more productive and profitable.
Here are some very important points for you to consider about your own practice so that you can not only avoid failure (mostly unlikely), but in the least, be more productive and profitable. These are items you definitely want to avoid!
- The company is not set up to be profitable.
Growth, creativity, owner-whims, excessive overhead, and an owner’s high lifestyle can all reduce profits Likewise, the owner sets revenue and profit goals based on “what’s reasonable” or the competition.
- The company is not being managed
To manage means to direct, control, support, challenge, create and always be “at cause”. Sometimes the owner delegates too much or lets the market manage the company.
- The company is not intimate with its clients
Polls and surveys are not nearly good enough If a partnership is lacking, the company is not learning about new products the customer wants.
- Owner has personal problems, is green, or trying to prove something Some owners have too much ego, are lacking “good judgment”, and haven’t yet learned their lessons.
- The company is less-than-polished
Quantity comes ahead of quality, the minimum amount of work is being done, and no commitment exists to excellence. Company operates “on the edge”; cash flow is poor, etc. Lots of chaos, commotion.
- Staff is not fully developed
Staff is left on their own to train themselves, yet expected to substantially increase profitability. Staff is resistant to mastering their functions and/or being cross-trained. The business plan is based on what the owner wants, needs or thinks the market is ready to consistently buy versus what they are ready to buy. The owners’ optimism greatly exceeds the customers’ actual needs. The owner needs the company to make a lot of money; inadequate reserve places excessive pressure on all parties and customers often stay away because of it.
- Money runs out
Cash is not controlled tightly. Too much cash is put into future projects versus maintaining a current cushion. Sales dip, which is normal, yet company has assumed consistent growth with no dips.
- The business owner’s lack of advanced management skills
Business owner is being run by ego versus profitability. Business owner attracts people who put up with him/her, yet aren’t producers. Business owner thinks he knows more than he or she does.
- The business owner’s unwillingness to be guided by the financial and other facts
Ego, creative drive or revenue versus profit-driven.
- The business owner is being run by survival or compulsions
The business is a way to prove something. The owner is under pressure and isn’t committed to excellence.
- The business owner is not applying him or herself
Treating the business like a hobby. Laziness. Inadequate structure to keep the energy, focus, drive, excitement.
What can you do? One of the most powerful and effective ways to make your practice the best it can be is to avoid these pitfalls. Be honest with yourself and your team. Even better (and much faster) – work with a coach who knows your business to help you have the practice and life you want.