Principles of Practice Leadership: Bring out your inner “coach.” Understand that the relationship between a leader and a follower works best when it’s like that of a teacher and a student. Rather than just giving orders, give guidance. Focus on bringing out your team members’ better qualities and helping them develop new skills.
Advice for the Endodontist – Set clear expectations. To perform well, team members need to know what they are supposed to accomplish. Providing staff accurate job descriptions helps them fully understand what they’ll be held accountable for. If specific tasks need to be completed on a certain day, the dentist should convey that information to staff members during the morning meeting.
Use a written agenda for morning meetings. Simply being prepared for what’s ahead on a given day will greatly reduce stress in your practice. During morning meetings, the endodontist and the team should review what will be happening throughout the day, including challenging cases and time crunches that are likely to occur.
Involve more than one endo staff member in handling practice finances. This minimizes the possibility of someone falsifying accounts for personal gain. Never let the person who collects money also make bank deposits. In addition, use an accounting firm to conduct unscheduled audits. Checks and balances―with in-house and outside oversight―can help prevent any financial impropriety.
Answer calls by the third ring. Whenever the phone rings, it may be a prospective new patient. Regardless of how busy the practice may be, pick up the call quickly and be prepared… with scripting… to make an excellent first impression, build value, and get the relationship off to a great start.
Measure success. Without data, an endo practice cannot be well managed. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) provide an accurate assessment of the practice’s crucial functions, including production, overhead percentage and case acceptance, to name a few. Use your practice management software to easily generate your office’s KPIs.
Monitor levels of supplies regularly. No practice wants to run out of essential patient care supplies, such as latex gloves or gauze pads. On the other hand, having a two years’ supply of hand soap isn’t an efficient use of resources either. Knowing the amount of supplies the practice uses in an average month should serve as a guide when placing orders.
Do your part to make delegation work. Everyone on the practice team needs to understand the value of delegation and help make it work. The objective is to give responsibility for virtually all administrative duties to staff members. This enables the dentist to focus on doctor-only activities… increasing practice productivity.
Advice for the Marketing Coordinator – Diversify. Don’t rely on just a few strategies throughout the year. A greater variety of strategies—implemented consistently throughout the year—will appeal to a wider audience of referring doctors, generating more referrals and, ultimately, bringing in more new patients.
Take advantage of in-office and offsite training opportunities. Whether it’s a lunch-and-learn, a dental conference, tradeshow or seminar, make the most of training opportunities when they occur. Anything you can do to develop your skills or learn new ones should be seriously considered.
Tuesday Training: Watch Dr. Levin’s video “Interpersonal Communication – Get Along with Everyone” by clicking here.