Know the practice’s milestones. As a team member, you should be aware of the practice’s most important accomplishments … reaching a record level of production… implementing an innovative new customer service program… winning a community award, etc. You’ll be able to take pride in your role in these achievements.
Don’t let negative people get you down. If others in the office project negative feelings, try to coax them away from that negativity. It may be an uphill battle, but it’s worth the effort. Be an example of positive energy and, hopefully, others will follow suit.
Replace ortho management systems every 3–5 years. All practices change over time, and their systems should change, too. Rather than tweaking them—which will eventually lead to more bottlenecks—redesign outdated systems completely to match the current needs of the ractice, team and patients.
Set your sights on growing production 15+% per year. Even in the new dental economy, your practice can grow 15% or more per year—without increasing fixed expenses. By asking parents and patients for referrals, keeping active patients scheduled, presenting and closing more comprehensive cases, trimming overhead, delegating non-clinical tasks, and adopting a more efficient scheduling system, you can grow your practice.
In meetings, focus on ways to meet challenges. A well-run staff meeting can have a highly positive impact on office morale. Rather than complaining about problems, brainstorm to find solutions. This will not only improve performance but also help everyone approach the day with an upbeat attitude.
Advice for the Treatment Coordinator (TC) – Make it easy for prospective patients. Typically, the orthodontist performs an examination and utilizes radiographs to determine the treatment plan. The treatment coordinator supports the recommendations with value-building scripts. Emphasizing the benefits of treatment is critical for motivating parents and adult patients to accept recommended treatment.
Publish content that is shareable. Use social media to inform and entertain patients, not just as an excuse to talk about your practice. While a Tweet or a Facebook post can discuss important practice announcements, you should also share stories about oral health, nutrition and other subjects that patients may find interesting.
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Advice for the Orthodontist – Set high expectations. Good leaders challenge their team members to reach their potential. Most people will excel when given challenges in small doses. Effective leaders know that such a strategy eliminates boredom and reduces turnover while motivating the team to perform at the highest levels.
Bring in more new patients. Set a goal to schedule 99% of all new patients within seven days. This can only be achieved if the appropriate scripting has been put in place. The right verbal skills ensure that prospective parents and patients are motivated to not only make an appointment but also show up for it.
Take inventory every six months. As part of your program to control overhead, pay attention to the supplies you have on hand. Many practices end up with supply closets full of materials they don’t really need… or run out of essentials because they had no idea of their inventory. Avoid overages, shortages and waste by counting inventory semi-annually.