How Can Dentists Plan to Open a Successful Practice
It should be relatively obvious that successful healthcare practices, of any kind, don’t simply crop up overnight. Establishing a successful dental practice requires planning and preparation, as well as a great deal of hard work and a reputation for consistent quality in customer service.

Many dental professionals just entering the field attempt to open a new practice before they fully comprehend the various roles they must fill in order to cultivate a thriving business. Just as in any other business, there are a number of critical issues that must be addressed if you wish to put a solid foundation in place for lasting success.

Putting in the Work BEFORE The Doors Open

Any dentist that has started his or her own practice will tell you just how much work they did before they finally opened the doors for the first day of business. Your venture will be no different, but fortunately, there are many resources available to ease your learning curve and help you minimize mistakes early on.

Every young dentist that desires to start his or her own practice shouldn’t neglect the depth of resources currently available. It’s essential to utilize the expertise of individuals or existing businesses that can supply the knowledge, experience, and insight you’ll need when starting out.

A dentist that seeks to open a successful practice should begin by forming his or her own ‘Startup Squad’. This team will include a transitions coach that can help you manage change and an equipment specialist to make sure all vital technology functions properly, as well as a lender and finance company. It can also prove beneficial to enlist the advice of a local practitioner in the ongoing mentor role.

Assembling your personal ‘Startup Squad’ is just a first step. Having these people around is unnecessary if you don’t know how to truly make the most of their expertise. Any young dentist seeking to start a successful practice should take time to ask as many questions of their ‘Startup Squad’ as possible. Gaining access to a vast knowledge-base means nothing if you aren’t able to truly take advantage of that access.

C – R – E – P – T

One of the most important functions of your ‘Startup Squad’ will be to help you formulate a strategic business plan. Diving into the development of a comprehensive plan for your practice may sound like a daunting task, but there is an easy acronym to help you tackle the plan step-by-step.

‘CREPT’ encapsulates the five primary engines responsible for driving a successful dental practice. ‘C’ stands for ‘Capacity’ of the facility. This includes the number of treatment rooms your practice will offer, your desired hours of operation, and strategies for weathering the initial cancellations and no shows in order to foster a high level of patient retention.

‘R’ stand for ‘Revenue’, which includes the number of patients your practice will serve, as well as your ability to handle patient growth. ‘E’ represents ‘Expense Management’. This engine requires predicting overhead and break-even point. These two factors are important if you wish to maintain healthy cash flow in order to duly pay bills and debts.

‘P’ stands for ‘Patient Service’, which should be a top priority for any dentists starting a new practice. This engine includes determining the specific demographic you wish to serve, technology needed to remain current, and options for periodontal programs to be implemented before and after hiring a hygienist.

The final letter, ‘T’, stands for ‘Team’, or more specifically, your dental team. You must determine what type of individuals you’ll need to partner with to make your practice successful. You need to know the specific personalities you’ll require to reduce workplace stress and build a quality practice. You’ll also need to investigate several means of gaining access to quality candidates.

Driving Pillars for Continued Success

There are many considerations when attempting to get a successful dental practice off the ground. Understanding the roles that must be filled before your doors open, forming a resourceful ‘Startup Squad’, and considering every necessary element in a business plan will help you set the foundation for a dental practice that will serve your community, and you, for years to come.

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Posted by: DSR
Tuesday, December 1, 2015
Tag: Dental
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