The independent dentist as an entrepreneur faces many of the same challenges as other businesses – marketing, finance, human resources, facilities, etc. – but has the added complication of being a healthcare provider, and usually operating as both owner and practitioner. And unfortunately, business education in dental school only covers the basics. One key to success in any business is to leverage outside experts where it makes sense to do so – in our case, that expert is in dental coaching.
Nearly every pursuit, from business to basketball, can benefit from an expert’s point of view. Indeed, chances are good that you are friendly, honest, and an excellent clinician, but if the degree of success of your practice is not meeting your expectations, you have room for improvement. Often, all it takes to achieve the practice of your dreams is a dental business coach to analyze systems, guide you in implementing needed improvements, and making dental online training available for you and your team.
Three Fundamentals of Dental Coaching
Here are three tips to help you decide if a dental coach is right for you.
- Are you open to change?
I can usually tell within a few moments of conversation if a potential client is a good fit for All-Star Dental Academy’s online dental training and coaching programs.
The one factor that determines the degree of success a dentist has with a coach is their approach to growth. A “growth” mindset (or attitude if you prefer) is one where change is part of a natural cycle. A “fixed” mindset fears change and refuses to acknowledge the ability of an individual or group to improve skills.
Carol Dweck authored Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, where she explores the power of our beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, and how change can have a profound impact on nearly every aspect of our lives.
A “fixed mindset” assumes that character, intelligence, and creative ability are static – unchanging even in the face of opportunity. A “growth mindset,” in contrast, thrives on change and sees failure as an opportunity to grow.
Alignment with one of these two mindsets determines much of our personality – how we relate to the world – and are strong indicators of the chances that an opportunity for growth results in positive change.
A dental coach trying to work with a client with a fixed mindset dentist is usually a losing proposition. People with fixed mindsets say, “It’s not my fault!” Growth mindsets, on the other hand, say, “What can I do to fix this?” No dental coach can help if you are not willing to change in ways that lead to success. And most of the time, that change begins with your openness.
- Your Clinical Skills Are Important, but NOT the Final Word
All-Star Dental Academy is a big proponent of honing clinical skills – my father is a Fellow of the AGD – but you must understand that clinical skills are not enough on their own to promise success.
Treating patients is the culmination of lots of non-clinical work. Patients have no way of judging the quality of your skills before they decide to put their health in your hands. Instead, they use all the things surrounding your practice (marketing messages, website, the expertise of the receptionist/new patient coordinator, the state of the office, and more) to inform expectations for their visit to your office. And it is in these areas of a practice that a dental coach, combined with online dental training for the team, can help your practice take off.
- Ingredients for Success
The key to dental practice success lies in a combination of efficiency and skill. Efficient scheduling and treatment help you get the most production out of every minute of the workday and every square foot of the practice. Team skills help you get the most out of every new patient opportunity. Team skills also help patients to show up their appointments, improves collections, and promote referrals. Finally, top-notch clinical skills will ensure that your patient has an incredible patient experience. And a dental coach can help you fine-tune systems and team skills.
Dental coaching and online dental training programs offer powerful, convenient, and high-value guidance to dentists with the goal of helping them achieve their potential.