How Much Should I Pay My Dental Team?

3 Ways to Train Your Dental Team to Collect Payments Well

How to Turn Around a Failing Dental Practice

How to Get More Patient Referrals to Your Dental Practice

How To EXPLODE Your Dental Practice Right Out of Dental School

How To Build a Successful Dental Practice

How-to-Build-a-Successful-Dental-Practice

How to Present a Treatment Plan the Right Way

How to Present a Treatment Plan the Right Way

4 Words to Avoid When Presenting Treatment Plans

Accepting treatment is a big decision for any patient, especially when high-value procedures are involved. It can cost a lot, and it can be scary for some patients when you tell them the best plan of action is to do something uncomfortable like get a tooth extracted.

No matter how scary the procedure is to patients, there’s a lot you can do to get patients to accept your treatment plan. For example, acting personable and caring and having the right systems in place can help. But one thing a lot of dentists overlook is word choice. In fact, you can immediately improve case acceptance by avoiding these four simple words.

“Maybe”

 

4 Words to Avoid When Presenting Treatment Plans

 

If something is “a maybe,” it’ll likely be a “no.” Maybe conveys a lack of confidence. It conveys a lack of urgency. So, if a patient asks whether they need to address an issue, answer confidently. And when you suggest something to a patient, be clear. Never say, “Maybe we should fix this issue.” Instead, say “We should fix this issue” or “Yes, fixing this issue will improve your health.”

Put yourself in their shoes. Imagine you’re at a dermatologist, and after examining your skin they tell you they’re worried about a mole and want to remove it. Most people would be less likely to pay for them to cut it off if they said, “Maybe we should remove this mole.” They’d be more likely to ask about alternative treatments or whether the mole can be tested before spending the money on removing a mole that turns out to be not problematic.

Most people would be more willing to accept treatment if the dermatologist says, “We need to remove this mole. It poses a threat to your health.” That decisiveness makes removing the mole an urgent matter that is putting the patient’s well-being in jeopardy.

“Cheap”

When you tell people something is cheap, there are usually two thoughts that will go through their head. The first is that if it’s cheap, then it’s low-cost. The second is that if it’s cheap, then it’s low-quality.

“Cheap” is a harsh word. Always be replaced with “affordable” or in terms of “value.” When someone tells you something is affordable or a good value, it comes across as being low-cost but without the negative connotation of it being low-quality. Thus, when talking with patients, talk about procedures being affordable or a good value instead of cheap.

“Cost”

 

4 Words to Avoid When Presenting Treatment Plans

 

Speaking of low-cost, avoid saying the word “cost” to a patient when discussing treatment. For example, if you tell a patient that getting an implant is going to cost them $5,000, they will immediately think of how much money they have in the bank. If they don’t have $5,000 in the bank (or a credit card with a high available credit that they’re willing to tap into), they are less likely to move forward. When discussing financial terms, focus on monthly payment plans instead of the total price and let them know you have several ways to help them fit their treatment needs into their budgets. Most patients think in those terms.

Instead of discussing “costs,” focus most of your discussions on the “value” of the procedure. That makes patients think about your treatment plan as an investment in achieving an outcome they desire. For example, you might say “The real value is having a fully-functioning smile again. You’ll be able to eat what you want. You won’t have to remove your dentures anymore. And you’ll be able to avoid large expenses that come from your teeth shifting or bone loss.”

Reminding patients of the value of your treatment plan and the outcomes they will receive, helps them better appreciate the benefits of moving forward with your plan.

“Problem”

While it might seem logical for people to try to “solve” problems, the reality is most people try to avoid them. Thus, when you describe something as a “problem” to a patient, many patients will instinctively push back or procrastinate. “Problems” feel big to patients. And big feels expensive to patients. Thus, of the patients who are of the mindset to find a solution—rather than to procrastinate—many will seek second opinions, giving another practice an opportunity to woo your patients.

Instead of the word “problem,” reframe your presentation using the word “issue.” It’s a gentler way of saying there’s a situation with their teeth that can be resolved through the treatment plan you’re presenting to them. Thus, instead of “the problem with your tooth is,” you might say, “there’s an issue with a tooth in the bottom right of your mouth that requires” and then present your treatment plan to the patient. Your patient is much less likely to push back when you present the issue rather than a problem.

Have you been using these four words when presenting your treatment plans to patients?

 

4 Words to Avoid When Presenting Treatment Plans

 

Consistent case acceptance can make or break your practice. Word choice might seem like a nuance that doesn’t amount to much but patients are much more likely to move forward with treatment plans when you avoid these four words.

If you want more strategies to help you increase case acceptance, plus coaching for you and your team, and more, join our Delivering WOW Platinum Coaching Program today.

 

6 Bad Excuses for Not Delegating Tasks to Team Members

We all know dentists work harder than many other people, running a business, leading a team, and serving patients. Unless we delegate effectively to team members, we will live lives full of stress and burnout. Yet way too many dentists still do way too much themselves.

It’s natural to roll up our sleeves and push through a busy season or two, but if those busy seasons turn into months or even years, it’s not sustainable. We need to delegate more.

Many dentists struggle to delegate, though. Some of them just need some help identifying tasks to delegate and training their team to perform. Others resist, making up excuse after excuse for why they can’t or won’t delegate. Here are six common—but bad—excuses dentists use to avoid delegating.

1. “I’m better at the task than anyone I’d delegate it to.”

 

6 Bad Excuses for Not Delegating Tasks to Team Members

 

If you’re using this excuse, you need to focus on building a better team, training an existing team, or implementing systems and processes.

You may have more experience than your team members, but that doesn’t mean you need to do everything just because you’re better at doing those things than your team members are. For many of those tasks, you will be wasting valuable chairside time to non-revenue-generating work. That can cost you a lot of money. If you’re better at the task, have someone shadow you while you do it a few times, documenting how you do it and asking clarifying questions. Over time, let them take over while you supervise during the time you would normally do the task. Soon enough, you’ll be ready to hand off the task without adding additional burdens to your schedule.

2. “It’ll take less time if I do it instead.”

If you do something that takes 12 minutes a day, you can save an hour every week by training someone to do it.

Even if it takes you four hours to train someone to take over the task over the course of several weeks, you will save that amount of time in just four weeks once they take over. It might take less time to do a task one time, but delegating is a long-term investment.

3. “I don’t trust someone else to get the job done right.”

 

6 Bad Excuses for Not Delegating Tasks to Team Members

 

The problem with this logic is that you shouldn’t have anyone on your team if they can’t be trusted to get a job done right that’s under their responsibility with proper training and systems. We must be able to trust everyone on our team to the point that we can train them, give them systems or processes, and confidently delegate appropriate tasks to them.

For example, if you can’t run the morning huddle one day—which you need to do to get your team to do their best work every day—you should be able to trust delegating that task to another leader on your team. If not, a key activity that promotes productivity will be completely dependent on you. That’s very risky.

4. “I need to be indispensable.”

Some doctors—and even team members—resist delegating because they want to be indispensable. This is a very bad idea. In addition to coming off to team members as arrogant, if you’re the only one who can perform a task, you’ll never be able to pull away from the practice. You’ll be a bottleneck. And if you’re sick or unavailable, productivity across the entire practice will suffer.

5. “I like doing the task, so I should be the one to do it.”

 

6 Bad Excuses for Not Delegating Tasks to Team Members

 

You might enjoy doing administrative work but that doesn’t mean it’s a good use of your time.

You didn’t go to dental school to do administrative work. Let someone whose job it is to do that work do it instead. They can likely do a better job than you, too, because they do those tasks all day.

It’s not a good use of your time to take you away from revenue generation or family time to do administrative work. Delegate tasks you shouldn’t be doing to people who should be doing them.

6. “My team is already busy enough.”

This excuse marks a bigger issue. If they’re already busy, you either need more team members or better systems and processes. Otherwise, your team will end up overworked and overwhelmed. It will only be a matter of time before they leave—especially the top performers who can more easily find other jobs.

Are you making excuses for not delegating?

You’ll never be able to grow your dream practice without being able to delegate confidently. So, if you find yourself making these excuses (or others), challenge yourself to look at the deeper issue and find a way to delegate more.

If you want help, join the Delivering WOW Platinum Coaching Program today, where you can access top training and get coaching for yourself and your team members from our roster of experts in all facets of running a practice.

Why You Need More Than Information to Get Results

At Delivering WOW, we pride ourselves in creating the best, most comprehensive training on everything you need to do to run and grow an amazing dental practice. And we’ve helped thousands of dentists improve their practices in the process.

One lesson we learned along the way is no matter how good the information is, it takes more than information to get results. Specifically, before launching the Delivering WOW Platinum Mastermind Program, we hosted a database of courses called Dental Profit Academy. Those courses showed practices exactly how to run and grow a practice. And many students achieved great success.

But, on average, their success was not as high as what members of my Inner Circle Mastermind were achieving. The information was the same. But my Inner Circle Mastermind members also received coaching and other benefits beyond the information.

Even though our clients were doing well in both programs, some of our Inner Circle members were growing at 20%, 30%, or 40% month over month. We just didn't see as much success in Dental Profit Academy.

While we knew information alone doesn’t change things, seeing the contrast between my Inner Circle Mastermind and Dental Profit Academy put additional perspective (and caused us to create the Delivering WOW Platinum Mastermind to replace Dental Profit Academy). 

Here were our key takeaways about what you need to really get results.

We need coaching to push us and point us in the right direction.

 

Why You Need More Than Information to Get Results

 

Running a practice takes a lot of work. There's scarce room in our days to synthesize information into a plan that will work for our practices. We have too much to do, especially when we just get started. One of the key differences between my Inner Circle and Dental Profit Academy was that my Inner Circle members were getting coaching. 

I believe every dentist needs a coach to help us get different perspectives about our practices and help us apply information to our unique circumstances. There’s an old saying in business that it’s hard to see the label from the inside of the can. In other words, it’s helpful having an outside perspective on our practices. Coaching helps us make better decisions. It helps us decide what direction we want to go and what steps we need to take to get there. It helps us see what activities are worth our time and what are distractions.

Information is important, for sure. But combining coaching with the content helps you get a more personalized and synthesized experience. They can also push you forward to make tough decisions. 

When I decided I wanted to build a different practice, one of the first things I did was hire a coach. It was without a doubt the best business decision I could have made.

We need accountability to keep us going.

 

Why You Need More Than Information to Get Results

 

While good coaching points you in the right direction and helps you make decisions and redirect as needed, continuous action is what you need to do to actually achieve your goals. That’s where accountability comes in. There’s a lot of power in accountability.

We get accountability in a number of ways. Friends, family, and colleagues can help you stay accountable. A coach can as well. 

As a leader of a dental practice, not only do you need to stay accountable, your team members do as well. Typically, that falls on us to do, and with so much on our plates, it’s hard to add holding each team member accountable on our plates. We must work accountability into our practice at all levels. For that reason, when we created Delivering WOW Platinum, we created a community and group coaching model that is available to team members, too.

Are you getting the results you want from your practice?

 

Why You Need More Than Information to Get Results

 

Information is important, but without coaching and accountability, you won't get results. That’s why we built both coaching and accountability into the Delivering WOW Platinum Mastermind. Combined with the best and latest information about all the things you need to do to grow your practice, coaching and accountability are the keys to unlocking your practice’s true potential.

If you're interested in getting access to the best dental training plus coaching and accountability from our hand-picked group of experts, join the Platinum Mastermind Coaching Program today!

Why Every Practice Leader Should Delegate More

Building a dental practice is challenging. We must deliver top-quality care to patients while simultaneously running a regulated business.

For those reasons and others, many dentists find themselves stressed and overworked. Eventually, something goes wrong. The natural reaction during times of stress is to roll up our sleeves and work harder. The mindset is that training people takes too long and delegating to untrained team members is too risky.

The truth is, practice leaders can’t and shouldn’t do everything in their practice. That’s why you have a team. If you don’t have the time to train your team or confidence to delegate to them, the solution is not to do more work yourself. The solution is to either find the time to train them or get help training them. Here are five reasons every practice leader should delegate more.

Delegating tasks frees up your schedule.

 

Why Every Practice Leader Should Delegate More

 

What would you do with an extra hour in the day? What about an extra two or three hours? Delegating helps you literally create more time in the day to do whatever you want to do.

What if you didn’t work fewer hours but your time became more flexibility to attend events for your kids, go out to lunch with your spouse, or exercise?

Unless you delegate, you will never be in a position to cut back on hours or shift your time around the life you want to build for yourself or your family.

Delegating helps you focus on what you do best.

Many dentists not only dislike admin work, but they’re also not very good at it. Other people excel at admin work. Thus, delegating tasks to someone who can do it better allows you to turn your attention to your highest-value activity, caring for patients.

Delegating helps you train other people.

 

Two Personal Brand Secrets and Why Reputation Precedes Revenue

 

One of the most common excuses for not delegating is that it’s quicker to do a task yourself than to train someone else to do it, review their work, and provide feedback. While that is often true for one-off tasks, it is very shortsighted for tasks performed regularly at your practice. With those tasks, delegating allows you to invest a little additional time upfront to save a lot of time down the road once your team member is able to complete the task with limited supervision.

Delegating helps build team members into leaders.

Team members will never become leaders if we don’t give them additional responsibilities and build a culture of delegation. When we give team members higher-level work and delegate important tasks to them, they learn more than only new skills. The example we set when we train them and delegate tasks shows them important leadership traits. And if we build a culture of strategic delegation, they will gain experience training and supervising others.

Delegating helps team members learn to collaborate.

 

Why Every Practice Leader Should Delegate More

 

Establishing a culture of delegation at your practice allows all the benefits of delegation to flow throughout your practice. It gives team members an opportunity to work together to complete tasks delegated to them. Your team members become resources to each other. They learn to support each other. They learn to find each other’s strengths and utilize each other’s strengths to complete tasks faster and better.

Do you need to delegate more in your practice?

Many practice leaders struggle unnecessarily because they feel they need to do everything themselves if it’s going to get done right. While that may be true in the short-term, over the long-term, it’s a recipe for disaster. You will become more stressed and overworked. And you will eventually burn out.

If you regularly feel stressed, overworked, or burned out, chances are you could benefit from delegating more in your practice. If you want help building a culture of delegation, join the Delivering WOW Platinum Coaching Program today. By doing so, you and your team will get access to top training and coaching from experts in all facets of running a practice. This gives you the systems, processes, and support you need to make delegating easier.

3 Reasons to Share Practice Numbers with Key Team Members

Sharing practice numbers with team members is a touchy subject for some practice owners. But it’s an important subject to consider because it can have a big impact on practice performance.

I recently reached out to the members of the Delivering WOW Dental Hangout Facebook group to get their take on the issue. My questions to them were simple: Should the practice numbers be shared with the office manager or team leader. And I asked them to defend their answer: If so, why? If not, why not?

Members were overwhelmingly in favor of sharing. In defending their answers these three themes formed.

Sharing numbers gives your team more context to their work.

 

3 Reasons to Share Practice Numbers with Key Team Members

 

Sharing your numbers is similar to sharing your practice vision with your team in that it helps you put context into key areas of team member performance.

For example, as I shared in my book (which you can get for free here) in 2011 I walked into my practice and told my small team I had a big vision. I wanted to grow while making a greater impact on people’s lives than we had been making. And I wanted to be different. I wanted to create an extraordinary customer experience for my patients. I wanted more! Had I tasked my team to help me achieve that vision without more context, they would have no idea what to do next.

The same is true with sharing numbers with key team members. With so many tasks that need to be performed in our practice, important things can seem like “busy work” without putting them into context. By sharing numbers with key team members, we let them know how seemingly disconnected tasks work together.

Additionally, sharing numbers shows team members where revenue goes. It shows them costs they don’t realize you encounter and trends in practice spending. They can see when things like supply costs, lease payments, or real estate taxes rise. When team members see the costs of running a practice, they often get even more aware the areas where they can help, such as reducing waste, negotiating supply costs, and more.

Sharing your numbers with your office manager or team leader builds trust.

 

3 Reasons to Share Practice Numbers with Key Team Members

 

Although some people hesitate to share numbers because they fear it could cause a rift between team members and practice ownership, many people found otherwise.

One member commented that sharing the numbers ensures the “boat will be going in the right direction.” She said it fosters an environment of “trust” and “honesty,” in her practice, which she described as “two vital things for a lasting (and rewarding) relationship.” She continued, “It’s been a huge part of our success, if everyone knows where we are, where we’ve been, and where we are going… those who are the right fit will be ready to help row!”

Another member said, “It breeds trust, it breeds culture and the numbers are the way to measure success!”

Because the Facebook group is closed, I have kept these responses anonymous. But trust was a common theme from the members.

Sharing numbers helps you incentivize and reward based on practice health.

 

3 Reasons to Share Practice Numbers with Key Team Members

 

Another common theme with the members was something else I talked about in my book, rewarding based on practice health. In my book, I mentioned that my team understands that as our business becomes more profitable, they can earn more money because I share the increasing profits with them. They know that can enable them to do things in their lives to achieve their personal dreams. Having conversations connecting practice success with their personal success helps connect their personal goals to my practice vision.

One member put it this way:

When you share the performance results with those who are performing, performance begins to improve every time. It’s a form of transferring ownership. Every day we come into the practice we surround ourselves with brilliant people. Letting them see the successes and opportunities for improvement will allow their creative juices to flow and help capture those opportunities. Use data as a way to empower and motivate. Celebrate successes daily and identify one to two opportunities daily as you review together and incredible things will happen

Another added:

Your numbers should be shared with your entire team on a monthly basis. A goal and bonus system should be in place in every dental practice. If you invest in your team they will invest in you and your patients.

Sharing numbers, setting goals based on those numbers, and assigning a bonus system that allows you to share in the upside helps get the entire team working together.

Do you share practice numbers with team members?

Do you share your practice numbers with team members? If so, which team members? All team members? Just your office manager or team leader?

What about your numbers? Do you share all of them? Just high-level profit/loss numbers plus key performance indicators?

If you want help growing into your practice, join the Delivering WOW Platinum Coaching Program where you can access top training and coaching from experts in all facets of running a practice.