Getting the timing right is critical to the successful execution of any business transition; and adding an associate dentist to the staff is not the time to wing it. Here is a list of 15 essential benchmarks to meet before bringing on a new dentist.
Transitioning to the multi-doctor arena will reveal the systems, staff members, and protocols that are no longer sufficient for continued growth.
Like most things, success is in the details. Most practice owners want to grow their practice to the point of needing a new doctor. Getting the timing right is critical to the successful execution of any business transition; and adding an associate is not the time to wing it. There are solid reasons, benchmarks, and systems to make any transition work.
The new dental economy of the modern day is a great time to make the transition to a multi-doctor practice. We are seeing solo dental practices decrease in numbers by 7% per year, while multi-doctor offices are increasing by 20% a year. The evolution of managed care, the competition of corporate offices and a more educated consumer are driving these changes.
John Gardener said it best: “Most organizations have developed a functional blindness to their own defects. They are not suffering because they cannot resolve their problems but because they cannot see their problems.” It is the myths and miscalculations that destroy any chance for a successful transition. Self-reflection as well as having a committed doctor and staff are essential to the process. Take note that adding an associate or partner never eliminates problems. This addition most often creates, or points out, the problems that already exist but were not dealt with when the practice functioned with a solo practitioner. Transitioning to the multi-doctor arena will reveal the systems, staff members, and protocols that are no longer sufficient for continued growth.
Practice owners must take the time to look at the pre-qualifying benchmarks that have the greatest chance of success in a transition. What follows is a concise list of things needed prior to hiring a new doctor.
With lots of boxes to check, the list includes the “not so small things” that make transitions work. Start with a cold, harsh and unimpassioned look at where the practice actually is as well as where you are emotionally and financially before bringing in a new associate. A new associate can yield a 15%-20% growth rate every year as well as provide the practice owner with a long-term business partner and strategist.
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