Friday, February 19, 2016

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

First I found out the hard truth about the tooth fairy as a kid, and now this.

I recently had my bubble burst. For a while now, I’ve been reading the advice of a few practice management gurus. I’ve enjoyed their advice. They have some great ideas. I’ve read their newsletters and emails with great amazement that they could accomplish so much in their practices. I often wondered how they did it.

My struggle in following their advice, however, has been finding the time to implement any of their ideas: improve your Web page, expand your marketing efforts, monitor your referral sources, establish a presence on social media, implement systems, learn scripts, and more. “Wow,” I wondered, “how do these experts run a practice, implement their ideas, have time to write a newsletter, and also attend to their families?” I know that you probably can relate to feeling like you don’t have enough time.

After a long day at the practice, I need to go home and attend to my family. Not only do I need to, but also, I want to. As many dentists have learned the hard way, what good is it to have an incredibly successful practice if your home life could use some improvement?

So as I read the experts’ blog posts, articles, and emails, I thought, “These dentists are simply amazing.”

Then my bubble burst. I learned that these practice management gurus actually sold their practices many years ago. Thus, they have plenty of time to offer up advice on how I should run mine. This actually shocked and disappointed me. Of course they have plenty of time to offer up great ideas! They never have to actually take the time to implement them into their own personal dental practices.

I think of it this way: I was once a dental student — a successful one, in fact, if you measure success in terms of actually graduating. Does this alone qualify me to give advice on how to best deal with today’s dental school challenges?

I had this same conversation with a friend, Bill, while he fought cancer. He could no longer physically practice dentistry, so in order to keep busy during the day, he started implementing all of this practice advice for his daughters who were now busy performing dentistry.

Bill told me that he was happy to finally be able to implement marketing, scripts, etc., into an already successful office. Of course, he had to wait to get cancer to be able to do this. He told me he didn’t suggest going this route.

Don't get me wrong: The advice given is great. It would just be much more valuable if a full-time drill-and-fill dentist was giving it. The most difficult challenge is implementing the advice you receive while also dealing with the daily grind of a dental practice.

Andy Alas, DDS

2 comments:

Laurence Grayhills said...

Incredibly great comments! I've built an extremely hi-tech, successful practice over the past thirty years. Nevertheless, after reading articles about all the other things that "I should have been doing," I wondered where these advisers found the time to practice dentistry and administer a personal life. One can't do it all!! That's where outsourcing becomes important...and expensive. Web presence and social media have to be refreshed on a regular basis otherwise they become stale. Practice management and following the metrics is a full time job to which the owner dentists must remain connected.

Radhika Wadhwa said...

In Dental implants you have to follow the instruction of the dentist otherwise you put in big trouble.

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