Top 6 Patient Breakup Mistakes Dental Practice Owners Make

Before you tap that play button, I want you to ponder these questions first: What do patients consider when they choose their dentist? And what makes them go and explore dental services from other dentists?

In medicine, research shows that 30% of patients leave the doctor’s office because of long wait times. Unfortunately, the number is higher when it comes to dental offices. The long wait times can make a patient believe that you’re in a poorly run business. And if it’s a poorly run business, you have subpar clinical standards.

In today’s episode, I will discuss the six top reasons why patients break up with dentists. Then, we will talk about patients’ perception of us and how we can maintain that in a positive frame, and how we can prevent the consequences of patient attrition. I’ll also share lessons from medical doctors’ mistakes so that you can prevent patients from even wondering if the grass is greener somewhere else. So just sit back, relax and enjoy the show.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “As smart business owners, we have to manage the upside push for growth and minimize the downside. And what’s the downside when it comes to enthusing clients? I think that’s when patients leave the practice, when they break up with us, and when there’s patient attrition.”
  • “Oftentimes, we’re able to maintain the relationship with the patient once they feel understood. And even if we weren’t, we can learn things that will help our processes, our systems. So as we strove to get better and better, we looked for more gems in those situations.”
  • “Now urgent care is a big patient perception because what is no big deal to you might be a really big deal to patients.”
  • “Patients aren’t loyal. If they’re feeling, feeling mistreated or ignored, or that you’re always running behind, they might find those greener pastures.”
  • “If patients feel like they’re just a number on a spreadsheet that you’re pushing treatment on them, that you have aggressive sales tactics, that you don’t have their best interests at heart, that then they’re going to feel inclined to be a patient somewhere else.”

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  • Quote: Customers perceive service in their own unique, idiosyncratic, emotional, irrational, end-of-the-day, and totally human terms. Perception is all there is!” — Tom Peters
  • I appreciate your feedback. Let me know what you learned and loved here: [email protected].

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The Power to Empower

“An empowered organization is one in which individuals have the knowledge, skill, desire and opportunity to personally succeed in a way that leads to collective organizational success.”  Stephen Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Pride in your work increases with freedom of choice. According to statistics, less than 1% of employees feel proud to tell others they work for an organization when the boss rarely gives them freedom of choice. However, 78% of employees feel proud to tell others about their work when the boss allows them the freedom to choose frequently.

Today’s episode will cover principles of empowerment — why most dentists want an empowered and engaged team but don’t feel confident in this quest. I’ll explain the big difference between holding your team accountable and fostering their accountability. Then, I will discuss how to make your team feel empowered and appreciate the great paradox of leadership. I will also share how Jolly Rancher and Stephen Covey’s books made a polarizing impact on my life and a personal experience on how efficiently an empowered team works during my visit with Dr. Andrew Turchin.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “Too often in dentistry, we go looking for sophistication, bright shiny objects, and new and innovative wins.”
  • “If you’re spending a ton of time holding your team accountable, your team will never even come close to reaching its full potential.”
  • “You can only gain power by giving it away.”
  • “The feeling of power or empowerment only comes from a sense of control.”
  • “Personal accountability is the only true accountability.”
  • “Encourage honest mistakes.”
  • “The results are the only thing that pays the bill.”
  • “Even if someone knows how to do their job, a lack of confidence or a fear of making mistakes will keep them from doing what needs to be done.”
  • Take charge and lead the way.”

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The Darkness of Doubt: Finding Action in the Avoidance

“Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.”  William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

I’ll share with you my favorite story on overcoming self-doubt. This story involved my son Bennett when I felt that he was ready and decided to send him down the black run. He was scared, no doubt. But my confidence in him fueled his confidence, and after uttering a few “I can do it” mantras, he took off. We celebrated his victory over some hot chocolate, and he came up with another mantra that I use every time I need to boost my confidence. Listen in to find out.

In today’s episode, I’ll discuss how you can win the war on self-doubt. I will talk about how fear and hesitation can inhibit your progress, the 5 Cs that undermine your goals consistently, and the creative toolbox for avoiding avoidance so you can maintain professional momentum and build the practice of your dreams.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “We avoid lots of things for lots of reasons, and in all of those reasons, we have embedded self-doubt.”
  • “Self-doubt creates avoidance, and sometimes it sneaks upon us.”
  • “Just like in dentistry, we need a diagnosis before we can create a treatment plan, and we need a treatment plan before we can create a treatment.”
  • “If you grew up around people who avoided, people who were conflict avoiders, people who were worriers, then no doubt you take some of that on.”
  • “Most people have a horror story at some point in time in their life. And what they do with that horror story that makes all the difference in their life.”
  • “Usually, we’re trending towards the worst-case scenario that’s almost impossible to happen.”
  • “In the Information Age, it’s easy to live in this delusion that I’m taking in tons of information; therefore, I must be productive.”

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How To Make More Money By Giving It Away

Statistically, 91% of consumers say they will switch to a brand that supports a good cause given similar price and quality.

Back when I was still active with my dental practice in Vail, I created the “Monthly Give,” wherein we give a portion of the collection to our chosen nonprofit organization every month. We started in 2012 with a 1.2% allocation for charity and slowly ratcheted it up every year as our profit grew bigger and bigger. How can we be generous with giving as we grow?

In today’s episode, I’ll talk about cause marketing — how it works, how your organization can get involved, and how it can benefit your team, your organization, your patients, and the community you are serving. Then, I’ll share steps to successfully create a cause marketing drive and address the objections to spotlighting your philanthropy. Finally, an anecdote from one of our patients clearly shows how impactful generosity is as it creates a powerful domino effect.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “There are more benefits in cause marketing than just writing checks and knowing that they will help people’s lives easier and better.”
  • “In each monthly meeting, a time is dedicated to nominating the next nonprofit partner.”
  • “There should be a priority system that needs to be built out.”
  • “This is not giving back. Giving back assumes you took something. This is just generosity. This is just giving.”
  • “The more you grow, the more you get to give.”
  • “There’s no one that doesn’t benefit from a good cause marketing.”

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High-Trust Case Acceptance

What are we doing to ensure that we’re not presenting treatment in a skeptical environment and inadvertently generating negative marketing for ourselves and our businesses?

Research shows that 55% of all communication is in the body language, 38% is in the tone of voice, and 7% is in the actual words spoken — all of which make up the overall impression we give out to our patients.

The way your patients perceive your practice impacts every decision and action they take. This perception has a rippling effect on your confidence, staff, potential customers, and business security.

In today’s episode, I’ll share with you two contrasting personal stories on what enthusing client is and what it’s not. Then, I have some tips that you can train your team on to ensure you’re generating high-trust case acceptance in your practice. I’ll also talk about the importance of picking up non-verbal and social cues to reciprocate appropriate responses.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “If we don’t do our practice in a trusting environment, it can generate buyer’s remorse and resentment if something goes wrong.”
  • “Too often, we hang too much on what our patients are telling us, and sometimes they are not candid.”
  • “We have to make sure that we’re picking up on the tone of voice and body language before we’re really satisfied that this person is scheduled for the next phase of treatment.”
  • “If we don’t read their body language, we can inadvertently scare and confuse the patient.”
  • “The possibility is that we appreciate that body language doesn’t lie.”
  • “The goal that we must establish and the intent that we should have is that every patient all day long is seen, heard, and felt like we’ve let them know that they matter to us.”
  • “You should look for a long-term relationship because it pays dividends again and again and again.”
  • “Your team is your eyes, ears, and spokespeople, so they must be good as you are, if not better.”

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Is Your Business Built On Hubris?

“Honour may not win power, but it wins respect. And respect earns power.” — Ishida Mitsunari

Apparently, even though a large number of dental practice owners believe that team success is essential, they also admit that only 1 to 2 members of the team are effective — a brutal truth that most practice owners have to face. Every business aims to foster an atmosphere that brings out the best in everyone because it will translate into a positive experience for both the team and the patients. The big question is, how do you transform your team’s hubristic culture into a team-centric mindset.

In today’s episode, I’ll talk about the factors that drive an honor business and a hubris business, and why it is important to know where your practice stands between the two. I’ll also share the five elements that I want you to examine about your business. I prepared insightful questions that you need to contemplate to set yourself up for an excellent 2022.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “The more divided our society gets, the harder it is to align a team.”
  • “If we’re going to be a growing organization, we have to challenge our comfort zone.”
  • “Environment is everything. A big part of being a good CEO is helping the team see the vision, you’re continuously selling that vision, but you also have to give them the tools and the training to succeed.”
  • “Collective confidence: When people come to work each day, they believe that this team will be successful no matter what.”
  • “If you’re willing to do what other dental practice owners won’t do, you will reap the benefits.”

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  • I appreciate your feedback. Let me know what you learned and loved here: [email protected].

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Three Secrets To Dealing With Adversity

What’s your favorite movie of all time?

I can greatly identify with the Rocky series’ story of resilience and perseverance, both onscreen and the underlying story on how Sylvester Stallone fought all adversity to have the movie get its screen time. It’s been my go-to movie whenever I’m confronted with roadblocks.

All of us went through one of the worst times last year, and it has tested our character and faith. But, it has also been a period of discovery that we’re far stronger than we thought we were.

In today’s episode, I’ll be talking about resilience. The difficulty we face as practice owners have exponentiated to a great degree in these crazy times. I’ll share three ways to keep a proactive stance on resiliency in dealing with adversity, rise above the occasion, and get back up better and stronger.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “Make sure that you’re setting 90-day goals that bring out the best in you and your team.”
  • “In being resilient, we can see opportunities in these radical shifts. You have to be aware and stay on offense so you can seize them.”
  • “It’s better to be proactive and stay in the offense during turbulent times than to be caught off guard.”
  • “Resilient businesses would need resilient cultures, and resilient cultures require resilient leaders.”
  • “Sometimes positive thinking will keep us in denial of what is. We can face the brutal facts; we can look at the reality of what is and still be hopeful.”
  • “In difficult times, we have to stay purpose-driven.”
  • “Adaptability, mental agility is a hallmark of resilience.”
  • “There are always lessons in deep, dark, difficult times; there are always gems to be mined.”
  • “Sometimes in business and life, we have to color outside the lines and do whatever is required.”

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Thieves Like Us

5% of people are hard-wired for integrity, while 5% are hard-wired to lie, cheat, and steal even if it doesn’t benefit them. Interestingly, 90% of people will lie, cheat, and steal given three things. Listen in to find out.

We always attribute “stealing” to something tangible, not realizing that there are some abstract constructs that directly affect the practice’s finances.

In this episode, I will discuss the three things that make 90% of people subscribe to some degree of misgiving, why assessing character is complex, and what you can do about it. I will also share my insights on how you can differentiate the strong character from the weak and thoroughly assess your potential hire’s personality before introducing them into your culture.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “There’s nothing more viable in your practice than your character as a leader and the character of your team.”
  •  “Money doesn’t have a conscience.”
  • “What really exposes our character is difficult circumstances.”
  • “Strong character comes from the feeling of security and self-worth.”
  • “Weak characters are overcome by the circumstances.”
  • “Think about the character in your hiring. Think about this collective character that is not only additive but creates a synergistic effect for better or worse.”
  • “Make sure that you’re not too simple in your interview questions.”
  • “Your home environment and work environment can bring out the best in you or the worst in you.”
  • “We need to have a growth mindset and understand that you can become whoever you want to become.”
  • “We all have things that we put in our backpacks as little kids and carry with us into adulthood that don’t serve us, that don’t service our practice, that don’t serve our patients, that don’t serve our team.”

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The 3 Mental Monsters that Kill Cashflow

“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” – Carl Jung

How’s your relationship with yourself, your profession, and with people? Are they standing in the way of enjoying the abundance of the dental profession? Or is it your thinking that’s killing the cash flow?

Money is not meant to be chased; you need to attract them. And learning from experience, it’s not all about skills and work ethics. Of course, it is essential, but what’s blocking the flow lives within your psyche, and a little re-wiring will help attune your practice to the cash flow.

This episode will talk about the three mental monsters that kill cash flow and how your thinking can quash these monsters by bringing out your unfair advantage. I will also touch on how you can take charge of your thinking and focus on adding value to yourself, your team, and your patients to address your financial worries.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “If we don’t have proper architecture, both the enjoy and the cash flow becomes difficult.”
  • “Many dentists are frustrated because the clinical skill alone doesn’t cut it.”
  • “The way we think causes money and quality of life.”
  • “The power of the skill stack is either divided or multiplied by the way we think.”
  • “Make sure that your mind and thinking is serving you, your goals, and your business.”
  • “What really unleashes a business are business skills, leadership skills, and sales skills.”
  • “We can change our thinking if we are deliberate about it.”
  • “Make a list of reasons that you’re worth more per hour than you’re currently paying yourself.”
  • “If we focus on what we’re getting and not focusing on what we’re giving, that can enhance our scarcity thinking.”
  • “Money always follows unique value.”

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Disney’s Taking Your Money

“Togetherness, for me, means teamwork.” — Walt Disney

Yes, Disney’s taking our money — money that we gladly give. In fact, we work our fingers to the bone just for us, and our loved ones enjoy a moment of pleasure in the happiest place on earth.

But what is so great about Disney that we’re willing to do prodigal spending to the extent of cutting costs on essential expenditures like dental care? Can we adapt and make the Disney magic work in our practice?

In this episode, I’ll delve into the principles that make Disney appeal to the core of our senses. The reasons why we trust the company and will continue to spend our money on them even after the magic no longer works on us. And most importantly, how our practice can learn from the values that Mr. Walt Disney himself established to which the company is built upon.

Disney’s taking our money. Wouldn’t it be fair to “steal” their strategies in enthusing clients and recover the money we’ve willingly given to Disney?

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “We oftentimes lose sight, or we don’t fully appreciate who our competitors really are.”
  • “We can steal like an artist and understand the principles that allow some of these big companies to take the healthcare dollars and put them in their pocket. This way, we can generate more loyal patients, better case acceptance, and referrals.”
  • “If we’re working under the assumption that Disney is one of our competitors, it would be wise for us to understand some of the principles that allow them to consistently enthuse their clients.”
  • “There are unlimited things to make sure that the patient feels that your place is clean and safe and a place where they want to continue to have healthcare.”
  • “We want to go into a business, whether healthcare or not, that is courteous.”
  • “Efficiency is shifting the pendulum from “needing more resources” to “I am resourceful.””
  • “Your competitor is anyone who’s creating a reallocation of precious healthcare dollars away from healthcare.”

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