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Getting A Mind For The Business Behind General Dentistry

by Editorial Team | September 5th, 2017 | Elementary

When you see the name of a dentist in front of their practice, it’s a natural reflex to say “oh, that’s what they do.” However, that’s not entirely accurate. When a dentist starts up their practice, in addition to their ordinary duties, they also become a business owner. As a result, taking care of customers becomes one of many concerns, including the bottom line. Including this one small fact into your dentist search and how you work with then can pay dividends.

Think Like A Dentist

If you don’t necessarily believe this, take a moment to read this text from a course designed specifically for dentists:

“The premise of the program is to equate the dental office to a manufacturing facility. Inherent to any manufacturing industry, each “department” represents a “profit center.” In the same metaphorical context, each member of the dental team assumes a new identity for his or her respective role in the office: the dentist, CEO (Chief Executive Officer); the administrator, COO and HRO (Chief Operations Officer and Human Resources Officer); and the bookkeeper, CFO (Chief Financial Officer).”

Sounds like a lot to think about right? Well, for one thing, this means that a practice generally has a lot of working parts, especially the larger it is. As a result, when you are searching for a dentist, the best thing to do is let each arm of the business do its job. For example, it’s a fair bet that before settling in with a dentist, that you call their office to ask a few questions. When you do so, a part of you may want to speak with the dentist rather than a receptionist, but there’s a good reason to let the natural order run its course, and it’s not about just availability.

Like any workplace, communication is important, and while it may seem a bit odd, sometimes the top of the line isn’t the best communicator. A receptionist is often the person in the best position to try and answer some of the initial questions you may have when asking about a dentist, like hours, insurance coverage, prices, and available procedures. In addition, they will be able to explain things in a way that won’t be overly technical in case you need to relay the information. So, before you get frustrated, think like a dentist—delegation is important, and if a business is running well, you’re best served to let it run.

Choosing Your Dentist Wisely

Of course, you can’t guarantee that every dentist will be the best business person they can, so this is why it’s so important for you to do your due diligence when searching as well. Wondering where to start? The best thing you can do is try and work through the opinions of others. Ideally, this would be a family member, friend, or colleague who has seen the dentist in question before. If this isn’t an option, there are plenty of platforms like Angie’s List or Yelp where people will post their reviews. Sometimes, it pays to sift through the reviews to find the best ones, but these will often be the best way to get a rounded picture of what a business has to offer—and a dentist fits the bill.

Failing a recommendation, the easiest way to get the information you want is likely to look at a website. For example, look at this dentist in AZ, who has done a pretty good job of hitting all the notes you would need in regard to attending all the major needs you would have when checking a website. These include an explanation of the dentist’s credentials and staff, a full list of the services provided, a section for financial questions, as well as testimonials. In general, on-site testimonials aren’t going to be as effective as those on third-party sites. This isn’t a matter of authenticity so much as it is a matter of detail. However, if you run into any longer testimonials, it may be worth it to give them a read to see if there are any relevant points hit on.

In life, it generally pays off to try and put yourself in someone else’s shoes before making a major decision. The same applies when talking about dentists, as their role in your oral health is a major part of both your quality of life and health overall. Picking a dentist you like can range from irritating to nerve-wracking depending on how you feel, but it pays to do your homework, use all the resources available at your disposal, and take into consideration their mindsets before coming up with your final decision—it may just pay off.

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