What makes some people more productive?

Time management in Dentistry continues to be a massive stumbling block to success especially when “speed” and “effectiveness” are confused, one leaves you knackered at the end of the day and not earning properly, the other brings rewards that you can appreciate.

We all have the same amount of minutes in an hour, hours in a day, days in a week etc. But some people clearly get more done than others. Often there is resentment from the “doing less” camp who say that the achievers cut more corners, don’t do things properly and so on but I find this is mostly sour grapes.

My experience of being in dental practices, operating theatres and offices is that the people who get most done are the ones who plan their days, roll their sleeves up and get on with it, start their day on time, who “eat the frog” as early in the day as possible and build in flexibility for when “stuff” happens.

Pozen and Downey found that the most productive people were good at:

  • overcoming procrastination
  • getting to the final product 
  • focussing on daily accomplishments &
  • delegating clearly and effectively

On the other hand those who scored lower:

  • did not plan their days in advance
  • were easily distracted by the avoidable 
  • did not have great routines &
  • (frequently) blamed others for their lack of productivity

If you want to have a good day you have to decide what a good day is and work backwards. Sadly too many people still let the tail wag the dog.

Summertime and the living ain’t always easy.

The current Newsletter from The Dental Business Coach is available to view here:

Here’s a section:

“Sophisticated Procrastination”


Most people know what they ought to do to succeed but can usually find something to stop them. Frequently they are guilty of getting in their own way. The reasons can be challenging to discover from depleted self-worth, having no idea of what success looks like for them through to not acknowledging that they are in the wrong place.

Although they have the problem and it is their’s alone, they are likely to want to blame something, anything, else. The practice, the principal, the patients, the position, the NHS, the associates.

Often this becomes a form of “sophisticated procrastination” which includes all sorts of excuses. Telling your teacher that the dog ate your homework may be acceptable when you are 10, using an equally lame excuse as an adult makes no difference because it’s only yourself that you’re trying to fool.

One of my roles in life is to hold up a mirror to people, businesses and teams to help them see themselves with greater clarity. Contact me to find out more here.

“Dentistry is Tough”

You know you’re being taken seriously when the incoming BDA President checks your name and writing in their address.

“An opinion piece was recently published in BDJ In Practice by Dr Alun Rees, ‘Is Dentistry making us sick?’ It starts with the statement, ‘Dentistry is tough’. I don’t think any of us would argue with that.”

For Roslyn McMullan’s full Presidential address CLICK HERE – I wish her a successful, productive and happy year and look forward to thanking her when we meet.

 

What do patients really think?

From The Conversation.

Gavin Brookes and Paul Baker were “tasked” with looking at patients’ opinions. An analysis of a total of 228,000 comments from the NHS Choices website, coming in at a huge 29m words. Their results have been published in the BMJ and as a book.

They spent three years on the project and Prof Baker said, “it’s taught me more about what it means to be human than any other project I’ve been involved with. It also reveals how some staff, such as surgeons, are almost universally praised, while others, particularly receptionists, unfairly take the flak when the system breaks down.

Some conclusions:

“…complaints about the technical ability of staff to make us well are less common, suggesting that the NHS is mostly doing a good job, but is overstretched and struggling to meet demand.”

“…patients like predictability – they have a set of expectations and are generally happy if they’re met.”

“…“attitude” tends to be at the heart of the majority of complaints about the NHS,…”

Dentists.

“…some staff members do especially well, with surgeons, dentists and paramedics being evaluated positively 95% of the time.’

“Dentists, who came second in our comparison, also attracted strong praise, consistently being called “great”. The broader language used to describe dentists was also revealing, though. Many patients wrote about having a dentist phobia but then being pleasantly surprised when the actual visit was painless. The good feedback dentists received, then, was often related to a sense of relief.”

What to do when…..a Corporate Opens Nearby – Part 2

What to do when a corporate opens nearby. First Published in Private Dentistry…2 of 2

6 Expand your offering.

What is the corporate doing that you could be doing – and be doing better? Now is the time to take those course that you have been postponing. Invest in yourself, your skills and those of everyone in the practice. Where are your “blind spots”? What skills are you, your associates and support team lacking? Get out there and get refreshed, it will do everybody good.

 

7 Up your business game.

Get out of any business comfort zone you may have been enjoying. Set personal and business goals. Make sure your financial controls and monitoring are as good as they can be. Brush up your sales process by ensuring everybody understands the importance of every stage of the patient journey. Refresh your internal marketing.

8 Ride with, and learn to avoid, the punches.

People will leave, the unexpected ones, the ones that you have moved heaven and earth to help. That will hurt; you’re a human being, of course it will hurt. There is a possibility that there will be a fall in new patients calling. Accept it, use it as a chance to look backwards at patients who you haven’t seen for a couple of years and reactivate them.

Beware of getting dragged into a price war with the new business who will be using loss leaders and offers to attract new patients. There’s no such thing as a “free” examination, just a consultation with someone who isn’t qualified to give a full opinion. A price war is a race to the bottom, keep your eyes upwards, make quality your mantra in everything that you do.

9 Wave goodbye / Welcome back

Let patients “leave” with your blessing, they’ll be back. Be understanding, be helpful, offer to share notes and radiographs. Keep them on your database (with permission) so that they get the regular newsletter, the news of the people, the offers, the inside track.

In my experience the best way to drive business to a private practice is an NHS corporate opening across the road. When they come back, and if they don’t return you really do need to take a long hard look at yourself, welcome them, listen to what their experiences have been and what they have learned. Then learn from them. Delight in their return, welcome them home.

 

10 Celebrate your independent success on your terms.

The patients who attend are coming to see you and your colleagues. The help you give is what you think is appropriate not set down and governed by a spreadsheet. The targets you set are your targets, flexible enough to be realistic for your patients.

The history of post-war Britain is for successful small firms to be swallowed up by large ones and for the intrepid owners to move on and start again. You cannot take on the “big boys” on their terms so don’t try to do it. Discover your niche, work at it, celebrate it.

Look at the big picture, you aren’t competing with the corporate you’re competing for the discretionary spend with holidays, cars, gym membership and consumer goods. Put health and individuals at the heart of your business, be honest with yourself, your team and your patients and you will resist this and other challenges.

40 years on M.K. still asks hard questions.

Forty years ago I was four and a half months in to my first job as one of the two “Resident House Surgeons in the Dept of Oral Surgery” at The London Hospital, now The Royal London. I am still amazed that I got the post, the story of my interview is worth hearing if only for the informal way the “second half” of the interview was conducted.

I was on the lowest rung of an impressive ladder at the London, with an SHO, three registrars, two senior registrars, a senior lecturer, two consultants, a Reader and the great Professor Gordon Seward at the top of the ladder.

It was the most intense period of my career, rivalling the first 18 months of practice ownership. At the London I was learning clinically whilst as the owner of two squats I was painfully cutting my teeth on business. I was privileged to see a huge variety of work, to straddle the divide between in and out patient care and to be on the “staff” of a major dental school and hospital.

One of the individuals from the Dental Hospital I encountered in the tea room was a young Irish registrar from Athenry with a great sense of humour who questioned everything and went on to great success.

It is no surprise then, that Martin Kelleher (for it was he), is now questioning the current explosion of tooth moving encouraged by American Corporations with an eye on the bottom  line. In this blog post from Kevin O’Brien (adapted from an article in Dental Update) he eloquently seeks answers to questions that seem to have been overlooked amidst the sales and marketing hysteria.

Worth a read and a touch of reflection.

“The race to the bottom for the quickest, allegedly ‘great’ or bargain deal in orthodontics has reached a place that few would have thought possible even five years ago. This gradual ‘uberization’ of orthodontics
 has produced a raft of new and largely unproven claims for treatments. These are promoted with gushing enthusiasm and superficial short-term evidence of their supposed long-term benefits for patients.”

Continues here.

 

 

Great opportunity in Cheltenham

We are looking for a full-time associate dentist

We have an exciting opportunity to work in a long standing, purpose built, private practice in Cheltenham.

We are offering:

  • A great clinical and non-clinical environment.
  • An excellent client journey delivered by a supportive, long standing team.
  • A committed client list who belong to Illume’s Membership.
  • Full time hygiene support.
  • Fully computerised system, digital x-rays, intra oral camera, AIRFLOW®, Florida Probe®.

Can you say yes to these?

  • You have a varied skill set to match the changing dental market, with excellent diagnostic ability.
  • You are a great communicator, excellent at building rapport, who understands perfectly first class customer care.
  • You take pride in providing painless, quality dentistry that will last.
  • You understand the benefits of being part of a coordinated and collaborative team.
  • You are living or looking to live in a beautiful part of the country.
  • You are able to restore implants, this is desirable but not essential.

If you like what you have read about us and this might be for you, please send your CV and an email describing what you can bring to our practice to:

Alison Rumney, alison@illumedentistry.co.uk by 31st October 2018

 

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