Saturday 13 July 2013

Is Your Dental Office Providing the Best Care Possible?

The best thing that you can do for your patients as a dentist is to do less.
Your job isn't to answer phones, it's not to fill out invoices, it's not to wrestle with your outdated software, it's not to make dozens of calls to run background checks on your new assistant. Your job is to be the dentist. That means taking everything that you can outsource and automate, and outsourcing and automating it. Unless you just like running every part of your business all by yourself, or you're happy to be the humble neighborhood dentist with a handful of loyal clients, and by all means, there's nothing wrong with taking a D.I.Y. attitude with you to the office. If you handle more than a dozen patients in a typical week, though, then you owe it to them and to yourself to create a working environment where you can give them the focus that they're paying you for.
Start With a Virtual Receptionist
A dental answering service is a great first step in uncluttering your duties at the office so that you can focus on the part of the job that truly matters. Using a professional answering service can be a tremendous help for your business for a number of reasons.
  • A live service projects a professional appearance. Trained experts answer the phone for you and help to make appointments and answer questions. Simply put, it makes you look like you know what you're doing.
  • It saves you time so that you can go back to doing what your patients need you to do for them.
  • It's a lot easier to set up than you probably think.
Don't Skimp on a Good Assistant
As soon as you have enough income flowing in to hire a good assistant, do it, and don't skimp on bonuses, raises and Assistant's Day gifts. A truly great assistant can be a game changer. They not only help you to deal with all of the daily busywork of running a business, they lend your business a face, a voice, and a personality. When you find such an assistant, do what you need to do to keep them around. Let them know how important they are to your business.
Rely on Classified Ads as a Marketing Shortcut
Even if you already have a comprehensive marketing campaign in place getting the word out on television, radio, in print, etc. you still want to have a presence on sites like Craigslist. The fact is that some people don't listen to the radio, watch TV or read the paper, they get their information on the web, and they go straight to Craigslist whenever they need, well, just about anything, including dentistry. Putting an ad out on Craigslist can get you some hits and ensure that marketing isn't something that you need to worry too much about.
The real aim of your business is to help people get their oral health taken care of, and everything else that comes with running a business is really just to serve as a platform for your work as a dentist, so don't hesitate for a moment to take some of the burden of running a business and share it with a professional outsourcing service or an assistant. Don't hesitate to upgrade your software or use a cheaper marketing service in order to afford yourself more time to keep up with your field. It's not about cutting corners, it's about focus.
Andrea Starr is a consultant for Peak Answering and for dentists around the southwest.

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