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4 Mantras the Best Dental Entrepreneurs Keep Top of Mind.

Dental offices can exist on two ends of the emotional spectrum, depending on how you look at things. Poor dental entrepreneurs have a drearier mentality; they see their office as a sobering and transactional environment and their patients associate it with little more than pain. However, the best entrepreneurs are coming into work every day with a contagiously positive mentality. Their practice is an environment where a growth mindset, actualization, and the unlocking of personal potential is happening—for themselves, their team, and their patients. 

As those latter dental entrepreneurs are taking patients along their journeys to health, they have a “why” about why they’re doing all of this in the first place. However, it’s not always easy to put yourself on that path; it means embracing uncomfortable change, taking on turbulent progress, and juggling lofty intentions. So, if you’re looking for help with adopting the kind of entrepreneurial mentality that’ll put you up there with the best, then I’m here to help. Here are four mantras that the best dental entrepreneurs keep top of mind.

1) Dentistry means helping patients discover their inner smile.

It sounds fluffy and nice but it’s hard—it’s an actualization thing—and it requires finding meaning on a deeper level. As the saying goes, “It’s not your responsibility to make me happy, it’s your responsibility to make you happy.”

Keeping this top-of-mind is helpful for dental practice owners who want to get patients involved in their self-care. It’d be vain to tell them all about the impact you’re making in their lives—let the results speak for themselves—but you can get a patient motivated to care more about their oral health by telling them about what getting treatment can do for them. When the patient starts to own their health, they’re involving themselves in the process. They take responsibility and initiative. They’re taking agency versus looking for a hero or a savior, and now it’s a whole different ball game. Case acceptance becomes easier, patients become more enthusiastic and loyal, and so on.

So, remember: every day, you’re contributing to the creation of a healthy community. Every patient that walks out your door is going to be happier at their job, more confident in their relationships, and more emotionally fulfilled in their day-to-day lives. 

2) A dental business requires team collaboration.

The best dentists are partners in serving others. Everyone in the practice—no matter where they place on the hierarchy, whether they’re the co-owner or a front desk team member—is partnered with you on your path to delivering life-changing treatment to your patients. The best dental entrepreneurs work alongside their team to gain a mutual understanding of what part everyone is going to play in changing the lives of others. 

A dental practice requires democracy, and everyone’s voice needs to be heard. Your front desk team should feel free to voice their needs. If your hygienist has an opinion on a treatment plan, you should treat that opinion with respect and consideration. The list goes on, but the point remains: you need to understand that no dentist is an island. 

Without team collaboration, you’re not going to get far. And, when it comes to that team, remember that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. For example, if you have a team member who is acting toxically toward other team members, then they ought to be disciplined (or, in worst case scenarios, fired). Because a team’s effectiveness doesn’t just boil down to productivity; chemistry is perhaps the most important factor in any team’s efficiency.

3) Good results require organizational systems.

A dental practice is nothing without solid organizational systems making up its foundation. If you’re not getting good results, it’s probably because your systems aren’t working. And, as boring as it sounds, running a dental practice takes an analytical mind in addition to the creativity required.

Believe it or not, maintaining organization is perhaps the hardest part of running any business. Keeping your practice running like a well-oiled machine simply isn’t easy. It takes a lot of thinking behind the scenes, a lot of hours crunching numbers, and a lot of deliberate planning toward milestones that’ll help you to grow and scale your practice. There are so many small, moving parts in a dental practice and it’s easy to let things go haywire without even realizing it. So, do your due diligence in making sure all the gears stay in line.

4) Hard times can be opportunities for growth.

A growth mindset is so important for any dental entrepreneur. Keeping your head up during trying times isn’t easy, but trying times are the name of the game when it comes to dental entrepreneurship. If you don’t make a habit of seeing your issues as opportunities for growth, you’ll have  trouble pursuing the abundance mindset that the best dental entrepreneurs have. 

When the rubber hits the road is the perfect time for you to set an example for your team. Be a role model by learning from your follies, laughing at your “stupid” mistakes, and focus on growing from there. If you start letting negativity overcome you when it gets hard, you’ll be doing a disservice to your own well-being—and you’ll pave the way for a poor practice culture.

You’ll be up there with the best of them soon enough.

The fact that you’re reading blogs like this in your spare time says a lot. While you may still be on the journey to achieving success in your dental practice, your potential is high. You can bet that your competitors aren’t putting the same amount of dedication and commitment as you are and, soon enough, your hard work will (hopefully) pay off.

I run a community full of dental professionals who can give you some nuggets of wisdom about dental entrepreneurship. So, join the Nifty Thrifty Dentists Facebook group and reach out! People from all across the globe will be happy to let you in on their two cents.

Glenn Vo
Author: Glenn Vo