Instead of flying around the United States to teach her formula for creating rock stars out of your front office team as a consultant, Laura decided to launch Front Office Rocks. During COVID-19, Laura has been strategizing to help dental offices plan for a grand reopening. Her front office staff training program is nationally recognized for capturing the techniques Laura developed while streamlining the success of two start-up dental offices along the east and west coast.
Front Office Rocks was designed to train anyone, no matter how new or beaten down they are within the dental industry.
Having launched seven years ago during a major economic crash, Laura believes that any woe-is-me attitude during this pandemic is detrimental to recovery. Set your mentality to be as flexible and positive as you can make it to work more proactively. Laura believes that most dental offices are not going to be initially bustling with people which means that you will need to be realistic and make financially sound decisions for your practice as a whole.
Before you make any other plans, Laura says that your first step should always be checking in with your team. Some of us may be already engaged with our teams regularly, but whether you are or aren’t, you need to begin by evaluating who can come back to the office for a reopening. Who is on the bus?
Next, you need to do the same for your patients. Examine your patient base and their priorities to determine who is more likely to cancel their appointments. Look at your backlog and scheduling, taking into account highly compromisable patients such as elderly people, those who travel often, or small business owners whose new priorities do not include the dental office.
Put the patients that are least likely to cancel at the top of your list. Also, look ahead at their insurance benefits to determine who else should be prioritized in the schedule. Give each scheduled patient a bit of extra time at first to account for new safety measures and catch up with office staff.
As the dentist, you are the leader of your office culture. Laura thinks that reopening is going to be a big shakeout that will require lots of team building and soft skills.
The one thing we don’t have a lot of in the dental office is time. Laura encourages us to use our extra time to have your team read a book, watch TedTalks, and create new guidelines so that you can come back as a better team.
Of course, another thing we should do is to take advantage of this time for education. In terms of training, you should consider looking at team building and drama-reduction activities.
With the increased financial challenges of patients, it’s important to ensure that your case acceptance communication is efficient. Think back to what else gave you headaches in the past and restart it better this time.
In terms of her specialty, online training, Laura recommends having new hires study for one hour per day, and having other staff members study for one hour per week. When your office is open, it is best to structure this as the first hour of someone’s day or the hour after lunch.
This is your time to make changes to your training process. Make sure that you set up a space where uninterrupted training can be done without staff appearing to neglect patients. You should also schedule training or it probably won’t happen. Laura tells us to face the reality that “squeezing it in between patients” rarely works. While you are at it, she recommends putting down meetings into your schedule for the rest of the year too.
If you want to access Laura’s online training program Front Office Rocks at a discount, mention that you want the Nifty deal when you reach out to her team at frontofficerocks.com.
Learn more about:
How you can utilize online training before and during your reopening
What steps you should take for proactive scheduling
New thoughts on “mobile waiting” rooms vs. improved reception areas
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