Welcome to our brand new column, Coaches Corner! We are happy to share our years of experience working with dental offices all across North America.
Today’s question comes from a doc in Atlanta.
Hey guys, would you be willing to share the most common mistake or problem that you have observed from the offices you have worked with over the years?
Dr. Mike H., Atlanta, GA.
How many new patients do we have?
Dear Dr. Mike,
Great question. There are so many things we have observed over the years, but one thing stands out in our minds for sure. The most common problem we see even today is offices that are overly concerned with how many new patients they are receiving. Everyone wants more new patients. But most docs think that more new patients are the panacea – the answer to all of their problems.
So we get into a conversation and we ask why they want more new patients. It always comes down to wanting to earn more money. Then we ask questions. How is your cash flow? What do you mean you can’t pay your bills? Why aren’t your current patients making appointments for their recommended treatment? Why did you just go into more debt to purchase that new piece of equipment? A salesman told you it would increase your production? Do you really think it’s going to help you? Why do so many patients owe you money? You have an associate doctor who is making more money than you? Can you explain why? Do you even need an associate? What is your overhead? You don’t know? Well let us share this – it’s about 90%. Why aren’t you treating any periodontal disease in your hygiene department? Is it that your hygienist doesn’t own a perio probe? Or is it that she has no time to use it or discuss perio with your patients? Do you think your front desk person is actually getting patients to make appointments? Doesn’t look like it. She needs help badly. Have you looked through your file cabinet lately? No you haven’t. It’s FILLED with patients that need to come in. Do you know how to get them in? You are taking a course to treat headaches and you can’t even treatment plan a crown? REALLY? Do you honestly believe that dropping all insurance is the answer? Your problem is NOT new patients!
Dr. Mike – Sorry about the rant. But you asked. We see this situation almost every day.
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Dr. David Madow
Influencer, Speaker, Author & Coach at The David Madow Lifestyle Show + Co-founder of The Madow Center for Dental Practice Success.
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International Keynote Speaker, Author, Award Winning Musician & Composer, Coach and Co-founder of The Madow Center for Dental Practice Success.