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The “Five C’s” of Dental Practice Success

Five “C’s” of Dental Practice Success

Looking for some great inspirational content for your team meeting this week?

Here’s a guest article from our friend Dr. Michael O’Brien of Auburn, Alabama, that you need to “C.” Take it away Dr. Mike!

Looking for some great inspirational content for your team meeting this week? Here’s a guest article from our friend Dr. Michael O’Brien of Auburn, Alabama, that you need to “C.” Take it away Dr. Mike!

The “Five C’s” of Dental Practice Success
Michael O’Brien, DMD

COMPETENCE
While it may seem obvious that clinical competence is a must, the application here is more to knowing your limitations both clinically and in managing patients.  Do what you do well – don’t jeopardize your practice reputation with incompetence and / or poor judgment.  Bottom line, you HAVE to know what you’re doing!

COMPASSION
While most dentists have a “passion” for their work, having COMpassion is a whole different entity.  It is a must both for your patients and your team.  The old saying is still true today – People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care!  And much like a first impression – you generally only get one chance at it!
CONSISTENCY
If a baseball player only gets a hit, much less a home run, every now and again, he is not referred to as a “consistent hitter”.  In dentistry, you want to be a consistent practitioner.  You will not be the “go to” practice unless you are consistent – specifically consistently GOOD!  Interestingly, a restaurant can actually be consistently just “above average” but very consistent and customers will say “Their food is ALWAYS good.”  Why? Because they never serve a bad meal.  In dentistry, it comes down to consistently giving patients a good or even great EXPERIENCE because they cannot measure your crown margins! (Of course your crown margins need to be consistent too but your patients are going to measure your consistency by their experience!)
CONTINUITY
Simply put, the right hand has to know what the left hand is doing.  If your practice is not demonstrating continuity throughout any given day, week, month and so on, then it is confusing to patients, and to some team members.  This parameter differs from consistency in that it refers to the ongoing dynamic in the office at any given time, or over time, that keeps all parts of the office working together and flowing smoothly.  (Another “C” word that could work here is “calibrated” but I use that word in describing the importance of all employees being in synC. )
COMMUNICATION
Seemingly a no brainer yet possibly the most fumbled parameter in dentistry.  Many, if not most people think communication involves mostly talking, verbal actions.  While verbal skills are indeed critical, consider this statement:  “Communication is 90% listening to what is said, and 10% HEARING, what was NOT said!” (My Father told me I had two ears and ONE mouth for a reason – I would be better off if I listened twice as much as I talked!).  Communicating to AND from your patients and to AND from your team is critical.  While this parameter is a whole separate entity in itself, the bottom line is people tend to be easier to relate too if expectations and circumstances are communicated in an excellent, accurate, and concise manner.  As a general rule, people don’t like “surprises” or changes without proper communication!Great stuff Dr. O’Brien – thanks so much for sharing. Mike has another C – “Clabbercod” – but that’s a topic for another day!

Michael O’Brien, DMD

COMPETENCE
While it may seem obvious that clinical competence is a must, the application here is more to knowing your limitations both clinically and in managing patients.  Do what you do well – don’t jeopardize your practice reputation with incompetence and / or poor judgment.  Bottom line, you HAVE to know what you’re doing!

COMPASSION
While most dentists have a “passion” for their work, having COMpassion is a whole different entity.  It is a must both for your patients and your team.  The old saying is still true today – People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care!  And much like a first impression – you generally only get one chance at it!
CONSISTENCY
If a baseball player only gets a hit, much less a home run, every now and again, he is not referred to as a “consistent hitter”.  In dentistry, you want to be a consistent practitioner.  You will not be the “go to” practice unless you are consistent – specifically consistently GOOD!  Interestingly, a restaurant can actually be consistently just “above average” but very consistent and customers will say “Their food is ALWAYS good.”  Why? Because they never serve a bad meal.  In dentistry, it comes down to consistently giving patients a good or even great EXPERIENCE because they cannot measure your crown margins! (Of course your crown margins need to be consistent too but your patients are going to measure your consistency by their experience!)
CONTINUITY
Simply put, the right hand has to know what the left hand is doing.  If your practice is not demonstrating continuity throughout any given day, week, month and so on, then it is confusing to patients, and to some team members.  This parameter differs from consistency in that it refers to the ongoing dynamic in the office at any given time, or over time, that keeps all parts of the office working together and flowing smoothly.  (Another “C” word that could work here is “calibrated” but I use that word in describing the importance of all employees being in synC. )
COMMUNICATION
Seemingly a no brainer yet possibly the most fumbled parameter in dentistry.  Many, if not most people think communication involves mostly talking, verbal actions.  While verbal skills are indeed critical, consider this statement:  “Communication is 90% listening to what is said, and 10% HEARING, what was NOT said!” (My Father told me I had two ears and ONE mouth for a reason – I would be better off if I listened twice as much as I talked!).  Communicating to AND from your patients and to AND from your team is critical.  While this parameter is a whole separate entity in itself, the bottom line is people tend to be easier to relate too if expectations and circumstances are communicated in an excellent, accurate, and concise manner.  As a general rule, people don’t like “surprises” or changes without proper communication!Great stuff Dr. O’Brien – thanks so much for sharing. Mike has another C – “Clabbercod” – but that’s a topic for another day!

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