Being your own boss and running your own practice sounds great, but it also can be quite stressful. A pair of recent studies found that 82.7 percent of dentists polled were living with moderate to severe stress. We believe that, based on industry trends, the key to being more successful—which means making more money and being happier—actually is to work less and reduce your level of stress.
Reducing overhead can help alleviate financial stress. It is estimated that, for many dental practices, overhead costs consume 75 percent or more of all incoming revenue. By trying to limit overhead costs even a 1 percent reduction can increase the take-home income for a dentist working as a sole practitioner by approximately $7,000. If you can reduce your overhead to less than three-fifths of your total budget, this can generate a six-figure increase in profits. Some of the ways you can reduce overhead may involve a greater initial investment—such as purchasing a new piece of technology that is useful to your practice. If that technology works more quickly and allows you to see more patients on a daily basis, it will pay significant dividends over time. You also may seek lower real estate costs, even if it entails moving to a new location. However, this would be a huge decision that should be thoroughly assessed.
Increasing revenue is the goal of any entrepreneur—and dental practices are no different. Advertising can help increase total patient enrollment and, with it, revenue, but you need to make sure your advertising is targeting the most effective mediums and channels possible to bring new clients through your office door. You also may consider widening the net and accepting more dental insurance plans. However, Bryant Consultants understands that each practice is unique. It takes an individualized approach when determining what is in the best interest of each practice.
Time pressures represent the number one cause of stress among dentists, according to the findings of recent polls. In fact, established dentists who have been working for 6 or more years actually report more time-related stress issues and work more hours than dentists who just are starting out in their careers. To combat time pressures, many dental practices are adopting reduced schedules, such as four-day workweeks. This makes for one less day that you can see patients, but it also means you are reducing your total overhead by at least 20 percent. Also, going to a four-day week has been proven to reduce the number of no-shows and cancellations by patients. This schedule also can be more agreeable to your staff, as it creates a free day during the week to tend to errands or other obligations.
Joining forces may benefit dentists working as a sole practitioner. By affiliating with a group such as a dental support organization, dentists operating on their own have to spend less time on tasks such as billing, scheduling, marketing, and working with insurance companies. Again, this may not always be the best approach for every practice but could be a consideration for some, depending on need.
Maybe you are new to the dental field and are looking for ways to make the connections that can lead to group affiliation. Maybe you have been running your own practice for several years, but find that your business has stagnated for whatever reason. In either case, you could benefit from hiring assistance from Bryant Consultants. Our services can help you realize your vision, establish goals, and set processes in place to evolve your practice. Contact us by calling (877) 768-4799.
We provide consultation, training, and coaching to help improve the operations of your practice so that you can provide exceptional results to your patients. No office is out of reach for us; we will even come to you!