As a dentist, you probably spend a significant amount of time making sure you are up to speed on the latest tools and techniques in your field. While many dentists may be at the forefront of their discipline by offering the latest procedures and top-notch products, some may lack a full understanding of the business side of the industry—particularly when it comes to practice transitions. Bryant Consultants has partnered with Tony Myers to offer dental practice transition coaching.
A practice transition and selling a practice is not the same thing
Both involve a change in ownership, but a true practice transition refers to the process of incorporating another dentist into an existing dental practice, with the eventual mutual goal of either sharing ownership or transferring full ownership to the new provider. This ownership change takes place at a mutually agreed point in the future.
A practice transition may be planned as a means of growing the practice, or as an eventual exit strategy for the current owner. Many times, the actual transition could end up being a combination of these two scenarios. The main difference between a transition and a sale is that a transition usually is more of a personal matter. The current owner and the incoming provider are going to be working together, either as future partners or leading to an eventual buyout. In a straight sale, the current and new owners interact up to the completion of the financial transaction. Future decisions regarding the practice are left solely up to the new dentist.
Every practice transition is unique
You treat each of your dental patients as an individual. Your practice has its own distinctive qualities that set apart that practice from all the rest. Likewise, no two dentists in the world are exactly the same. Thus, each dental practice transition is unique from any of the processes that came before it.
Key steps to a successful dental practice transition include the following:
- Defining larger goals for the dentist to achieve after the transition is complete and the new owner is established
- Determining the right work-life balance for the dentists involved
- Evaluating how the current owner/dentist feels about holding a mentorship role for a less experienced dentist who eventually will become the co-owner or take over outright control of the practice
It all starts, however, with the existing owner creating a vision of what he or she wants… both in their life and their practice once they have relinquished full ownership. Once this vision and the connected goals have been identified, a plan should be constructed that works backward step by step to determine how those goals will be met. A dental practice consultant can help you navigate through this process.
Learn the steps of a proper dental practice transition
- Planning: The owner should be preparing for life after the transition is complete from the earliest stage of the process, even before starting to conduct interviews with new, potential associate dentists.
- Identification: Next, the current owner needs to find the right associate dentist that fits their vision and the potential future of the practice. Hiring an expert in this field can be invaluable in streamlining this selection process.
- Acclimation: Once chosen, the associate dentist should work in the practice for an established period of time that is agreed upon by both dentists. This time period typically lasts between six months and a year, although it is flexible and can be tailored to meet the needs of each specific situation. This period also is a good time to do any final planning regarding the transition of ownership.
- Conclusion: The end of the transition process involves a variety of complex business and economic factors, ranging from cash flow modeling to tax planning and practice valuation.
Navigating every aspect of the transition process can be a real challenge. An experienced accountant can handle any aspect of the financial and tax implications, while an attorney can help to construct the most clearly worded document that protects your interests. However, we believe that any dental practice transition works best when all outside counseling and assistance comes from a single source that combines these different disciplines to support your original vision for seeking this transition. That is why Bryant Consultants has partnered with Tony Myers, a dental practice transitions consultant with 30 years of experience. These services can help you realize your vision, establish goals, and set processes in place to evolve your practice to the next level, while leaving your desired legacy behind. To learn more or to get started, contact info@bryantconsultants or call (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!