Dental Business Management Tip

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Published: Wednesday, 21 May 2014 00:00 Written by 

Read our exclusive dental tips for Dental Business Management learn how to manage and communicate with your patient from our expert

Dr. Anna Yiannikos DDS, MSc, LSO, MBA Course Leader/Director of DBA

 

TIP # 1 

A crucial question:

“Do we need to master presentation skills?” 

The truth is that each time we stand in front of an audience, whether it is of 200 people in a congress or only our patient and us, we are selling ourselves, our message, our treatment plan. There are many consequences to not making a good presentation. The most important and usual is that we limit our career potential and also lose business
So in the end it comes up to either Loose or Boost our business! 

Oral Presentation our opportunity to: 
▪ to educate our employees or our dear with our patients 
▪ to persuade our suppliers for a better deal or influence our patients and gain higher case acceptance! 
▪ to motivate our team members 
▪ to boost our academic career

 
 TIP # 2 

Profitability VS Productivity VS Time! 
If we are able to complete a lot of dental treatments during an office day it does not 
necessarily mean that we are as profitable as possible! 
For example in order to be as profitable as possible 
* we have to accomplish best rates by our suppliers 
* and have a low cost of treatment 
* or offer premium services in order to be able to charge a suitable amount for the treatment. 
* Another option we can consider would be to invest on dental equipment such as a Laser or CAD/CAM that assist us in maximizing our efficiency and minimizing our time!

 
TIP # 3 

Which race do you want to run?

As Porter declared there are 2 main strategies in a business level that we can apply:

 The cost leader (offering the best price in the market)

 The differentiator (offering different/similar services but in a unique way)

If you wish to be perceived by your patients as a professional the only strategy that you should follow is the differentiator strategy! When we follow the option of a cost leader sooner or later another colleague will come along with lower prices and we will lose our strategic asset. Also very cheap services create doubt to our patients’ minds making them reconsider our quality and educational status a result that we should at all cost avoid.

 
 

 TIP # 4 

“Acknowledge your environment by learning how to make your own PEST Analysis!”

PEST Analysis (Political, Economic, Social and Technological analysis) is a very useful tool in the environmental scanning process of strategic management. 

By making an effective use of PEST analysis we are able to adopt the changes affecting our world towards our own benefit!
For example imagine if you are considering of working as a dentist in another country, if you have made a PEST analysis on the country you can know from the beginning which are the available opportunities, and how to design your approach and management in order to succeed. Also you can be aware of upcoming treats and changes so you can efficiently avoid and minimize them.

 
 

 TIP # 5 

Know your market! – Be aware of your patients needs & profile by segmenting your market!

Creating homogenous groups with similar characteristics (ex. lifestyle, age, gender, educational status etc.) so to position and design your message effectively in order to know to which patients to address every treatment, win their loyalty, understanding and trust

 

 TIP # 6 

Avoid copy paste interviews or you will get copy paste answers!

Instead of following the same old questions be creative, be spontaneous. Listen to the candidate and ask him/her questions that can really reveal his character and personality like you would have done with a friend. After all at the end of the day we tend to spent more time with our colleagues and associates than with our own family and friends. Surprisingly as a result of this habit (copy paste interviews) we tend to hire

 
 
 TIP # 7 

Selection Criteria – The most important part of recruiting!

If you cannot identify the content of a job and activities involved how can you make the most appropriate selection?

 
 TIP # 8 

SENSE OF OWNERSHIP

 What is sense of ownership from our colleagues and associates and how important it is?

Our associates do not worry if things haven’t worked as planned from the beginning. For example if a new promotion plan or some new idea we recently have started implementing hasn’t succeed yet as much we want it to. They change their point of view, and try to promote the idea in different ways and aspects. That shows their faith and trust in themselves and in us.

 
 

 TIP # 9 

Choose your Leadership Style based on your Team Performance!


Let’s be more specific:
1st - The Democratic Leader
If your team is motivated and skilled you should be a Democratic Leader. Ask them their opinion and gain fresh ideas from qualified teammates. Support and encourage them, give them challenging and interesting jobs and goals and the most of their abilities and effectiveness will reveal!
2nd - Coach Leader
You could be a coach leader when you find yourself leading an eager team, usually composed by inexperienced or even young people that are enthusiastic and fast but due to that they make a lot of mistakes. Our leadership style here is to channel their enthusiasm without dampening it. Teach them, but don’t get in the way and become an obstacle to their productivity.
3rd - Authoritative Leader
A weird situation is when we should lead a marginal team, composed by people that they don’t really want to work, but they don’t want to be unemployed either, so they do just enough to keep them from getting fired. These are the ones that never innovate. In this case we should track what they are doing so we can counter all their arguments with proof. We could apply the style of authoritative leader who mobilizes the team toward a common vision and focuses on end goals, leaving the means up to each individual.

 

 TIP # 10 

Talented people are not only gifted but also hard working.

Therefore, next time you meet a talented person, do not be jealous or think that they were born this way, on the contrary, when they recognize their charisma they develop it by investing lots of time & money and effort to it.

 

 TIP # 11 

Remember Celebration!

When you do an excellent therapy or restoration at one of your patients do you celebrate? When you hear positive feedback for your work, from your circles and patients?
When the profits of your clinic keep rising? When your associates or your employees do a great job? When the service and levels keep on going higher? Do you cherish the moment? Sit back and relax? Enjoy your accomplishments? Celebration is needed in our lives, it’ one of the most important aspects of our work in order for us to acknowledge our own achievements! In order to see the direction we going towards and take a glance and reassess our future!

 
 
 

 TIP # 12 

Negotiation Tip of the day!


With the contribution of Lenhart, Katie we will present and study the 4 basic types of negotiators:

1. The “Dominant or Driver”

2. The “Expressive or Communicator”

3. The “Interactor or Amiable personality”

4. The “Perfectionists or Analytical personalities”

1. The dominant or driver : These are people that love to be in control. They can be stubborn, impatient, but very focus on their goal. In order to deal with them do your homework before you meet them, focus on results and use facts to support your discussion.

2. The “Expressive or Communicator” The second type is the “expressive or communicator”. These are enthusiastic about the negotiation, also they are flexible and creative personalities and pay more attention to relationships. If there is anything you want them to agree on, simply discuss the issue in a Friendly Mode.

3. The "Interactor or Amiable"

 
 

 TIP # 13 

Master your Negotiation Skills!-You need them!

We us dentists negotiate daily, with our employees, our suppliers, our patients- during a negotiation process we might feel bitter or after it without energy....

There are 3 main ways that we can negotiate:

- The Soft,- The Hard or The Principled.

By adopting the soft negotiation we want to finish the negotiation quickly with friendly feeling in both sides- usually the result is bitterness.

The hard negotiator is like being in a contest, he cares only about the result that should be only beneficial for his side without caring about the opponent.

Finally the principled negotiation cares about fairness and mutual gains. This is a decent way to negotiate, without any tricks or posture.

The third negotiator is an interactor or amiable personality which are not goal oriented and they love to be everybody’s friend. They don’t take risks and at times, can depend heavily on you. All you have to do is stick to your plan and give them low risk solutions to get what you want.

4. "Perfectionists or Analytical Personalities" Finally we would come across perfectionists or analytical personalities. They want everything to be in writing and in precise order. Perfectionists have amazing control over their behavior and prove to be excellent problem solvers.

The easiest way to negotiate with analytical personalities is to take more action and speak less. Don’t overstate the details, make sure that your decision is based on logic

 
  TIP # 14 

Our employees are our assets!

Our staff has an impact on our clinic as fas as the success , the profits and our clinics perception by others is concerned. To maximize our clinics profits and have the best possible results, the selection of our employees must be very careful and must highlight our clinics values. A bad selection of employees will not only cost us time and many but can also ruin our clinics reputation and relationship with patients and other associates.

 

TIP # 15 

Green Marketing Tips - How you make Green Dentistry your Competitive Advantage!

Process: The element of marketing is the process that we use in our dental practices in order to show our eco-smart existence. Let's confirm our patient’s appointment by email or sent their x-rays via internet. Book online appointments and allow payments, the patients could go digital even when they are filling in their medical and dental records.

 TIP # 16 

The Patient Says YES!

Never forget to praise him - saying for example - Mr. Smith your decision is the correct one for the health of your mouth. Psychological experiments have shown that whatever we say the next 25 sec will be registered in the patient’s long-term memory, meaning that they will never forget it. And when Mr. Smith goes home and try to recall what happen previously in our clinic he will remember immediately the his choice was the best one!

 
 
 

 TIP # 17 

Embrace Patient complaints

Research has proved that:

The patients who have complaints resolved will tell at least five others of the good treatment;Additionally the complainers are more likely to do business with us again than non complainers;54-70% will come back to us if complaint is resolved! On the other hand 95% will come back to us if complaint is resolved quickly. The speed on our response is essential, because this will make complainers to advocate our clinic.

 
 

TIP # 18 

Invest on our External & our Internal Marketing!

A cluster of studies had concluded that:

• 96% of dissatisfied patients NEVER complain…BUT 90% of them will not return in the future • ONE unhappy patient will tell at least NINE others;

• 13% of unhappy patients will tell at least twenty others; Al these demonstrate the critical role of the word of mouth communication in attraction or not patients.

• It takes FIVE time as much effort, time and money to attract a new patient than it does to keep an existing patient-that’s true-we have to invest on our external and our internal marketing.

 
 

 TIP # 19 

The best incentives for your staff members: tangible, specific, not cash!

Research has proved the above, that the most effective rewards for our employees are the ones that are specific, measurable and do not involve cash! A promising trip to an exotic island instead of cash as a bonus has greater impact for our team since first enhance the imagination, builds emotions resulting in boosting our employees' performance, satisfaction and commitment to us!

 
 

 TIP # 20 

Present the Price by using the SANDWICH TECHNIQUE!

Don’t you know it? Let me explain it to you!

For example: Start describing to you patient the techniques and the procedure :{ The treatment will be without anaesthesia ....}

Continue with the next benefit{ Our treatment will be totally painless ... }

Then immediately without a pause announce the price {The cost for the treatment is 60 € per tooth... }

& finally finish with you last benefit {The procedure will be completed in no time! }

 

 TIP # 21 

Be open to present the price to your patients- Remember of its objectivity!

Price: There are times in our careers that we find it difficult to announce a price to our patients - we might be afraid that they will react negatively – . Remember that there is no objective price! One patient might perceived it as very high and the other one as low.

So next time a patient says to you-Oh doctor the price is too high...! you can respond: - TOO HIGH COMPARING TO WHAT????

 TIP # 22 

International Communication Tips...!

Different cultures rely differently on the two different kinds of communication (verbal and non-verbal communication) So if we deal with our Chinese fellows we have to be very cautious with our body language since they rely heavily on nonverbal cues, whereas our Germans fellows rely greatly on words.

 
 International Communication  
 

 TIP # 23 

MINIMIZE THE % OF YOUR TURNOVER!!!!

By hiring 'bad' employees! They never leave!

(Turnover = employees that leave from your clinic!)

 
 

 TIP # 24 

Selection your A star employee for your clinics!

For hiring a new employee you could use your business network: other dentists, former/recent employees, your dental association, dental lab or suppliers. Or you can allow a recruiting office to do all the work for you: make an appropriate job description select the employee, test him/her and always remember to check their references. It might be costly but is surely saves you a lot of time and energy...

 
 

 TIP # 25 

How to Choose in Hiring Process!

During the hiring process we must not choose the best candidate in the room but the best! We don’t select the best between the ones that we interview but the best for the specific position considering our needs and standards!

 
 

 TIP # 26 

Opportunity Cost & Be aware of it!

Opportunity cost is the cost of what we are doing in terms of the value of our next best alternative. 
How We Can Apply it to Our Practise in a patient case presentation:
- For example if need for a filling or inlay we can explain to our patient that a fillings benefit is a short term low cost In contrast to the inlay that might have a higher cost but its longevity will repay its price!

 

TIP # 27 

Make your ownStrategic choices!!!

We have 2 basic business strategies that we can apply: 

1) To be a cost leader = to have the lowest prices in the market for our dental services 
2) To be a differentiator = always apply the most up to date treatments, have exceptional services, find our way to be unique Moreover there are 2 main dangers if we follow the first strategy: - Sooner or later one of our colleagues will offer lower prices than ours - Our patients will not perceive us as professionals any more since we are not invest money on upgrading and updating!

 TIP # 28 

Make your research for your selected candidates!

Is it a good idea to Google our candidate employees? My personal opinion is that it isn’t. The main reason is because during the interview we must avoid bias! But who will we be able to do that if we have already being through all our candidates personal habits and information?

 

 TIP # 29 

Hire People Not from their Diplomas, but from their Personality

Let's hire people not because they are the best candidates with the best qualifications but because they are the best employees based on their personality attributes and not on their skills

If we hire employees only based on their skills we have greater possibility to fire them due to their peculiarities of character and different values that do not agree with our own!

 
 

 TIP # 30 

Prefer the value than price!!!!

The price we set for our treatments represents the value of our service. ‘If you focus on the profit you will eventually lose, since you mostly care for the short term gain; success comes when you focus in real value and excellence’, ‘Be great, not big’ Value is expressed as equal to Benefits received (= tangible or emotional) over Expectations (=PRICE). If we want to increase the value of our services we can do it with two ways The Boring Way: by increasing the benefits without changing the price or by reduce the price without changing the benefits Or we can do the Creative Way…Being different!

 
 

 TIP # 31 

Set the Right Promotion Strategy for your Clinic Through Social Media:

In today’s day and age, there are many ways to keep in touch with our patients, and to create a meaningful & long lasting relationship after the treatment we offer them, but also to meet and introduce new patience to our clinic. Social media are the most popular and handy. It is very important to select the most suitable social media option for our business, since the right choice depends on which group of people we are targeting, or which message we are trying to pass through, or even more in which country we live in!

 
 

 TIP # 32 

Be Authentic!

-In my opinion authenticity is one of the most essential characteristics for a leader. We are the leaders of our dental clinics; we are the ones that have the responsibility to inspire our employees & patients!

In order to achieve this we must be authentic! We must be and show to others who we really are, with our accomplishments and our mistakes, without the fear of judgment or rejection.

Let’s ‘walk the talk’ so we can be proud of what we really are… Just human….!

 
 

 TIP # 33 

We Built Trust by Adding Value in Every Stage of the Purchase Process

From the moment the patient hears about us, from the moment they meet us in our offices, or even when they go back at home and evaluate us. Every step of the way we must deliver the same sufficient and clear message, so we can make them feel safe and happy that they have finally found a trustworthy doctor.

 

 TIP # 34

The Golden Rule:

Treat your employees as your patients! - What is the outcome of the above statement? Staff loyalty, lower employee turnover, less money expenditure! Who does not want that?????


 TIP # 35

Do not be afraid of change-It is our human nature!

We as dentists are influenced by our economic or political environment! It is more beneficial for us if we are proactive and not reactive to change. Whatever the issue is we should be open towards it, face it and make the necessary changes -Remember- Everything is based on us- Our success and sustainability, everything! • Turnover kills us!it destroys morals and there is more chance to make mistakes when training new employees, this will influence the quality of our dental treatments and resulting in a declined patient satisfaction.

 
 
 

 TIP # 36

Instead of creating trademarks let's create lovemarks

clinics that our patients will not only be satisfied by us but they will adore us!

 
 

 TIP # 37

What is the duration of an interview?

It will last till we have a clear impression about the candidate and no doubt about our decision! We should always use situational interviews.

 
 

 TIP # 38

Ask situational questions

We can ask our candidates for example to describe how they would handle an angry patient when he/she shouts at the reception area due to a 20 min delay. Instead of asking whether they are good in customer service, it is more preferable to use precise questions of situations that can really happen.
Studies show that these are 50% more effective than the common questions and can be more predictive of the candidate’s success to the posting.

 

 TIP # 39

Have in mind the 30%-70% rule

Let the interviewee do the 70 % of the talking and we do the 30%. We need to learn as much as possible about our candidate.

 TIP #40

Resume (CV’s) vs application forms

The application form gives a clear picture for the applicant instead of a CV. A study found that 40% of the information that a resume gives, might be misleading information (example once had a candidate that send me two different CVs!) Have in mind: Application forms tell you what you want to know
Résumés tell you what the candidate wants you to know!

 

 TIP #41

Here are the Best Predictors of Success on the Job based on several studies:

Testing 53%
Temporary job assignment 44%
Reference check 26%
Experience 18%
Interview 14%
Academic achievement 11%
Age – 1%

 

 TIP #42

Ask THE question!

‘How was your first day/week at our clinic? 
If we do not get the following answer which is the expected or a similar one of this: ‘Perfect! I love my job, this is an ideal position for me!’ we should suspect that something is going wrong. The first period at work should be the best period for them; similar to a couple that is falling in love.

 
 

TIP #43

Still you have hired the wrong assistant

Fire her immediately before she disturbs yours, your team’s or the patient's peace! 
I remember once I hired a receptionist who in 2 days gave me 2 big complaints from some very nice patients of my clinic – the complaint was that she had a childish, annoying attitude towards them! 
But what is next? We can call our best alternative or we could go for a new hiring process (which is a big disadvantage of time and money consuming).

 
 

TIP #44

How to avoid boring meetings with your team?

Change the meeting place!If I need to have a creative meeting I choose to do it in a different environment than my clinic!By disrupting predictable patterns will stimulate inspiration!

 
 

 TIP #45

Why do we need our employees?

Yes, there top priorities should be to do the job that they have been employed for:
A dental assistant to prepare the patient, a receptionist to book the appointments BUT do not forget the core reason of their employment and not just their priorities!
The core is to help you, is to make your life easier, lighter and happier!!

 

TIP #46

The ancient Greek Heraclitus said: ‘You cannot step into the same river twice’

Change is constant but we want to stay in our comfort zones instead. And what do we do? We stay and protect our status quo instead of embracing change, why? Because we feel familiar with it!
Here comes a real life example: We want to buy a dental laser but we are skeptical due to the cost of the equipment. And what happens next? A colleague will purchase it and we will lose our opportunity to position ourselves as the differentiators in our field!


 TIP #47

Why do we need accounting information?

We as managers or owners of our dental clinics interconnect with our 
• Employees 
• Government 
• Suppliers 
• Bank
• Clients (patients) 
There is a giving and receiving activity with them which is influencing the financial statements of our dental office.
In more detail & examples:
1. Our employees give us their skills and receive from us wages, bonuses and job security,
2. Our government might give us grants and will receive taxes from us,
3. Our suppliers will offer us their goods and services and will get back our money,
4. Banks that we have transactions with give us money in a form of a short-term or long-term loan and they receive interest,
5. Finally, and most importantly, our patients receive care from us and pay for their services.

 

TIP #48

Assets VS Liabilities VS Equity:

3 terms of Balance Sheet (One of our financial statements)

Our office as a building is an asset and we can buy it either by borrowing the money with from a bank (bank loan) -this is a liability, or in case we have already the money which is equity.

 
 

TIP #49

Which are our business ASSETS?

Our business assets are all the economic resources that we own providing us with benefits in the future and helping us in providing our dental services to our patients directly or indirectly.
Our panoramic x-ray machine and our desk are assets, the first as a direct asset whereas the second as an indirect.
Generally speaking, assets are all the things that we have bought, all our cash and money that our patients owe to us.

 

TIP #50

Liabilities: obligations that involve future outflows

 The most common liabilities are money owed to:

• Financial institutions (Bank)
• Employees, suppliers, lab
• Goverment

 

 TIP #51

Involve our employees

Let’s involve our employees to different projects and tasks in order to make them understand what we are talking about better, as Confucius declared at 450 BC there are different methods for pedagogy 
• Tell me only, and I shall forget-10%
• Show me, and I may remember-40%
• Involve me, and I shall understand-80%

 
 
 

 TIP #52

Do not be afraid of the ‘p’(=profit)word: we need it!

Clinics need to earn money-profits, to acquire new equipment in order to improve the quality of dental care. We need money to replace old buildings and equipment when they wear out, for our offices renovation. The profits are important to achieve our goals related to high quality dental care. Definitely, profits are not our only reason of our existence – they are just a means to an end and not an end in itself!

 
 

 TIP #53

Remember the number 4!

Our clinics have 4 types of expenses that we must deal with and each one of them has its own KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). The KPI is a number or a ratio that indicates how well our clinic is performing.


We have 4 basic types of expenses:
• staff, 
• lab, 
• supply, 
• facility costs

 
 

 TIP #54

Staff Expenses should be less than 20-25% of our gross revenue.

But how can we achieve that?
We can keep or improve the percentage by increasing our employees’ production by making them more efficient. More specific if we earn 500,000 Euros yearly and we pay 150,000 Euros for staff expenses then the KPI is 30% which is too high. But if we grow next year with the same staff being more productive, earning 750,000 Euros then our staff expense becomes 20% which is an expectable percentage for staff expenses.

 

 TIP #55

Lab Fees must be kept at 10% of our gross revenue.


Here is a friendly reminder, try to charge your patients 4-5 times your lab fees (= rule of 5). Clinics with higher lab costs usually are the ones with higher profits since that means that we provide higher value dental treatments.

 TIP #56

Supply costs should be not more than 5% of our gross income.


Let’s buy smarter, reduce the number of suppliers or the number of supplies that we ordero as to reduce waste and try to find better deals.

 

 TIP #57

Facility costs should be less than 5-7% of our gross income.

Seek to achieve a lower rate for your rent or negotiate the existing one. 

Also choose in advance the companies that will be responsible for repairs. Imagine this, our computer breaks down and out of panic we call a company that is the most expensive in the market - disaster. Being prepared is the best way to achieve better prices and deals.

 

 TIP #58

True Facts:

“Like it or not, you are a negotiator.” - Also have in mind that ‘conflict is inevitable!’
But instead of having a destructive communication with your employee, or supplier or patient let’s transform it into a problem solving situation. It is more productive with no hurt feelings!

 
 
 

 TIP #59

Find the type of personality of others personality in negotiation in order to communicate better!

Is the other part:
1. A dominant negotiator?
2. Expressive or communicator?
3. Amiable?
4. Perfectionist?
All 4 categories as well as how to handle each character will be described in next part as of daily advises.

 
 

 TIP #60

Characteristics of Dominant Negotiator

Inflexible, rigid. My advice in this case: Be well prepared and talk with facts!

 
 

 TIP #61

Characteristics of an Expressive or Communicator Negotiator:

emotional 

My advice in this case: Handle the discussion in a friendly manner if you want your work to be done.

 

 TIP #62

Characteristics of Amiable Negotiator:

they are NOT goal oriented, do not take risks. My advice in this case: Find common ground with them, and low risk solutions since they may take some time to decide.


 

 TIP #63

Characteristics of a Perfectionist:

They want everything to be in writing and precise. My advice in this case: Convince them with logic facts, do not speak a lot, and rather take actions!

 
 

 TIP #64

A crucial question: “Do we need to master presentation skills?”

The truth is that each time we stand up in front of and audience, whether it is of a 200 people in a congress or we are only with our patient we are selling ourselves, our message, our treatment plan. While we are doing this the audience (however that is) is sitting there judging you. That judgment can be either positive or negative but there will definitely be a judgment. Your presentation creates feelings, of trust or rejection. There are very real consequences to not presenting our selves well. We will severely limit our career potential and can lose business. The decision in the end is always up to us - loose or boost our business!

 
 

 TIP #65

Be prepared: 90% of the success of your presentation is determined before we stand up in front of your audience!

A great presentation is not about you, your comfort or your expertise. It’s about your audience. Fail to prepare→ Prepare to fail.
‘Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason mastery demands all of a person.’ Albert Einstein
Mastering Presentation skills depends not only on our charisma but also on our preparation!

 

 TIP #66

 Why do we refuse to prepare correctly?

There are 3 main reasons for that:
1. “I know someone that never prepares and never fails”
It is a myth. You are all the time with that person so you cannot be sure of what kind of a preparation and if he does a preparation in the end – My opinion and personal experience shows that everyone that is a successful presenter - prepares!
2. “I do prepare – in my head”. 
You will never get nervous in your own head; never use hems and ums in your head. You will be prefect in your own head - because it is your head!
3. ‘I don’t have time to prepare’.
And next day you lead to be a lousy presenter - with no eye contact with the audience because you read the slides, your voice is monotone, reading and not explaining, resulting in a presentation with unclear message! – Maybe next time you will find time to prepare!

 TIP #67

 Patient satisfaction surveys & why we need them!

Research has shown that these are the possible reasons that patients choose to come to us: price, service quality, convenience, past satisfaction - patients will come back to us not because we are the cheapest but because they are satisfied with us. This shows the growing impact that patient satisfaction and dissatisfaction have on the business success of dental practice.

 TIP #68

 Why patients change dentists?

A study indicated that dissatisfaction with the way patients were handled by their dentists was the reason for 46% of the patients that were changing dentists.

 
 

 TIP #69

 What do we want to learn when we conduct a patient satisfaction survey?

Our objective is to find out which are the most important factors for patients a, so to continue visiting our dental offices and in the same time find out in which areas we lack, so to improve ourselves and the treatments we offer.

 
 

TIP #70

 How often should we do a patient satisfaction survey?

Twice per year or if we think that something is going wrong in our practices so via a patient satisfaction survey we can locate the cause asap!

 
 

TIP #71

 How to check before delivering the questionnaires?

Through a pilot study!
You cat distribute it to a small amount of patients (8-10) for completion while they are waiting for their appointment and then ask them for their impressions (about the format, wording ordering, and simplicity of the questions) and their suggestions. By this you can check and improve your questionnaire in an easy and quick way based directly on the focus of your patients from the beginning.

 
 

TIP #72

 Find the right sample size from your patient data so to receive accuracy on results!

 

 TIP #73

 How should we deliver the questionnaires?

Call our patients; ask them in person, though mail or emails?
The main criteria to choose the right method are the time constraints and the speed that you want to collect the data from them.

 

 TIP #74

 I want to use a mail survey how can I do it effectively? Part1

1. We can prepare and mail the surveys at the same time so to reflect ‘one point in time’.
2. We can provide a postage-paid return, self –addressed mailer for the patient to return the survey

 

 TIP #75

 I want to use a mail survey how can I do it effectively? Part2

3. We can offer a small incentive for responding to the questionnaire such as a small discount on their next dental prophylaxis so to increase the response rates.
4. We can send a follow-up postcard reminder that explains the importance of the results of the survey for the service that we are going to provide to our patients.

 

 

 TIP #76

 We have the data and the results, what comes next?

Immediately apply the results in your practice and wait for the immediate miracles to happen!

 

 

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