There are two styles of dentist: Attack – reliably productive, predictably good at communication, encouragingly enthusiastic, popular with patients and team, Â£1000+ a day producers; Defence – reliably plodding, predictably introvert, worryingly demotivated, Â£700-Â£1000 a day producers. I’ve noticed that, no matter how many training courses you send the defence to – Breathe, Ashley Latter, Stephen Anderson et al – they carry on producing Â£700-Â£1000 a day – and I have proved elsewhere that on a 50% contract that is losing money for the principal. Defence prefer to go on clinical courses – to learn more and more about clinical skill and technique – so that they can have a more interesting time producing Â£700-Â£1000 a day – then go home to their apartment, gym and Porsche Boxster. Attack just do it. They just do Â£1000, Â£1250, Â£1500 a day – whatever patients you put in frot of them. And if you give them new patients, that will rise to over Â£2000 a day and beyond. It just happens that they do all the clinical courses as well – but they have a gene that makes them good communicators and producers. So the way to set up a dental practice is that:
Attack see all new patients and, after dealing with any initial treatment requirements, pass them on to the defence team for ongoing maintenance;
Attack are responsible for the delivery of all advanced treatment referred to them by the defence dentists in the building
Attack see 7/8 patients a day
Defence do the maintenance – full stop
Defence see 20-30 patients a day
If the principal is an attacker – the principal sees new patients and delivers advanced treatment to the existing patients who are referred from defence. Therapists/Hygienists? Same model – attack and defence – but you cannot figure which is which by production – you can however, look at the FTA rate. An attacking hygienist has a very low failure rate in the book – the patients love to visit. Up to 10% FTA. A defence hygienist has more cancellations – because they are not so much fun to be with. Over 10% FTA (and sometimes above 20%!). How does that contrast with what you are doing? Are you a principal drowning in a sea of check ups, frustrated by the inabaility to fit treatment appointments into your diary? There’s no way out of that hamster wheel unless you make radical change – and sort your team out.