Grow your dental practice by embracing these 5 key qualities.
The new year is a great time to reflect on your dental practice. As you think about how far you’ve come and the plans you have for the future, it’s important to consider what your patients want.
Unless the strategies you put in place align with your patients’ expectations, any progress you make could be short-lived. Long-term success requires elevating the patient experience. If you can create a practice that they trust and retain their loyalty, then you’ll organically grow.
Is 2022 the year you add orthodontics to your practice? Today, we’re sharing 5 things patients expect from orthodontic professionals and how you can meet those requirements moving forward.
1. Dental Leaders Committed to Professional Growth
More than ever, patients need reliable, reputable dentists who are in it for the long run. They need experts who know that leadership is the journey of a lifetime, not a destination.
As you become more passionate about and committed to your work, you’ll seek continuing education (CE) beyond your field’s standard requirements. By doing so, you’ll specialize and fine-tune your expertise in the areas of dentistry that you love the most.
If you’re a general or pediatric dentist, then this might mean adding orthodontic treatments to your range of services. In your quest to expand your technical and clinical knowledge, orthodontics courses from AOS can help you reach those goals.
2. Dentists Committed to the Growing as Leaders
Despite popular belief, the best leaders aren’t born; they’re made.
If you’re committed to learning the art of leadership, then you’re already one step ahead. Patients want to visit dentists who are actively pursuing personal and professional development, and encouraging their team members to do the same. This requires owning both your strengths and your weaknesses and finding ways to improve on both.
If you’re satisfied with the status quo, then you might find it difficult to grow beyond your current situation. You might have a solid patient base at the moment, but to reach more people, you’ll need to vary your approach. By adding orthodontics to your current practice, you’ll send a strong message to your community that you’re invested in leading the best and most comprehensive dental team around.
3. Dentists Who Lead By Example
Successful dentists know that true leadership isn’t about the title or position you hold. Rather, it has everything to do with how you conduct yourself. You don’t need a label to be a leader—everything you need is already there within yourself!
If you lead your practice with honesty, integrity, and kindness, then you’ll naturally create the kind of environment that employees want to work in and patients want to visit. By setting a strong example of sound guidance, you’ll establish a solid foundation that’s ripe for growth and advancement.
Though it might seem ironic, this will often require stepping back and learning how to follow. When you allow yourself to be shaped and sharpened by other leaders in your space, you can take that same spirit of agility back to your dental team.
A few of the ways you can pursue this growth include taking CE courses, following senior experts in your field, and shadowing experienced instructors.
3. Dentists Who Inspire Their Team Members
It’s easy to tell when a dental team feels empowered, respected, and supported. They’ll serve patients with enthusiasm, and are always willing to share their knowledge or lend a listening ear. At the same time, it’s not difficult to discern when their motivation is lackluster.
As you set goals for your team this year, look for ways that you can encourage them to be their best. This includes finding opportunities to invest in their professional growth. For instance, you may encourage your team to take CE courses, where they can learn new skills and best practices.
At AOS, we offer both in-person and online CE courses that can help your team members earn credits, maintain their licenses, and grow their careers. By making these courses available to your employees, you can help them reach their full potential, and that return on investment is unmatched.
4. Dental Leaders Who Are Visionaries
Gone are the days when rigid dental practices were enough to keep new and existing patients satisfied. Patients are more discerning and invested in their care now than ever before, and they expect their dental teams to keep pace.
If you’re easily deterred by roadblocks at your practice, then it won’t take long for those issues to become evident. Maintaining trust and patient loyalty requires a visionary approach to leadership.
If you can see possibilities where others see problems, then you can turn every setback into a setup for success. This includes recognizing where your existing workflows or best practices are failing, and looking for ways to improve or rejuvenate them. For instance, if your practice isn’t growing at the rate you imagined, then it can help to add a specialty to your practice, such as orthodontics.
5. Dentists Who Take Calculated Risks
It’s natural to be averse to change. After all, it’s scary to put your life’s work on the line, especially when patient trust is involved. Still, it’s important to realize that today’s patients want to visit dentists who are willing to take calculated risks, where appropriate.
Doing so shows your confidence as a leader. It also shows that you trust your team members to rise to any challenge you put before them, and that you believe they’re capable enough to do so.
In other words, taking on a healthy degree of risk can improve your public perception. Even if you’re shaking a little as you take that next step, moving forward is the only direction to go.
Orthodontic professionals can shine in 2022.
It’s a new year, and we’re ready to embrace everything that these next few months have in store. As you think about the vision you have for your practice in 2022, remember to consider your patients’ perspectives, too.
Achieving new growth often requires stepping outside of your comfort zone and embracing new leadership initiatives. This might mean learning from experienced orthodontic professionals, and adding that skill to your growing list of services. If you’re interested in learning more about how AOS can help you achieve your personal and professional goals this year, join us today!
To learn more about our popular orthodontics courses for pediatric and general dentists, check out one of the upcoming events below.