Tougher times ahead in dentistry…

The dental business environment is changing. Rapidly so. Changes such as more competition, increasing supply of dentists, NHS funding crisis, more patient mobility have been in the pipeline for a little while. The new NHS contracts and the belief of potential new entrants like supermarkets and High Street players that dentistry is a viable market will cause an avalanche of more changes and a permanent restructuring of the industry.

In short what it will take to survive and thrive within dentistry will be redefined. Very likely, the defining skill that dentists will need to thrive will be “business skills” – being a good dentists wont differentiate your practice enough to give it the competitive edge it needs to get ahead of others.

Make the Most of Your Dental Business in 2017

With such drastic changes due, new winners will surely emerge and there will be lots for whom things will not be as good. The expected winners will be asking themselves what can be done now to emerge with some advantage – planning their way to suceess.

Getting ahead of the crowd

Business planning is not something that dentists do all that much. Arguably, it hasn’t been needed so far. Dentistry has been a straightforward business – about being a good dentist. Not so now. Like the lawyers, pharmacists and opticians whose sectors undertook similar journeys, dentists are rapidly finding that it is not their professional skills that differentiates competitive advantage but their business and management skills and the ability to attract patients. At a large lawyers commented… “doing the work is easy, the challenge is business development [sales]”.

Whats the urgency?

There is gloom in dentistry that cannot be explained away by the recession the world at large is experiencing. Many are convinced that the “good times” are definitely behind the industry. cBPE has come accross more than one set of accounts where the dentist principal’s earning are below the minimum wage.  There’s tales of banks not lending or renewing overdraft and getting edgy about the mangement capability of principals being able to manage multi-site dental business.

However, none of these define the need to act now for those doing better. Why its important to act now rather than later is about getting hold of the opportunities for the benefit of your practice. Act later and others will taken the lead.

cBPE can help

Business planning is not something that dentists do all that much. Arguably, it hasn’t been needed so far. Dentistry has been a straightforward business – about being a good dentist. Not so now. Like the lawyers, pharmacists and opticians whose sectors undertook similar journeys, dentists are rapidly finding that it is not their professional skills that differentiates them from the competition. Rather, competitive advantage is endowed through business and management skills and the ability to attract patients. As a pratner at large lawyers firm commented to cBPE… “doing the work is easy, the challenge is business development [sales]”.

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... you'd feel more energised and motivated. You might find you are questioned, maybe feel stretched - but, always you will feel yourself more focused and more powerful. You might find that the creative streak and confidence rubs off on you and the people around you, along with the entrepreneurship and success. Most of all, you'll feel that problems are there to be solved, and that you have the capacity to do it. Hopefully, the strategic thinking Hitesh puts on your table will add an extra dimension to how you manage your business and personal growth. Hitesh's big thing is that learning (faster and better than others), and therefore, adapting is the key to success. His work with organisations is very much about developing a capacity for its people to solve problems for themselves and therefore excel. He specialises in business strategy and in helping clients to derive creative solutions to business problems. I have seen him do that with start ups, small and large businesses. Although he owns sizeable businesses himself, his real job (ie his calling) is the work he does with other people's businesses - especially dentists - and the spectacular success he has achieved there speaks itself and for his effectiveness in implementing growth. By Jay Shah, long time associate I am entrepreneur with many businesses under my belt, having started some from scratch and taken others over or disposed of them. As part of the sell out of one, I ended up in a progressive corporate - and so to add to the 20 years of owning, growing and running business, I also have 10 years in corporate senior management. Unusual in someone like me is that I have a very solid academic background - two bachelors graduations plus a business masters degree from one of the top ranked MBA schools (Cranfield). And not least, the formal coaching training! Business is a lifestyle thing with me. I own and am still very motivated to run business with a multi-million pound asset base. Coaching for me, is a very satisfying extension to that lifestyle. Where I am involved, I have a track record of making a real difference to the businesses, their owners and staff. I specialise in business strategy and in deriving (in conjunction with you) creative solutions to business problems. That said, my coaching is pragmatic in that I address implementation and how to embed change. I also specialize in certain sectors like dentistry, medical, legal and similar people businesses. Also, in direct marketing and comparable business where getting and keeping customers is the critical success factor.

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