Practice growth must be approached with good business sense. All successful business owners know that growth includes a meaningful plan for investment and an accurate analysis of the potential for return on that investment. It also requires what I like to call a “growth mindset.” I have conversations every week with doctors who are thinking of starting a practice, or who own established practices but have hit a plateau in the growth of their business, or are seeking to transition and expand. My goal is to help doctors develop their growth mindset and to strategically evaluate ways to achieve better results from their practices and investments.
How does your facility appear to patients? How does the functionality contribute to, or hinder, their experience in your office? The location and appearance of your office may be limiting factors in your ability to grow. A good analysis for your growth plan should include the evaluation of your facility by an objective expert who assess and then recommend renovation, upgrades, or even a relocation that can make a huge difference in your results.
What is the capacity of your office to produce revenue based on the size of the practice as determined by the number of treatment rooms you have available to seat patients? Lots of doctors base business decisions on the ebb and flow of the schedule in the office. It is easy to look at a few holes in the schedule and think it might not make business sense to expand, but it may. More importantly think about the times when there are no chairs available and you are rescheduling a procedure that you could have done if you only had a place to treat the “customers” who are your patients.
No business reaches 100% capacity at all times. You build to meet the demand like Dunkins. Some tables are empty and the drive thru is not always busy but when you are ready for coffee so is Dunkin. It’s ok to have an empty room sometimes. In fact is it profitable. Think about how convenient and profitable it is to perform an additional procedure on a patient today. They don’t have to come back (might not) and you already paid all overhead except for your lab (10%) and supplies (6%). That is a profit of 84%. Doing more quality dentistry efficiently during business hours is essential to profitability. That’s why McDonald’s asks “Would you like fries with that?”
The correct facility size increases productivity and patient experience. Take this test: your collections______ / total number of operatories = __________ your per operatory collections average. If you scored 250K per op you are healthy based on a 4 day week. If you’re producing 5 days per week the healthy per op average is 300K. You produce for 20% more hours. Hours and procedures are the largest contributing factors to collections while the number of doctors working in the space doesn’t significantly increase production. Maybe 10%. It makes sense, if you short yourself an op for another dentist to produce your production goes down and theirs goes up. It’s almost a wash as far as collections, but income suffers.
If you scored below healthy let’s look together to see why. If you are over congratulations! If you are at or near the upper limit you’ve probably hit a plateau. How can you get beyond your plateau and grow? If you are short just one operatory it could be costing your business $250,000 year revenue x 10 years $2,500,000, 20 years $5 million. We can determine if expansion is a good option for you and how to get a significant return on your investment. Business is getting more competitive at a lower margin so it is more important than ever to strategically plan your growth and profitability. If you are looking to start, looking to grow, or have reached a plateau in your business I can meet you wherever you are at in the process and work with you to plan for your goals. Please take a moment to view featured projects and read testimonials from doctors about their projects. You can also fill out Getting Started forms on my website. Let’s meet to discuss ways we can work together to plan and build the successful modern dental practice of your dreams.