Managing a business isn’t easy. Managing a thriving dental practice is downright difficult. With staffing, record keeping, marketing, and financials, it may seem like you spend the majority of your time running the office instead of caring for patients. It can leave even the most seasoned dentist overwhelmed at times and wondering why they don’t at least cram a few business classes into dental school. But when it comes to success, practice management is as important as clinical skill and dentists are regularly turning to consultants for advice.
Enter Dr. Mayer Levitt, President and owner of Jodena Consulting, a firm that provides vital support and solutions to dental practices nationwide. Dr. Levitt spent nearly 30 years managing his now 12 chair dental practices before becoming a consultant, and during his last seven years in private practice, he balanced both consulting and practice management. Dr. Levitt knows the business of being a dentist and has worked with over 525 practices on everything from creating profitable hygiene departments, to practice transitions and helping doctors optimize their efficiency and effectiveness.
Dr. Levitt graciously allowed us to pick his brain about practice management today, and to let us in on a few secrets:
DB: As a dentist, what was the hardest thing about managing your own practice?
Dr. Levitt: Unquestionably, finding and keeping a talented, caring, customer service oriented staff. It’s still the biggest problem for dental practices now.
DB: What are some of the worst mistakes a dentist can make when managing his or her practice?
Dr. Levitt: Micromanaging the staff and not allowing them to grow and learn from their mistakes is a big misstep. Also, failure to think outside of the box and stifling creativity is an issue. Sometimes you simply have to leave your comfort zone and remain open to a different approach. If you continue to do what you have always done, you will continue to get what you’ve always gotten.
DB: What’s the latest piece of advice you’re giving to your clients?
Dr. Levitt: Get going with Internet marketing. It’s an absolute must if you want your practice to remain competitive. You have to have a great website as well as a social media presence. Google is king!
Dr. Levitt also let us in on another secret. Since he is no longer practicing dentistry, he doesn’t get the satisfaction of seeing patients relieved of pain and happy with their smiles. Now he gets his kicks seeing his clients become more successful as they grow their practices. For more great practice management advice, visit Dr. Levitt’s blog. Be sure to sign up for the Jodena blog RSS Feed to receive lots of consistent, practical advice delivered right to you email (you’ll receive a FeedBurner notice via email, so be sure to confirm after signing up). To learn more about Dr. Levitt and Jodena Consulting, visit his website at www.jodena.com.