Aldridge & Associates, LLC

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Blog and News


Why Should You Measure Your Patient’s Satisfaction?

We don’t know what we don’t know. If don’t listen to our patients, the good and the bad, we have no way to measure how we truly are doing. There is one good thing that can come out of poor reviews and that is we can learn where we can approve upon. We have to know where we are failing in order to learn how to become successful.

Is Your Dental Team Prepared?

Do you know how much valuable time is lost looking for dental materials and supplies while the patients sits in the treatment room anticipating the treatment to come? With well-designed systems such as those that can be purchased through Aldridge & Associates, LLC your entire office can be set-up to include every procedure and material so you can focus on providing excellent dental care while maximizing profits. Increase efficiency, decreased time and maintain The Dentist’s Edge with Standard Operating Procedures.

Should You Cross-Train Your Dental Team?

Should you cross-train your dental team? There is an old adage that says when everybody is responsible for everything, nobody is responsible for anything. The answer to cross-training a dental team is it depends. If you have a small office (3-4 treatment rooms – total) then it may be beneficial to cross-train your employees. Examples include answering phones during lunch time, acquiring x-rays and/or CBCTs, presenting dental treatment plans below <$3,000 – should be done chairside in most instances and making financial arrangements for large cases. However, in most cases each employee should spend at least 90% of their time doing what they do best. In other words, match their strengths with a well-designed and thought out job description directly tied into the business philosophy and let them excel. Seldom do professional teams (baseball, football, soccer, etc.) or a beautiful orchestra cross train their professionals. Keep your Dentist’s Edge by keeping it simple. Make sure you match your employees strengths with their job description and help them reach for the stars.

Is Your Office Scheduling for Your Success?

The schedule is the command center of the practice. If the schedule is not managed properly the practice becomes a roller coaster ride filled with stress, chaos and tension. A 3-minute roller coaster ride at an amusement park can be fun, but imagine spending 8-10 hours every day on this sort of ride. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid this situation. Learning how to schedule for your success is critical to enable you to keep the dentist's edge.Where do you schedule new patients, surgery, crown & bridge, basic restorative, denture adjustments or suture removals? Analogous to the airline and hotel industry it is important to know how to schedule an appointment to maximize profitability and minimize stress. Learn from the experts as we have walked in your shoes.

The "Z" in the Success in Dentistry

Zest – Dentistry is a wonderful profession that enables each of us to serve our patients, colleagues and give-back to our community and family. Let your Zest be the inspiration that helps lead your team.

The "Y" in the Success in Dentistry

Yellow Pages - Whether you believe it or not, the yellow pages are a thing of the past. Investing your hard earned money on yellow pages advertising is like throwing hundred dollar bills ($100) on the campfire. For years the yellow pages have sucked dental advertising budgets dry. In 2017, over 93% of business searches are conducted on the internet. Do you remember the last time you used the phone book for anything?

The "X" in the Success in Dentistry

X-rays – An FMX and Panoramic X-ray or CBCT, for new patients are still the standard of care. I see more and more colleagues failing to order the appropriate images (because insurance won’t pay for it) necessary to evaluate the head and neck area for which we possess tremendous knowledge. The panoramic x-ray has fantastic value and when displayed and presented to the patient on large screen monitors, serves as a wonderful education tool which builds rapport, value and trust (RVT). The ability to evaluate the patient for intra-osseous pathology, elongated Styloid processes, internal carotid plaque, TMJ, sinus pathology and much more warrants acquiring a beautiful panoramic x-ray. With respect to FMX or Bite Wings we need to hold our team accountable for acquiring diagnostic images so we can do what we do best. I see hundreds of images that would not pass the test in dental school for either the dentist or dental assistant.

The "W" in the Success in Dentistry

Website – The days of hanging up your shingle and expecting patients to call or walk-in your dental office are gone. Print media is on a continual decline, at an all-time low, and will continue to (newspapers distribution is at its lowest point since 1952) deteriorate. Print media that promotes your services based upon price only serves to promote dentistry as a commodity that leads to patients believing a dentist is a dentist is a dentist. There is a place for print marketing (your best patients - approximately 20% of your business). However, after tracking 100’s of client’s data sets it is minimal at best. When today’s consumer needs a dentist they will find them through referral (friend, family, co-worker, employer insurance, etc.) or turn to the world wide web. However, just having a website is not sufficient. Today, consumers (including new and existing patient base) are glued to their smartphones, tablets and laptops. The typical user is continuously checking their e-mail, updating their social profiles, searching for a destination (your office) and on average spending 5 – 6 hours per day navigating their device. According to Pew Research (April, 2015), 64% of American adults now own a smartphone of some kind, up from 35% in the spring of 2011. The ability to “stay in touch” has changed from a luxury to a necessity for all types of users. We are truly a people “on the go.” Patients expect you and your website to be GREAT. If you don’t have a website, you don’t exist and if you have a website and the consumer doesn’t like what they see they will bounce (bounce rate) right off of your page and move to the next.

The "V" in the Success in Dentistry

Voicemail – National data suggests that 80-87% of “New Patients” who call today’s dentist and are greeted by voicemail will hang-up and go to the next dentist on their list. That means that you will lose 80 – 87 of every 100 new patient calls if you have employed voicemail to answer your telephone during regular business hours. We are in the customer service and we need to be available for our existing and potential new patients during regular business hours so we don’t lose them to our competitors. Voicemail services have painted a picture through marketing that has induced too many dentists to rely upon their services because our front office has convinced us they are too busy to answer the telephone. The patient has chosen to call our office and we need to teach our team members to smile, answer the telephone within 2 – 3 rings and make every patient feel welcomed and believe they have called the finest office in their community. Case conversion begins with the first patient “touch-point” and that is usually the telephone. Two weeks ago a colleague of mine called his office nine (9) times and informed me that on all nine instances his call went to voicemail. Enough said?

The "U" in the Success in Dentistry

Uniformity – The ability to provide a consistent product and service that creates value for each and every patient (consumer) is one of the biggest challenges facing any business. As dentist we are the primary revenue producer and unfortunately we seldom serve on the front line and interact with the patient when they are paying for our services. Your financial coordinator or whoever collects monies on your behalf needs to be trained and supported with proven financial systems to protect the financial health of your business. If the patient deserves continuity of care, then the business owner deserves uniformity of payment. It is estimated that the average general dentist loses between $500,000 and $2,000,000 after tax dollars over a 20-30 year career because of inadequate business training. We can do better! However, without proven systems your financial health will be jeopardized.