Most dentists don’t like to talk about practice debt, and they certainly don’t want to ask for help. Many convince themselves they can fix any financial problems they’re dealing with on their own, so they never consult a dental consultant for guidance. This often causes dentists more heartache and costs them more money in the long run. There are many reasons self-help just doesn’t work for, whether you’re trying to fix your financial debt situation or address other problems in the practice. Here are a few of those reasons:
You’re not objective enough. You spend a lot of time in your practice (probably more time than you care to admit), which of course means you know exactly what problems you’re facing. Sorry, but that’s not necessarily true. You might see some of the problems but not all, and have no idea what’s causing the problems you do recognize. When you hire a consultant, you’re bringing in fresh eyes that can objectively look at the situation and offer expert advice. The consult will likely point out issues you and your team members never would have identified on your own, as well as come up with a plan to fix those issues.
It’s difficult to stay focused. You might walk into the practice on Monday morning ready to start making changes, but find that by the end of the week, you haven’t accomplished any of the goals you had in mind. That’s because it’s difficult to stay motivated if you don’t have someone, like a consultant, encouraging you and monitoring your progress. The truth is, most people simply aren’t disciplined enough to follow a self-help plan, especially when it comes to debt, which means their situation never changes.
You don’t really know how to fix the problem. Before you can create a self-help plan, you have to understand what the problem is with your debt and know how to correct it. It’s likely going to take you a lot of time and research to get to that point, and while you might intend to do the work during breaks and in between patients, chances are it just isn’t going to happen. Consultants, on the other hand, have dealt with these issues before and know what it takes to help a struggling practice.
Self-help might seem like a good idea, but it often just doesn’t work—leaving practices worse off than they were before. Consider hiring a dental consultant instead and you’ll have much better success in dealing with debt and increasing production.
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