Dr . Meis’s 10 Steps to Success (Part 2)

Welcome to Part 2 of Dr. Meis’s 10 steps to a more successful practice.

In this episode, Dr. Meis isn’t sharing conventional wisdom. He’s not recommending more marketing, better technology, more education, or adding more procedures. Those things can be helpful to a practice, but that’s not the place to start.

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Dr. John Meis: Today, we'll be talking about part two of my first 10 steps to a more successful practice on today's Dr. John Meis Show.

The first 10 steps are not the things you think they're going to be. They're not more marketing. They're not more team, they're not less team. They're not more technology. They're not this class or that class or adding this procedure. None of that are the in the first 10 steps. All of those can be helpful to a practice success level, but they aren't the place to start. In part two of this, we're going to talk about the next steps.

Step number four, be prepared. I've had the opportunity to do training for multiple large DSO. These are groups that have up to 800 practices, and I was able to see the differences in culture from group to group to group. Some groups, the doctors kind of shuffle in late and everybody is dressed like they're, you know, kind of practically in their jammies, they got their sweats and whatnot on. They kind of shuffle on in and the doctors come in late. Nobody's kind of prepared, nobody's focused on what's going on. That's one set of things that I saw as far as preparation.

Another group, the doctors and the team are there just a little bit early. They're all dressed professionally, so much so that when I looked at the team, I couldn't tell which is the doctor and which are any of the other team members. Right? They all looked professionally dressed. They were all there. Everybody's there. Everybody's got a notebook. Everybody's got a pen that they're on time. They have their breakfast and they're there seated ready to go, right at starting time. They obviously had been trained to be prepared. Have you trained your team to be prepared?

Define for your team what being prepared looks like, and there's lots of different ways to prepare this. One of them certainly is to be physically and mentally ready for the day. I've had team members over the years who would come in that hadn't had any sleep the night before, not because they had babies keeping them up but because of the extracurricular activities, and they come in being tired and grumpy and not physically or mentally prepared for the day. Morning huddle. What's your preparation for the morning huddle? These are just examples. What's your preparation? You know, my preparation was yesterday's results, today's opportunities, and what can I do in order to pump up the team so that we leave the morning huddle and greet that first patient of the day with tremendous positive energy.

Meetings and expectation for meetings. Clearly, for this large DSO was you show up on time, you look professional, you act professional, you come prepared with paper and a pencil so that you can take great notes and take what you learned back to your practices and absolutely implement and execute it. What does prepared look like in your practice? Have you defined what being prepared looks like? If not, go ahead and do that, because you'll find that you'll get excellent results. Once you have defined what being prepared looks like, of course, then you as leaders need to model it. You need to have that behavior in order so that the team will follow you and do it as well.

The next step, step number five is be coachable. In the picture it shows LeBron James, arguably the best basketball player who's ever lived, and does he have coaching? Absolutely. He has a coach that helps him work on defense and footwork. He has a coach that helps him with his physical stamina, weightlifting, and exercise. He has a coach that helps him with shooting. He has a coach that helps him with free throw shooting. He has lots of coaches, even though he's probably the very best playing in the world right now. Right? Absolutely amazing that someone at that level wants to have all this coaching. Why? Because he wants to get better, and if you want to get better, you need to be coachable as well.

One of my mentors taught me something that's been so valuable to me, and the thing that they taught me was that the more confident you are about something than you know, the more curious you should be about it as well. There should be a balance between your confidence and curiosity. If you're so confident that you're not open to other ideas, you may be wrong. You may be 100% confident and 0% right. That's what coaching allows you to do, is to be confident but still have that creativity. Coaches can help you move on so much faster than by trial and error and blood, sweat, and tears. Be coachable.

The next step, step number six is be results oriented. Be results oriented. Assess the results. Figure out how you're going to define success and how you're going to assess whether you're being successful or not. When you have that, that allows you to give credit and it allows you to take blame. Leaders, if things aren't going the way they want, they always take the blame. Right? Let's talk about assessing results. Really define what is a successful outcome. Define how we're going to measure it, and it has to be measured objectively. These are with numbers, with ratios, or whether clearly it happened or didn't. Many practices I go into assess results by how it feels. You know, I've heard this, "Oh, it felt like a slow day. It wasn't that great a day." Well, let's take a look at the numbers. Oh, you produced 20 grand today. That's a really good slow day. Let's have some more slow days just like that. Right?

Being able to assess it with objective measures. An example of that is, we know one of the numbers that I think is important to assess is hygiene reappointment. That means every hygiene patient leaving with an appointment. How effectively are we doing that? The way that we assess that, we believe it should happen at least 90% of the time. Right? That's our successful outcome. 90% of the patients leave with an appointment. We're going to measure results. We do that by taking hygiene patients that were reappointed divided by the total number of hygiene patients. That will give us that ratio that tells us if we're hitting our 90% benchmark. If we are, fantastic, we can give credit to the team. Fantastic, well done. You guys are doing a great job. This is so important to our practice and you guys are killing it. Way to go.

If we're not hitting those numbers, now we can take the blame personally. Now we can say to our team, "All right, I didn't provide enough clarity here. Here's what we're shooting for. We're shooting for 90%. Where were the places that we missed today and how can we do better tomorrow?" Great leaders always give the credit when things are going well and take the blame when they're not, because that way they can take personal responsibility for changing the results. I like this quote from Brian Tracy. "The more credit you give away, the more that will come back to you. The more you help others, the more they will want to help you."

That's not kind of human nature. Human nature is this. I mean, we tend to look at who we blame, and we tend to spread a lot of blame on other people and take just very little ourselves. But, the great leaders do the opposite. They give credit when things are going well and they take the blame when they're not because they're going to take the personal responsibility to change it. I like this statement, "If it is to be, it's up to me." I'm sure glad that rhymes because it makes a cute little saying, but if it is to be, it's up to me, and that's the attitude that we all should have as leaders. If we're not getting the results we want, let's do something to change it.

I want to remind everybody that the book that Wendy Briggs and I wrote together, The Ultimate Guide To Doubling Or Tripling Your Dental Practice Production, Amazon number one bestseller, is available. All right, and I've got a deal for you. Here's the deal. If you pay for the postage, I'll pay for the book. Okay? Free book, you just pay for the postage. You can get it at yourultimateguidebook.com.

In the book, we talk about the strategies that Wendy used with our private clients to transform their practices. We talk about how to maximize hygiene performance. We talk about maximizing clinical productivity. We talk about building a leadership team. We talk about becoming more time proof, which is secure and sustainable. We also talk about replacing your salary with profits. Those five strategies are how we transform practice after practice all across North America, and you can get the book at no charge, just pay for the postage, yourultimateguidebook.com. That's it for this Dr. John Meis Show, I'll see you next time.