The world seems to have 'lost it's mind' over the corona virus 'crisis'.
I truly can't quite believe that people are fighting over toilet paper in Australia.
As a result, we have even started rationing the number of toilet rolls being left in our dental practice bathrooms so that patients don't take extra rolls home with them as a bonus to their appointment.
So what does the corona virus mean for us in the dental profession?
It means some concerning times ahead that is for sure.
The difference in how this will impact on you and your practice is your attitude and approach.
These are the challenges that I believe are ahead of us:
- Consumer spending will be reduced on non essentials.
- Travel will be significantly curbed meaning that your patients' will limit all travel to and from your practice, particularly on public transport.
- International travel will also be limited which means that those patients' who usually take a yearly overseas trip will have 'spare cash' to spend on themselves.
- Patients' without private health insurance will not be coming to the dentist unless they are in extreme pain.
- 'Bargain' dentistry is gone. Who can afford to keep giving away dentistry when costs are increasing & the number of patients' seeking cheap and cheerful dentistry is diminishing.
- Practice costs will increase because of stock shortage, since almost everything we use in dentistry is manufactured outside of Australia.
- You will feel hopeless about your practice stability and future.
These are the opportunities that I believe exist right now:
- Focus all of your efforts on long term, loyal patients'.
- Spend time with these reliable patients' and those that live or work close to your practice location. Large marketing budgets to attract new patients should be reviewed. What is the return on your marketing investment?
- Patients' with private health insurance are paying for their extras so they will still see you for regular preventative care + there is an opportunity to consult with them about 'dream smile' options.
- Re train staff on product usage; time efficiency; patient service and communication. Every team member needs to 'lift' to a new level and not continue to 'go through the motions'.
- Spend more time with your patients', give them a 'wow' experience. This involves the entire team.
- Be fully involved in the day to day management of your practice, leave nothing to anyone else. Know exactly where you can save costs; what is the breakdown of your practice costs; improve service; plan & fee for your time correctly; utilize your practice facilities; maximize your skills and take control.
This uncertain time is not the end of your practice stability, it is the start of a new chapter.
I'm here to help you, so just reach out.
I have personally thrived in the dental profession for over 30 years and successfully navigated 3 recessions.
It's not doom and gloom. Opportunity to continue succeeding is waiting for you.