CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Even though all endodontic practices are essentially engaged in the same business and deliver the same services, there can be vast differences in the level of practice success. While some of the differences can be chalked up to demographic variations between communities, even two practices in the same community can show dramatic differences.
It is the practice owner’s personality that is often the key variable which determines how successful a practice is likely to be. Some doctors have a personality and natural leadership ability that stimulates growth and success. For other doctors, it takes more effort to get to the same level (more about this at the end of the article).
In a world where unlimited knowledge about practically anything is just a Google search away, attitude is the differentiator. Here are some key personality factors of an owner doctor that contribute to making a practice more successful:
- Passion and push
When you love what you do, there are follow-on effects: a desire to be good at what you do, having fun and enjoying every day, and a work ethic to be focused and productive with your time spent meaningfully. That passion and the innate drive to keep pushing yourself to improve keeps a practice owner moving forward.
- Curiosity and enjoying the game
Business has an economic result, but the experience of business ownership is an intangible benefit to be enjoyed. When you are curious about how to keep growing and optimizing the business, then roadblocks and limits are seen as opportunities. It’s a fun game of possibilities to play where learning and growth inspires persistence to succeed.
- Future-Focused Priorities and Decisiveness
You see the limited results of GP-performed endo all the time: missed MB2 canals that blow up, retreatments, separated instruments, and cases where the doctor simply realizes they are in over their head. Every time they refer a case where they get in trouble, it’s an opportunity to help them realize endodontists provide a faster and more predictable clinical outcome with a significantly reduced risk of a failed case or need for retreatment. It’s generally not possible for them to rise to your level: They lack the clinical techniques plus all the specialized technology and tools we have in our practices, such as CBCT, microscopes, etc.
- People-based investment mindset
You need others to help you reach your goals, which means surrounding yourself with people who have the skills to support you. That means investing in people to align themselves with you. Whether it’s your team, your referrers, a mentor or coach, or other professional advisors, building relationships where you can amplify and access the expertise and resources of others is vital.
It’s easy to see how these leadership factors work together to create a positive, happy, engaged, forward-looking practice. When the doctor embodies these qualities fully, it creates a culture for the entire team. The full force of growth potential becomes unlocked. 90% of practice growth is driven by the team, and the team’s attitude and mindset reflect the doctor.
Upping your game
It is estimated that only 10% of people have natural superlative leadership qualities. Another 20% are within reach of being very effective leaders. What does that mean for the 70% that agree in principle but haven’t found the knack of putting leadership into action?
Everyone can take stock of their strengths and weaknesses. You might be great at vision but limited when it comes to motivating your team. Or you might be great at creating an enjoyable work environment, but weak at building referrer relationships to drive growth. Or you might provide excellent clinical care but have trouble staying on-time with your schedule.
Many doctors focus on their leadership strengths but gloss over the impact of their weaknesses. That inattention to certain aspects of business ownership dilutes your success far more than you would think and compels you to work so much harder to achieve the success you want.
The secret is put the right delegation, systems and accountability around your own limitations as a business owner. Having a coach support you with a 360-degree approach to your team and practice systems could be all it takes to achieve your next level of success.