One of the most important elements of efficiency is preparedness. Million Dollar PPO Coaching and Consulting focuses on “profitability through efficiency.” In order for an office to achieve maximum efficiency, an organized system for communication and planning must be established. One of the ways in which we help offices to communicate more effectively is through a series of regularly scheduled meetings. We suggest the following organizational structure for meetings in a successful practice:

Your office should never begin a new calendar year without a comprehensive annual planning session. This meeting should be held in December prior to the start of a new year and should be mandatory for every team member. We suggest a half-day meeting outside of regular office hours.

Your annual planning session should begin with a comprehensive review of the current year. You should discuss your numbers and compare the actual performance of the office with your established financial goals. It’s not enough to look at the raw data. You and your team must ask and answer why — “Why were we able to reach our goal, or what factors prevented our ability to meet our goal”? The whys will allow you to more accurately establish new goals for the upcoming year.

In addition to your financial goals, you should review any other goals, such as the addition of equipment, technology, or staff. Each team member should also be given the opportunity to discuss their own personal goals and achievements throughout the year.

Following this recap, plan your new year’s calendar. Determine which days you will be closed and account for the doctor’s vacation schedule. Your team should get in the habit of providing as much notice as possible for requesting vacation days. In addition, plan your bi-weekly meetings as well as your training/CE calendar. Your goal for this exercise should be to create a very clear, accurate calendar that includes the total number of production days available for the year. Knowing the total amount of days available for production allows you to set goals more accurately — and to be able to adjust your monthly goals to match your calendar.

While financial goals are a critical part of a successful practice, you should also establish additional goals for your team and your practice. These goals can involve personal and professional development, training, technology, and/or growth. For example, you may have a team member who is interested in adding an additional level of certification or training in order to better serve themselves and the practice.

You may also be interested in adding additional procedures to offer to your patients or adding a piece of technology to the practice. These goals should be openly discussed so that each member of the team is aware of the direction of the practice and the relationship of these goals to their position.

All of these goals require planning. The execution required to achieve these goals can easily interfere with the smooth and effortless performance of a practice. Preparedness and communication can minimize any interference and confusion, and facilitate the achievement of your goals.

In addition to planning, many of the goals that you set will require input from one or more of the experts that you look to for guidance, like your accountant, lawyer, or field sales consultant. Having a clear direction for the practice to travel will better prepare you and your team, and allow you to have more effective guidance from your supporting counsel. Clarity allows for more accurate advice and a more successful outcome.

Effective year-end planning is one of the keys to maximum efficiency and optimal performance. Take the time to plan so that you control the direction of your practice -instead of it controlling you.

If you are interested in learning how Million Dollar PPO Coaching and Consulting can help improve your practice visit our Web site.

Dr. Matthew Krieger is CEO and founder of Million Dollar PPO, a dental practice consulting and coaching company serving dentists across the United States. Its core philosophy is increasing profitability through increasing efficiency. It works with its clients through various programs to ensure that they have the understanding and the tools to create the practice that they’ve always dreamed of.