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Are you planning on scaling your dental practice? Whether you are or you’re not, keep reading because I will be making the case for growing your practice no matter what your plans.  

One of the most difficult aspects of being an entrepreneur is your mindset. Bet you didn’t think I’d say that, right? There are a lot of challenges and obstacles when it comes to being an entrepreneur, but every single solution starts in the same place…a growth mindset.  

If you don’t have a growth mindset, every single challenge will be exponentially harder to defeat because you will be meeting that challenge with a never-ending supply of resistance. 


Excuses for not expanding your dental practice

Etc., etc., etc.  

What’s that saying? “There’s as many as excuses as there are…” you get the idea. If you’re going to scale, grow, expand or do anything of importance for your business, yes dentistry is a business, you’ve got to start at the very beginning…your mindset.  

That’s a nebulous, cloudy proposition, though, isn’t it? How do you change your mindset? Glad you asked! There are all kinds of ways to get started in creating a mindset shift. You can read some wonderful books on entrepreneurialism and mindset; You can attend lectures, conferences and retreats dedicated to this topic; You can hire a coach; In fact, one of the most effective ways to challenge an old mindset and shift your thinking is by joining a mastermind. More on that a little later.  

All these solutions have one thing in common, well two things: 1) most effective solutions, when it comes to mindset shifting is finding others who’ve done it and hanging out with them; 2) these solutions are all based in taking action.  

The #1 Strategy for Scaling Your Dental Practice 

I have another strategy for shifting your mindset in addition to the ones above. This strategy allows you to bounce ideas off someone else, just like a mastermind does; you get the opportunity to brush up on new skills, just like going to a retreat or conference would; and this strategy allows you to work on your business, not just in your business, much like working with a coach would.  

But the quality that makes this secret strategy the most effective one is…this strategy will actually make you money as opposed to all the other strategies which will cost you money! Now, tbh, the above strategies are fantastic and effective and the cost is worth the Invesment, to be sure. But this strategy is designed to increase sales, expand your practice and change your mindset. So, what is it?  

If you want to scale your practice, but you can’t even envision what that will look like much less begin executing a plan, start with hiring an associate dentist. Hiring an associate dentist is the fastest way to grow your practice while allowing you the time to evolve your thinking and shift to a growth mindset. How?  

Josh Gwinn, Co-founder, CEO of OPS on the advantages of hiring an associate for your dental practice

Learning to Shift into a Growth Mindset in Your Dental Practice  

With an associate, you will have someone to bounce ideas off of when you start thinking about making changes to your practice. In fact, just making room for an associate may bring up other areas of your practice that need your attention. You may have to do a bit of remodeling; you’ll need to make room on your website for the new addition to your team; this might be a good time to talk about your pricing structures, making sure they’re up-to-date and comprehensive; and the new associate may bring her own ideas and inspirations to the discussions. Opening discussions with your new associate will allow you both to engender trust, share ideas, troubleshoot problem areas and brainstorm on solutions.  

Learn New Leadership Skills for Your Dental Practice 

When you take on an associate, there may be some subtle shifts in the power dynamics within your team structure. This is totally normal. Questions from your team may arise, like, “who do we answer to now?” “Does this mean you are stepping back?” “Are we getting a new hygienist?”  And there will definitely be questions coming from your new associate as well.  

This period of transition offers you an opportunity to step into a leadership role. If you have not already taken on a leadership role in your practice now is the time for you to step up. You went to dental school; you may have started out as an associate yourself; you started your own practice; but all of that doesn’t necessarily allow you to flex your leadership muscles.  

Taking on a new associate means your team just got bigger; the power dynamics will be shifting; you will be looked at to make the big decisions. Your leadership may have up to this point seemed almost like a by-product of your dental practice, a necessary aspect that you need to revisit from time to time. However, with an associate, there will be no mistaking that you are the person in charge, and you are the one who makes the big decisions.  

This can feel uncomfortable at first, but with time, you will accept this new role and more importantly, so will your team and your new associate. Leadership takes practice and having a new associate will allow you to figure out what kind of leadership style fits you best. Enjoy the process and everyone will be that much more comfortable while you grow into your new authority.  

Learning to Delegate to Improve Your Dental Practice 

The last area of growth that comes with taking on a new associate is in delegation. You will now have someone else who can take on more work! This will free up your brain in so many ways. You will finally get the opportunity to start thinking bigger when it comes to your practice. Why? Because now you’ll have the time and mental clarity to start working ON your business, not just IN your practice.  

This is a huge leap forward when it comes to expanding or scaling your practice. Now, you’ll watch the creative juices start flowing when it comes to ways your practice can expand and grow. This will be an exciting time because this is one of the most immediate and expansive results of taking on a new associate. You will suddenly start to look for other ways you can grow your dental practice as well we your mindset.  

Expanding your dental practice = expanding your mindset. You can’t have one without the other. Whether you want to scale your practice by adding new locations or expand your single practice by adding more dentists and operatories, taking the leap and welcoming a new associate will give you the growth mindset you need to achieve your goals and reach your vision. By taking on the responsibility of hiring a new associate to join your team you’re already taking the steps to expand your mindset, and when you expand your mindset, you expand what is possible for your business.  

One More Way to Grow Your Dental Practice Growth Mindset 

Earlier in this post I mentioned joining a mastermind as a way of shifting your thinking and turning on your growth mindset. What is a mastermind? A mastermind is a group of like-minded individuals coming together to solve problems, brainstorm creative solutions and share resources with one another, making everyone in the group much stronger. Business masterminds are incredibly effective, solution-oriented collaborations that offer the participants the opportunity to solve problems that would otherwise stick around a lot longer and be a drag on your systems and operations.   

Funny you should ask, because, our CEO, Josh Gwinn is starting up a brand-new mastermind just for dentists and dental practice owners. Josh has moderated countless masterminds. This is his wheelhouse. So, if you’re interested in joining us click the button below to register for our next one! Let’s get after it…together.