Closing cases, especially large complex cases, is crucial to dental practice growth.
But there is one problem: A dentist who doesn’t have a way of presenting complex cases cannot close them.
Many dentists don’t truly understand the sales process and dislike the very idea of selling. They simply want to spend their time chair-side, doing the profitable complex dentistry that they love.
If this is you, there’s both good news and bad news here for you.
The bad news is that for continued dental practice growth, someone in your office MUST truly understand the sales process in order to close treatments, especially the large-ticket ones where a patient may be transfixed by the bottom line.
The good news is that it doesn’t necessarily have to be you.
In Gary Kadi’s book Million Dollar Dentistry, he says, “Selling really isn’t your business. Setting up a system in your office by which sales can happen easily – that’s your responsibility.”
(Selling is the right word, by the way. That’s what is happening as you present treatments to your patients, and it can be done with dignity and respect for all involved and for the dental industry as a whole.)
So who in your office should be tasked with the bulk of the job of selling treatments to your patients, especially if you have no time and little inclination for it?
Dental Practice Growth and Your Treatment Coordinator
For maximum dental practice growth, the answer is your treatment coordinator. Turning this process over to the treatment coordinator and letting him/her make it their entire focus can be an excellent use of your time.
The hygienist will share with the patients her findings and the possible treatment, you as the dentist can confirm the findings, discuss the treatment and introduce the investment needed if you prefer, but the bulk of the discussion can be deferred to the meeting with the treatment coordinator.
In order to make this system work, the treatment coordinator needs to have a dedicated space in which to have this important discussion with the patient. No one else besides the assistant treatment coordinator should be allowed to use this space.
Its sole purpose is to be the area to which the hygienist takes patients to meet with the treatment coordinator and discuss the cost.
This is essential point that cannot be over-stressed: No one else should be allowed to use this area under any circumstances.
The reason? The patient’s emotional attachment to performing the proposed dental work is at its peak right after the problem has been described and the treatment recommended.
If every patient can have this discussion with the treatment coordinator at this time, treatment close rates will skyrocket.
If, however, the area is otherwise in use, and the patients are allowed to go home before making arrangements for having the work performed, they will often dismiss the proposed solutions, especially if family members’ attitudes are negative and they aren’t experiencing any great pain (as you, undoubtedly, know well).
The treatment coordinator also needs a dedicated, quiet area so that he/she can explain the treatment in simple terms that everyone can understand. Dentists can sometimes use big words to describe the needed work and this can cause patients anxiety until these concepts can be fully elucidated.
The treatment coordinator also needs to fully explain the value of the treatment to the patient. Only after the patient fully understands the value of the work proposed should you present the investment that will be needed for the work to be performed. In fact, throughout the whole process, the focus needs to be on getting the patient to think of the care instead of the cost.
Dental insurance should be thought of as a benefit instead of a silver bullet for the high cost of dental work. You want the patient to be grateful for any assistance, but you don’t want the patient to have the attitude of “I’m only going to do as much as my insurance covers.”
How should this all-important treatment coordinator space be set up?
- Furnish it in a living room style, rather than an office style
- Ensure the door is glass so the patient doesn’t feel penned in.
- Display framed “after” pictures of patients as well as written testimonials. (“Before” pictures should not be displayed.)
- Also frame pictures of your entire team, stories of outside interests, and tokens of community activity and involvement.
- Display and integrate any and all materials that explain to patients exactly how the described treatment will benefit them.
- Make sure to include a credit card machine so checkout can be completed in this room.
When you follow these steps and have a dedicated treatment coordinator working in a dedicated space, you can expect some wonderful results.
Skyrocketing income due to a soaring closing rate will be one of the most obvious ones, but it is certainly not the only one.
A much more peaceful practice, much less hubbub around your front office desk, and a much clearer patient routine will also be noticed.
All of these are more than welcome developments for any office.
Incorporate this change for maximum dental practice growth today!
In order to make all this work, you must have a treatment coordinator on duty whenever your office is open. If the regular treatment coordinator can’t fill the position due to other duties or days off, make certain to have a secondary treatment coordinator that will automatically step into the shoes.
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