When you’re producing about $16,000 per month and not seeing even a hint of growth, you know you are going nowhere. That’s where I was. I had bounced around, attending seminars and events all over the country, looking for an answer. My staff was a mess, I had nobody I could rely on, and the stress and bills were piling up higher and higher.
I’m not in a wealthy neighborhood, and over the years many more dentists had started up in my area, including corporate practices and other large insurance-driven “mills”. At one point, I got so desperate I started to think “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ’em”. I added on a bunch of highly discounted PPO plans. Hello more work for LESS money.
I had no control over what was going on in my practice. I even ended up a bit superstitious about it (like when someone decides “If I wear the 1985 Super Bowl Jersey on Tuesday, the Bears win this week”). But it didn’t matter if I drove a different way to work, or listened to classic rock n’ roll on the way, it still didn’t mean I would have a productive day (I didn’t really think it would, but at that point I was willing to try anything).
Then one day I ended up speaking with Judy Marcus from Vanguard Dental Management. I was telling her about my situation and rambling on about all my problems (an endless supply).
I thought the barriers to my practice were insurmountable; Judy had a different opinion. At Vanguard they had a real answer for me, a precise system, their Blueprint for Practice Prosperity.
It made perfect sense! It wasn’t a new-fangled marketing gimmick, or a cleverly disguised plan to turn my practice into a low-paying insurance dental “factory”, requiring me to add 5 associates and 12 more chairs. That’s never been my dream. It was a system specifically designed to address every aspect of, and provide workable solutions for, the type of practice I wanted to have: Productive and profitable, without sacrificing the personal touch and quality of service that is my standard.
Fast forward: As of last month, I’ve been averaging close to $100,000 in collections and production – for 5 months running! Of that, less than 50% is from insurance.
We learned and implemented an effective marketing program to attract the right type of new patients to my practice. It’s incredible! We’ve gotten more new patients each month since putting this in place than I’ve seen in YEARS! And they are really quality, wonderful new patients! They can afford the treatment they need, and aren’t totally motivated by insurance.
Judy trained my staff in the Vanguard system. And I mean really trained them! The marketing definitely changed the type of patients we brought in, but now they are actually paying for the work they needed.
I no longer constantly hear “I only want to do what my insurance will cover”. I can say with confidence, my practice is not restricted by insurance AT ALL.
On top of that, patients are scheduled properly, recall is done properly, reactivation is working (it is now normal for us to bring back 10+ patients each month we previously thought were long gone).
Really, every aspect of the practice is now being done properly, BY MY STAFF!
In over 30 years of practice, I now have by far the best team I’ve ever had.
Plus, I didn’t have to spend a single cent on travel to train my staff and get this all done! Not having to spend thousands on flights and hotels was a big relief. And the cost of the training itself was VERY reasonable.
The Vanguard Blueprint system we learned and implemented in our office is ingenious. It took me on a straight-line path from $16,000 a month to $100,000. And it is so easy to learn and implement.
Michael A. Bender, DDS