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Watch: Bringing Together Two Dentists for Mentorship and Growth


Dr. Gagnon needed another dentist in her practice after her father retired. Dr. Sikora wanted her first associateship out of dental school to include plenty of hands-on mentorship – in a state where she had no connections.

Practice Profile: Low Overhead, High Growth Potential

Be the only dentist in a family-friendly, fast-growing town with good schools! This beautiful Wisconsin area boasts plentiful nearby entertainment and outdoor leisure, including a network of hiking trails and lots of local fishing and hunting.

Webinar Replay: Find Career Success with ADA Practice Transitions

ADA Practice Transitions goes beyond practice transactions to focus on the whole transition. Rather than being just another listing service, we focus on connecting dentists who share a similar practice approach – which leads to more successful transitions and careers.

This week’s webinar explored exactly how (and why) we do things this way. Watch the replay, with ADAPT President & CEO Bill Robinson and VP of Dental Practice and Relationships, Dr. Suzanne Ebert, to learn:

  • How ADAPT is designed to help you find a match and success long after the contracts are signed
  • 10 ways that ADAPT is different from traditional practice transition options
  • How to showcase your skills or practice to find the right match for you

3 Ways ADAPT is Making Practice Transitions Less Expensive

While doing the research that led to the development of ADA Practice Transitions, we found a common theme: Dentists who had sold their practice frequently shared that they spent too much money with a broker – and felt they did not receive commensurate value.

We developed ADA Practice Transitions to focus on philosophy of care – matching dentists with a similar approach, for a more successful result – but we also wanted to give dentists a more cost-effective option. We designed our service to deliver tremendous value in a manner that was less expensive than the other options, sometimes by a lot.

Practice Profile: Practice Where Everyone Wants to Vacation

This five operatory, 1600 square foot office suite is located in a beautiful brick-clad, hospital-built, professional building. The updated practice includes Digital Pan and Softdent, with low overhead and a healthy base of established patients. The current owner does not work every day, so there’s plenty of room to grow.

Matched: Finding the Perfect Associateship in a New State

Dr. Jessica Sikora had never been to Maine until 2016 when she visited and interviewed at the University of New England College of Dental Medicine.

“I immediately fell in love with the area,” said the Honesdale, Pennsylvania, native.

She’d also fallen in love, after four years of dental school, with the idea of practicing in her new state. 

Coming Soon to You: ADA Practice Transitions

ADA Practice Transitions is coming to dentists throughout the U.S.!

After a successful eight-state pilot, we are excited to announce that we will be expanding nationally. That means that no matter where you want to practice, ADAPT can help you find the perfect fit.

Answer three quick questions to become an ADAPT Insider, receive early access to create your profile – AND be entered to win a $100 Amazon gift card.

What Went Wrong: My Transition Fell Through After Months of Planning

Sometimes even the best-intentioned transitions fall apart. All too often, this happens because both parties overlooked the basics: clear communication and putting everything in writing. A few key actions can minimize the back and forth while keeping your transition on schedule.

Read on for one scenario in which a buyer and seller just couldn’t make it work, then learn how you can avoid similar problems.

Taking the Legal Pain Out of Buying and Selling a Dental Practice

Buying and selling dental practices means paperwork, including letters of intent, contracts, valuations, and a whole ream of other documents. Navigating all the details takes a close eye to detail – and an attorney who can help make sure you don’t overlook anything critical.

Last week’s ADA Practice Transitions Coffee Talk webinar delved into the legal aspects of practice transitions.

Practice Profile: Busy State-Capital Solo Practice with Room to Grow

This state-capital solo practice has been serving patients for over 30 years and has earned a reputation for putting patient relationships first. The team works together to put patients at ease in a relaxed atmosphere, then provide all the information needed to make educated treatment decisions.

How One Dentist Built His Ideal Practice – and Life – In a Small Town

42 years ago, Dr. Dean Hussong graduated from dental school and set out to build his own practice from scratch. After visiting 28 different towns, he and his wife, Ann, settled in Tomahawk (population 3,160) in northern Wisconsin. While Ann was initially skeptical of following her high school sweetheart to such a small town, it turned out to be the best possible move for both of them and an ideal place to raise three children.

Practice Profile: Busy Practice, Vibrant Town, Balanced Life

Want a place where you can be busy and productive from day one? This small-town practice is busy, busy, busy! Demand currently far exceeds supply, with an eight-week wait for hygiene (though the current owner doesn’t work every day). And with no competition, the practice has never had to advertise.

Practice Profile: The Latest Tech with a Low-Cost Lifestyle

Walk into this practice and you’ll be set!

All four operatories are updated with the latest technology, including CBCT, digital radiographs, paperless charts, CO2 laser, digital scanners, electric handpieces, and intraoral cameras – all in a free-standing dental office building near a residential area.

Meet Your ADA Advisors: Guiding You Through the Practice Transitions Process

After submitting your ADA Practice Transitions profile, you are assigned to an ADA Advisor who guides you through the transition process. The Advisor takes time to understand your goals and preferences, then matches you with dentists or practices that fit your criteria. Your Advisor also provides a stream of resources at every stage of the process.

5 Questions to Ask Your Partner Before Relocating

Have you found the practice of your dreams? Could it be the practice of your partner’s dreams too?

If it is in a new town or state, what would it take for you and your family to make the move?

How to Manage & Retain Staff During a Practice Transition

We hear lots of questions about managing staff during practice transitions, so we made it the focus of last week’s ADA Practice Transitions Coffee Talk webinar.

Dr. Betsy Shapiro, ADA Director of Practice Management and the ADA Center for Professional Success, joined ADAPT’s Dr. Suzanne Ebert, Vice President of Dental Practice & Relationship Management, for this hour-long conversation. The two shared their experiences with managing staff through their own practice transitions, as well as lessons learned from working with other dentists.

Practice Profile: Long-Standing Practice in Beautiful Southwest Michigan

Discover what memorable experiences await you in the beautiful corner of the world known as southwest Michigan.

And look no further for a great professional opportunity in this general dentistry practice for sale.

Are You New Around Here? Why ADAPT Does Things Differently

ADA Practice Transitions (ADAPT) has been in pilot stage for several months now, but there are still many dentists who may not know what we do – and why we do it. ADAPT offers a new way of hiring an associate, finding a job, buying a practice, or selling.

Some wonder why such a service is necessary. And why now?

Before You Buy: The Financial Side of a Practice Transition

Last week's ADA Practice Transitions Coffee Talk webinar featured advice on preparing your finances for a practice purchase.

Rob Westhoven, VP and Director of Dental Banking for Androscoggin Bank, explained how banks approach practice sales, including several possible options. He also answered several great questions from attendees about how COVID-19 may change the equation. 

Selling Due to COVID? Ask Yourself These 3 Questions

I have talked to many dentists over the last several weeks and noticed that recent conversations have taken on a new tone as we all navigate the COVID-19 situation.

Selling Your Practice in the COVID-19 Era: Advice from Accounting Experts

Last week we kicked off new topics for the ADA Practice Transitions Coffee Talk webinar series with some fantastic advice from a pair of dental CPAs. Chris VanStraten and Andy McCarty of Baker Tilly, founding member of ADCPA, walked us through some of the ways that COVID-19 is changing dental practice sales.

During the webinar, Chris and Andy explored:

Different Approach, Better Results: How ADAPT Matched 2 Maine Dentists

Kristen started her practice search on job boards.

Joe was exploring a sale with a practice management company.

In both cases, they could not get what they needed – until they turned to ADA Practice Transitions.

Big Decisions Demand Family Input: Your Guide to Starting the Conversation

Now is a great time to have some important conversations with your family about how your career affects your collective future. Most of you have never been allowed this kind of focused time to evaluate your true priorities as a family.  

Transition Tale: How an Unexpected Ultimatum Led One Dentist to Fulfillment

Emily Ishkanian, former chair of the ADA New Dentist Committee, joined a practice that turned out to be the wrong fit for her long-term goals. She shared her experience with ADA Practice Transitions. Read on for her story and 5 lessons for other dentists.

What to Do When Your Practice Is Closed

As a profession, we dentists have been challenged in many ways, at so many times, and we have responded with thoughtfulness, compassion, and caring. I am proud to be a part of a group of people who are willing to sacrifice so much just to care for our patients and communities. Let’s remember that we are a small group of highly trained individuals whose services will always be needed – we will bounce back from this.

So how can we navigate these times when practices are closed? After all, even the most introverted of dentists is used to interacting with people each day. I have a few ideas to help you stay positive through the coming weeks.

A Message from ADA Practice Transitions

We want to reach out to let you know that we at ADA Practice Transitions are here to support you in any way possible during this crisis.

5 Tips to Find the Right Dental Associateship for You

Whether you are looking for your first dental job or ready to move on, associateships are on your mind. But what type of practice is just right for you? What should you look for? What should you watch out for?

This Week Only: Sign Up for a Free 3-Month Trial of ADA Practice Transitions

ADA Practice Transitions will find you the right practice or dentist to help you take the next step in your dental career.

Build Your Dental Dream Home

Through ADA Practice Transitions, I work with many dentists who are looking to buy a dental practice. While it is tempting to search for the “perfect practice,” I ask dentists to keep an open mind and find a practice with a great foundation – one that you can transform into your very own dental dream home.

Just like with homeownership, you have two basic choices when it comes to dental practice ownership. You can build it new, or you can buy an existing practice. The reality is that it is often financially advantageous to find a practice – a fixer-upper, if you will – that you can adapt to fit your vision.

What Went Wrong: The Practice Wasn’t Ready for an Associate

Dental practices can grow slowly over several years – then suddenly reach a tipping point where an owner feels they need to hire an associate ASAP. But it is important to prepare the practice before hiring anyone.

Transition Tales: 5 Lessons on the Cross-Country Journey to a Unicorn Practice

This is part of the Transition Tales & Truths series in which we discuss practice transitions with real dentists.

Patience is a virtue when trying to find the ideal practice. However, it is important that you use the waiting time to prepare for your next steps.

That was Dr. Jim’s message to his dental colleagues when he got in touch with ADA Practice Transitions to share his story.

Dr. Jim and his wife, Pam (names changed at their request), worked together as a team to navigate the practice transitions process. Over six years and a variety of experiences, they refined their idea of the “perfect practice” and wanted to share their lessons with other young dentists ready to forge a path.

What Went Wrong: My Path to Retirement Got Way Too Bumpy

This is part of the “What Went Wrong Wednesdays” series, in which we explore common problems of practice transitions – and offer tips to help you avoid them.


Retirement should be a well thought-out event that you take ownership of. To truly take control of your future, retirement planning should start years – even decades – before you anticipate finishing your career.

Here are two scenarios that illustrate what happened when a doctor did not completely think through their exit plans, along with suggestions to help you avoid the same fate.

Practice Profile: Fun Urban Practice, Small-Town Feel

Looking for a practice in a prime urban location with a small-town feel?

Should You Take the Money? The True Cost of a Signing Bonus

If you ask a dentist about “corporate dentistry,” you may get a strong reaction. Opinions range from “corporate dentistry is destroying the profession” to “corporate dentistry is ideal – it allows a dentist to focus on dentistry rather than running a business,” with many flavors in between.

In particular, I have heard a number of established dentists lament how many new graduates choose the corporate dentistry route for their first job. Whenever I encounter someone who is disappointed with a new graduate’s choice outside of independent dentistry, I often have the following conversation:

Resolve to Start a Successful Practice Transition in 2020

Happy New Year! Many people look at the new year (or new decade) as a time to make changes. If the fresh calendar has you thinking about your own dental practice transition, review my lessons learned in 2019 and then read on for tips to make 2020 your year.

Practice Profile: Close-Knit Community, Fully Updated Office

Interested in a startup that comes with a ready-made patient base?

Walk into a fully digital, 6 op, updated practice in a large, well-maintained building with room to grow. The nearest dentist is 25 miles away, so when the current owner had to stop practicing due to health concerns, local residents were left clamoring for a dentist.

Practice Profile: High Integrity, Low Cost of Living

Join this practice as an associate dentist. The owner dentist is committed to the long-term patients and communities the practice serves. This owner understands that there is more to being happy and productive at work than an excellent salary so, along with a comprehensive benefit package that includes a CE allowance, paid vacation and bonus systems, he recognizes significant milestones in the team’s lives with gifts and staff appreciation parties.

My Top 5 Predictors of Practice Transition Success

This year, ADA Practice Transitions (ADAPT) went live – and I have had the privilege of working with dentists in the midst of career transitions of all types. From dental students to dentists wrapping up 40-year careers, I am thoroughly enjoying working with each and every one!

As we look ahead to 2020, I wanted to share five of my thoughts on the biggest predictors of a successful transition.

Transition Tales: Building a Career that Balances Business with Dentistry

This is part of the Transition Tales & Truths series in which we discuss practice transitions with real dentists.

Today’s Transition Tale comes from our friend and 2020 New Dentist Committee Vice Chair Dr. Daniel Hall. He wants to share his learnings with other dentists so hopefully they can find the right fit, the first time.

Dr. Hall got in touch with ADA Practice Transitions because he believes that ADAPT, a service created by the ADA, could have helped alleviate many of the obstacles he found during his journey to practice ownership.

Practice Profile: Loyal Patient Base with a Fast Payback

This small-town practice prides itself on providing the gentlest of care at a reasonable price – but the collections very comfortably support a dentist and family.

Practice Profile: A Nature-Lover's Setting

How would you like to see wildlife right outside your operatory picture window – even the occasional bear? If you love nature AND dentistry, this practice might be perfect for you.

Talk Less, Listen More: 10 Tips for a Better Interview

Whether you are hiring someone or looking to be hired, an interview is the traditional way to assess whether or not a person or situation is a good fit. At ADA Practice Transitions, the interview is typically the first time that two dentists get to discuss their goals and weigh how strong a potential match may be.

Anything with high stakes – such as a practice transition – merits some preparation. Don’t go into an interview cold. Instead, keep these tips in mind when preparing for and managing an interview.

What Went Wrong: I Overlooked the #1 Thing That Mattered Most

This is part of the “What Went Wrong Wednesdays” series, in which we explore common problems of practice transitions – and offer tips to help you avoid them.

At ADA Practice Transitions, we place a heavy emphasis on making sure incoming doctors share a similar philosophy of care as the practice owner. While it may not be immediately apparent, having a shared approach is critical to the success of your future career or retirement plan, even if you are planning to sell and walk away.

ADA Practice Transitions: Now Matching in 6 More States

Today’s the day! ADA Practice Transitions (ADAPT) is now matching dentists in six additional states.

Matching in More States, Giving You More Options



By popular demand, ADA Practice Transitions (ADAPT) is expanding!

Starting today, dentists who either own a practice or want to work in Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota and New Hampshire can create an ADAPT profile!

Transition Tales: Finding a Fit in a Small-Town Dental Practice

This is part of the Transition Tales & Truths series in which we discuss practice transitions with real dentists.

When Dr. Christy Rens and her husband (a fellow dentist) graduated from the University of Minnesota Dental School, they weren’t quite sure where their future would take them. They assumed they would eventually wind up near family in the Twin Cities.

Life doesn’t always turn out as planned. One day, Dr. Christy got a call with an offer that she and her husband couldn’t refuse, so they packed their bags to try small-town life. The two-year contract even included free housing if they were willing to serve two rural practices.

Consider Going Country: Why a Rural Practice May Be a Perfect Fit

Many young dentists automatically flock to urban or suburban areas after graduation. After all, those areas can command higher salaries. But have you considered working in a more rural area?

A rural practice can offer several advantages beyond fresh air and open spaces. Namely, rural practices often cost less with lower overhead and higher collections – meaning you might be able to pay off your debts sooner and enjoy a better quality of life.

What Went Wrong: We Disagreed on the Value of the Practice

This is part of the “What Went Wrong Wednesdays” series, in which we explore common problems of practice transitions – and offer tips to help you avoid them.

Get Your Paperwork in Order for Your Practice Valuation

Do not forget the primary rule: your practice is worth whatever someone will pay for it.

What Dentists Want: Annual Meeting Edition

I am thrilled to be able to touch base with you about our recent trip to ADA Annual Meeting in San Francisco!

Why ADA Practice Transitions Isn’t Just Another Broker

In April, the American Dental Association launched a pilot for a new service: ADA Practice Transitions. Our goal is to make the process of joining, expanding, or leaving a dental practice more predictable and successful. The pilot is currently available in Wisconsin and Maine for all dentists looking for opportunities in those states. (We will soon be expanding to other states – sign up to be notified of the program’s growth.)

Some have said that the ADA is just replicating the current broker market. While there is some natural overlap, ADA Practice Transitions takes a completely new approach that’s designed to address a major need: finding the right person or practice for a successful transition.

Transition Tales: Why Practice Transitions Should Be a Family Affair

This is part of the Transition Tales & Truths series in which we discuss practice transitions with real dentists currently in the process.

We recently met Dr. Joe, a recent graduate working in a DSO with dreams of buying his own dental practice. Dr. Joe joined ADA Practice Transitions to pursue his goals and is working with his ADA Advisor to narrow down the best path forward.

The “life” in “work-life” balance is very important to Dr. Joe and his family. The desire to build a good life for his family guides every step of his journey.

Transition Tales: Navigating a Path to Ownership

This is part of the Transition Tales & Truths series in which we discuss practice transitions with real dentists currently in the process.

Meet Dr. Joe. He’s a year out of dental school, working in a DSO in a new-to-him city. He grew up on a farm and watched his parents run their own business – and has always wanted to do likewise.

Dr. Joe’s first year of practice has given him real-world experience by letting him focus on dentistry. Working in a DSO has exposed him to a variety of staff characteristics and helped him crystallize what his ideal team might look like.

What Went Wrong Wednesdays: My Restrictive Covenant Was Too Restrictive

Welcome to “What Went Wrong Wednesdays,” a series in which we explore common problems of practice transitions – and offer tips to help you avoid them.

Many dental contracts include some version of a restrictive covenant, also called a non-compete clause. These clauses prohibit an employee from practicing within a specific geographical area (typically a defined radius) for a certain period of time after leaving a practice. These covenants generally also have a non-solicitation clause that will bar an associate from directly soliciting the employer’s patients or other employees.

This clause helps protect an owner dentist from competition – but it can also limit an associate’s career movement.

Come Talk Transitions at the ADA Annual Meeting

ADA FDI 2019 is a great place to think about your career path. You can earn CE credits, hear best practices, and network with fellow dentists. Our ADA Practice Transitions team will be on site and ready to share the knowledge and resources you need for future success.

We recommend stopping by these sessions to talk transitions with us!

Shhhhh, I’m Selling My Dental Practice

There is a widely-held belief in the dental industry that confidentiality is essential when a dentist decides to sell their practice. This idea is heavily promoted by dental brokers and has been embraced by many dentists. In fact, some dentists report that they had little to no contact with the buyer of their practice until they closed the transaction.

What Went Wrong Wednesdays: 3 Contract Issues that Got Expensive

Welcome to “What Went Wrong Wednesdays,” a series in which we explore common problems of practice transitions – and offer tips to help you avoid them.

5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Practice’s Curb Appeal

A practice needs a certain curb appeal to attract buyers – just like selling residential real estate. However, a practice’s curb appeal extends beyond its physical appearance. Buyers want a well-run practice that makes a consistent profit.

4 Options for Expanding Your Practice

Your practice is growing. Maybe you want to work fewer hours or maybe you are thinking about retirement.

Don’t Settle: Identify the Ideal Practice for You

There’s no such thing as a typical dental practice. They can range from homey rural offices to busy urban spaces, with everything in between.

6 Ways to Get Staff Buy-in for Your Practice Transition

Your staff can make or break your practice transition. Change can be scary. Your long-time staff may be apprehensive about the future of the practice – after all, the practice provides their livelihoods, too. However, you can take steps to reassure staff and gain their buy-in. When staff is on board, they can be your biggest advocates and streamline the transition.

You Decide: Choose the Best Option for Your Career

Looking for your next dental job? Whether you have recently graduated from dental school or have a few years of experience, you have plenty of options.

Your Information, Your Timing: How We Keep Things Confidential

We understand how important confidentiality can be as you go through a career transition. If you are a practice owner, you may not be ready to share this information with the rest of the dental community quite yet. Keep in mind that the transition can be smoother if time is taken to prepare and involve your staff before the sale. If you are looking to purchase or change positions, you may not be ready to inform your current employer of your plans. We understand these scenarios and will keep everything fully confidential until YOU decide it is time.

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