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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

Welcome to Practice Profiles, an occasional series that showcases some of the practices of ADA Practice Transitions participants. See one that intrigues you? Create your ADAPT profile today!

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

Welcome to Practice Profiles, an occasional series that showcases some of the practices of ADA Practice Transitions participants. See one that intrigues you? Create your ADAPT profile today!

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

Welcome to Practice Profiles, an occasional series that showcases some of the practices of ADA Practice Transitions participants. See one that intrigues you? Create your ADAPT profile today!

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

Practice Profile: A Nature-Lover's Setting

Welcome to Practice Profiles, an occasional series that showcases some of the practices of ADA Practice Transitions participants. See one that intrigues you? Create your ADAPT profile today!

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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