From the publisher’s: Welcome to Efficiency In Group Practice


In my seven years as a manufacturer sales rep with Coltene Whaledent, the majority of my time was in the field co-traveling with dealer reps as they visited their dental customers. The dealer rep and I had a partnership. They brought me into their accounts as an expert on my products and services. They would give me an idea of what a practice’s needs were and I figured out what products I had that would help address those needs. We worked together; not only to sell more “stuff” to these practices, but also to make sure what we were selling had a positive impact on practice.

Writing this column I started to look at all of the different partnerships that exist in a group setting.

  • Practice – Dealer partnership – The dealer can provide many things beyond great pricing and on time delivery. They can help you determine what new products are beneficial for your growing group. They are not just order takers; dealers can be a fantastic source for information and education. They can also help you monitor your territory’s buying habits.
  • Practice – Manufacturer/Service partnership –If you are looking to make a product, technology or service change, you should evaluate several manufacturers. Once a decision is made and you bring this new product or service into the group, make sure you leverage the manufacturer or service provider as a resource. Rolling out a new product or service to 10 offices or 300 offices can be a challenge. If it makes sense and the company can do it, have their reps come out and educate your individual locations. Another option is a webinar, which can help educate your teams live and “on demand”.

Other types of partnerships within a group setting

  • Group (corporate) – Group (individual location) – What is your corporate office’s relationship with your individual locations? How do they view corporate? Is this a partnership?
  • Group – Community – As a corporation, a group practice has an obligation to give back to the community it services. Are you as a group doing something for your community?
  • Group – Patient – This may be the most important partnership. Without the patient, you don’t exist.

The value of your partnerships should never be taken for granted. We hope we’re able to help you enhance your partnerships in a way that encourages growth and success.

Partnering with you and your group,

Bill Neumann


There is a long list of skills and strengths necessary to effectively manage a group practice like yours. Maintaining the ideal environment to consistently create a positive experience for your patients is a delicate balancing act every day. Effective communication between the doctors, team members and patients is critical. The expertise of the clinical team, friendliness and efficiency of the administrative team, and a mutual respect amongst all members of the team are imperative to keep things on track, on schedule and running smoothly.

Our goal with this and every edition of Efficiency in Group Practice is to provide you with expert advice and solid clinical and business resources to help you develop your ideal team and practice. In this edition, you’ll find articles that will prompt discussion within your team about where you’re going and how you’re going to get there. Dr. Ben Burris has ten thriving practice locations and shares an interesting perspective on bargain hunting for supplies. Mike Uretz is back with a look at electronic health records vendors. Teresa Duncan of Odyssey Management offers sound advice for new managers and J. Haden Werhan shares wealth management strategies and principles.

Our sponsors have gone above and beyond to provide the best products and services to support your busy practices. We solute the teams at Garrison Dental Solutions, Hu-Friedy, Smile Reminder, DentalEZ, Ivoclar Vivadent, One Mind Health, Sultan Healthcare, Acteon North America, and Voco for helping today’s group practices thrive. Each of them understands the value of being knowledgeable resources for you – their customers; not just “suppliers”. Efficiency in Group Practice is intended as a guideline for the important discussions that should be taking place in any group practice. We hope you find the topics relevant and useful, and of course, we always look forward to your feedback. Let me know what you think by emailing me at [email protected].

To your success,

Bonnie Hixson

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