What’s Your Plan B?

October 13, 2019
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Your practice is chugging along.   Sure, you have some of the typical challenges; difficult patients, outstanding debt, staff issues, lab mishaps etc.  But, the economics seem to be working.   You’re meeting payroll, paying your bills and taking home a few shekels too.

BUT…do you have a PLAN B?

What happens when something unexpected occurs?

What happens when a key employee leaves?
What happens when YOU get ill, disabled or worse?
What happens when the economy changes?
What happens when a key employer leaves town?
What happens when an insurance company lowers their reimbursement rate?
What happens when your marketing stops working?

If YOU don’t have an answer to these and other questions, then you DO NOT have an adequate PLAN B.

And, you really, really need one.  And, you need one NOW.

Without a PLAN B, you, your family and those you love and depend on you are at risk.

I’m certainly not wishing you harm or predicting that the sky is going to fall.  I’m actually a glass half full person and an eternal optimist.  Based on a 40 year plus career however, I am predicting with certainty that the unpredictable will likely happen sometime during your practice career.  

And, if that career is long enough, like mine has been, you’ll probably experience all of the above and then some.

So, if you’re not prepared, you might not weather the storms unscathed.

I’m not the smartest person on Earth, but one of my mentors, Dr. Joseph DeLisi taught me to contingency plan; not only in my dentistry but in my business practices as well.   He was the one who ingrained into my being the idea of Strategic Planning.

I also learned what NOT to do from my father.  

A 3-generation fabric business, started in 1890, was going along fine.  They even managed through the Great Depression.  That’s the 1928 one, not the 2008 one.   They were doing just fine until they started expanding in the 60’s, while at the same time the economic situation changed and import tariffs were placed.   Sound familiar?   That was in the late 60’s and early 70’s.

In 1973, just as I was about to enter dental school, that I thought would be paid for, my father became unemployed, out of work.  And, without a PLAN B, his family suffered.  I had to pay for dental school myself.

It was a great lesson.

SHIFT HAPPENS

Things change.  Often, these changes are BEYOND our control.

Yet, there ARE things that we can control and certainly, things we can anticipate and plan for.

Chief among the strategic planning process PPS uses is a SWOT analysis.  The “T” is the process to identify THREATS.  And of course, once you’ve identified them, finding a way to avoid them and/or deal with them should they materialize, has been a key to my success.  I’ve always had a PLAN B.

Jim Collins, in his book “Good to Great” talks about the “Hedgehog Concept” that great companies use to deal with such threats.   When hedgehogs are threatened, they roll up into a ball with their spiny outer-coat protecting them until the danger passes.  The GREAT companies, when threatened, retreat into their CORE competencies in order to outlast the storm.

Think of all the companies that have disappeared off the face of the planet.   Supposedly great companies such as Pan Am, Eastern Airlines, Pontiac, TWA, EF Hutton, Standard Oil and Woolworth’s to name just a few, are GONE, eaten up by THREATS.  They lacked a PLAN B.

Have YOU identified ALL of YOUR threats?

Have YOU begun a Strategic Analysis of your business?

Have YOU a PLAN B?

If not, you would benefit from a complimentary 20 minute conversation with me.

During this brief conversation, YOU will gain insight into potential issues that could cost you dearly.

You have NOTHING TO LOOSE and everything to gain.

20 minutes could change the trajectory of your business life.  It will help YOU develop a PLAN B.

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To your excellent health and success,

Michael and the PPS team.

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Dr. Michael Goldberg is one of the leading educators on dental practice management in the United States.

Michael ran and sold a prestigious group practice in Manhattan and has been on Faculty at Columbia University and New York-Presbyterian Medical Center for 30 years including Director of the GPR program and Director of the course on Practice Management.

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