Many dentists know a lot…about dentistry. Most of these same dentists don’t know a whole lot about team dynamics, interpersonal communication skills, or how to craft a purpose-driven mission statement that everyone in the office will die for.
Dentists face myriad pressures from dental service organizations (DSO). In 2017, a mere 7.4% of dental practices were associated with a DSO, but that number increased nearly 40% over the following three years. Some forecasts estimate that by 2030 ~80% of practices will be affiliated with a DSO or similarly managed organization.
Years ago, in Dallas (or maybe it was St. Louis, Rochester, or Waukesha), I kicked off a dental CE presentation by asking everyone to “Raise your hands if you screen all your patients for oral cancer.” Each hand went up. Every one of them. “How many of you with your hands up have detected a lesion in the last 12 months?” Almost every hand went down. In a room full of 30 dentists, two hands were still up. My next question. “Of you two with your hands up, have you detected more than one squamous cell carcinoma in the past year?” Both hands went down.