Like many dentists, if you are looking to enhance your practice, you may be confused about the difference between dental coaching and dental consulting. Is there a difference? Which approach will most benefit you? While both services can enhance the professional side of things, you could think of dental coaching as a more “holistic” approach. A dental coach will help you identify your goals, find greater personal satisfaction, and maintain a better balance between your personal and professional life.
A Consultant’s vs. a Coach’s Goals
Both coaches and consultants can help you improve your practice. However, consultants tend to focus solely on business-related goals. These goals typically include:
• Increasing profitability
• Increasing efficiency
• Making the HR process easier
• Improving marketing efforts
• Navigating insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid
A dental coach addresses these goals, but he goes beyond them. In addition to the goals listed above, his objectives may include:
• Allowing you to become a more effective leader in your practice
• Teaching you tips for better communication
• Helping you to define your goals in your professional capacity and in your personal life
• Helping you to reclaim your passion for dentistry
A Consultant’s vs. a Coach’s Approach
A consultant will begin by analyzing your office policies and budget. You will discuss marketing strategies. You may go over your office files, bank statements, and scheduling policies. A dental consultant may provide several sessions with your entire team. He or she may address team policies and discuss ways of increasing team productivity.
A dental coach addresses these areas, as well, but he takes a more self-guided approach. To improve your practice, he will often begin with a personal assessment. The personal assessment will not only include an analysis of your business success, it will also include an evaluation of your personal fulfilment. When you can learn to analyze your strengths and weaknesses, you will be better prepared to make lasting and dramatic changes in all areas of your life. For example, when you learn better time management tips, it will increase both practice profitability and time spent with your family.
Once you have learned the vital skills of self-assessment, you will define your ultimate personal and professional goals. Here is another key difference between a consultant and a coach. A consultant will tell you what you need to do to increase profits and efficiency. A coach can make suggestions, but ultimately, the change is up to you. You get to decide what matters most to you and what areas you most want to change. Once you have defined your objectives, the coach can help you establish a clear path to get there.
A coach teaches you the skills you need to change yourself. These are tools that will last the rest of your life. As you get older, your goals may change. Thanks to your work with a dental coach, you will know how to identify those new goals and develop a clear plan of action. In this way, you can continue to enjoy practice improvement and personal growth throughout the course of your life.