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Client Resources

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How do I go about choosing a consultant?

First, know why you want a consultant and then look for one who specializes in that area. Then, begin your search by asking a colleague for a referral, calling a consultant who has written an article you found informative, and/or checking with the Academy of Dental Management Consultants. You may also want to contact the American Dental Association Directory of Management Consultants at (312) 440-2895, check online at www.ada.org, or e-mail Dental Platforms at: info@dentalplatforms.com.

Kathleen Johnson Consulting provides consulting services to practices nationwide. Contact us for more information or ask Kathleen a question.

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Where do I find a consultant?

The Academy of Dental Management Consultants can give you a list of consultants, but one of the most common ways to find a consultant is by asking colleagues for referrals. It is also a good idea to attend seminars on some of the subjects you are concerned with. If you like what a particular presenter has to say, that may be the consultant for you. View our testimonials for a partial list of doctors who recommend Kathleen Johnson Consulting.

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How much should a consultant cost?

The price will vary based upon the market you are in, the needs of your practice, and the reputation of the consultant. The best way to determine the value of a proposal or estimate is to see how well it is customized to your practice. If you are being offered services you do not need, do not see services you do need, or if the proposal seems vague, you may be getting a consultant who uses a formula rather than a system tailored to your needs.

At any price, a formulaic approach will cost too much. On the other hand, a good consultant will evaluate your practice, tailor the approach to your practice's needs, and show you the value of every component in the approach. When you are comfortable and confident with the services being offered, the price is usually right.

Our proposals are all tailored to your needs, and we will take the time to show you exactly what your customized consulting program will do.

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How does a dentist know if/when he/she needs a consultant?

There are a number of different scenarios where a consultant's expertise would be helpful: If your practice has reached a plateau and you're not sure how to take it to another level.; if things aren't going well and nothing seems to change that trend; if you want to phase out HMO's or PPO's; if you need help training staff; if your hygiene department is not profitable; or even if you're a new practice owner and need help making the transition. Kathleen Johnson Consulting provides consulting services in each of these areas to help you achieve your practice goals. Contact us for more information.

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How important is a practice analysis when purchasing a practice?

Unless you know what to look for, it is strongly suggested. Just as you would have a home inspected by an expert before purchasing it, you will want an expert to report on every aspect of a practice.

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What role does the owner/doctor play during the consulting phase?

Because the presence of a consultant can sometimes make staff members feel threatened about their jobs and future, it is extremely important for the owner/doctor to immediately define the consultant's role as an ally to the practice and a team member. Once the consulting program begins, the owner/doctor will be integral to its implementation. No consultant can be at a practice every day, and no manual, no matter how specific, can handle every situation. The owner/doctor must be willing to take accountability for the new shape the practice will take.

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Should my staff fear for their jobs if I bring in a consultant?

A good consultant will evaluate your staff to determine if any staff-related deficiencies can be corrected without turnover. Most of the time, a staff member does the job they were given in a job description so the deficiency has occurred because they are underutilized or under-trained. Retraining is often a better option than a new hire.

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What if I hire a consultant and do not see the results I was hoping for?

Before you sign any agreement or contract with a consultant, you should ask that question specifically and be clear on how the agreement can be terminated. Our contracts allow you to terminate the agreement, without cause, at any time. There is no penalty or buyout, and only fees owed up to the termination date are due.

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