Real Talk from New Dentists in Private Practice

Dr. Jill McMahon

Dr. Jill McMahon

The panel discussion Real Talk from New Dentists in Private Practice just concluded. The wide-ranging conversation covered topics from improving efficiency to marketing the practice.

According to the most recent ADA Survey of Dental Practice just over 88% of dentists are owners, either as solo practitioners or partners. For almost every dentist, ownership becomes a consideration at some point in his or her career.

Earlier this year ADA New Dentist News spoke with several new dentists who were new to practice ownership to get their suggestions on how to approach ownership. Dr. Jill McMahon, who graduated from dental school in 2007, is not just the first dentist in her family, she’s also the first small business owner.

“At first it was scary, thinking about all the new responsibilities, and of course the new financial obligations that go with ownership,” Dr. McMahon remembers. “What helped a lot was connecting with other dentists who were in my situation and realizing that if they could do it, I could do it too!”

If you are attending the 2013 ADA Annual Session, you have lots of opportunities to connect with other new dentists. But if you aren’t at the meeting, what’s on your action plan to make sure you can get that real talk from other new dentists exploring their private practice options? Share your suggestions in the comments. And if you don’t have any networking events on your calendar, may we suggest the 2014 New Dentist Conference July 17-19 in Kansas City, Missouri.

5 comments

  • I purchased my practice almost one year ago, after a year of working in corporate dentistry. Let me tell you it was the best decision I ever made.

    As boss-man I am able to make my own decisions, go in my own direction, participate with my staff as leader, be admired, and be building financial freedom (one loan payment at a time). These benefits far outweigh the negatives – paying practice loans, supply bills, payroll, and TAXES.

    I encourage everyone to dump corporate dentistry and make their own move into private practice – commander of your own ship!
    -Dr. Clark Damon

  • The Dental Implant Place

    Great article! It can be overwhelming to start your own dental practice, but well worth it in the long run.

  • As the owner of a start-up business, my day-to-day schedule varies greatly! Some days are very busy with patient care, while slower days are spent meeting with vendors, marketing the practice or handling administrative duties. I am surprised how much of my daily job isn’t performing dental treatment and how much of my work follows me home at night.

  • Nice article. Young dentists will face a myriad of new problems and issues. They need to feel that they can contact their mentors at any time without fear of the mentor looking down on them or speaking to them in a condescending manner. Young dentists are not as secure in their abilities, and mentors can help them avoid the various pitfalls they encountered in their early days of practice.

  • This article makes a lot of sense. The best thing a new dentist can do is gain experience from an existing dental practice. Obviously no practice is run perfectly, but the experience and insight of the office operations, staffing process and other regulations and business requirements can be a real eye opener. Taking to leap to own your own dental practice or business is obvisouly less risky if you have some real life experience under your belt. Also as an outsider you can get a good idea as to how you would prefer your own dental practice to operate.

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