Leadership, Culture, and Business Tips for Orthodontists and Dentists

Glad to have you back for our latest episode of the GrowOrtho podcast. In today’s episode, we sit down with Michael Dinsio, a dental practice consultant and strategist. Michael started in banking but has been a practice consultant for about 15 years. He and his team at Next Level Consultants help doctors at every stage of building practices — from getting into ownership to growing and expanding.

Tune in to hear our discussion about:

  • How Michael and his team help dentists and orthodontists master leadership and culture.
  • Two essential qualities of any great leader.
  • Why “ideas are great, but the execution is everything.”
  • What Michael means when he says he’s not a typical consultant, plus some practical tips on getting the most out of your consulting investment.
  • Why working capital is a must for startup practices, plus other key factors that any would-be practice owner should prioritize in preparation for launch.
  • Michaels’s thoughts on dental and orthodontic service organizations and whether he thinks they could change the industry.

Michael has personally helped 500 doctors start practices over the course of his career, and if there’s one thing he seems to have really learned from this experience, it’s that communication and transparency are essential for good leadership.

Thanks to their highly specialized and diverse skill sets and backgrounds, Michael and his team “can get very granular in fixing a problem” and offer a range of solutions to their clients for everything from acquiring to growing a practice. But the real bottleneck is making sure that “the team adopts that solution and adopts that change,” which is where he says leadership comes in big time.

“We’re big fans of leading with transparency and not holding back on too much with your team,” Michael says. “If you’re not leading with some kind of vision … how is your team going to help you get to the goal?”

With this in mind, Michael advises practice owners and doctors to “always improve their communication with their team.”

It also helps, when hiring a consultant, to understand what that consultant’s background is, “because that’s where they’re going to be the most qualified and focused.” He gives the comparison of hiring Tony Robbins versus someone who came “from the chair” as a hygienist — both people can give you valuable insights into your practice, but they’ll be from starkly different angles. So be sure to know how to use and apply those insights appropriately.

As for doctors who are interested in starting or acquiring their own practices, Dinsio offers a big picture view of some key factors to consider, including:

  • Having an adequate marketing budget (“You could walk into [the] best practice, but if you don’t have any money to market and get patients in the door, you’ve got nothing”).
  • Avoiding the temptation to go “too big too soon,”, especially in today’s climate of inflation and expensive construction.
  • Location and visibility.
  • Maintaining production and cash flow.

We end our discussion talking about DSOs and OSOs — not new concepts, necessarily, but there is certainly a new buzz around them. Michael sounds a bit bearish about these phenomena and says he believes they’ll probably “max out” at some point. He also underscores why he feels private practice is so essential for patient care and why “we need to protect it.”

To connect with Michael, you can contact him at his website, nxlevelconsultants.com.

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