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Your dental practice needs a strategic plan when you decide to undertake any major changes to your business, your operations or practice focus. That plan is the roadmap of how you will get from here to there, from point A to point B.  

Last week, my partner, Dr. Jack Bayramyan, talked about your vision, the what of your plan. Your vision is your point B, where you want to go, what you want to achieve.  Your strategic plan is the how you achieve that vision. Your strategic plan is the roadmap that gets you to point B.  

The Difference Between a Strategic Plan and your Vision

But your plan needs to be thoroughly vetted and examined so you avoid any soft spots in your planning, execution and communication with your team on what the expectations are going be.

Lack of Clarity in your Vision 

One of the fundamental errors in strategic planning is a lack of clarity. If your goals, objectives, and the steps to achieve them are vague, your team may find it challenging to align their efforts. Be crystal clear about what you want to achieve, how you plan to get there, and the milestones along the way. 

In the ever-evolving business landscape, failing to consider market trends can be detrimental. Stay abreast of industry changes, technological advancements, and shifting consumer preferences. An effective strategic plan adapts to the external environment rather than ignoring it. 

Not Doing a Thorough SWOT Analysis for your Dental Practice 

A SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) is a cornerstone of strategic planning. Neglecting this critical assessment can result in an incomplete understanding of your business’s position in the market. Do a thorough SWOT analysis to make informed decisions. 

This is a great article on using the SWOT analysis for your strategic plan and offers some great templates to follow.

Setting Unrealistic Goals for your Team 

While ambition is commendable, setting unrealistic goals can lead to frustration and a deceleration of motivation. Ensure your objectives are challenging yet attainable. Break down larger goals into smaller, manageable tasks to maintain momentum. 

Neglecting Implementation Plans 

Creating a strategic plan is only the first step. Failing to develop a robust implementation plan is a common misstep. Clearly define team roles and responsibilities as well as timelines to ensure that your strategy moves from paper to action seamlessly. 

Inadequate Communication with your Team  

A strategic plan is a roadmap that everyone in your organization should understand and embrace. Communication is key. Regularly update your team on the progress, changes, and achievements related to the plan. Foster a culture of open communication to keep everyone on the same page. 

Lack of Flexibility  

The dental industry landscape is unpredictable, especially post-pandemic. A rigid strategic plan may become obsolete in the face of unforeseen challenges or opportunities. Build flexibility into your plan, allowing for adjustments and pivots as needed. 

One way to know if you need to pivot or change strategies is by measuring your results as you execute on your strategic plan. This post explains how to measure, what to measure and why to measure. Measuring and testing your strategies is a key component to a healthy and effective strategic plan and should be part of your regular strategy planning meeting cadence.

Crafting a strategic plan is not rocket science but it is a lot of hard work. And taking on this much hard work can only be worth it if you know you’ll succeed. There are no guarantees, of course, but avoiding these mistakes brings you closer to an airtight plan focused on reaching your point B. You got this. Remember, a well-thought-out strategy is not just a document; it’s a living, breathing guide that evolves with your business. 

One More Strategy Implementation for your Dental Practice

A mastermind is a group of peers that come together on a regular basis to work out their biggest challenges, share resources and lean on each other to get through the rough patches and celebrate the wins. It is the single most effective tool that an entrepreneur has in her entrepreneurial toolkit.

One of the best ways I know to remain steadfast in your goals, bust through your obstacles, find resources and community to keep you strong is joining a Mastermind.  

And you’re in luck! I run a mastermind exclusively for dentists. We get together regularly to discuss the biggest obstacles to growth that they’re facing in real time; share stories of inspiration; share resources and celebrate what’s working in their practices. It’s a wonderful community and we want you to be a part of our movement. Click the button to register for the next one and we’ll see you there!