Podcast: Good Profits and True Growth

In this episode Dr. Coughlin discusses good profits and true growth, why do we do it and how should it be done.

Hello and welcome to Ascent Dental Radio. A program dedicated to the balance between the clinical aspect of health care and the business of health care. And now here is your host, Dr. Kevin Coughlin.

kevin-transparentWelcome. My name is Dr. Kevin Coughlin, creator and owner of Ascent Dental Solutions, with a focus on developing your team, product and service, education, knowledge, training and the creation of the appropriate processes and procedures to make your product, service or organization better.

The following podcast talks about good profits and true growth, why do we do it and how should it be done.

The first step is understanding the culture of your organization or business. That culture may be focused only on money, working faster, working harder, seeing more clients, more patients, more customers. Your company many deal with problems rather than avoiding them. Individuals or team members may do a job but don’t understand their job.

You should next, understand the strength of your company and hopefully the single largest strength should be the great people that make up your organization. And if you don’t have great people, it is your responsibility as leaders and management to improve your team members’ strengths and decrease their weaknesses.

The next is focusing on your infrastructure, the location. Make sure you have committed leaders who really understand leadership and they understand the difference between leaders and managers. You need a team that is hardworking, dedicated and motivated. I suggest that a varied ethnic group and leaders in the field that you’re promoting and in the services you’re recommending be part of your team.

Next, understand weaknesses; the weaknesses in your products, your service or your organization. Almost all weaknesses can be overcome by extensive and correct training and complete and total understanding of the correct processes and procedures to deliver a final valuable product, service and getting the message out clearly and consistently. Over and over I have seen organizations that their single weakest link is poor or limited communication. I wished organizations could work on autopilot, but in the real world, excellent and consistent communication is necessary. Failure to provide it will be a guaranteed failure in your organization, products or service. You have to understand how to achieve these goals and you must be motivated to want to achieve these goals.

Start by looking at all your processes and procedures and in almost all cases it should start with the first point of contact with your customer or patient base. Review, assess the strengths, the weaknesses. Review, review again, train and improve until the process and procedures are perfect.

What’s most important for your business to succeed are the relationships amongst team members, leaders and managers. This relationship also must extend to your customer base or patients. How do you cultivate this? It usually occurs with time, but in most cases it will occur with excellent processes, excellent procedures and outstanding communication.

What are bad profits? These are profits that are earned at the expense of a customer relationship. Whenever a customer or a patient feels misled, mistreated, ignored or coerced, then the profits from that customer or patient are considered bad profits. They arise when a company tries to save money by delivering a lousy customer experience. The company extracts value from customers instead of adding value to their customer or patient base.

Companies that focus on bad profits will have growth suffer, reputations will become hurt, customers and patients become alienated and employees become demoralized. You become vulnerable to your competition and over and over I have seen competition will win out. Your business, many times, when it focuses on short profits or bad profits will not succeed in the long term. They may get initial success in the short term but ultimately failure in the long run. In order to avoid bad profits, leaders, managers, team members, all have to focus on aspects of the organization that create an excellent customer or patient experience. This comes once again with outstanding communication and outstanding leadership.

In the end, what you really want to do is treat your customers the way you’d want to be treated and that’s the same for products or services. What can we do? Start by changing the message and sometimes it’s necessary to change the messenger. If the culture is bad, action steps must be taken. Know and understand not only your job but the jobs of the team members around you. Be not just good but attempt to be the best and a relentless effort to excel at whatever product, service or organization you’re in. It’s critical not only to know your strengths but understand your weaknesses and get help with those weaknesses.

What are good profits? Good profits are earned when customers or patients become enthusiastic and cooperate. They occur when their customers or patients want to continually come back for additional services and products. They can’t help but want to tell friends and family and acquaintances about their excellent experience. They become what we refer to in business as promoters. Promoters are individuals that market your business, product and services. They are loyal individuals who you see over and over again. They believe, like and trust in you, in your organization and they provide the most cost-effective growth for your company. They are loyal.

Bad profits create what we refer to in business as detractors. Detractors hurt you, your company, your services and your products. They drive up cost by reporting numerous problems and wasting company time. They bad-mouth your company and your company’s reputation. They strangle growth, they demoralize an organization and the people in it. How can you avoid detractors? Service, better service and even better service and communicating clearly. This comes with written processes and procedures that if proven over time to be successful and that all team members, managers and leaders understand what these processes and procedures are and what the ultimate goal is, is to provide a high final valued product. Once this is achieved, you will not only have a promoter but you will have an extremely successful business.

There’s a third group of customers or patients and they are called passive groups. The three groups; promoters, detractors and passive individuals. The focus of the passive individual is someone who is not really a detractor but not really a promoter. They can be satisfied but they are unenthusiastic. They can be easily wooed to one or your other competitors and can easily be moved into a detractor or promoter category if not handled carefully. Most businesses should understand what their Net Promoter Score is or NPS. This is simply promoters minus detractors will equal Net Promoter Score. The goal of all organizations is to attempt to have 100 percent promoters which is unrealistic or worse 100 percent detractors, which is almost impossible because you will no longer be in business. Most companies fall somewhere between 40 and 80 percent. The closer you can get to 100 percent, the better your processes and procedures are, the better your organization is and the better your long term success will be.

The ultimate question is how do you create the appropriate processes and procedures? You must review not only your organizations, but your leaders, your managers and your team members’ strength and weaknesses and understand your company’s strengths and opportunities. The goal is to create a high Net Promoter Score. This will create for your business high retention rates, high margins, high annual spending, cost efficiencies, excellent marketing through word of mouth and an increase in market share.

Start by measuring what matters. Understand what makes your customer or patient satisfied and happy. This comes with quality assurance and quality assessment on every point of service. Start by reviewing and improving your existing processes and procedures and not only focus on your customers and patients, but focus on your team members and leaders and managers. All areas of an organization need constant improvement and that will come with constant communication, improved communication.

If you’ve enjoyed this podcast and you are interested in more information, please go to my website www.ascent-dental-solutions.com or email me at info@ascent-dental-solutions.com. Thanks, I hope you enjoyed the podcast and I look forward to speak with you in the future. My name is Dr. Kevin Coughlin.