12 Apr 2021  •  Blog, Practice Management  •  5min read By  • Gary Nelson

Why you need a plan

Gary Nelson on why every practice needs a plan for the coming year…

I can think of many reasons you might not want to take the time to write down your business plan for the first quarter or indeed one for the whole of 2021. However, like every other year, you need to. You need to do it for yourself and you need to do it for your team. Here are three reasons why…

Having a plan provides clarity

A clear plan will help you think through what you want to achieve and to know what you need to get there.

Being clear on what steps you need to take will stop you being overwhelmed and help you to follow through on specific actions.

Make sure those steps are tiny steps. Lots of tiny shuffles forward can keep you moving in the right direction.

A plan helps with motivation

A key ingredient to success is being motivated, and right now it is a problem area for many people.

It is something I have touched on in a previous blog with strategies to help.

Actually, taking action towards something helps. Having a plan with clearly defined tasks will keep procrastination at bay. It is much easier to be motivated when you know what needs to be done.

Promote an intentional attitude

We might not be able to plan much in our home lives right now so it is important to people that they can in a work environment, it could be a positive distraction from the real world.

Effective planning promotes an attitude that is positive and focused. When you are committed to following a plan through, you are moving forward in a particular direction, towards a clear goal.

Spending time planning as a business owner or leader at the minute when you are busy and spinning plates each and every day may not be high up the list of must-dos.

However, making time to plan will help you and your team to focus on what is important and be clear on what you all need to do to achieve your goals.

So, you have three reasons why you need to plan and no doubt many why you don’t really want to. Focus on the need.

There are many varieties of business plan. One quick and simple way of coming up with a plan is doing it with a retailer’s hat on.

If you were thinking like a retailer, you would likely break your business down into product areas and set targets based on previous performances.

Once you know your numbers, write them down, and complete it every month on a whiteboard in the staff area. In a larger practice you might even want to break these down by dentist

Product Area 2018 Performance 2019






= 2021 Per Month



New Patients



Membership Joiners



Dental Implants



Adult Ortho



Facial Treatments



Home Whitening



1 Hour Whitening



Oral Health Products



This is just a quick example of how easy a plan can be in relation to business performance. It’s people that make a business happen and it’s people that make it come alive. So don’t forget to have a ‘people plan’ as well as the above and that includes you. A plan for you as well.

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