With 2018 here, you have probably said—or at least thought—“this will be my best year ever.” That train of thought is great; you should always be striving to improve over last year. However, what are you actually doing to make 2018 your best year ever? It’s one thing to say you are going to have your best year ever; it’s another thing to have a plan in place to actually have your best year ever.

Below, we provide a list of “chores” to help you get on your way to having your best year ever:

1. Review last year

When looking toward your future, you can probably learn a little something by looking at your past. Looking back will help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future, continue to do what you did best, and show you areas where you might be able to grow.

In the last year, you probably reached several of your goals and fell short of others. In looking back, you may be able to see where your shortcomings were and how you can ensure those same things do not repeat themselves this year.

As you learned in grade school, “history repeats itself.” While this is great news for everything good that you accomplished, you don’t want your shortcomings to repeat as well.

2. Review your marketing efforts

This goes hand in hand with reviewing your last year. While looking at your marketing efforts, you should also examine your new business (new patients). Where did the majority of these patients come from? This will shed some light on which of your marketing efforts worked and which ones didn’t.

Additionally, in reviewing where your new patients came from, it may show you where you should grow your marketing budget. For example, if you did well online and with direct mail, but did not receive a high number of referrals, this means you should look for a good referral program.

Your last year and your past marketing efforts will offer some hints about where to allocate your marketing dollars to ensure you keep a steady flow of new patients every month.


3. Set goals

As with anything, goals are important. Goals give you something to strive for and keep you on track. However, when making your goals for 2018, make sure that these are SMART goals. What are SMART goals? SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Agreed upon, Realistic, Timely.

Having SMART goals for your entire team will help everyone get on board with your goals and make them easier to achieve.

4. Find what motivates you

More than likely, it will not be smooth sailing all year. At some point, you will experience a setback or failure. When you do, it is easy to get stuck and give up on your goals. However, if you can find what motivates you, you will be more likely to achieve your goals. When things get tough, it is always good to remind yourself why you started in the first place. Whatever your reason for starting was, it is probably something that motivates you.

5. Surround yourself with brilliant people

You are a great dentist, similar to how Michael Jordan was a great basketball player. However, as great as Michael Jordan was, he could only be as good as the people he surrounded himself with—after all, he never won a championship without Scottie Pippen.

You, just like Michael Jordan, need great “teammates.” Whether it be someone who is great at handling your billing, great hygienists, or a great marketing mind, who you surround yourself will play a big role in how successful you are.

Author: Kathy Jiamboi

Owner of Creativedge Marketing, where growth-oriented dentists find dental practice marketing strategies and advice to take their practice to a new and higher level.

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