For this week’s blog post, we are doing something a little unusual—featuring some of the basic information from the MGE Power Program; specifically, the article “Morning Production Meetings.” Every MGE Power Client receives a copy of this article, among many others, at the beginning of the program. This article in particular describes how to conduct a morning production meeting (or a “morning huddle,” as many people call it) to maximize productivity and case acceptance.
Many dentists already hold morning meetings to coordinate clinical activities, while overlooking the value of placing similar attention on figuring out how to increase productivity. The answer – do both! The following article provides a step-by-step guideline on an essential dental practice management tool for increasing productivity —with no wasted time—every morning.
MORNING PRODUCTION MEETINGS
Consider this analogy: A professional football team spends several days planning and practicing their game plan before the game. When Sunday comes, they hit the field and execute. If their plan is sound and they execute well, they achieve their objective — a win. Spending no time on planning and all of your time executing would bring about confusion and an uncoordinated team. If you are having trouble meeting production goals in your practice (in other words — executing) it may be due to lack of planning how to meet these goals. One effective method we have found is to have morning “production meetings” done in a very specific format. To implement this in your practice, follow along with this article.
I. PURPOSE OF THE “MORNING PRODUCTION MEETING”
The purpose of this meeting is to coordinate the scheduled production and case presentation activities of that day. It is also used to “line-up” which patients you will be presenting treatment to (or closing cases that have already been presented earlier) and when they will be seen to ensure that all of your patients are moving along on their treatment plans.
II. WHEN TO HAVE IT
The morning production meeting needs to be held at least fifteen to twenty minutes before the first patient of the day. It should take no more than this to get it done.
III. WHO SHOULD ATTEND
In attendance should be you, your office manager, your financial coordinator and your scheduler. Other staff may wish to attend, but it is not mandatory. In reality, we have found that having too many people there can throw the meeting off track (the assistant asking what type of cement to use for your 1:00 patient, etc.) as well as cause too much confusion. Try to keep it limited to the staff mentioned above. Detailed clinical discussion of cases should not be covered at this meeting. These should be covered in a separate “clinical meeting” accordingly.
IV. PRODUCTION MEETING RULES
Several rules should be followed to have an effective “production meeting”:
- The meeting should be kept brief and efficient (no more than 15-20 minutes).
- Every person attending needs to be on time and come prepared.
- Keep the tasks that you assign simple and doable. Do not set “unreal” or unattainable targets.
V. SEQUENCE OF THE MEETING
1. Take that day’s charts that have outstanding treatment in them and review with those present what would have to be done to get those patients scheduled to do it. This may include: figuring out the patients’ accounts, having you talk to them, etc.
2. Examine any openings that you have in the immediate future and review which of the patients coming in that day could fill those openings with a productive procedure (i.e., Mrs. Smith is a housewife and can come in almost anytime before 2:00 PM, etc.).
3. Have your receptionist highlight the patients’ names who need to be seen by you to be sold on all copies of the schedule posted around the office. Your assistant, associate, hygienist, etc. should understand that by highlighting a patient’s name, you need to see that person before they are discharged that day.
4. Before the close of the meeting, have each person present note their tasks as applicable — i.e., the Financial Coordinator may need to check on Mr. Jones’ account, etc. Also, set or reaffirm the production and collection quota for that day in accordance with your weekly/monthly goal.
5. Adjourn the meeting and have the office manager ensure throughout the day that everyone is accomplishing what was discussed.
The first step in getting production to occur is to figure out where it is going to come from (i.e., state exactly what is going to be accomplished). By following the above, you put CONTROL in on your office and can push yourself to new heights!