Robert Bongiorno, DDS

Last updated on July 8th, 2019 at 02:42 pm

How did you start out?

I graduated from the New York University College of Dentistry in 2009. I followed this immediately with a residency program at Staten Island University Hospital, and directly after my residency went into practice with my father, who practices in Brooklyn. While I was working with my father, an opportunity came along in Queens to purchase an office and I decided to move ahead with it.

How was your practice doing prior to MGE?

One word: STRESSFUL.

One of the reasons I became a dentist was my dad. Growing up, I watched him work three days a week, enjoy his job and his life! He seemed happy and we had a great lifestyle. I had no idea how much the business aspect of dentistry had changed over the years – until I was knee deep in it. Prior to MGE, I was working six days a week and coming home most nights at 9:00 PM. So, all in all, being a dentist was far from what I expected.

While I loved the profession, the business side of dentistry was a huge headache. I had a hard time getting a gauge on how the practice was performing. I’d be in the back most of the time taking care of patients, and I couldn’t tell how or if my staff at the front were doing all that they were supposed to do. Or, whether they were doing it well, average or mediocre. Profitability was also an issue. Specifically, the lack of it!

So, while I enjoyed being a dentist and taking care of patients, I most definitely did not enjoy the “business of dentistry.”In addition to myself, I had a full time associate dentist, a Periodontist who came in twice a month and an Orthodontist who worked one day a month.

What made you decide to choose MGE?

We found out about MGE from one of my wife’s friends who’s a hygienist. She invited us to one of MGE’s seminars – the MGE New Patient Workshop, so we came along. From the beginning I loved what I was hearing, especially when I spoke with other clients. They weren’t stressed out, were productive, and weren’t working the crazy hours I was! I saw the MGE program as a way out of the situation I was in and became hopeful that it would actually be possible to spend more time with my family!

The New Patient Workshop was an immediate hit. We started marketing to the correct target audience and our new patient numbers went up right away After that I decided to continue with MGE and signed up for the MGE Communication and Sales Seminars in Florida; and came to my first one at the end of 2014. These seminars were amazing and made a huge difference in case acceptance and collections in my practice. We started doing more comprehensive dentistry and patients were accepting and paying for all the treatment they needed – not just what insurance covered. Collections went up by over 17% the month after my first seminar and stayed there. By the fourth month we doubled that. And here’s where it gets real interesting: during this period my full-time associate left the practice and my Periodontist dropped down to a day a month! So, our collections increased significantly with less doctor days!

With how great this stuff was working, it was a no-brainer for me to sign up for the MGE Power Program – so I did! I was ready to move things to the next level and learn how to be an executive and organize and manage my practice. (Editor’s Note: The MGE Power Program is a comprehensive series of courses, seminars and implementation steps designed to give a doctor control over all of the business aspects of their practice. The subjects covered range from marketing, case acceptance, organization, management, hiring, financial planning, leadership, and more. Learn more at www.mgeonline.com/services)

How did the MGE Power Program affect your practice?

The MGE Power Program completely transformed my office. It gave me the executive know-how and organizational systems to control practice growth. It taught me how to get everyone on the same page, increase efficiency, and how to get the entire team to provide incredible customer service to my patients.

The Power Program is not short! It takes time and dedication. And I put in both. And you might think that this time out of the office would decrease production – but the office continued to grow even with less days in the office while I was at MGE working on my training. It’s proof of that saying, “Working smarter not harder.”

I started the Power Program in early 2015. Since then we’ve grown every year. And I finished the time-consuming portion of the Power Program training a while ago! This knowledge I have, I have for life! Even though I’m done with my training, my Office Manager and many of my staff still train regularly (especially as we bring new staff on). I make sure I stay on top of my game and occasionally attend advanced practice management courses at MGE and the twice yearly MGE Graduate Conferences. And if I run into any issues, MGE is always just a phone call away! And best of all is how it helped improve my family life. I’m happier, I enjoy the office and…I’m working normal hours! I get to spend more time with my wife and kids; you really can’t put a price tag on this.

What are your future plans for expansion?

I plan to open multiple offices. Right now, I have my office in Queens, and I’m going to step into my father’s office in Brooklyn and see if I can help it grow. I will also have a practice in Florida opening up soon. By the end of 2018 I plan to have four offices.

What advice would you give to another dentist?

The MGE training is like getting a Master’s degree in business for Dentistry. It takes a lot of work and it takes sacrifice, but it is well worth it in the end because the knowledge you gain you’ll take with you for the rest of your life. MGE doesn’t want you to fail; they’ll do what it takes and show you how to do what you need to in order to become successful. For me, MGE practices what they preach and that was important to me.My advice would be to come to MGE and see how they can help you. I would start off with the MGE New Patient Workshop (which comes with a money-back guarantee) and see if you like what they have to say; if you do, then trust your gut and go with it. The MGE Communication & Sales Seminars are a no-brainer investment – I made the money back the first day I got back to the office, literally. So, just test it out and see how you like it because it could be the thing that you’ve been looking for to help your practice succeed.