10 Ways To Know You Are NOT READY To Become a Practice Owner

by Dr. Paul Goodman Dr. Paul Goodman | May 7, 2024 11:13:53 AM

You will never truly know when you are ready to own a dental practice. You should know when you are NOT READY.


I would like to share some tips on how to know you are NOT READY to become a dental practice owner. These are tips I have developed from owning a dental circus, I mean practice. Tips from helping dentists buy and sell dental practices. Tips from connecting with thousands of dentists online each week. Tips from connecting with hundreds of dentists in person each year.


These are my tips. Some of you will love them.  Some of you will be annoyed by them. Some of you will disagree like the fifth dentist and Trident gum. I like that. Friction and feedback leads to more learning. Fighting leads to more isolation. Focus on sharing well-intentioned feedback. Be curious, not judgmental as Walt Whitman and Ted Lasso like to say.


10 Ways To Know You Are NOT READY To Become The Owner Of A Dental Practice


  1. You are NOT READY to commit to living in the area where you will own your dental practice for the next two decades.


  1. You are NOT READY to have three to ten team members depend on you to "feed their family" and look at you as their leader.


  1. You are NOT READY with your clinical skills to be super efficient in delivering dentistry "inside your operatory."


  1. You are NOT READY to be asked to solve $1 and $100,000 problems daily.


  1. You are NOT READY to answer A LOT of questions a day that have "nothing and everything" to do with being a dental practice owner.


  1. You are NOT READY  to manage the "people challenges" that come with having your team members work in a super small space together working on patients that do not want to be there.


  1. You are NOT READY to not be paid if the practice account does not have enough money in it that week.


  1. You are NOT READY to think about your practice and its success and struggles A LOT of the time when you are not in the office.


  1. You are NOT READY to get text messages before 7 am destroying the predictability of your day and causing you to go into "crisis problem-solving mode."


  1. You are NOT READY to own a dental practice if you are not ready to give up a lot of personal autonomy in exchange for business autonomy.


As the owner of a dental practice for over fifteen years, I can confidently say that owning a dental practice is 50% awesome, 50% annoying and 100% exhausting.


Practice ownership is the right move for some dentists. Practice ownership is the wrong move for other dentists. Some practice owners I know wish they did it sooner. Some practice owners I know wish they never did it at all. Find out as much solid information as possible to make the BEST DECISION FOR YOU!


There are so many creative ways to be successful as a dentist from 100% ownership, partnerships, group practice models as well as full and part-time associate positions.


Treatment plan your "dentisting happiness" with purpose and intention. 

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