By Hayley Robins, Senior Accountant at Hive Business
Because dentists find it hard to articulate what they really want, it’s normal for a practice owner to run their business according to arbitrary external goals. Look around and you’ll see your peers killing themselves running businesses they feel alienated from, a million miles from meaningful work that has been designed via introspection, asking questions like: do I value freedom, money or job satisfaction the most?
While these three things are flexible, they are limited and constrained by each other in what’s known as an iron triangle. For instance you can fashion your business around your desire for personal freedom and time with family by delegating heavily, but being out of operations a lot dictates that you must sacrifice money and job satisfaction.
You don’t get the confidence to take such decisive action unless you have done the introspection first, and it’s this process of reflection, to develop a clear idea of your personal philosophy and values, that will enable you to make meaningful decisions with all the other iron triangles too. They are everywhere. One is quality, speed and cost when buying services, another is tax rate, access to cash and unwelcome HMRC attention. If your business is really going to serve you, only a coherent picture of want you want will bring coherency to these decisions.
As the author Simon Sinek might say, you need to know why you are getting out of bed every day before you can figure out how or what you are going to be doing. Get the big things right — your values — and the details take care of themselves. How does that work for dental practice owners? You step off the daily treadmill, find time to connect with yourself and build some awareness of how you want to live. You start imagining the kind of life you would wake up to feeling inspired and return home from fulfilled every day.
If you’re stuck we can help you jump start the creative process with a diagnostic day to give you a sense of what is possible. The next step is translating your preferences into reality: how will your heavily delegated business actually function? What kind of staff will you need? How will you and your family live if you are forgoing access to cash in order to pay as little tax as possible?
These are the prosaic, technical questions that need competent answers. Via a methodological approach that balances what is ideal against what is viable, any set of values and preferences can be manifested into reality, so that being a dental practice owner might not be what you assumed it had to be. This is the business modelling service we provide — get in touch to find out more and make your business work for you, and not the other way around.