NLC Recap: The Value of Owning A Practice

Written by: Soren Paape

Soren is a D1 who attended this past National Leadership Conference in Chicago. Continue reading below to learn about his takeaways.

Soren  (right) .

Soren (right).

Coming in to dental school, I was well aware that I wanted to be fully immersed in the business side of dentistry. To accomplish what I wanted aside from the ‘becoming a dentist’ part of dental school, I knew that I needed to establish a proper mindset. To do this, I dedicated the summer prior to my D1 year reading and acquiring all of the knowledge I could about the foundations of business. You can find some of my favorite books at the end of this blog post.

Although I had to take a short break from my research to focus on my academics, I was pleased to have many of these business topics reviewed from a variety of speakers at ASDA’s National Leadership Conference. One of my favorites of the weekend was from Charles Loretto, the founder and president of National Dental Placements.

An unfortunate burden that comes with dental school is the shear amount of debt that students leave school with. As we all know, dentistry is not about making money, rather, it’s about providing good care for patients; however, this debt can add an incredible stress on new doctors in our profession. Many students leave school with a variety of options including repayment plans, refinancing, consolidation, etc. and lack a good idea of how to go about paying off this debt. I believe, as Charles believes, that owning a dental practice is one of the smartest pay off these student loans.

Many students don’t see the value in owning a dental practice and see it as an added stress. Throughout the presentation from Charles, he made one thing very clear: corporate dentistry doesn’t want students to know that they will make more money after dental school by owning a dental practice. He went over the numbers with us, and many people were shocked by salary increase that comes with owning a practice. Generally, a practice owner will double their salary by taking on the business hat and the doctor hat in a practice.

With the mountain of debt that students leave school with, it’s important to see all of the options available. I believe that owning a practice is one of the smartest ways out of the dental school debt and I’m glad that there are speakers that are pushing students to look into this option. Taking control of your finances will be one of the smartest decisions you make as a dentist. I hope you enjoy some of my book recommendations to get started down this path.

Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

E-myth by Michael Gerber

One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard

Good to Great by Jim Collins