Cash flow up, Stress down? Thank Pareto!

In 1906, the Italian economist Pareto astutely observed that 20% of the people owned 80% of the country’s wealth. The principle that 20% of something is always responsible for 80% of the results is known as the Pareto Principle, or the 80/20 rule, and can be used as a daily reminder to focus on the 20% that matters.

By applying the Pareto Principle when running your dental practice you can:

  • Drop the high maintenance, low revenue patients. These patients are never satisfied and tend to suck the energy out of you and your staff.
  • Focus on the 20% of the dental procedures that produce 80% of the practice income. Practice volume permitting, it may mean adding an associate to handle the less profitable work.
  • Pamper your best patients with small gifts, lots of extra attention, preferred appointments etc.
  • Delegate tasks. Before you start any task, ask yourself whether or not another staff member can do it.
  • Stop spending valuable time on bringing a weak staff member up to speed. There is a management theory based on the Pareto Principle, called Superstar Management, which claims that 20% of the employees produce 80% of the results, and you should therefore focus your time on nurturing the good so as to become excellent. Follow the management credo of Netflix: “Hire the best and get out of the way!”