Thursday, 29 October 2020

The quest to save money can be costly


The quest to save money can be costly


I have recently started coaching a dentist in wales who bought their practice 2 years ago.

As they transitioned from an associate to a principal the figures were overwhelming.

Against sound advice, they cut costs as much as possible, refused to invest in a specialist dental accountant, used a high street solicitor and chose not to work with an experienced Dental Business Coach and trainer.


Two years on, he contacted me in a panic, he realised that the in-house capitation plan was flawed, there was significant supervised neglect, he had been paying his associates and hygienists incorrectly and he needed help. The first analysis showed that he had been losing at least 5k a month on how the plan was being operated, at over £120,000 over the last two years. By his own admission, the young principal thinks his losses are probably much larger because he had not been looking at the numbers.


If this dentist had paid for professional advice these errors would have been predicted, prevented, the practice would have been profitable.


Unfortunately, having ignored the situation, what would have been simple has become more complex, because other threads from the practice are intertwined.


By his own admission, the dentist told me that he didn’t know what he was doing, running a practice was much more difficult than he thought and rather than ask for help, he put his head down and worked harder. He told me that his quest to save money was a costly mistake.

Over a couple of coaching calls we have redesigned the membership plan, got the team on board and are looking at the remuneration packages so they are fair and equitable. “The coaching and training I am doing with Jane is the best investment I have ever made, no one should ever become a principal without the support of a business coach. Since working with Jane I have saved myself so much, money, time, and stress. I can now sleep at night. Thank you  Jane for getting me out of my dark hole.”


Transitioning from an associate to a principal is in exciting adventure, where you are in control of your career, the care and treatment you provide. You get to choose your equipment, materials, and team. Being a principal is very different from being and associate and your blind spots can destroy your dream.


There are 4 stages to mastery

1.     Unconscious incompetence (UC-IC) – blind spots you don’t know what you don’t know.

2.     Conscious incompetence(C-IC) You must become aware of what you don’t know. This can be scary admitting that you have knowledge, skills and attitude gaps. Unless you know what the 12-facets of a successful practice are you can’t master them. Conscious incompetence often occurs through a crisis, financial breakdown, staff leaving, patient complaints etc. Alternatively, working with an experienced specialist Dental Business Coach and Trainer, they can supportively and encouragingly shine a light on your blind spots.

3.     Conscious competence (C-C)– with training you learn what to do and how to do it. You will be able to answer questions such as why, what, how, what is. At this stage, your skills are growing require you to consciously think and implement. This stage of learning how to run a successful practice can feel slow and hard work and some get frustrated and disillusioned. It is essential you learn what you need to learn, practice, home and embed your new skills as a practice owner.

4.     Unconscious competence  (UC-C)– Before long you will find what was previously impossible or difficult as effortless. You have built the structure, systems, processes, physical and mental muscle memory. You will have structured your days and your mindset so that success is inevitable. Your coach keeps you on track and enables you to hone your skills.


Before you get complacent and undermine all your great efforts, the next step if to become aware of your residual blind spot(s) and start the process again.


Being principal of a successful practice is not a destination, it is a continuous journey.

Invest your time, and money wisely.


In the words of Benjamin Franklin

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”


If you would like to know more about how we can assist you in making you and your practice more successfulful, saving you time, money and stress e mail

Balance Wheel – Dental Practice


This exercise is about the balance in your practice. For each segment, ask yourself, “How satisfied am I in this area of my practice right now?”   The centre of each segment represents 0 and the outer edge 10 give each segment a number from zero to ten and indicating that by creating a new outer.



0              Failure                                     Ignorant

1              Unacceptable                          Beginner                     

2              Incompetent                            Novices

3              Ineffective                               Apprentice

4              Inadequate                              Probationer

5              Complacent                            Intern

6              Satisfactory                              Experienced

7              Competent                              Practiced

8              Commendable                        Proficient

9              High quality                             Specialist

10           Excellent                                 Master


Notice two distinctions in the questions.

How satisfied am I…” This is a subjective assessment.  It is not about how your family colleagues or friends see you; it is not about success; it is about personal satisfaction.


Also notice right now”.  This wheel is a snapshot.  Scores will change weekly, daily – even hourly as circumstances change.  Do not look for ultimate truth; just check in with how you feel in this moment

Monday, 24 August 2020

Before you start bonding you need to bond

 Before you start bonding you need to bond


Adhesive dentistry and minimally invasive techniques have changed the way we do dentistry.

35 years ago, when I was a dental student the only composite that we had was occlusion, and it really did not look that great, and didn’t bond that well either.

Minimally invasive techniques combined with modern day composites look incredible, they have the potential to be practice builders, little if any drilling, fabulous aesthetics, and function restored in one visit what is there not for your patients to love?

Before you get a chance to do modern day bonding you will need to do old fashioned bonding to build rapport with your patients. Experience shows that until your patients know you, like you, and trust you, they are unlikely to invest their precious time or money with you.

The great news is that old fashioned bonding, or as we call it rapport takes very little time it can be done using a video platform, over the telephone as well as face to face. In the current way of working you can create deep trust and rapport with your patients irrespective of the PPE or social distancing.


Our goal in building patient relationships is rapport, a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other's feelings or ideas and communicate well.

When you have this, you will understand your patients and they will understand you. Other benefits of establishing rapport, include less stress, less conflict, fewer complaints, patients experience less discomfort or post op problems, happier patients, treatment is easier to deliver.

Think about it for a moment, If you are in an area where there are people gathered, you intuitively know who gets on and who does not, don’t you? What is it that you are unconsciously aware of to be so accurate? The psychologists have demonstrated that it is a result of how closely with match another person. Those people that get along well, walk in step, are in harmony and see things from the same viewpoint, that is people are really connected and bonded, naturally become an echo or mirror of one another.

Accepted wisdom is that 55% of our communication is through body language, gestures, and posture, 38% is through vocal tonality, volume, rhythm, harmony and 7% the words we use.

If we assume that this is true, what is our most powerful modality of communication?

That is correct, your body language.


It therefore follows, when we decide that we want to establish rapport, we actively choose to do what people who get along do naturally, we become as much like our patients as possible, because people like people like them.

I am going to invite you to match and mirror as closely as possible

1)   Body language including

      i.        Head position

     ii.        Part-body postures

    iii.        Half-body postures

    iv.        Limb position and movement

     v.        Hand position and movement

    vi.        Gestures

  vii.        Facial expressions

 viii.        Eye movements, eye contact, blink rates

   ix.        Habits and ticks

    x.        Energy

   xi.        Breathing, location, rate                                                                                                        

2)   Non-verbal vocal qualities: including

      i.        Speed of speech

     ii.        Volume

    iii.        Timbre

    iv.        Tempo                                                                                                                                                                

3)   Verbal qualities

      i.        Words

     ii.        Verbal syntax

    iii.        Representational systems

    iv.        Meta programmes

What we discover in our workshops that when delegates match one another more closely, they become more engaged, more interested, remember the conversation, feel more connected and listened to. What impact would it have on your patient relationships if your patients felt that way too?

Your patients are unlikely to remember what you do, they are unlikely to remember what you say and they will always remember how you made them feel.


Mirroring has been tested and proved to be effective in lab research and please don’t believe what I say, try it out for yourself, match and mirror people and notice what happens to your connection, depth of communication and trust as a result.

Here are some examples of people matching, do you think it is natural or active, with the intent to build rapport? Does it matter? does the ends justify the means?

Examples of mis matching that breaks rapport and that you can sense that lack of rapport, lack of engagement, lack of trus, and even dislike.


By way of a comparison

Notice the smiles with the matching and the frowns with the mis matching.

What do you want for your patients, team, family and friends?

Let me know what happens when you experiement with bonding techniques.




Thursday, 30 July 2020

4 EASY steps to better

4 EASY steps to better


There are only 4 steps to better. - So much easier than you may thought.

Think for a moment about your personal and professional life, where would you like them to be better?

Are there areas that have been affected by covid and lock down that you would like to restore and make better, maybe even better than they were pre-covid?

The balance wheel below may help you  identify areas in your personal or business life that you would like to make better.







Once you have identified what you what to make better, now for the



Unconscious Incompetence

You don’t know what you don’t know. Ignorance is bliss, or not as the case may be. This is a place that often involves, frustration, disappointment, stress, anger, self-doubt. Now is the perfect time to move on, and make the change, because doing the same as you have always done will only yield the same results.



Conscious Incompetence

This step is essential. You must identify the truth about your current situation, not overdramatise and make it worse than it is, or gloss it up making it seem better, the honest truth about your situation. Unless and until you take this step, you cannot improve those areas that frustrate you, stress you or make you unhappy. This is where the balance wheel above and talking through them with a coach will be really useful. This step of revelation is often associated with mixed emotions, excitement, anticipation, frustration, sadness, notice them and progress to stage 3

 C C

Conscious Competence

This is a stage of learning., developing new skills, discovering new and better ways to achieve what you want. You achieve conscious competence by working with trainers, attending seminars, reading books, working with a coach therapist or mentor, and putting what you learn into practice. Conscious competencies a period of action and reflection Thinking about what your outcomes, designing, implementing strategies, reflection on the results and changing your approach until you see the results.



Unconscious Competence (Better)

With focused thought and practice, new habits become embedded, practice makes permanent, new approaches become part of your muscle memory and you are now achieving what you set out to without thinking about it, better is your new way of being. Until you move the goal posts and start the process again. This quadrant is a time when you feel peace, sense of achievement, seeing results and new and better comfort zone. Just as the seasons must change, we need winter just as much as spring, summer and autumn, so to will you change and you will begin the cycle again so you are in a eternal process of tweaking, constantly learning growing, practicing and feeling fulfilled.


I would love to hear your comments and reflections on this article, how do you feel about the concepts, what do you see and sense from your balance wheels?

If you would like to talk anything through, e mail me to set up a call.

What is coaching?

Jane Lelean

International Business Coach, 
Trainer, Mentor and Speaker

Therapeutic Coach

Wednesday, 27 May 2020

words matter

When someone says

“I’m doing ok it can sometimes be slightly daunting, but I think I’m keeping it together.”
You (and they) may think they are in a good place mentally and not needing any support.

However, I believe, it is a statement that indicate that the person concerned needs support, and does not know how to ask for it or accept it if offered.
As a therapeutic coach, I recognise the words we use are not accidental. The phraseology above indicates that the speaker (or writer) would really value from (needs) a listening ear, professional support, and strategies that are more supportive than the ones they are currently using.

The words you speak or write matter. Your unconscious will select words that accurately convey what is underlying your mental state and blow your cover. Your conscious mind may think that you are covering up well, protecting your vulnerabilities and pride, keep up appearances and deflect the need for support.

An experienced therapeutic coach, therapist, or skilled listener will pay attention to the words and immediately notice the flashing warning lights recognising all is not well. What seems held together on the surface is masking denial and an unacknowledged acceptance that all is not well.

To me the person who wrote this, is not doing well; and here is why.

The use of “OK” does not describe the best version of themselves and indicates they are hanging on by their fingertips, just holding it together.

“Sometimes slightly daunting”, indicates moments of overwhelm, without an approach that makes it manageable.

“I think I am keeping it together”, is a statement of uncertainty, and the writer does not really know how they are doing, and thinks they probably could be in a better state of mind

Listen closely, pay attention to what you and other are saying. Just because others are stressed and struggling at this time, does not give you permission to struggle necessarily. Help is at hand from many sources to support you with fears concerns and worries whether they be tiny, small or big.

Your mind matters.

I have been offering free 1-2-1 therapeutic and business coaching calls throughout lock down and if you would like to speak to a qualified coach for solutions not signposts, please call me on 07989 757 884 or e mail to schedule your complimentary session.

Tuesday, 12 May 2020

Helping you prepare for an incredible return to practice

In clinical dentistry somethings belong together and if a key component is missed, your treatment is likely to be substandard or fail.
For example
Rubber dam and endo
Etch and composites

With food there are also ingredients that belong together
Strawberries and cream
Fish and chips
Cheese and chutney

There are also ingredients that are not normally put together, infact the combination often sounds bizarre, yet when combined  the results are deliciously magical. They bring the best out in one another in ways that you could not imagine.  1+1 =5
For example
Peanut butter and marmite
Strawberries and black pepper

I would like to suggest that clinical skills training combined with Patient Centred Sales -BEST CHOICES training is the most magical and productive, get underutilised combination of courses in dentistry.

You have probably spent the last 6 weeks attending many clinical skills webinars, now is the time to take you skills, talent and services to a level that you have previously only dreamt was possible.

I am frequently contacted by dentists, like you, who have made huge investments of time and money on theoretical and hands on clinical courses and have come away frustrated and disillusioned. The promise of more rewarding private dentistry has not materialised. Moreover, these dentists often report that they continue to do more and more advanced courses and yet their patients still just want the cheapest or quickest, when you want to provide the best. For some the frustration of not being able to provide the best treatment available combined with the fear of being sued, results in many to consider leaving the profession.

During our conversations what I discover is that despite making really significant investments in clinical training courses, the dentists have attended not attended any communication or sales skills courses. As a result, they have learnt the clinical skills and not how to discover what is important to their patients or the value of the treatment from the patient’s perspective.

You have a fabulous clinical skill set that will improve the patient’s dental health, appearance, and experience, now is the time to ensure those skills are utilised.

We are offering our Patient Centred Sales BEST CHOICES as an online and interactive workshop to supplement the clinical training you have done in the Tools down – Skills up Covid zone. I am sure that you will then discover that clinical and communication skills training belong together and when they are the results are magical.

This workshop will be run through zoom as a fully interactive workshop
5 X 4-hour sessions
  • Monday 22nd June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Tuesday 23rd June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Wednesday 24th June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Thursday 25th June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Friday 26th June 2020 8:00-12:00

Additional bonuses
  • 4 x webinar follow ups over 12 months, September, December, March, June
  • Extending the start date of the 100% double your investment guarantee
  • Free place for one DCP per dentist attending.
  • Opportunity to spread your investment until June 2021 at 0% interest.
Find out more and book your place

Here are a few comments from delegates who have already completed the online workshop

Rosie Thomas
“Thank you so much for running the BEST CHOICES course over the last few weeks, it really has been a brilliant course and I can't wait to actually start using it in practice, although it has been an amazing way of making use of this drills down skills up time!

I was recommended this course by a colleague, who said it was one of the best courses she had done.

By attending this course, I now have a lot of frameworks and methods that I will be able to incorporate into my general practice. I feel a lot more confident about talking to patients about their wants and preferences and what impact any treatment will have on them as well as how to overcome any objections they may have.

I had never used Zoom before or done an interactive session over zoom, so I was slightly apprehensive about this but it worked very well and by the end of the first session I felt comfortable using Zoom

Jane made me feel very comfortable speaking over Zoom and split the delegates off into smaller groups which also enabled me to get used to using Zoom.

I did this amazing course during lockdown about how to increase your private treatment plan conversions, it really was very interesting and has opened my eyes to a lot of new techniques and methods; I'd thoroughly recommend it!”

Ricky Ghataura, General Dentist, Bucks
“I cannot explain how it has made such an impact to the way that I shall work in the future. It has given me so much insight into so many areas, such as communication, phrasing questions, NLP techniques, different ways in which people learn and the whole patient experience.

I am looking forward to applying all these techniques and looking at improving my patient treatment courses and my income and confidence.

Patient Centred Sales BEST CHOICES is all very helpful and well planned and organized, with role play sessions and discussion sessions with learning and reflection. 

 I was concerned about the cost of the course and initially about the time away from the practice but when I contacted Jane and asked if she had thought about doing the course online during the lockdown and she agreed, I had to do the course.

 The course was done online and made use of time during lockdown and so I didn’t have to have any time away from work. The cost of the course was spread over a year and so it was so helpful for me. Jane was very accommodating.

The Patient Centred Sales BEST CHOICES is an amazing course that is useful for everyone, individuals and teams. It takes you through the whole process of how to build rapport, communicate and elicit all the information from the patient to create and reassure them that their goals and desires can be achieved. It is an invaluable framework and learning resource and I truly wish I had been introduced to it earlier in my career. I now feel I have the skills to apply in my daily practice.
I would strongly recommend this course to everyone. “

Lydia Sharples Oxon
I have known Jane for a couple of years and always admire her calm and strategic approach to things, so when she named this time 'tools down, skills up' and announced she would be running an online version of the BEST CHOICES workshop, I knew this would be a really valuable use of my time. 

I really love that the course is split in to 4 x 4 hour sessions, so we benefit from really rich and deep learning, as opposed to panic watching a number of 1 hour webinars on a variety of topics (which is what I was doing a few weeks ago!!). I know that I will be able to use what I am learning straight away when we go back, in whatever way we go back. Communication has always been the key in dentistry, and I feel it will be even more so when we eventually go back to seeing patients, so doing this online course has made me feel more calm and in control about how things will be when we go back. 

Having done this course 18 months ago face to face, comparing the online version, I have been so pleased, and honestly, quite surprised, that I feel I have gained exactly the same amount, certainly no less, from doing it online. Jane has succeeded in making it really interactive, it works so well, using the break out rooms and discussing the content in small groups. I don't think any of the value of the course is lost by it being carried out online, which is what I was worried about before I signed up. 

Another highlight of the course is that my dental nurse has been able to come along for free! She has really enjoyed it, and we have daily de-briefs after the sessions to think about what we've learnt and how it applies to us as a team of 2 and also the wider practice. I think the team approach is a really unique aspect of Jane's teaching, and incredibly valuable.

Sue Boynton Dento-legal advisor
I'm looking forward to the rest of the course. Thankyou Jane!"

In my role as an independent dentolegal consultant I assist individuals and teams who have either run into difficulties, or who want to change some aspects of their practise.

There are times when they’ll ask me to recommend someone with expertise in sales and crucially they are wanting to keep ethical. That’s when Jane invited me to come along to her Patient Centred Sales Best Choices course.

I was really pleased that the could proceed online during the lockdown. The online aspect works really well, there are even breakout rooms for small group discussions and exercises. It’s really easy to get build rapport everyone - it’s almost like being in the same room.

We’re only halfway through and already there’s a benefit for me in understanding different perspectives, different approaches, and that sparks all sorts of fresh ideas.

Jane is generous with her time and expertise, and her enthusiastic approach is very motivational. Really looking forward to the next training session!

Join us in June before you return to practice
5 X 4-hour sessions
  • Monday 22nd June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Tuesday 23rd June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Wednesday 24th June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Thursday 25th June 2020 8:00-12:00
  • Friday 26th June 2020 8:00-12:00
Additional bonuses
  • 4 webinar follow ups over 12 months, September, December, March, June
  • Extending the start date of the 100% double your investment guarantee
  • Free place for one DCP per dentist attending.
  • Opportunity to spread your investment until June 2021 at 0% interest.

Join us inSeptember after you have returned
5 X 4-hour sessions
  • Saturday 5th September 8:00 -12:00
  • Saturday 12th September 8:00-12:00
  • Saturday 19th September 8:00-12:00
  • Saturday 26th September 8:00-12:00
  • Saturday 3rd October 8:00-12:00
Additional bonuses
  • 4 webinar follow ups over 12 months, December, March, June, September
  • Extending the start date of the 100% double your investment guarantee
  • Free place for one DCP per dentist attending.
  • Opportunity to spread your investment until September 2021 at 0% interest.

We look forward to hearing your incredible results when you marry your clinical skills with Patient Centred Sales -BEST CHOICES