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Dental Practice Consulting: What Stats Tell You

Dental Practice Consulting: What Stats Tell You

Statistics are like x-rays or a car's dashboard. Statistics tell you and the employee what's going on in a specific area of the practice. Some statistics can be assigned to a specific employee. For example Number of Patients Reactivated.

If a statistic is trending down, then it is likely that something changed which means you need to figure out what changed and get it reverted back.

Typically this happens when someone new takes over a position and changes things or some successful action is changed or stopped.

As an example, you see that the New Patients statistic is trending down and you discover that referral cards are no longer being handed out. Obviously you want to make sure that referrals cards start getting handed out again.

In the above example, you'd have one employee who was overall responsible for the statistic of New Patients. That's where accountability comes in. You know that the key successful action is getting referral cards handed out. So you would set a quota for the number of cards handed out on a daily and weekly basis.

Note: The Morning Huddle is a perfect to time to review the statistics for the week and month, then assign daily quotas.

On the other hand if a statistic is doing OK, then make sure nothing gets changed.

The example above is the real use of statistics. There's quite a bit more to using statistics, but essentially they’re useful tools so that allow you to quickly know what's going on in your practice and take appropriate actions as well as set goals and daily quotas.

We use to assign lots of statistics to all employees. We no longer do so. Many consultants, as part of old management systems, used to recommend doing so but we've found blindly assigning statistics because "you're suppose to" is actually counter productive.

Some statistics make sense to assign to a specific employee but not all of them.

A perfect example are Dental Assistants. We use to have a very complicated point system that we used to create a statistic for Dental Assistants. It was stupid. The only statistic that makes sense for an assistant is production; but of course a Dental Assistant is not the only one responsible for production.

So you can't be rote with statistics. Each practice is different. How statistics should be set up in an office vary from office to office.


Kevin Tighe, Cambridge Dental Consultants, Senior Consultant, got bitten hard by the business and marketing bug during long summer days working at his dad's Madison Avenue ad agency. After joining Cambridge as a speaker in the mid-1990s, Kevin went on to become Cambridge’s senior consultant and eventually CEO. Cambridge Dental Consultants is a full-service dental practice management company offering customized dental office manuals. Frustrated? High overhead? Schedule a chat with Kevin at 




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There is the good, the bad and the ugly of dental practice management, but many dentists will still tell you the probability is your dental consulting will work if you and your consultant are on the same page. It stands to reason that if a dental consultant had little value, worth or benefit that consultant could not stand up to harsh economic realities for long.  A veteran dental consultant is also a "personal coach" who shold bring management wisdom based on "in the trenches" experience along with systems and protocols to that have been successfully implemented in other practices. Top dental consultants talk and network with each other. They pay attention to what systems work and don't across many dental practices. 


New Patient Phone Call

Insurance Processing

New Patient Experience and Patient Education

Financial Arrangements



Unscheduled Treatment 


Daily and Weekly Checklists

General Policy Manual 

Staff Accountability

What gets monitored, gets managed. It is as simple as that. The only way to monitor what gets done is with daily stats especially for your weak areas. For example, one employee should be specifically responsible for calls to patients who are unscheduled, overdue for re-care or need reactivation. Other staff can and should help in coordination with the accountable employee.


What most practice owners are lack in knowledge is not how to book an appointment, but rather how to be an effective leader. The best systems in the world are useless if the staff do not comply. Good leaders know how to get staff to willingly follow through and comply. 

Questions To Ask 

  1. Do you and/or your staff have to travel or does the consultant come to you?

  2. Is the program mostly one on one consulting versus seminars or courses with multiple clients in attendance?There are advantages to both.

  3. If the dental consulting is one on one who will actually deliver the consulting? I recommend knowing who your specific dental consultant will be prior to signing on the dotted line.

  4. Is program based on a specific dental practice management system? You want to avoid cookie-cutter programs. Ensure the program will be tailor-made to fit your practice's specific needs.

  5. The cost (including travel expenses and downtime) is certainly not the only factor, everything else being equal, it is still a major factor to consider. It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little.  


Top Dental Practice Mangement Consultant

Shane Blake DDS Coudersport, PA

My name is Kevin Tighe. Consultant. Coach. Mentor.

My mission is to advise, recommend and help implement proven systems to grow your practice . 

Before joining the Cambridge team I was in charge of setting up workshops for large nonprofits throughout the United States and Canada. During that time, I was fortunate to receive mentoring from several world-class business consultants, including a dental practice management guru, which led to a position at Cambridge as their seminar organizer. In time, I began crisscrossing the country delivering seminars myself for the better part of a decade. Subsequently, I moved up to senior consultant and eventually partner and now sole owner. 


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