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Inside Dental Technology
January 2023
Volume 14, Issue 1

Reset for the New Year

A successful laboratory is a work in progress

Executive Editor Daniel Alter, MSc, MDT, CDT |

I would like to begin by wishing all our readers a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year! The new year is a wonderful opportunity to evaluate, assess, and potentially pivot or reset what was worked on over the past year and begin to strategize new initiatives in order to continuously advance our dental laboratory businesses. Depending on the size of the laboratory and the organizational flow, each component should be assessed for its own set of desired outcomes as they relate to the entire laboratory's outcomes. The results of these assessments will provide the decision makers of the laboratory with quantified and qualified information, so that they can take those results and outcomes, learn from them, and establish mechanisms to improve on them or establish new initiatives to replace ones that may have fallen short. Understanding the why(s) through these results will greatly help decision makers to take corrective actions, with a rejuvenated and focused attempt to achieve those desired outcomes. The results may shed light on staffing, energy, marketing efforts, and funding allocations for those initiatives—where our resources are best spent. A famous quote from Albert Einstein defines insanity as "doing the same things over and over again, but expecting different results."

Once all the pertinent information is derived, decision makers should ask themselves: Did we achieve the desired outcomes? Was it a worthwhile initiative? And are there any newly emerging trends recognized? If yes, what are the drivers of those results and how can we continue to support those outcomes? If not, what is the cause of these shortfalls, and what do we need to implement, change, or discard in order to achieve better results? Lastly, what new initiatives should be implemented in order to continuously evolve, grow, and strengthen as a dental laboratory, providing our dentist clientele with the highest value, while focusing on the organic and strategic growth of the dental laboratory businesses? Answers to these questions will yield opportunities perhaps previously unrecognized by decision makers, which will allow the laboratory to tap into current trends as they relate to technology, materials, and dental restorative solutions. The future is not set in stone and is more within our control than oftentimes people realize.

These milestones, whether at the beginning of a new year or quarterly, should be used for these management exercises in order to steer our laboratories in the direction of greater value and profitability. Set your calendars and schedules to examine the effectiveness of previous initiatives and set new initiatives with your laboratory's desired outcomes, which brings me back to the new year being the perfect opportunity to establish the best actionable strategy, moving forward. Happy New Year!

It is my great pride and honor to elevate and inspire with knowledge.

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