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Why Dentists Must Learn to Negotiate

Posted August 1, 2019

The DentalPost Team

Many dentists are learning that good negotiation skills can have a positive impact on their income levels. Dentistry is a competitive field, with many new graduates joining the workforce each year. The American Dental Association (ADA) currently consists of more than 163,000 dentists (and counting). 

Attending business negotiation workshops can equip you with valuable skills to help you stay ahead.

The Importance of Negotiation

If you can learn how to keep your costs low and make better deals, you may be able to attract more clients. Negotiation workshops can equip you with the skills you need to make competitive deals. In turn, you may be able to improve your margins. This article lists some areas where you can learn to make better deals.

Negotiate With Your Clients

You’ll know all too well that when patients avoid regular dental visits, it can lead to poor oral health and costly emergency treatment. Negotiation skills are useful when learning how to present attractive offers. 

When clients trust you more, they also visit you more regularly and refer their family and friends. Regular dental visits can give you a better chance of guiding your clients to optimal oral health. 

In addition, practical lessons can assist you in developing better communication skills. As a healthcare practitioner, the wellbeing of your clients depends on your interactions. 

Improving your communication skills can assist you to better notice and understand your clients’ dental aversions. You can then work to address your clients’ concerns. The information you can gather from your interactions can work to serve your clients’ needs more effectively.

Improve Supplier Deals

Many dentistry businesses rely on medical supplies and equipment from external sources. The cost of these essentials can trickle down and affect the cost of your services. 

Negotiation workshop leaders teach effective ways to manage supplier deals and work out better payment terms. With better payment terms for your supplies, you may be able to keep your monthly running costs low.

You can also learn how to research and leverage competing supplier deals. Your suppliers may offer lower rates and improved services if they know you have found a better deal from their competitors. 

Strengthen Service Provider Relationships

Many dentists run independent dental practices. These practices often rely on service providers such as lawyers, IT specialists, and real estate managers. When you have long-term relationships with your suppliers, you may need to develop mutually trusting relationships. If you have a stable business, you can leverage your track record when dealing with these agents. 

In a negotiation workshop, you can learn how to offer trade-offs for lower monthly rates on various services. Offers such as space for ads on your notice board could earn you some discounts and loyalty points.

Offering your service providers discounts for dental services can cement your relationship. If you can develop friendly relationships with your service providers, you can work towards negotiating better terms in your deals with them.

Leverage Insurance Firms

Learning how to negotiate can help you understand how to leverage insurance firm deals. Dental cover is typically offered as a premium service by many insurance firms. However, insurance firms need to make deals with dentists before setting their rates and designing their packages. 

Since many insurance firms have very experienced negotiators on their team, you could be at their mercy if you are not well trained.

There are many chances to create value when you design dental plans with insurance firms. You can negotiate on price per procedure, payment terms, the number of covered visits, and a wide range of cost containment measures.


Negotiation may not feature on your list of fundamental dentistry skills. However, running a business can be costly if you don’t know how to negotiate. If you can attend negotiation workshops, you can open your mind to a world of business opportunities. 

DentalPost is the dental industry’s premier and largest online and mobile job board.
We connect and educate more than 850,000 job seekers in the U.S. and Canada to build better places to work through teams that excel.

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