Laura Horton and Michael Bentley, two of the industry’s most sought-after dental business speakers, will be hosting this year’s Practice Plan Workshop Tour entitled ‘How to create your ultimate dental practice…room by room’.
We spoke to Laura Horton to find out a little more about her path into dentistry and the upcoming tour.
Dentistry magazine (DM): How did you get into dentistry?
Laura Horton (LH): As with many dental care professionals (DCPs), it was an accident.
I left school and went to college and I hated it. I decided to change my course but had to wait a couple of months to do so, so I applied to be a dental receptionist at the practice where I was a patient. I was immediately offered a position as a dental nurse and thought ‘I’ll give that a try’.
I fainted in my first week during an oral surgery procedure, but once I returned to my feet, I never looked back!
DM: How did you go from your role as a dental nurse to owning your own dental consultancy business?
LH: My final role in practice was working for a cosmetic and implant practice – it was working here that I really came into my own and was totally inspired to forge a career supporting dental practices.
I was asked to be a treatment coordinator and I made the role my own with the support of the practice owners.
I went on to manage the practice’s training academy and also became practice manager for both of our practices, one in Essex and one in Hertfordshire.
I continued to learn and develop every day and self-funded many courses just so I could become better at what I was doing. I didn’t tell the owners I was doing this, I just wanted to fulfil the belief they had in me that I could do this!
After many happy years working in practice, I decided I needed to get further out of my comfort zone and start my own business.
I wanted to be a practice management consultant; however, there was a huge influx of consultants from the US doing this in the UK, so I decided to change course and have a niche in the market – treatment coordination.
In September 2008, I stepped out on my own, founding ‘Horton Consultancy’ and have continued on this fantastic journey ever since!
DM: So, what can delegates expect from this year’s Practice Plan Workshop Tour?
LH: Practice Plan’s brief for the tour was that the workshop had to be an equal experience for every team member that ultimately led to the realisation of their practice’s vision.
Michael and I created the concept of doing a ‘room by room’ visionary day, allowing the team to grasp their practice’s vision, but breaking it down room by room so that it’s easier to digest and helps each team member to identify the goals and actions they’re responsible for implementing.
We’ll start right from the beginning, looking at access points to the practice, which include your practice’s website, telephone and email communications, through to driving up to the practice and entering the patient lounge.
We’ll move through each vital room of the practice including the dental room, management office, hygienist room and consultation room. We will focus on key actions for each room that will improve your practice – so each individual can take note of what they think can be improved.
By the end of the workshop, each member of the practice should have their own project as part of the overall vision for the practice.
Michael and I genuinely can’t wait to kick-start the tour, so I hope to see you all there and support you in taking your practice to the next level.
The 12-date tour will begin on the 9 September in Bristol and will work its way around the country, stopping at 10 other locations including Heathrow, Edinburgh, Manchester and Newcastle.
The tour is free to attend for Practice Plan members with over five patients on plan, and Practice Plan is also throwing the doors open to non-members too, with tickets costing just £100. Places are being snapped up fast, so if you’d like to secure your ticket, simply visit www.practiceplan.co.uk/events or call 01691 684135.