AADOM's Career Resource Center

Practice manager resources available to you.

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Cecilia Mescain, FAADOM

A career as a dental office manager or practice administrator is indeed an excellent one. Being an office manager or practice administrator sets you aside as a business leader in the dental field. To be an office manager or practice administrator in this field is no different than any other business manager in any other field (i.e. banks, retail stores, restaurant, etc). In the end, you are still responsible and expected to run a business, make it successful, respected and profitable. That is in no way, shape or form just a job.

As a practice administrator, we utilize skills that we didn’t even know we possessed. These include patience, leadership, motivation, perseverance, endurance and, at times, even magicians just to name a few.

I love that every single day I have the opportunity to lead a team of dental professionals, educate them, and make a difference in many people lives.

The opportunities for advancement are vast. An experienced and educated office manager or practice administrator can not only further advance his or her career in the field as an expert, educator, consultant, speaker, author, blogger, etc. but has a tremendous amount of bargaining power when it comes to negotiating his or her compensation package. The more you know the more valuable you are to your employer and to others in the field.

This is a great profession because you get to meet many people, challenge yourself and grow not only as a professional but as an individual as well.

Tara Hudson, FAADOM

Practice management is not a career it is a lifestyle. As a practice manager, I come in contact with people from all walks of life. I get an opportunity to meet members of my community and learn about their families, their history, their goals and values and to hopefully become lifelong friends while serving their dental and health needs.

Some of the skills you need to utilize in this position are compassion, empathy, time management, organization, and goal setting. As a practice manager, you are responsible for making sure that each department is working proficiently and efficiently. You are responsible for keeping up with the metrics and the pulse of the practice and reporting these figures to the clinicians and the team. Meetings, organizing and facilitating meetings with doctors and teams is also a necessary function.

There can be a smooth progression into other areas such as consulting, training or multi-practice management after mastering single practice management with the help of tools such AADOM’s Fellowship and Virtual Study Club programs. Witnessing the transformation of an apprehensive patient to a full mouth reconstruction is such a gratifying and rewarding experience to be a part of. I could think of no other profession I would rather be a part of. Dentistry rocks!!!!

Teresa Spence, FAADOM

I have been in dentistry for over 25 years and I have always viewed my dental career as a part of my lifelong passion for dentistry. I began as a dental assistant and always yearned to learn more about the ins and outs of everyday dentistry.

There are so many opportunities to grow in the profession of an Office Manager/Practice Administrator. There are several different aspects and job descriptions for Office Managers/Practice Administrators from scheduling, treatment coordinating, insurance opportunities, human resources and much more.

One of my most rewarding things that I enjoy most about being a Practice Administrator is the opportunity to encourage others such as showing them how to discover the potential within themselves and the opportunity they have to excel in their career as a dental assistant, administrative team member, and hygienist.

In order for us to grow and excel we must be willing to further our career through self-investment, networking and education. The American Association of Dental Office Management has played a huge part of my success in my dental career over the six years.

Michael Cruz

I never thought I’d love dentistry as much as I do. I came from a small business background and got involved in helping my wife get her practice off the ground, but for some reason, I never thought of dentistry as a real business. I could not have been more wrong. Dentistry is exactly like any other business with two key advantages:

1) The jobs won’t be shipped overseas, and 2) what we are “selling” is something that benefits every single person. Today’s successful office managers must understand things like leadership, social media, marketing, human resources, interpersonal communication, finance, business metrics, and more.

With all of these new avenues to explore, a career in dentistry has unlimited opportunity. Personally, this has been the most challenging and rewarding thing I have ever done. I am never bored and love every minute of it.

Janetkay Gurganus, FAADOM

If you are looking for a career where you are always challenged (no day is ever the same), and you have the opportunity to learn many new skills then this is for you. You are the head and the heart of a “small corporation” and as your employer grows, you have the opportunity to be instrumental in the success of that growth. This can be very satisfying.

In addition, you can meet and work with women and men from all over the United States through friendships made at the annual conferences of AADOM. AADOM is our national organization and provides you with education, networking, support and a family like none other.

I have spent over thirty years in this career and worked all over the United States and it has been very good to me. Earning my designation as Fellow was such an amazing affirmation of all the years of hard work, and dedication to my profession.

Jamie Perryman

Managing our office requires utilization of many skills but most often coaching, problem-solving, financial management and frequently tech support.

What I love about dentistry can be summed up in three categories:
The variety of my day! Interaction with patients, and the CULTURE of Dentistry.

Dentistry is a great profession because I am always learning. Employers are encouraging and supportive, and the focus is always on health. Plus the pay isn’t bad either.

Our dentists value my opinion, and they value ME! And we are making a difference in people’s lives!

Courtney Roberts, FAADOM

Dental practice management is a career that will lead down three important professional paths: advancement, success, and a sense of purpose. This industry breeds determination because you have a team to lead, patients to care for and to make a practice succeed.

It comes with challenges and rewards, but with the right resources, you can break down doors of opportunity you never knew existed. This profession has allowed me to travel, meet an array of incredible people, and I love how the opportunity for educational growth, in this career, is boundless.

I feel so blessed to be a part of a smart, hardworking team that shows up every day to help people be healthy. This is such a noble profession and practice management can bring unmeasurable happiness to those who are driven by hard work.

Julie Varney, CDA, RDA, FAADOM

Dentistry overall has been very rewarding for my career, starting with being a CDA/RDA and transitioning into a Practice Manager. The more you continue to educate yourself, the more you grow. By educating yourself, you can help educate others for their own growth. As you immerse yourself into the world of dentistry, your network of supportive people are there to help you along your journey. But, the best reward is when a patient completes a service at your office and they tell you what a great visit or how happy they are with their smile. Every patient becomes a part of your dental family, and we build relationships that last. That’s when you know your team’s dedication, hard work and education is also enhancing someone else’s life.

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