(Dr. Mark Tholen is our guest blogger today at Sidekick Magazine)
Who’s on First?
When initially entertaining the idea of creating a new dental office, it is important to consider the composition of the team who will turn your idea into a reality. Most doctors will think of an architect; while this skill set is definitely needed to create a functional and esthetic result, the truth is that you will have a series of ‘new best friends’ during the design and construction of your new dental office.
The first person you should seek out is an experienced dental equipment sales representative such as the Henry Schein Equipment Sales Specialist. This person can act as your project manager bringing all other ‘players’ on and off stage at the right moment. The first step of finding the right location will require a good commercial real estate agent and your Equipment Sales Specialist will have knowledge of quality agents with whom they have previously collaborated. Once the best location available has been identified, it will then be important to find a competent mortgage broker who can navigate the difficult process of securing the funding for your new office. Again, the Equipment Sales Specialist will know who has been effective in securing adequate funding for doctors.
While in the process of securing the funding, it is important to conduct a due diligence analysis of the proposed office location; this is accomplished through an architect familiar with dental office requirements. With an acceptable due diligence report outlining the costs of the project, the doctor can move forward with a full set of architectural plans that include design development documents (resulting in the office ‘being built on paper’) and the construction documents (stating which materials will be used for each component of the office and how the office will be assembled). The interior designer will designate finishes (wall coverings, paints, flooring, furniture, and accessories such as flower arrangements and art).
The general contractor will build the office according to the plan designated by the architect who has hopefully queried you extensively on the style of office desired and the manner in which you practice. You really, really want to work with a general contractor (g.c.) who has built dental offices; your best source for a recommendation about the g.c. is your Equipment Sales Specialist because they have been building dental offices in your town and collaborating with a good general contractors. And the g.c. truly wants the Equipment Sales Specialist to happy with them at the end of the project so the g.c. will receive more office projects from the Equipment Sales Specialist.
And the Henry Schein Equipment Sales Specialist really wants you to be happy.
Everybody wins…and lives happily ever after.
About the Author
Dr. Mark Tholen is the past CEO of T.H.E. Design, Inc. and the author of A Guide to Designing the Elegant Dental or Medical Office…The Largest Marketing Tool of Your Career available at Amazon.com.