Design Your Post-Dental Transition Plan

A dental practice represents more than a business, especially if you’ve been there for years. If you’ve paid your dues working on the business while working in it, your well-run entity showcases your values, vision, and legacy. It also represents a significant asset that influences the next stage of your life.

When you look towards the road beyond the exit ramp, there’s a lot to think about regarding your post-dental transition plan. Here’s a quick guide to help you get started.

Explore Your Why

In the excellent book It Starts With Why, author Simon Sinek reminds us that we need to think from the inside out. In other words, we need to dig into the reason behind what we’re doing. It’s the first step in motivating others that we lead, but it’s also critical to helping us find fulfillment and purpose.

Take time to consider why now is the right time for you to move forward with a practice sale. You may recognize that we’re in a seller’s market, and you could capture maximum value sooner than later. However, don’t jump past the deeper “why” question.

  • Are you burned out?
  • Do you want to pursue other business interests?
  • Do you want to relocate and enjoy more sunshine?
  • Do you want to preserve your health?
  • Do you want to enjoy your best years and travel?
  • Are you suffering from ergonomic injuries?

Most of these questions focus on what you want, and that’s a great place to start. However, once you’ve explored your why and talked it over with those you trust, you should move deeper into what will shape your post-dentistry life.

Define Clear Purpose

It’s essential to settle on your reasons for selling your practice, but designing your post-dental transition plan, or the next phase, is equally important. Think of it as the second half of “why.” Stepping away from dentistry frees up your life; there’s no problem getting a tee time or booking a trip in the shoulder season. But it leaves some dentists bored and lacking purpose after a career built on structure, appointments, and professional credibility with a family of patients.

You’ve also spent your career helping other people enjoy new possibilities in their daily life. With a bit of foresight, you can find a new purpose with lasting satisfaction. Another fantastic read for anyone facing a post-career change is Strength To Strength: Finding Success, Happiness, And Deep Purpose In The Second Half Of Life by Arthur C. Brooks. Setting the sail in a new direction with a fresh perspective often leads to some of the most fulfilling experiences as people move beyond their primary careers.

As you explore your reasons for an exit and refine an exciting phase of life, the financial picture helps round out your plan. There’s plenty to consider in this vital piece, too.

Structure Your Finances

Your practice represents steady cash flow that funds your current lifestyle, and cash flow is still king when you leave dentistry. However, a complete financial plan involves many interrelated pieces that grow more complex as time goes on, and good foresight will help you fund the lifestyle you’ve imagined.

Your team should include experts that live and breathe the nuances of the financial world. A dental CPA should be able to make sure your practice reports and data are tidy and updated, and they can also help you with any tax projections as your plans materialize. A practice transition advisor can help you understand your projected practice value and exit options.

Your CPA and transition specialist can also help you explore opportunities to boost profitability within your practice. Incremental improvements can provide additional investment funds while adding more support for a higher practice value. This information is critical for a financial planner to help you formulate a cohesive strategy, too.

Many of your patients want complete dentistry, but they don’t realize the technicalities behind a successful full-mouth rehab case. Similarly, dentists don’t understand how tax efficiency, estate planning, asset shifting, and more intertwine to create an ideal financial plan. But when you work with experts, you’ll enjoy the same depth of benefits as comprehensive dentistry patients do. For example, clients are often surprised to learn that tools like Spousal Support Trusts create possibilities they didn’t know about before.

Prepare For Possibilities

You’ve worked hard to build a practice and add value to many lives over the years. If you’ve explored your goals and determined it’s time to look ahead, don’t wait to start the process. We can work with any time frame; there are exciting possibilities to capture maximum practice value in today’s market. But if you have more time, you may be able to consider ideas that open more doors. Either way, take the opportunity to design a post-dental transition plan that’s thoughtful and leads you from strength to strength after dentistry!

We provide a free baseline valuation to help you start this process, and we’d love to talk about possibilities for your future. Contact us today to explore these critical pieces to a successful transition plan.

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