Maximise your time in 2023
As we see out another year, attentions are turning to the 12 months ahead. With budgets getting tighter, time at an all-time premium and several other pressures rising across dentistry, it has never been so important to streamline workflows and plan ahead. Being as prepared as possible for 2023 will set you up for a positive start and a successful year.
Not all tasks in the dental laboratory can be shared, but there are many that can. For lab owners, managers or lead technicians, review the list of activities you are responsible for on a daily, weekly and monthly basis to see if there is anything that can be delegated. Handing over certain duties can not only create significant time for you, but it can also provide others with an opportunity to expand their own skills and diversify their roles. Maybe one of the newer technicians in the lab is ready to take on more responsibility? Or perhaps some more of the admin tasks could be allocated to the front desk team?
Consider your normal working week – is there anything you could do to save time each day? This might involve bulk cooking on a Sunday to prepare lunches for the week, or cycling to the practice instead of driving in to get in that cardio. Is there software you could introduce to the lab that makes designing and fabricating restorations or frameworks faster? Have you considered the materials you use or the milling machine you have, could they be improved upon to allow the team to shorter turnaround times for certain cases?
Do a time audit
Consider how you actually spend your time – both at work and at home. By keeping a diary for a week and noting the hours spent on different tasks, you may be surprised to learn just how much or little time certain activities require. Compare time taken for different types of cases, either using different materials or digital versus analogue workflows. Concentrate your team’s time on cases that offer the highest value for maximum efficiency. At home, review how much time you spend on social media – the average adult spends 108 minutes scrolling daily! Also, you may find it helpful to allocate 30 minutes to chores in the evening and then intentionally give yourself a rest, rather than doing things all evening and not getting a break. If you audit your time, you’ll be able to reorganise and better utilise your time going forward.
Schedule your training
Don’t forget to schedule time for training and development in 2023 as well. Save the dates for the Dental Technology Showcase (DTS) on 12-13 May 2023 and get ready for two days of learning, networking and fun for the whole team. In combining all this and more within the same weekend, you can further streamline your time. Update and develop your skills, meet with product suppliers and purchase innovative equipment at the same time!