Gentle Dental & Orthodontics
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- Comp & Benefits
- Work/Life Balance
- Senior Management
- Culture & Values
- Career Opportunities
I worked at Gentle Dental & Orthodontics full-time (more than 5 years)Pros
There are some long-term clinicians (dentists, hygienists, DAs) and staff who are truly committed to the care and well-being of the patients. A few dental teams are even able to thrive in spite of upper management - so the office culture and Regional Management team is extremely important to whether a new clinicians or staff members will be successful. This company also contains huge potential for changing lives for the better - if it can get the visionary leadership it deserves.Cons
The overarching theme is that there is a long history of the management company's owners (under the name "InterDent") and senior leaders continually cutting their noses off to spite their faces in an unrelenting quest for an easy, quick profit over hard-earned, long-term gains. This is always done at the expense of the clinicians, staff and patients. The last several senior management teams have little-to-no dental background and no vision for the company other than to make it appear profitable so that it can be unloaded on the next owner (affectionately known as "the newest schmoe"). Each new management takes one of two approaches to create a false idea of profitability/success - "expand beyond our ability to financially or practically support and then implode" or "lay off, outsource, and cut supplies/staff to the bare bone so everyone's hands are tied".
The list of ongoing mismanagement practices that repeat with each management team/owner are as follows: unethical practices that turn a quick/large profit are rewarded; people who attempt to speak out against unethical practices or unfavorable working situations are either terminated from employment or frozen out; the technological infrastructure is 10-15 years outdated; people work long hours for low pay and very low % increases (if any); vital customer service functions are outsourced resulting in bad customer service and lost patients; offices are often opened without all the equipment needed for standard and emergency dental services; almost every department is under-staffed; and, there is a standard practice of paying below market wages for support staff.
While I don't believe anyone approaches this company with intentional malice, actions always prove out true intentions. The fact that the "HR" department for a 150+ office company consists of two overworked payroll staff who report to the company lawyer says a lot about this company's priorities.
If you join Gentle Dental/InterDent, expect long hours, unreasonable demands, low remuneration, high stress, little communication with upper management, and patients who desperately need you to stand up for them. You can survive by keeping your head down and your mouth shut, or you can be a Sisyphus and burn yourself out trying to change things.Advice to ManagementAdvice
Get a clue, guys. Learn from the past. It's easy - take the time to find out what all the prior management teams did, how and why those things failed, and then DON'T DO THOSE THINGS. Next, go to the internet and read a couple of the many, many research studies about how the best way to earn a long-term healthcare profit is to actually EARN it by providing a great patient experience, which starts with you seeking to create a high level of employee satisfaction (yes, you have to change the way you manage an will take a lot of hard work on your part) and then uniting your clinicians and staff behind a clear, strong, communicated vision (yes, you need to come up with a vision and make all your decisions in alignment with that vision).
Seriously, if you didn't learn this in your MBA program, you should get your money back.Doesn't RecommendNegative OutlookNo opinion of CEO