Dr. Anantuni grew the practice 100% and became the #1 Invisalign provider in the state.
hygiene care, patient experience, systems, leadership development
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in dental surgery from a renowned dental institute in India, Dr. Sandhya Anantuni immigrated to the United States. She completed her DMD at Boston University Goldman School of Dental Medicine in 1997, opening her own practice in Chandler, Arizona in 2002.
While Dr. Anantuni successfully grew the practice on her own, she struggled to implement her ideas because she couldn’t get her staff to perform processes and systems consistently. Over and over again, Dr. Anantuni would watch webinars, attend conventions, or some other training, and bring the information back to her team.
But nothing ever seemed to stick. While her team would perform the process or system initially, after a week or two, they’d stop doing what needed to be done.
It’s what led Dr. Anantuni to search for a practice management company to help her. “I wanted to know how to get my point across without sounding like a broken record,” Dr. Anantuni said. “My ideas, processes, and systems weren’t sticking.”
In 2017, she finally found what she’d been looking for while attending a convention. “I had been on the lookout for a practice management company for many years,” Dr. Anantuni said. “I looked at many, many different ones and then I heard Wendy Briggs and Dr. John Meis speak. I was impressed. Not only are they dynamic, but the best part for me, and why I gravitate towards them is because Dr. John isa practicing dentist, and Wendy Briggs is a practicing hygienist. Even though there are other dentist-run companies that help dentists, I like The Team Training Institute’s mix of being led by a dentist and hygienist coming together because they see where the problems are and know how they can help the practices.”
Although she knew she’d finally found the right coaches for her practice, fear held her team back. She continued to struggle to get her team on board with the idea of bringing in outside coaching for four more years before finally hearing an idea that would gain her team’s trust.
"My team was afraid that they might have to read off of a script or that things would be too regimented,” Dr. Anantuni said. “Because with other practice management companies, when you’re not getting results, they say it’s because you’re not following their scripts. That's why I didn't sign up with other practice management companies. I told my team I never heard Team Training Institute (TTI) talk about using scripts. In fact, that is something I liked about TTI and why I kept attending their webinars.”
After attending a webinar in 2020, a light bulb went off. Realizing her team needed to walk in her shoes and hear what she’d heard, she took her team to a convention where The Team Training Institute was scheduled to present a workshop. “When they heard Dr. John and Wendy speak, they were convinced that The Team Training Institute is for us,” Dr. Anantuni said. “After the workshop, I met my team in the hallway. Although I had mentioned Team Training Institute many times prior to them attending the workshop, after they came out, they said, ‘You must sign us up with Team Training Institute!’ They needed to attend the workshop to see the value.”
Dr. Anantuni signed up with The Team Training Institute on the spot in July 2021. Her practice, Anantuni Family Dental, grew 100% in 2021. Between July 2021 and December 2021, she had 140 Invisalign starts which elevated her to Invisalign Diamond (top 1% Invisalign provider) and the number one Invisalign provider in the state of Arizona. Her team is more open-minded to new ideas, processes are sticking and Dr. Anantuni is seeing a consistent, positive patient experience as patients talk about their experience and write about it on Google reviews.
Here are five strategies Dr. Anantuni attributes to her success:
#1: Improve Your Hygiene By Getting An Experienced Hygienist To Train Your Team
Hygiene Explosion training improved implementation and made dramatic increases in production. Plus, they are delivering a better patient experience by focusing on maximizing the care they give.
“Where I’ve seen the biggest change is hygiene, hands down,” Dr. Anantuni said. “Big, big change. My hygiene department is killing it. They perform like there is no tomorrow. Every patient talks about what an amazing experience they had coming to the practice. My hygiene department would not be where it is now without The Team Training Institute.”
Dr. Anantuni attributes this success to the instant trust created by the fact that Hygiene Explosion is taught by a peer hygienist with experience. Explanations about WHY they are doing what they are doing alongside HOW to present to patients has made the hygienists feel comfortable with the processes. For example, before Team Training Institute’s Hygiene Explosion training, zero patients were saying yes to adult sealants. After the training, her two hygienists protected 2,284 teeth with adult sealants within five months.
“I absolutely love Coach Paige,” Dr. Anantuni said. “She is a hygienist who made the process easier for me. If a non-hygienist came in trying to teach a hygienist what they should and shouldn’t do, it would not appeal to the hygienist because the non-hygienist has never practiced. But with Paige, I’m able to ask her, ‘From your experience as a hygienist, what is a better way?’”
Dr. Anantuni confessed that while they did sealants on kids because they knew sealants are covered by insurance, she wasn’t comfortable recommending sealants to adults because insurance didn’t cover it. “Before The Team Training Institute, patients would say, ‘Oh, it’s not covered by insurance, I’m not going to do it,’” she said. “I could not explain why I was recommending them. But now, after Paige told us how to present it, no one says ‘no’ to adult sealants. Everyone in my office feels comfortable talking about sealants on adult teeth. Even though none of the insurances cover sealants for adults, we had a $60,000 increase in hygiene revenue from adult sealants in the last five months.”
#2: Invest In Training
Although Dr. Anantuni has never been opposed to investing in training for her team, she invested a lot more heavily in it this past year than she ever had before. Not only did she invest in coaching and training in-house, but she also took her entire team to conventions, including The Team Training Institute Retreat. “I truly believe in training,” she said. “They hear it from a third person. When there are certain things, I'm unable to accomplish, I'm going to pay somebody to help me accomplish those goals. I put a lot of effort and money into training my team, and I can see the results. Now I’m even more comfortable investing in training because I see the results and so I give credit to all this training.”
#3: Put Systems In Place To Create Consistency & Improve Team Relationships
Dr. Anantuni says putting systems in place has helped her the most and made the biggest impact. Due to the different personalities on her team, this process allows everyone to understand each other’s points of view, which improves team relationships. These systems also help her to be a better leader. “Everyone is mature and dependable, but there are times during the day where the front office is working on ten things at a time, and then someone from the back-office needs someone to go over a treatment plan and there’s no time,” Dr. Anantuni explained. “With Coach Karleen’s help, things are more streamlined. Also, everyone’s perspective is different. Something that I feel is easy and simple might not be the same for the other person. Working together to understand everyone’s perspective helps everyone get along. It’s helped me to understand their strengths and weaknesses, work more with their strengths, and encourage them more. I feel the way Karleen has worked with us helps us to think about the situation. This can make or break a person’s day. Instead of blurting out, ‘You haven’t done this, or you haven’t done that,’ we stay complimentary.”
#4: Be Consistent
One of the systems that has been most effective is incentivizing the team. “I had done that before, but now I’m consistent with it,” Dr. Anantuni said. “Our December 2021 was unbelievably high. It was a record month in the entire history of Anantuni Family Dental. So, I gave everyone bonus checks, totaling $10,000. Everyone was happy. My patients were happy. My team members were happy. I was happy. Team members came into my office with tears in their eyes and were like, ‘Oh my gosh, Dr. Anantuni, thank you.’ This is an effective way for me to show them they are performing, so it’s a thank you from me.”
#5: Stop Doing Everything Yourself
Before The Team Training Institute, she didn’t have any leadership other than herself and didn’t want an office manager. Since starting with TTI, she did promote an existing employee, Cammielle, to office manager. She’s found it helpful to have someone to bounce ideas off and still feels a part of the team.
“I was afraid to have an office manager,” Dr. Anantuni said. “I have done all of this by myself all these years and I was afraid I might feel disconnected. But having an office manager is good. Before, I’d bounce ideas off my husband, who is a non-dental person perspective. Now with Cammielle, we bounce ideas off each other. She listens to people’s problems or issues and then talks to me. We discuss and come up with a solution. She has taken a lot off my plate and removed worry. I never feel stressed about anything.”
The Team Training Institute has accelerated Dr. Anantuni’s rate of success, speeding up the process and giving her shortcuts to achieve what she wanted in less time. More importantly, they’ve helped her to get her team on board to execute her ideas, relieving stress and giving her more time freedom.
“Before The Team Training Institute, I had a lot of these systems and processes I wanted to implement but I didn’t know the right way of doing it,” Dr. Anantuni said. “I had all these ideas in my head, but I could not verbalize my thoughts. When I heard what Wendy and Dr. John were doing, I thought, this is EXACTLY what I want to tell my team. I believe I would have gotten there eventually, but it's been 20 years, and I didn’t get there yet. So now, with The Team Training Institute, the process is smoother, streamlined, and easier. I’m a better leader and I no longer struggle to get my point across. My team is more open-minded and when I say something to my team, it sticks because they understand and know exactly what I’m talking about. Before I was always at my practice. Now I feel more comfortable disconnecting and confident that I can leave or take time off and that has happened more this past year than ever before.”