It is every dentist’s dream to be running a successful dental management practice. However, new dentists will soon be rudely shocked by the realities of running a business. Being competent in dentistry is simply not enough. Business acumen and financial skills must also be present to ensure that the business grows successfully. After all, no dentist can continue to practice if the business stays unprofitable. Let’s take a look at a few key areas that dentists must pay attention to.Financial management.This is, by far, the most important aspect of running a business. As the owner of a dental practice, you are not just a dentist. You are also a business owner. That means you must be able to manage the cash flow of the business. For example, you may have plans for expansion, but you are not sure that the cash you have in your bank account will pull you through the expansion phase. Here is where you need financial management skills. If you are able to make sound business decisions based on the numbers you see on the balance sheet, your business will certainly benefit greatly.Human resources.Another key area to focus on is human resources. To run an efficient and effective practice, you need to depend on your staff to complete various tasks. Running a team is by no means, an easy task. You need to understand the needs of your employees, and what motivates them to stay and work hard in your organization. You also need to be able to spot and employ the best people so that you can build a strong team.Sales and marketing.As a business owner, you cannot run away from sales and marketing. Sure, you can employ staff to help you with marketing activities. But ultimately, you are the brain behind all those activities. You know the direction that your business is headed, so you are in the best position to draft out marketing campaigns. What does your dental practice stands for? Where do you see your business five years down the road? What are your expansion plans? Those are difficult questions to answer. Perhaps, only you hold to key to those answers.Leadership.As your practice grows, you are going to need to grow your team. And your team cannot grow without proper leadership. Someone must be able to lead the team! Many times, new dentists make the mistake of doing too much on their own. In other words, they think that just because they own the practice, they must assume the leadership role. Unfortunately, they are not making the best use of their time. If they are not seeing patients and filling appointments, they are not making money. So sometimes, it’s best to leave management tasks to managers and supervisors, who can fork out the time and do a better job at leading the team. If you are thinking of growing your dental practice, start selecting some of your best employees and send them for leadership training. They will be able to contribute more to your organization.