Understanding and Evaluating Associateship Opportunities
Philosophies and Personalities

Course Author(s): David G. Dunning, MA, PhD; Robert D. Madden, DDS, MBA

Philosophies and Personalities

  1. Have the would-be associate and owner-dentist discussed their philosophies of practice in areas such as patient care, managed care/dental insurance, staff management?
  2. Are the personalities of the would-be associate and owner-dentist compatible, and how will the would-be associate’s personality “fit” within the existing dental team? Personality testing such as the DiSC or Myers-Briggs Type Indicator might be helpful in answering these questions.
  3. Will the owner serve as a mentor in terms of clinical skills and business skills? Is the owner willing/available to do this or will schedules be staggered to maximize facility efficiencies?
  4. Does the practice have a clearly articulated and communicated vision statement?
  5. If a previous associate worked in the practice, does the owner encourage the associate candidate to talk with the previous associate about their experiences? If this is the first associate working for the owner-dentist, realize there may be a learning curve for both parties.