By Michelle Kratt
I recently attended the Association of Dental Office Managers (AADOM) annual conference in Las Vegas. This was the third year I attended the meeting, and it just gets better every year. This year, there were almost 300 office managers, financial coordinators, and administrative team members. The energy in the room was amazing from beginning to end.
The lineup of speakers was topnotch, beginning with Katherine Eitell as the keynote speaker. Judy Kay Mausolf of Practice Solutions spoke about “Starting a Local Study Club” and “Conflict and Gossip”; Kevin Henry, editor of Dental Assisting Digest™, spoke about “Going Green in the Dental Practice” and “How to Be a Good Writer”; Fred Joyal of 1-800-Dentist discussed about “Creating Your Brand”; and Larry Wintersteen talked about “Stress Management” — not to mention the expert panel in which attendees were able to ask questions of expert consultants in an open forum. There were so many great topics and just not enough time to attend each course.
Of course, we cannot forget about the 40-plus vendors who were there giving information, demonstrations, and product samples. At the end of the conference, each vendor raffled off a gift for the attendees. The gifts were incredible, from gift certificates to $250 cash, iPods, iPads, flip video cameras, and even stays in Cancun.
Not only were we there to learn from the best of the best, we were there to network with our peers. As you know, the office manager of a dental practice is pretty much alone. Other team members have the office manager to go to when they have questions or concerns, but who does the office manager go to? This is why the AADOM is so valuable; everyone in the group is going through or has gone through exactly the same thing, and they are there for moral support when you need them.
This year, AADOM inducted its Charter Class of Fellows. There were 42 members who achieved fellowship status (I am proud to say I was one of them), which is an amazing achievement.
In my opinion, AADOM is one of the best things that has happened in my career. It helps me improve the way I manage the team and build the practice. If you are a dentist and are looking to improve your practice, I highly suggest investing in your office manager by allowing him or her to become an AADOM member. The benefits don’t just come from the annual conference; they are provided on a daily basis with e-mail blasts from other association members and from AADOM’s virtual study club.
For more information about AADOM, go to www.dentalmanagers.com.
Michelle Kratt brings more than 20 years of dental office experience to her new role in administration and practice-management consulting with Amy Smith Consulting, LLC. Michelle’s history and experience in dentistry is impressive. She is a fellow of the American Association of Dental Office Managers, and is currently working on her fellowship with the Association of Dental Implant Auxiliaries. She is also the founder and president of NEDAT Study Club for dental administrative team members, and was recently recognized by AADOM for her efforts in this capacity. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
AADOM: learning from the best of the best
By Michelle Kratt