Unlocking the "Power of 3"

Unlocking the "Power of 3"

James K. Zenk, D.D.S.:


Is it spring yet??
 
As I sit at my kitchen table working on the deadline for this ADA Trustee report, all I see out the window is winter. Sideways blowing snow, extreme sub-zero cold, and iced roads are  normal for life on the prairie in West Central Minnesota this winter. It is time for happier, warmer thoughts — dreaming of springtime and planning for all the ADA 10th District state  meetings. I am excited to attend another Minnesota Dental Association Star of the North Meeting this April and catch up with all our friends, colleagues, and classmates. It looks like another excellent and action-packed meeting is planned.
 
Strategic Planning and Supporting Structure
As your trustee, much of my time is spent in strategic planning. Two big issues are being introduced this spring: “Members First 2020”, and “Unlocking the Power of 3”.
 
“Members First  2020” is the next Strategic Plan for the ADA. It will go into effect in 2015, and continue until January 1, 2020. All future decisions, spending, and budgets will relate to the Strategic Plan. I  outlined the proposed objectives for “Members First 2020” in the January-February issue of Northwest Dentistry. If you have any questions about the direction of our association and the  proposed strategic plan, please contact me at zenkj@ada.org
 
Supporting member success through the “Power of Three” with increased partnership across the tripartite system and structure is an important part of the new Strategic Plan. The ADA  Strategic Plan calls for the tripartite to “act in the best interest of the member, rather than the organization, when designing processes, programs, and services”. This is based upon our  belief that, from a member’s perspective, what should matter is not who delivers a given program or service, but rather the quality and value received. Remember, the American Dental  Association is an entity made up of three inter-related parts: the national, the state, and the local. The ADA is not “just Chicago”. It is all three parts of a tripartite system. The ADA is  committed to helping all members succeed, wherever they live, practice, or engage in organized dentistry. To achieve this, the three parts of the tripartite must work together in new  ways to:
• Create consistent member value for an increasingly diverse market regardless of where the member lives or practices.
• Provide consistent and “best-in-class, concierge level” member service and experience, regardless of where the program, service, or advocacy is delivered.
• Drive member loyalty beginning with admission to dental school and continuing throughout a dentist’s career, regardless of the member’s entry point into organized dentistry.
 
If we can do this together, more dentists will recognize the need to belong to our association. 
 
In support of this direction, we offer as well a new way of working together. We all must recognize that there are some aspects of the programs and operations of each part of the tripartite that can be better handled by others. This includes work currently done by the national association. Where the constituent (state) or component (local) society is better positioned or able to provide a member service or program, that component should take the lead in doing so, and the national association should support its efforts and facilitate the sharing  of best practices across the tripartite. Conversely, when the national association is better positioned and able to provide a service or program, it should take the lead. Examples may include federal advocacy, the ADA Health Policy Resource Center, Center for Professional Success, the SPA program, and some national-level benefit programs. By making use of the  programs and services offered by the national association, the state and local societies can reduce redundancy, increase efficiency, and reinvest the savings of time and money into the most highly valued programs and services. By working together we can increase our ability to provide member value, a key driver for membership growth.
 
ACA-Compliant Health Insurance Options
Big news: Members looking for Affordable Care Act compliant health insurance options can now look to the ADA as a resource. The ADA Board of Trustees approved the endorsement of a  national private health insurance exchange Web portal, the American Health Insurance Exchange (AHIX), powered by JLBG Health. The ADA is designing an ADA.org Web landing page that  will first list the direct links to ACA-compliant medical plan options endorsed by individual state dental associations. This will be followed by a link to the ADA-endorsed AHIX Web portal for 
members who do not have health insurance plans offered through their dental associations. Members please note this is an endorsement of a Web portal only, not of any health insurance  company or plan. Member only services will include a dedicated answer line via email or toll-free number where a licensed insurance broker will consult with members to find health plans to meet their needs. This resource will maximize member value by making it easier for members throughout the country to find health insurance that best meets their needs in a very  complicated new medical insurance landscape.
 
MouthHealthy.org Update
MouthHealthy.org, which provides the latest information to help our patients make informed decisions about their oral health, has reached a milestone: one million visitors at the end of  2013. Please continue to promote this educational website to your patients. ADA members can also market their own practices on MouthHealthy.org by completing their profile on ADA  Find-A-Dentist. To complete a profile, visit ADA.org/memberprofile.aspx. Members can also connect their patients directly to ADA-approved patient education by downloading a web button  and linking it to their practice website. Download the web button and other promotional materials at ADA.org/7229.aspx.  
 
Texas in October
I invite you to make plans to join me October 9-14, 2014, in San Antonio, Texas for “ADA 2014 - America’s Dental Meeting”. If you have never been to an ADA Annual Session, come to this  one — it’s one you will not want to miss! The opening session will feature keynote speaker former president George W. Bush. Please come for the first class continuing education offerings  and the world class exhibition hall featuring all the latest and greatest new products and equipment. Best of all, take time to connect with friends and colleagues from around the world and enjoy the sights, sounds, and food of the River Walk in San Antonio. To learn more, please visit ADA.org/meeting.
 
An Open Invitation
I want to thank you for allowing me to continue representing you as your ADA 10th District Trustee. If you have any questions, concerns, or thoughts about how we can continue to  provide consistent best-in-class member value, please contact me: My email is zenkj@ada.org.
 
I will see you all in April at the Star of the North! 
 
 
 *Dr. Zenk is the Trustee to the Tenth District of the American Dental Association, representing Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. He is a general dentist in  Montevideo, Minnesota. Email is zenkj@ada.org