As a dentist or a practice manager, one of your primary jobs is to utilize your team efficiently. Of course, this is easier said than done. Below are several tips and strategies to keep in mind as you seek to mold your employees into a cohesive, effective, and efficient team:
1) Clearly define roles and responsibilities. Many business owners, whether in the dental profession or elsewhere, fail to clearly define the roles of each employee. Instead, the manager expects his team to come together to execute tasks as necessary. Unfortunately, because this approach does not assign responsibility to a specific individual, tasks will often go uncompleted. Conversely, when each team member knows his or her specific responsibilities, there is no excuse—the work either gets done, or it doesn’t, and it’s crystal clear who failed to meet their responsibility.
2) Be consistent and fair with your expectations. Few things are more demoralizing and confusing to employees than unfair or inconsistent expectations. Don’t assign tasks and responsibility arbitrarily—take time to think through the strengths and weaknesses of your employees, and do your best to match each employee with the tasks that suit his or her skills best. Don’t engage in “office politics” and don’t allow personal feelings to impact you as you manage your staff.
3) Provide feedback and mentor your employees in order to help them grow. Far too many dentists hire a new employee and then simply throw him or her to the wolves after a brief training session. But in order to help your employees reach their potential, it is important to devote time to helping them build on their strengths and compensate for weaknesses. Take time on a regular basis to provide feedback and constructive criticism for each employee. Don’t limit your advice to areas that impact the employee’s work performance—help them build life skills as well. Your employees will see that you are interested in helping them become better people, as well as better employees—and they’ll reward you with their loyalty.
An efficient team is often the difference between a thriving dental practice and one that is struggling to get by. If you would like help implementing systems to maximize the effectiveness of your team, get in touch with me today!