Because dentists take on so many roles in their practice, it would be impossible to build a thriving practice without help. A hardworking and motivated team is essential. In fact, if there’s one thing that separates thriving practices from ones that struggle, it’s the team you have working with you.
Team-building is also an area where many dentists struggle. We work so hard that investing in team-building can feel like an additional burden. But the reality is it can be one of the best investments you’ll ever make. And it doesn’t need to be hard.
You don’t need to immediately hire a dozen new people and build a huge team. With the right people, in the right positions, working the right systems, you can do well with a small, motivated team. Here’s how to make sure your team is motivated to perform every single day.
Hire the best, motivated people, and let them know why their work matters.
Many times, production problems are actually hiring and communication problems.
A quote by author and speaker Simon Sinek sums this up well:
“Great companies don't hire skilled people and motivate them; they hire already motivated people and inspire them. People are either motivated or they are not. Unless you give motivated people something to believe in, something better than their job to work toward, they will motivate themselves to find a new job, and you’ll be stuck with whoever’s left.”
Hiring motivated people and letting them know why their work matters will help you build a team of the best people doing their best work.
Not every person will be a good fit for your practice. People who are just looking for a paycheck or who aren’t willing to work hard to get their job done won’t be a good fit. The same is true with complainers. Having even one team member with a poor attitude or poor work ethic can put a strain on your practice. Thus, it’s important that you have the right people working with you from the start.
It’s also important that every team member knows why their work matters. Let your team know your big vision for your practice and how they fit into it. This will transform their tasks into something much bigger than the task itself.
For example, we call our patients on their birthdays. Without context, that task might seem like something we can skip on a busy day. After all, people don’t expect to get a call from their dentist just to say happy birthday. If a birthday passes without a call, they might not think twice, especially if this is their first birthday as our patient. But birthday calls help us to build deeper relationships with patients. Those calls lead to referrals, build stronger loyalty, and develop greater trust. A team that knows why their work matters will be much more likely to perform tasks with enthusiasm.
They’ll be more accountable to each other, see the purpose behind your systems and processes, and be ready to work hard to help you achieve your vision.
Hold a morning huddle every day.
A WOW team with the best dental practice systems and processes will form a solid foundation to help you achieve your practice goals. One of the best ways to get your team to perform their best every day is to hold a morning huddle. I lead one in my practice every morning, and it has revolutionized my practice.
During the huddle, we check in with each other, talk about the upcoming day, and look at our whiteboards with our production goals on them. Sometimes we see that we’re falling behind on production goals for certain procedures. Other times we find ourselves ahead.
Whatever the case may be, our whiteboards help us focus and have important conversations about productivity. For example, in early 2018, we set a crazy goal to do seventy-five crowns per month in my practice. That was a crazy number for us because we had been doing fewer than 40 per month to that point.
Setting the goal got us to focus on what we could do to attract more crown patients. Obviously, our current patients and practices generated fewer than 40 crowns per month, so we knew we needed to do something more. We started marketing to crown patients. We changed how we presented treatment plans to make emotional connections with people who needed crowns. That way, patients wouldn’t focus on the transaction of the crown. They would focus on how their life would improve when they got the crown they needed. We utilized online scheduling to make it easy for people to make an appointment. We utilized Instagram and Facebook to promote crowns. We did a lot to focus on attracting new crown patients. In the end, we became extremely successful in attracting crown patients to our practice.
If we see that we’re falling behind on production goals, we will focus on what we can do to catch up. For example, if we’re falling behind on Invisalign, we can run an Invisalign Facebook ads campaign. We can also follow up with patients who expressed interest in Invisalign. Without a morning huddle, your practice can easily become reactive. Weeks and months even can go by with team members doing lower-priority activities. That can lead to profits plummeting and more work being required of you to keep up.
Or, you can have a morning huddle to get everyone working together on what’s most important that day.
Do you have the right people on your team and connect with them daily?
Having the right people performing the most important tasks can transform your practice. Do you have the right people on your team? Are they motivated by their nature? Do they know why their work matters? Are you connecting with them every day so everyone can focus on the most important work?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, start with a simple morning huddle. Talk with your team about your vision, why their work matters, and the focus of the day. Use a simple whiteboard system to focus on production goals. If you want help, check out Dental Profit Academy. There, you will find my best training, systems, and strategies to build and motivate your team.
You can also join my free Dental Marketing and Profits Facebook group, where thousands of dentists and I help each other build better practices.
Finally, if you want even more personalized help, sign up for my next business bootcamp session, where I work directly with you and a small group of other dentists to improve your dental practice.
This article originally appeared on DeliveringWow.com.