When patients come to your dental office for check-ups or procedures, most of their interactions are with your staff. Ensuring that your team is performing well and keeping patients happy is an important part of your job as dentist, but how do you accomplish that? Below we list 4 best practices for boosting dental staff performance.
Establish a Positive Culture
Boosting dental staff performance starts with a positive culture. To do this, establish a purpose and build your practice around it. More than a minimum number of new patients or hygiene appointments per month, why are you in business? Your purpose should relate to your practice philosophy and be an ideal that employees can follow.
It’s also important to maintain an open flow of communication, value your employees as investments, and have a cohesive team that works as one unit. Especially in small dental practices, one bad egg can ruin the whole environment.
Listen and Communicate
We mentioned valuing your employees as investments as a key component to maintaining a positive culture. To do that, you must create an atmosphere where employees feel listened to and can voice their concerns without fear of reprisal. If something isn’t working or a staff member’s performance has dipped, the simplest and most effective solution is to talk to them and ask why, and problem-solve solutions together. Consider an anonymous way for employees to share feedback or suggestions, or to provide praise for one another. Small efforts can go a long way.
Ask your team how to improve the practice and communicate with them on practice performance. When everyone knows what goals, they’re working toward and why, it’s much easier to get there.
Offer Regular Continuing Education and Training
If your staff seems to fall behind in certain technology or processes, or you want to stay on the cutting edge of dental tech and practice management, train them! Training can be informal and done in the office as a group, virtual seminars, or you can create room in the budget for travel to dental conferences. Whether it’s learning a new skill, getting up to speed on your practice management software, or the latest in practice management, make sure you and your staff are equipped with the latest knowledge. They’ll appreciate the access to training and will be better prepared to serve your patients.
Recruit and Retain the Best
We mentioned above the importance of a cohesive team. To build the best team possible, it starts with finding top talent. Offering competitive salaries and bonuses are one component; the best candidates are also looking for intrinsic rewards and a positive, challenging work environment. Retaining the best employees is an ongoing effort, and the other best practices we mentioned all play a role. Much can be said about recruiting and retaining the best dental staff, which is why it is a blog post for another day.
Your dental practice is most productive and profitable when you and your staff work together and enjoy what you do. These guidelines will help you identify where to focus on, and if you have questions specific to your dental practice, contact us today.