Why is building a positive work culture worth the time, effort, and possibly expense? Because employee satisfaction touches many aspects of your business and will contribute positively to your employees’ job satisfaction, performance, and productivity. It will also allow you to attract top talent, providing your patients with higher-quality treatment. Here are some tips on how to build a positive work culture in your dental practice:
1. Celebrate wins and reward your team
When one of your team members achieves a goal, give them a shout-out and offer praise. Whether they managed a problematic patient, worked out an insurance issue, or forged a vendor relationship, recognizing their effort will help them feel appreciated and set an example for your team.
2. Teach by example
Practicing clinical dentistry and being the operating manager of your practice is a juggling act. You often won’t have the time to teach your team how you want them to perform tasks. So you may have to demonstrate procedures in real-time. Allow your staff to document their learnings and ask questions.
3. Build authentic relationships with your team
Create opportunities to form relationships with your staff outside of business. Have lunch with your team to talk about non-work-related topics or sponsor an employee’s child’s soccer team for the year. Celebrate birthdays and other milestones. Find ways to help your team bond and enjoy working at your practice.
4. Create digital boundaries
Technology can be used to connect to work wherever you are. However, it can cause you to feel like you’re always on the job. Help yourself detach by turning your phone on “do not disturb” for a set hour a day, sleeping with your phone outside of your bedroom so that it’s not the first thing you check in the morning or last thing you look at at night, and/or putting an away message on your work email when you’re not in the office.
5. Keep communication channels open
Ensure there is an open line of communication between you and your team for any questions, concerns, and problem-solving. Have short meetings in the morning to set expectations for the day and address potential issues, especially before each specialty treatment day. Create positive experiences out of these conversations and show your team that you’re available to support.
6. Hire the right team
Hire people who are committed to growing your practice alongside you and the rest of your team. Incompatibility happens, such as a new hire struggling to fit in or a team member disengaging as a practice grows. It’s essential to address the incompatibility as soon as possible. Find out the root of the problem and handle it accordingly. Is it a culture fit? Help them bond with the team. A knowledge gap? Have them observe procedures. Or are they just not committed? As important as it is to praise your employees who are doing well, it’s equally important to manage underperforming employees. Otherwise, they may demotivate the rest of your hard-working and loyal staff.
Building a positive work culture is a key step towards a well-managed and operated Dental Practice. What are some ways you build a positive work culture?