A  Happy Dental Team is not just a dream!

A Happy Dental Team is not just a dream!

Hello Friends,

The key to successfully improving your dental practice, reaching your goals and having loyal and happy patients is to have a loyal and happy team. For some, this can be quite challenging.

I want to help. I’m going to share with you some tips and ideas on how to have a Happier and more Productive Team.

how to have a happier dental team

When people feel valued, appreciated, heard, supported, acknowledged and included, they are motivated to bring their best selves forward. ~ Betsy Myers

Isn’t that the truth? I know it’s that way for me. I’m sure your team would respond the same way. Give it a try with these tips and ideas…

Set the Example Lead by example.  Treat your employees how you would like them to treat your best patient! If you want to see positive change in your practice, you must consistently lead by example. It starts at the top. You set the tone for the day, make certain that it’s a happy & productive one. This includes any employee in a management position – if you have employees complaining about your office manager, take it seriously. A toxic office manager will destroy your practice over time, at the very least, cause a staff turnover nightmare.  In fact, any employee that is toxic to your vision, to your team, and/or your patients…needs to go. It’s not easy to make the decision to terminate someone’s employment, yet absolutely necessary if you want to improve your practice. Once you make the decision to no longer tolerate or allow the poor behavior and attitudes in your practice, you’ll breathe a huge sigh of relief.

Hire only the Best – Take the time necessary to screen your job candidates. Don’t be so quick to hire that you settle for less than the best. Allow your team to spend time with the candidates prior to hiring. See how they interact with each other and with your patients.

“Remember there is no way that the quality of customer service can exceed the quality of the people who provide it.” – Liz Tahir

Compensation – You get what you pay for.  Pay your employees well.  Simple as that.

Communication  – Job descriptions and expectations must be clearly defined for each employee.  Don’t assume they know. This will help keep things running smoothly, efficiently, and productive.  (Have every team member write down a detailed list of all of their job responsibilities. This is VERY helpful in determining more effective ways of doing things as well as finding out what is NOT being done.)

Team Meetings/Morning Huddles are essential for a happy and smooth work day. Visit HERE for some tips on how you can have a successful morning huddle.

Address quickly any needed discipline or correction; don’t wait for a staff meeting to address these problems. Instead, meet one on one with the offender right away and move forward.

Avoid office negativity and gossip, it’s toxic and will infect your team – Rather, focus on and share positive experiences.

Respect – Respect your team by sticking to the scheduled work hours. Be sure that they are not habitually working through their lunch or having to work late. They need breaks to refresh and refuel. Give them that. They have a life outside of work and making them work past their scheduled end time is a real drag. I understand that sometimes unexpected events may occur so they might be asked to work late or into a lunch hour but this should be the rare occasion, not a daily or even occurrence. If you find that this is happening frequently, it’s time to reevaluate your systems for scheduling appointments and your office hours.

Commendation – This one is easy. Commend your employees when you catch them doing something “right”. Commendation boosts morale. Applaud & reward the behavior and actions that you want to see more of. Simply thanking your team at the end of the day goes a long way in making them feel appreciated. Little surprise treats and gifts every now and then are also much appreciated.

Involve and Empower – Knowing why you show up every morning will help to create a culture of happiness and excellence.  Involve the entire team in your vision, mission, and goals for the practice. Involving your team will help to keep everyone on the same page; working together for the greater good of the practice. Encourage and empower your team to not only come up with new ideas and solutions to problems but to implement these ideas and solutions.

 Training – Don’t hold back in this area! Invest in your team. Thoroughly train any new employees on your practice goals, systems, software, telephone skills, dental procedures, protocols, etc.  However, training isn’t just for your new employees, everyone in the office needs regular training. This leads me to the next point…

Continuing Education – Continuing education, not just for the providers but for the entire team is a wonderful way to ensure practice growth. Not to mention, it’s a great team-building experience, one that will give you a happier and motivated team. Think about this, your administrative team is the first and last impression made on each and every one of your patients. This includes potential patients that call your office. Certainly, you want to have the very best training and education for not only your clinical team but your administrative team too. You can do this with in-office training, webinars, lunch and learns, and seminars/classes outside of the office.

For example, have you heard about The Best Seminar Ever? Better known as TBSE? For real, I attended TBSE last year and it absolutely was the best seminar I have ever been to. If you’re ready to boost your team and take your practice to the next level, please check it out here: TBSE -The Best Seminar Ever

If you’re unsure about the true value of continuing education for your entire team, consider the following scenario… You the doctor, come back from a dental seminar all fired up to implement some new ideas, protocol or the use of a new/improved dental procedure or cool piece of dental equipment and your team is less than enthused, maybe a little angry that they cannot possibly add one more thing to their already too busy day. Besides, the way they do things is how they always have and it’s working out just fine…

Sound familiar? Is there a chance you might have some new dental equipment or training manuals just sitting on the shelf, begging to be used? I hope not. However, if this or something similar has happened to you, it’s most likely because your team didn’t understand or appreciate the why and the how. Knowing why and how this new idea, technique, equipment or procedure works, benefits the patient and the office as a whole is critical to enthused implementation.

Have Fun! – Have more fun in your office with Team Building Activities, Events, & Rewards.  More on this one coming soon!

It is my wish that these ideas and tips will help you and your team experience greater happiness at work. If you have any other ideas or things that have worked well in your office, I would love to hear about them. If you have any questions or concerns about what you’ve read today, please contact me at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com.

Have you signed up to receive my complimentary dental marketing and practice management ideas that are sent right to your email inbox each month? If not, take a second and sign up. Or send me your email address and I will send you an invite to follow. This way, you won’t miss a single idea!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

there is no way that the quality of customer service can exceed the quality of the people who provide it

Spring Clean Your Dental Office Using Your 5 Senses

Spring Clean Your Dental Office Using Your 5 Senses

Hello Friends,

It’s that time of year when many take advantage of the warmer weather to “spring clean” their homes. This is also a great time to spring clean your dental practice.

I encourage you to make a checklist of all the areas in your office that need some spring cleaning.  I’ll help you get started by showing you how to take advantage of using your 5 senses while cleaning your office. This is by no means an exhaustive cleaning list but it will you give you ideas of where and what to clean.

Betty Hayden Consulting Dental Marketing and Practice Management Ideas

Sight, Smell, Sound, Touch, and Taste.

SIGHT

What do your patients and potential patients see?

Areas to “see” include;

  1. Office Exterior
  • Signage
  • Windows
  • Landscape/Weeds
  • Garbage/Debris
  • Safety Concerns/Handicap accessibility
  1. Office Interior
  • Reception Room – Sit in your reception room, what do your patients see, touch, hear, smell and taste? Look high and low. What do you see? Dirty carpeting/flooring? Outdated magazines & decor? Stained or worn chairs? Peeling wallpaper? Cobwebs? Dusty plants/floral arrangements? Light bulbs that are out?  Look over at the front desk area, if you see a sliding glass window that is full of signs and papers telling your patients what to do and what not to do…remove them immediately! In fact, remove the glass. It’s very unwelcoming!
  • Restroom – Most if not all of your patients that visit your restroom WILL determine the quality and safety of your care from that experience. (Isn’t that true of you when you’re at a restaurant or any public restroom? No one wants the gas station bathroom experience…not even when you’re at a gas station.) Your restroom should be clean, nicely decorated and well stocked with quality paper products and soap.
  • Front Desk Area – Clutter represents indecisions. Make a decision to get rid of the clutter! (That includes any sticky notes attached to computer monitors, coats/sweaters hanging on the backs of chairs and fast-food drink containers sitting out on the counters.) Purchase hot/cold beverage tumblers, preferably with your office logo on them for your team members to use at their workstations – this looks much nicer than your patients seeing soda bottles or coffee shop cups.

While you’re visiting the front desk area, don’t forget about cleaning these areas too…

  • Current Protocols–  Hygiene Continuing Care, Incomplete Treatment Reports, Confirmation, A/R-Collections, Greetings, Patient Hand-off,  New Patient Welcomes, and Referral Thank you’s, etc.
  • Paper Communication Materials –Intake forms, Letterhead, HIPAA forms, Financial Policy & Postcards.
  • Job Responsibilities/Descriptions –Have every team member write down a detailed list of all of their job responsibilities. This is VERY helpful in determining more effective ways of doing things as well as finding out what is NOT being done.
  • Operatories – Sit in the treatment room chairs. What do you see? What do you hear? What do you taste? What do you smell? How do you feel? Again, your patients don’t measure the quality of care, they measure the quality of their experience. Keep your patients loyal to your practice by making certain they consistently have great experiences.
  • Closets – Make an inventory checklist. Throw away any expired or outdated products, equipment, manuals, etc. While you’re at it, if there is anything that isn’t be used properly due to lack of education or training, go ahead and schedule time for continuing education/training.
  •  Equipment/Technology – What needs repairs, upgrades or to be tossed? Computers, Software, Internet Speed & Access, Printers, Copiers, Telephone Systems, TV’s, Postage machines, including…dare I say, typewriters?
  • The Team – Appearance – Wear clothes that reflect the excellent care you give your patients. Professional, clean, and wrinkle-free clothes.  Clean hair, nails & body). Attitudes – Remove any toxic attitudes. Office Policies – Review and update employee benefits and expectations.

TIP: Make a cleaning schedule – who, what & when will the parking lot, restrooms & reception room be checked. This should be done several times throughout the day. Do not wait for the “cleaning person” to take care of those areas.

SMELL

  • Get rid of the dreaded dental office smell. There are products out there that will eliminate that smell without aggravating patients with allergies. Bake chocolate chip cookies if necessary.

SOUND

  • Keep the noise down! Patients want to be put at ease; they don’t want to hear the latest office gossip or a TV that is too loud. Avoid using patients’ full names or complaining about patients when you can be heard from the reception room or treatment chair.
  • Music – Consider playing music in the reception and treatment rooms. Wireless headphones will allow patients’ to listen to music or the TV while in the chair.
  • Telephone Greetings/Messages – What do your patients and potential patients’ “hear” when calling the office? Be sure that what they hear is a reflection of your goals and vision. See How To Effectively Answer The Dental Office Telephone

TASTE

  • Beverage Station in the reception room. Complimentary coffee, tea, cold bottled water, juice, etc. See this Pinterest board for beverage station design ideas.
  • Snacks – Offer snacks such as fruit, granola bars, etc. This is especially nice for patients that may have been in for a lengthy appointment and need a little boost in energy.
  • Allow patients to rinse with mouthwash before and after the appointment.
  • Offer pre-pasted toothbrushes for patients that didn’t have time to or forgot to brush their teeth before their appointment.

TOUCH

  • Reception Room – Is it comfortable & welcoming?

Reading Material – Have a variety of magazine and books for patients to read.

Temperature – Keep the temperature in the reception room at a comfortable setting.

  • Treatment Rooms – Be sure that your patients are comfortable during their visit.

Massage Pads on Chairs

Blankets (If you have a patient that is always cold, pop the blanket in the dryer for them right before appt).

Distractions –  (Movies, Music, Digital Aquarium, Etc.)

Give Painless Injections…always.

Put your patients at ease by talking with them before you start looking in their mouth.

  • Free Stuff – Give away items imprinted with your office name, website and phone number to each patient at their appointment. Such as; toothbrushes, magnets, calendars, pens and lip balm. (If you’re wondering where you can order some quality imprinted items, check out Bizarre Marketing.  I share this particular company with you because their customer service is awesome!)

Using your 5 senses, look closely at yourself, your team, the exterior, and interior of your building, all office systems, your lab, sterilization procedures, website & social media sites, marketing materials, marketing programs and the patient experience.

Your goal during your spring cleaning should be to find ways to consistently exceed your patients’ expectations and remove anything that is hindering you from reaching that goal.

Are you receiving my free dental marketing and practice management ideas every month to your email? If not, PLEASE take a second and follow today or send me your email address to bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com and I will send you an invitation to follow. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends.

 ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on  FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

Tips and Suggestions for the Best Morning Huddle Ever!

Hello Friends,

Do you ever feel like your attempt to conduct a daily morning huddle is just a big hassle? That the meetings are a waste of time? Or maybe you’re already conducting morning meetings and want to make them more effective, Please keep reading!

Today, I want to share with you some tips and suggestions that will help you have effective morning huddles and answer some questions that many of you have asked about morning huddles.

tips for the best morning huddle ever

 

Why should I have a morning huddle/meeting?

The morning meeting is essential for a successful day. If you tried in the past to have a morning huddle and it didn’t work out… try again! However, this time, please follow my tried and true suggestions & tips. Every dental office wants to produce more, collect more, stress less, have happy doctors and team members and consistently exceed patient expectations. Right? Well, effective morning huddles help to make those things a reality.

Remember this: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance!

When should the morning huddle start? and How long should it last?

Fifteen – twenty minutes before the first scheduled patient.   It should last no more than 10-15 minutes. Taking 10-15 minutes first thing in the morning to ensure the day starts off happy and productive is well worth it.

Who should attend the morning meeting?

Everyone. If scheduling prevents everyone from attending…at the very least the doctor(s), hygienist(s ), assistants and someone representing the administrative team. It is imperative for a team member to be assigned at every meeting to update the employee(s) not present of what was discussed/announced. No one should be left in the dark. This eliminates any “I didn’t know” or “no one told me!”

Who leads the huddle?

Rotate team members to conduct the meeting and make certain that everyone stays on point and that the meeting ends and starts on time (appoint a time-keeper)! Doctors (lead by example) be present at the start of the mtg and end each meeting on a positive note. Team members from each department can & should contribute what pertains to their particular department.

What do you talk about?

Focus on: Today and Tomorrow and a little bit of yesterday 😉

START and END the meeting with something POSITIVE.

  • Ata-boy/gal minute – What did we do “right” yesterday? How did we go the extra mile for a patient? Did you notice any team member that did something nice for a patient or another team member? Did anything happen yesterday that could be improved upon or avoided in the future? If yes, How?
  • Holes – Can a hygiene patient in need of restorative slide over into the doctors chair? Is there anyone coming in with the doctor that is due in hygiene? If not, how will we remain productive during this downtime? 
  • Emergency time – Where can we put the “true emergencies”?
  • Potential trouble spots – Review schedule for any potential trouble/hiccups/hangups. Such as: doctor needed in multiple places at the same time, habitually late patient, copays that must be collected, difficult patient, etc. Do everything in your power to start, stay & end on time, exceed patient expectations and work together as a team for a smooth & happy day.
  • New Patients / Referral Sources – Who are our new patients today and how did they hear about our office? Everyone be ready to warmly greet all patients but introduce yourselves to all new patients. Thank them for coming in.
  • Pre-op calls – Any new patients coming in tomorrow or the next day that the provider can call and welcome?
  • Same day services – Identify any patients that would benefit from same day services (fluoride, xrays, desensitizing agents, whitening, mouthguards, better home care tools)
  • Post-op calls – Did we call yesterday’s patients to check in on them? Preferably the doctor and hygienist should make their own calls. (Who do you call? All new patients and any patients that had anesthetic, extraction or perio. Also, any patients that may have been fearful.
  • Social Media – Who will help with that today? Ask patients to like the office (or check-in) on Facebook, follow on Twitter & Instagram. So many reasons throughout the day to post to your social media sites, such as: a patient brings in a treat, to welcome a new patient to the office, a child joined your kid’s club/team, celebrate a beautiful cosmetic restoration/teeth whitening, etc.
  • Testimonials/Reviews – Who is a candidate for providing a testimonial/review? Be alert throughout the day to ask for testimonials/reviews. Especially when a patient compliments the office on something… ask for a written or online testimonial. Take their picture (with permission) to post on your social media sites/website. NOTE: If a patient that is coming in for today has previously filled out an online survey be sure to review it. If they had a problem make certain it’s not repeated, if it was praise be sure to thank the team and the patient!
  • Goals – Look at Production, Scheduling & Collection goals for yesterday, today and tomorrow. Reminder to collect all co-pays at time of appointment!!
  • Treatment plans – Remember, offer the very best treatment options to your patients, let’s not “watch” or “wait until next visit” chances are it will only worsen. Let the patient decide for themselves! Were there any patients that came in yesterday that we treatment planned and they did not schedule an appointment? WHY?
  • Conclusion – End the meeting on a positive note. Tell a funny joke, read a positive quote and/or thank your team. Watch a quick motivational, educational or funny video clip. This meeting sets the tone for the day… Make it a happy one! Let’s go change someone’s life or at the very least help them smile bigger and healthier!

Here are a few additional tips for a successful morning huddle:

  • Come prepared! Have ready copies of the schedule (today and tomorrow). Charts/treatment should be reviewed the day prior to the huddle. Be sure to have available your collection, scheduling and production goals for today and tomorrow and yesterday’s results.
  • Stand for the meeting. This helps to keep the huddle on time and hold everyone’s attention.
  • Maintain a positive attitude regarding the importance of DAILY morning meetings.
  • Use a check-list! This will help you stay on time and cover all points.
  • FOOD! Every once in a while surprise the team with bagels, donuts, coffee, muffins, etc. 

I strongly encourage you to implement daily morning huddles, simply because I know that they’re effective and I want all of you to have happier, more productive and stress-free work days!

If you already conduct morning huddles, way to go! Feel free to share with me any of your tips for successful morning huddles.

Should you need any help implementing these ideas or have any other questions that I can help you answer…I’m ready to help.

If you are not yet receiving my free dental marketing ideas every month to your email inbox, PLEASE take a second and subscribe today. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

Huddle Up and Have a Great Day!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn andPinterest

February Dental Marketing Ideas – Focus: Children’s Dental Health Month

Hello,

February is Children’s Dental Health Month, what do you have planned to help educate families in your community about the need for better dental health?

dental marketing ideas for February

Field trips to local schools? School field trips to the office? Participating with the National Give Kids A Smile Day?

Today, I’m going to focus on Give Kids a Smile Day.

Now the ADA website has an excellent Give Kids A Smile Toolbox  http://www.ada.org/1584.aspx  It’s loaded with information such as Planning, Promotion, Forms, etc.

Advertise your Event

Social Media ~  

Advertise your event on all of your social media pages.

TV News ~

Fax & Email the press release. (Sample Press Release below)

Call the stations and pitch your story. Invite them to visit the office the day of the event and to please help you identify true children in need by spreading the word.

Most TV news stations have a free community calendar on their website – post the event on the calendar. (Pictures are a good idea too!)

Local Newspaper ~

Send press release.

Flyers ~

Have flyers in the office and ask patients to please share with their friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors.

Visit local businesses ~

This is all FREE advertising! Even if your schedule is filling up, continue to advertise! Think of it as spreading seeds all over the community, getting your name in front of many people. You never know when those seeds will grow!!

Key things to remember/do before, during and after the event:

Show lots of Enthusiasm:  

Be enthusiastic about this great event and your office too!

Printed Materials:

In addition to the event information/details. Be sure to include: Doctors (office) Name, Address, Phone number, email, social media pages and website

Telephones:

Thank them for calling,  ask how they heard about the event (TRACK EVERY Callers Referral Source)

So your schedule is full for that day, what do you do when the phone continues to ring with people wanting to schedule an appointment for their child(ren)? 

Take down their name, phone number, chief concern,  and let them know you will call if there are any changes in the schedule for that day. (Believe or not people sometimes cancel/no show on this day!) 

Just because you may not be able to see them on that day, offer them a different day for a complimentary consultation. Give them hope, give them a chance, they’ve probably been turned away from other offices.  

While out in the community:

Look good! Your appearance is a reflection of the office and the care you provide.

Be considerate of their time.

Don’t hold back from offering the people you meet an appointment.

Carry extra toothbrushes, business cards, lip balm, etc. to share with those you meet.

Donations:

See if you can get donations from local businesses for the event.

Be sure to include any business that contributed to the event in your advertising & thank you’s after the event!

Day of Event:

Every child receives a goodie bag that includes an imprinted toothbrush.

Take pictures!!! (The ADA website has a release form)

 Enter all charges into the computer and write off as GKAS-Charity  (Record total donation dollars- the production)

Sadly, There will be treatment that you won’t be able to do that day – give them a treatment plan and if they cannot afford treatment in your office you should refer them to a dental school or medicaid office.  Have a list ready for them.

It may be the first visit to the dentist for some kids so they may be scared you really have to work at keeping them comfy & make it fun.

You might be surprised to see how many families end up becoming patients.

GKAS day can be a very busy day for the office, I recommend ordering lunch in so team members can relax during their break.

After the Event:

Send a thank you to the children after the event.

Send a thank you to any business that contributed to the event.

Submit a press release talking about the success of the event, pictures and tips for parents to keep their child’s smile healthy.

Make your Give Kids a Smile Day a huge success!!

 It’s actually a really fun day – exhausting yes, and maybe a little heartbreaking but it feels good to volunteer your time, and donate your services to help so many children in the community.

 If you have any questions about hosting your Give Kids A Smile Event or would like help planning/advertising/marketing this special day, please contact me at  bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com

If you have not yet subscribed to receive my Free Dental Marketing Ideas each month, please do so today.

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

 

 

  Give Kids A Smile is held annually to:

 

• provide free dental services to local, qualifying children from low-income families

 

• raise awareness of the epidemic of untreated dental disease occurring here and

 

across the country and