Tips to Improve your Dental Office Part 4 ~ Happy Team

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 tips on how to have a Happy Team and in turn, Improve Your Office.

Before I get started, did you catch Tips to Improve your Dental Office Parts 1, 2 and 3? If not, here they are; First Impressions,  Make a Change and The Little Things. (BTW: Sign up to receive my complimentary dental marketing and practice management ideas and tips each month right to your email inbox…this way, you won’t miss a single FREE idea!)

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…

how to have a happy dental team

Commendation This one is easy. Commend your employees when you catch them doing something “right”. Commendation boosts morale. Commend & 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. Thank them for going the extra mile to help a patient out, or for the day running smoothly, or for always getting to work on time.

Communication   Job descriptions and expectations must be clearly defined.  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.

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

Your team must know the why, what and how. They may know the what and the how but not the why, often times, this is why employees are there just to collect a paycheck. Talk about what you believe and attract those who believe what you believe. People buy the why not the what.

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.   Follow through on goals and changes. Training isn’t just for your new employees, everyone in the office needs regular training. Which leads me to the next point…

Continuing Education Continuing education, not just for the doctor or hygienist but 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 learn, and seminars/classes outside the office.( For example, Ever hear of TBSE? Check this seminar out if you really want to boost your team: TBSE -The Best Seminar Ever.)

If you’re still 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. Only to find that 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 because your team didn’t understand 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. Critical to its success and yours.

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.

Have Fun! – Have more fun in your office with Team Building Activities and Events

In Office Fun: Potluck lunch, Ice Cream Truck, Carry out lunch (team choice), Craft, Games, Puzzles, Book club and Brainstorm sessions with prizes for ideas. (Purchase a Team Building Activity book such as:  Quick Team-Building Activities for Busy Managers: 50 Exercises That Get Results in Just 15 Minutes)

These articles have some really good ideas for team building activities: Six Quick Teamwork Games to Engage Employees at Work and this one: When I work – Team Building Games

Outside the office Fun: Bowling, Paint a Canvas, Shopping, Dinner, Cooking Class, Wally Ball, Baseball Game, Spa, Escape Room, Field Day (Team up with other offices), Concert, Skating, Batting Cages, Mini Golf, Pottery Class, Theater, Community Events, Volunteering at a local charity, Nature hike/walk, Etc.

Tips to get you started:

  • Positive Gossip Only! Entire team agrees to stop gossip. Refuse to listen. Rather, encourage the person to go directly to the other person they have an issue or complaint about. Unless of course, they can let it go and move on.
  • Why are you here? What are you doing? Do you know? What about your team? Knowing why you show up every morning will help to create a culture of happiness and excellence.
  • Book Club – Start a book club with your team. Purchase a great team building book and share paragraphs or chapters at your team meetings. There are so many wonderful team building books out there. Below you will find a list of some of the ones that I have read. (Also, short team building video clips might be helpful to share at a morning huddle or team meeting. One of my absolute favorites is the FISH! Philosophy)
  • Little Surprises – Write a thank you or I appreciate you note and stick it on an employee’s computer screen. In the morning, bring in donuts and coffee.  In the afternoon when everyone is feeling sluggish, bring in a refreshing drink or treat. If possible, have everyone step outside for a few minutes of fresh air.

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 team building 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 the things you’ve read today, please ask 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. 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 Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Pinterest

P.P.S. Team Building Book Suggestions: Move Your Bus; Fun Is Good; The Energy Bus (ALL books by Jon Gordon); Our Iceberg is Melting; Who Moved my Cheese?; FISH!; Full Steam Ahead; Million Dollar Dentistry; Be Our Guest; …more added soon.

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Tips To Improve Your Dental Office,  Part 3 ~ The Little Things Matter

Tips To Improve Your Dental Office, Part 3 ~ The Little Things Matter

“It’s the little details that are vital.

Little things make big things happen.” ~John Wooden

Hello friends,

It’s the little things that can make the biggest impact on your practice growth and the happiness of your team.  The little things that I am sharing today, are FREE or very low cost and most only require seconds of your time.

a little bit more lou vickery hayden consulting

Here is a list of 25+  things you can do starting today to greatly improve your office and in turn your personal life too! All it takes is doing a little bit more.

If you didn’t get a chance to read Part 1 & Part 2 of my Improve your Office series, please check them out here: Improve your office – first impressions & Improve your office – Make a Change .  Feel free to share them with your friends.

Betty Hayden Consulting Tip to Improve your Dental Office

25+ Little Things to Improve your Office:

1.  Hello, Good Morning! –  Make it a point to greet your fellow team members every morning. Let people know that you see them and acknowledge them with a hello.

2.  Smile More – Smiles are contagious. Smile before you pick up the phone, smile to passersby, smile to your team mates and smile in the mirror. Smiling will boost your mood, puts people at ease and makes you more likable.

3. Say my Name – everyone likes to hear his or her name. Greet your patient’s by name. Use their name during treatment. Thank them by name for coming in or calling.

4.  Say “thank you” –  Express your appreciation.  Thank you Mr.Patient for coming in, Thank you Mrs.Caller for holding, Thank you employee for your hard work today, Thank you co- worker for your help, Thank you doctor for coming in to do the exam, you get the idea. Saying thank you Improves your Office and your Health! Check out this article: 7 Scientifically Proven Benefits Of Gratitude That Will Motivate You To Give Thanks Year-Round

5.  Choose to be Positive – Your attitude is a choice and that choice is 100% within your control. Avoid spreading negativity by sharing bad patient experiences, personal problems, or problems with other team members. Choose to be happy and positive.

6.  Be kind – Be kind to your patients, strangers, sales reps and callers.

7.  I’m sorry –  Accept responsibility when you are wrong. Be honest, simply say “I’m sorry I/We messed up”. (Tip: Keep small ($5) gift cards for coffee to give to your patients when you’ve messed up, ie: running late, lab case mistake, appt. mix up, etc.)

8.  Friendly Greeting – Warmly greet every person that visits the office. Even if you’re on the phone or taking care of a patient, you can acknowledge the other person with a smile.

9. Say Please –  Make it a habit to say please every time you ask for something.

10.  Offer a proper handshake- A nice, firm handshake shows confidence and makes a good impression. (Tip: When a new patient comes in to the office, come from around the desk and welcome them with a handshake.)

11.  Check it twice – Before you send that email, letter or text, check it for spelling errors.

12.  Social Media Sites – If your office is using social media sites be sure to like and follow the pages of local businesses within your community. Click the LIKE button or comment on their posts. Easy way to build relationships.

13.  No Cell Phones – Turn down the volume and put your cell phone away while you’re on the clock. Ask your family and friends to call the office line in the event of an emergency. Be fully present during work hours.

14.  Write it down- start and end your day with to-do lists. Write a note or set an electronic reminder to check on that claim, call your patient, check voice mail, etc. Writing things down prevents you from forgetting things that are important. (Tip: Avoid placing sticky notes around your work station. Clutter is chaos to the patient.  Place reminders in a notebook that you frequently refer to or set electronic reminders.)

15.  Commendation – Commend a fellow team member when you catch them doing something “right”. Commendation boosts morale.  (Tip: Employers, commend & reward the behavior and actions that you want to see more of.)

16. Business Cards – Carry your business cards with you and use them! Get your team personalized business cards to hand out to patients and people they do business with. (Tip: Use the back of the business card with a call to action invitation.)

17. Stay on Time – Respect your employees and patients time. Do all you can to start the day on time, stay on time and end the day on time. (Tip: If you are constantly running behind schedule it might be a good idea to review your scheduling protocol. How much time does it really take to…,  Where should we schedule emergency patients… etc.)

18. Patient of the Day! – Select a patient from the days schedule to be your “patient of the day”.  Give them a certificate, a small gift and take their picture to share on your social media sites. Fun and inexpensive way to exceed your patients expectations.

19. Post- Op Calls – Doctor and Hygienist, call your patients at the end of the day to see how well they are doing. (Tip: Call all patients that received an extraction, perio treatment, difficult procedure, were fearful or new to the office.)

20.  Pre- Op Calls – Doctor and Hygienist, call the new patients on your schedule and let them know you are looking forward to meeting them. Start building your new relationship early by exceeding their expectations before their very first visit.

21.  Send a Card – In this electronic age, rarely do people get “real” mail. Send hand-written thank you, get well, thinking of you, anniversary, sympathy and  congratulation cards to your patients.  They will truly appreciate it! (Tip: Keep a supply of cards on hand in the office.)

22.  Everybody Clean Up – Pick up the piece of paper from the floor, Wipe up the spill up from the counter and Keep your work space clean.

23.  Replace the roll of Toilet Paper – Yes, I said it. Even if there are still a few squares left to spare, replace with a fresh roll. While you’re at, go ahead and fold the toilet paper into a pretty fan. 😉

24. Huddle Up – 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 these tried and true suggestions & tips for morning meeting success.

25. Negative Gossip – Refuse to listen to gossip and stop speaking & spreading gossip. Simple as that.

26. Dress the Part – If you want it to be a great day, start by looking great. Wear clothes that reflect the excellent care you give your patients. Professional, clean and wrinkle-free clothes.  Brush & style your hair, if you’re a woman put on some make-up, wear a special piece of jewelry, etc.

27. Verbiage Matters – Use these words often: Absolutely, I’ll be happy to, My pleasure, You are very welcome, Certainly and Right away.

28. Memorable Goodbye’s – Make a great last impression with a friendly goodbye…be sure to use the patients name. “Thank you for coming in.” “It was great to see you today.” “We really appreciate having great patients like you!”

There you have it, 28 little ways to easily Improve your Office.

“I try to do the right thing at the right time. They may just be little things, but usually they make the difference between winning and losing.” ~Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Do the right thing, as a team work together to implement these little things in your office every day. Print this list and review it at your next team meeting.  Enjoy practice growth with a happier team and happy patients.

If you are not yet receiving my free dental marketing ideas every month to your email in box, please subscribe today. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

betty hayden consulting how to grow your dental practice

 

 

 

Shake it Up Baby! How to Love Mondays

I love Mondays. I really do enjoy the fresh start to a new week. However, if you are miserable Sunday night because you just totally dread Monday morning, maybe feeling like my daughter in this short video clip:

If you feel like you just can’t do it! This might help:

Shake it up Baby!

betty hayden dental consultant

That’s how you can start loving Mondays.  Yes, I said it – Love Monday and Tuesday, and Wednesday and Thursday!  You already love Friday, right?  Well, get ready to love the others by Shaking up Monday.

How do you Shake it Up?  First, you need to prepare for Monday on Sunday.  Try this:

  • What will you wear?-  Lay out your work clothes. (Make sure they are clean & wrinkle-free.)
  • What will you eat?-  Prepare your lunch & healthy snacks.
  • What to do? – Make your to-do-list. (Purging your brain of everything you need to accomplish will help you sleep better.)
  • Where is it? –  Put your keys, purse/wallet, coat/shoes, etc. near the door.
  • Go to bed early – .  (Staying up too late will only make you crabby in the morning. Avoid using/watching electronics in bed.)

Okay, so there are some of your Sunday responsibilities.  Here’s what you do Monday Morning:

  • Wake Up – Tell yourself this: “I’m going to make this a GREAT day!”
  • Eat a healthy Breakfast!  Do not skip this important meal.
  • Dress the part, if you want it to be a great day, start by looking great. (Brush & style your hair,  if you’re a woman put on some make-up, wear a special piece of jewelry, etc.)
  • Leave early enough to allow yourself plenty of time to arrive at work without feeling rushed.

So now, you’re getting ready to walk in to work –  put a smile on your face and remind yourself that “you” are going to make it a great day.  And here are some “Shake it Up” tips:

  • Act like it’s the happiest day of your life.
  • Greet your fellow co-workers. (If you are the only one there, look in the mirror and say hello beautiful….  kidding not kidding 😉 )
  • Start the work day with a morning huddle –  this will keep everyone on the same page, and gives you the opportunity to set “the tone” for the day.  Encourage everyone to share their ideas for marketing, better customer service and increased productivity. (See Morning Huddle/Meeting Tips Here)
  • Learn something new –  Look to learn better & fresh ways of doing things by reading books, magazines, listening to podcasts, watching a webinar, attending seminars and learning from those around you.  Remember this, you can learn a lot by getting feed back from your customers/patients (good & bad).  
  • Get some fresh air –  if possible, eat your lunch outside the office or take a short walk during your break.  A breath of fresh air and change in scenery will  help clear your mind and reinvigorate you.
  • Drink plenty of water and eat foods that refresh, not ones that make you feel tired & sluggish.
  • Work from a to-do-list.  If there’s something that must be done, go ahead and get it finished. Get busy, get it done, and feel the freedom of no longer having it hanging over your head. 

I really like this quote from Brian Tracy:  “Your ability to discipline yourself  to do what you should, when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not,is the key to becoming a great person and living a great life.”    

Great advice!

These are just some of the many suggestions and helpful tips out there to help you “Love Monday” – and if with all of these suggestions you still “hate Monday” well then, try this:

Turn the volume up on your computer, Play this video by the Beatles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVlr4g5-r18  and “Shake it Up baby!”

If you do not already subscribe to receive our free dental marketing and practice management ideas right to your email inbox each month, please do so today. Feel free to tell your dental friends about Hayden Consulting. ~Thank you!

We welcome your comments, questions and likes.

Make it a GREAT Day!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. If you have children, I understand that your evening and morning routines can be quite challenging… I shared some tips over at my Bacon & Kids blog that might be helpful to you! It was written to help with the Back to School routine but the idea’s are helpful for any time during the school year. Here it is: Organization Tips

“Every moment is your opportunity to build a life that’s rich and full, so take a deep breath, aim for the stars, and make it happen.” — Ralph Marston