How to Have Effective Meetings

Someone once said, “A meeting is an event at which the minutes are kept and the hours are lost.” If your staff meetings seem like events where hours are lost and little is accomplished, please consider the following ideas for making your meetings much more effective.

Staff Meeting

Since most dental practices struggle to have consistently productive and efficient schedules, make sure you troubleshoot your schedules on a regular basis. Proactive dentists and teams will review a few schedules from the current month that worked well along with a few that were not as strong. By identifying traits of an effective schedule that help you meet production goals while staying on time, you can better troubleshoot the breakdowns on schedules that did not work as well. Focus on what you will implement to make your schedule even better.

Most practices also have patients who are past due for recommended treatment or preventive care. Staff meetings are the ideal time to make everyone aware of unscheduled patients. Often the team member who knows the unscheduled patient the best is not the one making the calls. Hygiene teams are typically in the best position to motivate unscheduled recall patients to respond just as assistants may have the most luck guiding patients to schedule for treatment. Use staff meeting time to assign unscheduled patients to the most appropriate team member.


Finally, staff meetings are a great time to use the collective wisdom of the group to identify how to improve overall communication and teamwork. What could you do to make handoffs more effective? What additional information would you like to have before seeing new patients? How can you make the patient experience even better? Make sure you leave the meeting with tangible ways to improve communication and teamwork.

Instead of having meetings where hours are lost, you can have meetings that gradually make the practice and team even stronger. Consider regularly dedicating time to reviewing schedules, discussing unscheduled patients, and identifying how to improve overall teamwork and communication.

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