If you want to improve morale in your dental practice, you need to not only consider how to motivate your team, but you also need to recognize habits that de-motivate them. Too often de-motivators slip under our radar to become regular habits.
For example, when you become frustrated with someone, one of the worst things you can do is criticize them in front of the team or a dental patient. This leaves everyone, including the person facing the criticism, feeling awkward. And if you criticize team members during procedures, it can cause you to lose patients. Offering constructive feedback is best accomplished in private.
The next habit that can de-motivate your team is creating a goal that is unattainable. If you return from a dental conference excited about taking your practice to the next level, but you set new goals at levels that are not practical, your team will become demoralized. Remember, realistic goals create movement, and without movement you will never reach more ambitious objectives.
Finally, whenever you do not welcome creative ideas and problem solving, you close the door to future creativity. The best innovations come from teams that feel empowered to offer suggestions. You want your team to think about how to fine-tune the patient experience, how to bring more new patients to the practice, and how to make communication even stronger. Encourage new ideas whenever possible.
As the old adage goes, “First, do no harm,” and in building stronger teams that means first, do not de-motivate. Instead, concentrate on habits that empower your team.
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