Who is the Team leader in your Dental Office? Team leaders need to always have clear expectations for their business and for their team. Team relationships seem to fail because of mismatched expectations, these misunderstandings can impact team success, customer service and overall dental case acceptance. 

When we take responsibility for a specific area, we recommend that ONE person be primarily responsible for a business system such as Continuing Care, Appointment Scheduling, Financial Arrangements, and Insurance Claims.  When job duties are clearly defined, we know who to go to if there are problems with that specific area.

When team members have an issue, follow these steps to resolution:

  1. Meet with the team members in conflict and insist that they meet with each other to first try to solve the problem they are facing.  Give them ample opportunity, yet  a definite deadline of no more than a day or two, to meet unless there are extenuating circumstances.
  2. Coach each team member on how to raise their issue and use the skill of active listening.  In the words of Stephen Covey, the esteemed author of “7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” who declares, “Seek first to understand then to be understood!”
  3. Urge each party to allow the other to completely express their issue or problem without interruption.  Encourage the other to share all that is bothering them regarding the issue.  Remain non-defensive and use words like, “I understand that you feel (emotion being expressed), about (description of issue).”
  4. Commit to a resolution, even if it is not 100% as you would like it to be.  Decide what is workable and most of all, in order to be a part of this team, conflict is required to be resolved so that the team can continue to grow and move on.
  5. Avoid arguing at all costs.

Being willing to truly listen, is half way to problem solving.  Men and women commonly view life and its many facets differently as you well know.  Be respectful of our differences and listen not just to the words being used, but also the heart and soul accompanying those verbal displays.  If one party or another spirals out of control, be sure to maintain composure on one side of the table.  Continue to listen empathetically and do NOT be defensive.  This stance and way of being with another provides the immense power of diffusion.

As you view this show, enjoy the video, “It’s smarter to travel in groups.”  This is a playful illustration of the power of functioning as a team.  In a dental office, we all must function as a team to truly enjoy a successful, productive and enjoyable work environment.  Offer to help fellow co workers to turn over a room or help with instruments when they least expect it.   This type of action builds new inroads, for trust and respect from others.  Enjoy what happens when you graciously accept someone’s helping hand. Team work soars to unimaginable levels and happiness prevails.