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Motivating Your Team

Having a motivated, committed team is the dream of all dentists’.

Finding suitable staff today is becoming increasingly challenging for all dental practices’ and keeping them is even tougher.

So to keep the good team members you must be as committed to their development, motivation and education as you ask them to be for you.

Here is the motivation checklist for your team:

  • Have you clearly both in verbal and written format outlined what your expectations are from each team member?

  • This means not just their individual task list but also what type of attitude you require, how you expect them to communicate both within the team and with your patients’


Any successful relationship requires daily communication and honesty

  • Does each team member have an updated workplace agreement or employment contract stating all terms and conditions of their employment?

  • This is an essential requirement for both you and your team members because then there can be no misunderstandings for any reason about employment details.

  • Do you schedule regular performance reviews and discussions about what each team member is doing positively and can improve on?

  • These performance reviews must be structured with a written format so that both you and your team member can have a written record of what was discussed and an action list for areas of improvement.

  • A performance review is not always linked with a pay review, these are quite separate issues.

  • The recommended framework for performance reviews is every 6 months and the appropriate time frame for a salary review is yearly, in line with the time of each team members’ contract renewal.


If you do not clearly outline each team members’ employment details and performance assessment, then you can’t expect your team to feel secure and clear about how they are doing in their role in the practice.

  • Professional development, ongoing education is essential for all team members. If you do not invest in your team, how can you expect them to continue learning and growing in your practice?

  • Ask your team what courses they might be interested in completing some further training in and then assess how these new skills could be incorporated into your practice. This could be such diverse training as photography or updated computer skills or communication skills.


If you do not invest in your team, they will stagnate and become stale and disinterested.

  • Daily or weekly thank you for a job well done goes a very long way to ensuring that your team members know that you appreciate their input. This takes zero effort but has a huge impact on your team.

  • Simple rewards such as buying the team lunch, or morning/afternoon tea is a wonderfully easy way to keep up team morale.

  • Team social activities are a brilliant way to create a really positive team environment. This can be just 2 or 3 times a year.


Time taken to say thank you is so simple.

  • Regular team meetings, either the entire team or smaller teams in your practice are essential to keep you all on track. These are not wasted time and in fact ensure increased productivity, profitability and efficiency if you simply take the time.

  • All meetings should be scheduled into your appointment books, and not just happen ‘if you have time’. This means that you are serious about communicating regularly with your team.

  • All meetings should have a time limit and a set agenda to ensure that they are a productive use of everyone’s time


If you take the time, to communicate with your team, you will reap huge rewards.

  • Professional image is very important to the way we all feel about ourselves. Having a team uniform and specific image is very important not just for the professionalism of your practice but for the motivation of your team.

  • Provide a tailored, smart uniform that you pay for

  • Professional image says volumes. It is this attention to detail that lifts the image of your team, your practice and the morale of your practice.


If you are more involved in working with your team, they will work more effectively with you and be much more motivated to achieve your practice goals.

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