Those working in the dental industry spend a great deal of time at the office. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average adult spends over eight hours a day at the office. This means you may be spending over 2,080 hours at the practice over the course of one year. If you don’t love your office environment, that figure may be a tough pill to swallow. It is important to create a home and a family within your office, so that you, your team, and your patients feel happy and at ease while there. Patients will be able to feel that warm, welcoming energy and will in turn, be more likely to return for their appointment, accept treatment and refer others.
Connect with your staff and connect with your patients. According to Dentistry IQ, one of the top reasons that patients don’t accept treatment is because they don’t feel a connection. Create a warm, family-like culture within your office and urge your staff to not only empathize with each other, but to empathize with patients. Your patients will be able to sense this familial environment and feel more comfortable.
Plan events outside of the office. This is one of the most successful ways to bond with your team. The day-to-day activities of a dental office can be fast-paced, leaving little time to build relationships. Try planning a lunch, summer barbeque, or monthly book club. Make sure its something that isn’t related to work. At these events, ask the staff questions and encourage them to get to know one another on a personal level. According to Forbes, socializing with coworkers is essential to a more efficient workplace. Knowing coworkers on a deeper level contributes to communication, trust and overall happiness at the workplace. After all, we’re humans; we live to connect with others.
Enhance the office space. One’s environment can have a huge impact on behavior. Create a home within your office by decorating it as such. Hang up photos of happy patients, paint the walls a fun color, and invest in comfortable, fun furniture that the entire staff has a hand in choosing. Not only will this create a cozy environment for your staff, but it will also put your patients at ease.
Reward your team. Make sure your dental staff knows how much you value their hard work. On occasion, reward them with a small bonus or a gift card. It doesn’t have to be huge, just enough to let them know that your appreciate them.
You spend so much time at work, so make sure that time is enjoyable. You, your staff and your patients will be happier for it.