28 Jan 2022  •  HR & Employment Law  •  4min read By  • Chris Barrow

Recruiting the ideal team player

Business Coach, Chris Barrow, gives you a guide on what to look for when you’re trying to recruit the ideal team player…

There continues to be a lot of competition for recruitment in the dental market. Associates moving to private practice because they don’t want to work in the NHS, private practices are offering higher wages to attract other staff such as associates, dental nurses and hygienist/therapists – and some dental staff are leaving the profession all together.

This is at a time when things are all hands to the pump and patient lists are growing with a higher demand for private dentistry. So, if you are needing to recruit right now, it is more important than ever that you identify the ideal team player.

So, with that in mind, here is a guide on how to look for the ideal team player…

Reading recommendation

The first thing that I recommend you do is go out and buy a book called ‘Ideal Team Player ’by Patrick Lencioni. This book really is pure genius and it is full of guides on how to put together support for teams – it will change the way you think about recruiting an individual.


I get asked a lot if I can have a look at CVs that prospective candidates have sent into practices. When I do, I scroll straight down to the bottom and look at the section where they talk about themselves and if there is nothing there, I immediately lose interest.

However, if on the other hand, it explains how someone was, for example, a swimming champion as a child, or has run a charity group, or they maybe ran a little side hustle when they were studying, then I would be more interested in giving the CV a bit more of a chance.

What I’m looking for is someone who is hungry to achieve something and so, if under the section about themselves they haven’t got anything or very little, then it gives the impression that they haven’t got that hunger that you seek.

Hungry people are the ones that you need if you want to move forward and have success as a business, so be on the lookout for the sections of a CV that show hunger and drive.


In any job and any walk of life you want someone to be humble. Being humble is about treating everyone in exactly the same way, whether it’s the practice manager or the patients. This really is a great trait for an ideal team player to have.

People who are humble know their strengths and what they are good at and they just get on with things, so an ideal trait to look out for either on their CV or during an interview. If they have a good manner and demonstrate humility, they are more likely to make good team players and improve your overall team make-up.

Probably the best way to discover if they do have a humble nature is through the references that you have been given. If you speak with those previous employers and they don’t give an indication that they are humble and hardworking, then they probably aren’t going to be an ideal team player.

People smart

Tip number three links in with the previous piece of advice and it is about having someone who understand what makes other people tick, whether that be a principal, members of the practice team or the patients. You want someone who is comfortable having all sorts of conversations and someone that has great personability, whereby they are approachable and are comfortable approaching others.

Being people smart also involves having common sense and being able to problem solve. Now, with things being so busy, this is a really good trait for a prospective candidate to have. You want someone who can learn fast, crack on and get things done.

Get all blogs delivered to your inbox

By subscribing to our blog, you agree to receiving our monthly blog update and newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time. The security of your personal data is very important to us and we will never sell your data to other companies. You can read more about how we protect your information and your rights by reading our privacy notice.