Josie Hutchings, Regional Support Manager at Practice Plan, looks at three ways you can help boost your team’s morale…
Over the last 18 months, the morale of teams in many businesses will have been tested after all they have had to go through. Dental practice teams are no different and have had to endure periods of uncertainty and months of restrictions and heavy PPE while still delivering a top level of care to their patients.
Morale may be low in your practice as staff work hard to treat the growing number of patients as a result of the unprecedented increase in demand for private dentistry.
If that is the case, your team may well need a boost to show them how much they are valued and how much you appreciate them. You don’t have to do anything big and bold, just a small gesture to give your team a little pick-me-up. So, here are three easy ways to lift the spirits and get smiles back onto faces….
Just say ‘thank you’
Out of all the tips you are going to read in this article, this will be, by far, the easiest. The simplest thing in the world is to say ‘thank you’, but even if we feel appreciative of what someone has done, how many times do we forget to actually say it?
It can be such a simple but powerful way of individually and collectively giving your team a morale boost. You might have an employee who isn’t feeling 100%, and that little ‘thank you’ from the practice manager could really make their day and send them home happy.
There are a few different ways you can show how thankful you are, whether it be giving out little thank you cards, or just saying it every now and then to show the team how much they mean to you.
If you’ve got a staff room, you could put a big white board up and write a little message of thanks on it every few days or every week, along with a motivational message.
You could even give the staff a little box of chocolates alongside a card as a little thank you gift. In recent months, one practice gave every member of staff a box of disposable face masks and it’s that little thought that can really go a long way.
You have probably read a lot about the importance of communication with your patients and your team in recent months. Through the pandemic, communicating has been vital to keep everyone on the same page, and moving forward it will be no different.
Keeping your team in the loop can be a big morale booster because it shows they are valued and that you want them to be on the same page and know what is going on.
This can happen in a few ways, such as through regular group team updates, or it can be done through smaller, one-to-one sessions. Some people hold 10:10 meetings, which sees you, as an owner, principal or manager, talk for ten minutes before the employee then talks for ten minutes.
When communicating with your staff, you don’t have to go into the fine details of, for example, the practice’s finances. Just so long as everyone is on the same page and in the know then they will feel a lot more comfortable, more valued and part of the business.
A small bonus or maybe a day off
Another good way to boost morale and show your team how much they are valued is by giving them a small bonus at the end of the year. However, if that is not possible, then it would be worth looking at alternatives such as giving staff an extra day off.
It might be that there are certain months of the year where the practice staff are just rushed off their feet and have been working extra hard. So, in the following month, how about giving them an extra day off as a way of saying ‘thank you’? Again, like all the things I’ve talked about, it is a very small and simple gesture that can go such a long way.
Josie is a Regional Support Manager at Practice Plan.