A while back I came home from the office, and my daughter asked me to pick her up some lunch. I went into a coffee shop and ordered her a ham and cheese panini.
While I was waiting for the panini, my daughter’s ballet instructor came up to me. She had seen my daughter in a dance show from another school and wanted to tell me how great a job she did.
My daughter has been dancing for about twelve years and goes to two dance schools. In her ballet class, she is not being challenged. She gets frustrated by that and is always making up excuses for why she can’t dance.
On the other hand, she is always challenged at her other school. Each class is more challenging than the last. But my daughter never makes excuses for why she can’t dance with the more challenging classes. She always dances. In fact, she has even won a prestigious award for her performance with this class.
When her ballet instructor saw how well my daughter danced for the other class, she was surprised.
I told the instructor that my daughter loves dance but she does not feel challenged in her current class and gets bored. I suggested she challenge her a bit more or move her up a class to get her to perform at a higher level.
The instructor told me she had no idea my daughter had that in her because she never shows up performing at 100% for her class.
The same happens all the time in the dental world. Recently in one of my coaching programs, a team member expressed that she wanted more responsibility at work. We coach both doctors and team members because we know how important it is for everyone to grow. This team member was getting frustrated because they were not given more responsibility. It happens all the time. Many times, team members leave for other opportunities when that could have been avoided.
Here are two ways dental team members can set themselves up to earn more responsibility.
Examine how you show up to work.
Do you show up to work on time? Do you dress professionally? Do you take initiative? Do you work hard when you are at work? Do you run out the door at the exact time your shift ends?
All of these things send a message to the practice leader. If you show up late, wear wrinkled clothes, complain all day, and then sprint out the door the second the clock hits quitting time, you will likely not be there very long.
If you show up on time, dressed well, work hard while you are at work, and stay late if needed, you will likely open doors for tremendous growth.
Neither of those scenarios mentioned pedigree or intelligence. They mentioned how you show up to work and what you do when you get there. Those two things will help you earn more responsibility much more predictably than anything else.
Offer to take on new projects.
If a team member wants to work her way up in the practice, she could approach the doctor with a new project she would like to lead. It might be a new marketing campaign. Or, it could be an operational issue such as offering to create a process or system for something in the project. That initiative will go a long way toward earning more responsibility.
Identifying something that can be improved and offering to do the work to make the improvement is a great way to let the doctor know you are ready for more responsibility.
Are you setting yourself up to earn more responsibility?
We all want the same thing in business. We all want to be recognized and acknowledged for who we are and what we do. And we all want to be challenged at work or we will quickly get bored.
If you are a dental team member, take a look at how you are showing up to work. Are you showing up in a way that instills confidence in others? If not, simply showing up on time—every time—is a good start. Then identify something in the office you think you can improve. Ask the doctor if she is okay with you doing that.
If you are a dentist, what can you do to encourage your team to earn more responsibility? Could you reward and recognize them for showing up better to work and taking the initiative to suggest a new project? What do you do to encourage your team to work hard and take initiative?
To learn more about leading your team members, our team of expert coaches and training resources in our Delivering WOW Platinum Mastermind Program can help.
You can also join my free Dental Marketing and Profits Facebook group, where thousands of dentists and I help each other build better practices.