Business owners often say to me that finding motivated, skilled, and loyal team members is challenging and getting them to stay can be even more so.
It can be so disheartening when you employ what you believe to be the right person for the job and spend time training them and supporting them only to see them leave shortly after you have recruited them knowing then you must start all over again.
There are many pieces of research out there that look at why people stay in employment and why people leave. As a Coach that has worked with many different businesses over the last 11 years, I have found that when you hire the right person, pay them fairly, support them and invest in them, help them to achieve mastery in their role and give them the right amount of autonomy you tend to find your staff retention rates increases. However, there is one important component missing here, and it is the one that will not only encourage them to stay, along with all the other factors I have detailed, but it is the overarching thing that drives passion, commitment and loyalty to a business or organisation. And that is purpose.
Every Human being has an intrinsic need to be connected to a higher purpose or follow and believe in something bigger than themselves. You only have to look at the history of religion to see that it is the best example of cultivating loyalty amongst the masses, regardless of your religion or beliefs.
Another example of this would be to examine the following of some of the most popular sports clubs around the world. Some of these have been established for almost 200 years and have followers in all corners of the globe. Let me ask you this: why would a man from Calcutta, India get so excited and passionate about Manchester City winning at the weekend? He does not know the players, he is not from Manchester nor has any connection to the city, and he is not financially invested or stands to benefit if the club wins or loses. He uses language like “we did so well” when he talks amongst his friends, and he passionately cheers as they score a goal when he watches the games that are televised in the middle of the night where he is.
The answer is that he feels connected to something bigger than himself. Part of an enormous group of people worldwide that all have a common interest, focus and goal: For Manchester City to win the FA Cup Final.
Now, I may have used rather large examples of purpose here, mainly to show you the power that having a purpose can have on people. It is the science of human connection and loyalty. But what does this mean to the Dental practice, and how can we apply the same philosophy when engaging the team to stay AND give you their best every day? The answer? Start with your WHY.
WHY does your practice exist? WHY are you different to the other practices in your area? WHY should People choose to come and work for you? WHY should patients come and see you? Often these are questions that Practice Owners have never considered and have never been asked before.
By answering these questions, you can start to form what we would call your Vision Statement or Mission statement. Here are some other pointers to get you started.
First, start by answering these questions:
- WHY does your dental practice exist?
- WHAT your dental practice does (what needs are being addressed)
- HOW you and your team do what you do (what behaviours do you exhibit)
- WHY – We provide excellent quality of care and education for our patients and are passionate about the longevity of our patient’s Oral Health.
- WHAT – We offer the finest reconstructive and cosmetic dental services to restore function, comfort, and aesthetics.
- HOW – Treating patients as we treat each other, with respect, dignity, and care. Empower them through education and prioritise our education so that we can stay current in the industry.
At Prime Practice, creating a Mission or Vision Statement is one of the first things we do with our clients. If you already have a Coach, you will likely have seen our support document on this. If not, be sure to ask your Coach for support. If you are not yet a Coaching Client of ours, then you can get in touch with me to discuss how we can help you cultivate a Vision or Mission statement that you can use in the following ways:
- Team Meetings
- Job Descriptions
- Team Communication
- Strategic Planning
- Performance Reviews
- Cultivating and inspiring Team Culture
Research shows that when an organisation, despite the size or industry, has a meaningful Vision or Mission statement, the retention rates of the staff increase alongside job satisfaction and overall wellbeing of not only the individuals but the whole team.
Un-Popular opinion: Every single team member working for you right now will leave one day. Your aim should be to create a place where team members stay as long as possible. This is only a good thing if you invest in your team, support them in personal and professional growth, encourage them to create their own mastery, laterally promote them and up-skill them in areas of the business are interested in.
And above all, give them something to strive towards, a guiding light, something that makes them feel grateful for every day spent working within your business. That is how you attract exceptional team members, retain them, and ultimately create a Team Managed Practice.