Managing Dental Staff Effectively

Tips for motivating and managing dental staff

As a business coach, I am often asked “how can I motivate my staff“. However, we first must understand the different types of motivation. Traditionally, businesses have used the ‘carrot and stick’ approach, meaning that if you do something good you will get a reward and if you don’t do something there will be a consequence. This approach can work in organisations and teams where the work is repetitive and does not require lateral thinking. This type of motivation is called extrinsic motivation.

If we really want our staff to become motivated we need to look at the research. Dan Pink, author of Drive – The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us discusses the research conducted by MIT and other universities [Canongate Books 2018].

He states that, if we want to get our team members to become more motivated, we need to help them develop intrinsic motivation. We can do this by addressing 3 key components:

  • Purpose – the desire to do something that is meaningful and important.
  • Autonomy – the wish to be self-directed.
  • Mastery – the urge to gain better skills.

As business owners and leaders, part of our role is to find ways that we can provide all 3 to our team members.

The key of course is not just in finding opportunities for staff, but in how these opportunities are offered, and the feedback and support that will be needed to allow your staff to make a go of them.

– Steven Valentine, Business Coach