With recruitment of dental practice staff representing a major challenge, practice-owners should understand what their loyal team members appreciate about their job. Some practice owners assume that providing extra benefits will help retention when the reason for staff staying loyal might be completely different.
Over the years, several clients have welcomed the opportunity for a discussion around staffing issues. We are objective and we understand the challenges involved with dental staff retention.
We recently supported a client with a team member who was skilled at asking for pay increases! She had enjoyed several raises but was still not fully delivering. Our client did not want to take her to task because he believed she was indispensable to him. If she left, how would he replace her?
Our advice to the client was to sit down with the team member and revisit the job description and performance standards to pin-point objectives and priorities to be met before any further increases might be on the table. Use constructive feedback techniques to keep the discussions focused on the practice.
It’s worth being aware that in the future, when you want to retire from your practice, buyers won’t be impressed if they feel that the staff are overpaid for the role they perform. Insult will be added to injury if you struggle to manage demands for pay increases and at the same time deter future buyers. In extreme cases you may be required to make the individual redundant before sale, and that can be expensive.
Dental staff retention involves time and effort but if you can keep your best team members, it will pay dividends.