Tips for Retaining Your Dental Practice's Staff

February 1, 2017
DMD Staff

Mayer Levitt, DMD, is president of the dental consulting firm, Jodena Consulting. Here he discusses what dentists should be doing to retain staff members in their practices.

Mayer Levitt, DMD, is president of the dental consulting firm, Jodena Consulting. Here he discusses what dentists should be doing to retain staff members in their practices.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“There are certain things that have to go into an order and a sequence. I would say that it’s probably the doctor’s responsibility to create a fabulous work environment. I think that dentistry, just like any other business, the most difficult challenge is building that great staff that stays with you. A great, customer-service oriented staff where people really, really get it. That’s the hardest thing to do, whether it’s in dentistry or in any other kind of business.

I think that in order to be able to attract that kind of staff you’ve got to offer state-of-the-art benefits to be able to do that. People are not going to come and work for you if you’re not providing health insurance, if you’re not eventually going to be able to give them some kind of benefits, in terms of pension, or that kind of thing. You need to be able to do this. And you don’t want to be penny wise and pound foolish. If you’re paying people, I’d like to see you be paying more at the top of the scale because I don’t want these people looking every month on Craigslist, asking, where should I go?

Keeping the staff, even in the most optimum situation, two people work, husband gets relocated, the wife gets relocated, somebody has their third kid, all of these kinds of things happen, and it’s that dreaded conversation: ‘You know, doctor, can I see you at the end of the day?’ And you know that something bad is going to be coming.

The other thing that I would say is that as a doctor, as the owner, you need to be continually coaching your staff, and you’ve got to be continually praising your staff. This is what they want to be able to hear. I think if you can do that and be a great manager, which you don’t learn in dental school, you’re going to be quite successful.”