Managing effective team meetings

Do you meet with your dental team on a regular basis? You should consider doing so as team meetings serve several important purposes. They are an effective way to open up the communication lines, bring your office into sync and keep everyone on the same page. Every day you impact lives. Regular staff meetings help you focus on this purpose.

Celebration (10 minutes)

Meetings are serious business, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make them fun. Kickoff your team meeting by recognizing special events: birthdays, holidays and/or accomplishments. When you consistently begin your meeting with fun and food, staff will look forward to the occasion. Be sure to acknowledge and celebrate the successes of your team and practice.

Continuing Education (40 minutes)

The bulk of your meeting should focus on improving your practice through education and training. This is your opportunity to teach. It’s also the time to share new ideas, review scripts and rehearse/role play the most critical patient interactions involving scheduling and financial matters. Review your numbers and share your insights: gross production, net production, collections, net collections and new patient flow. How does the performance match up to your goals? How can each member of your team contribute to increased productivity and efficiency?  When your team tracks and analyzes this information together, it creates a collective focus that almost always results in improvement.

Correction (5 minutes)

The conclusion of your meeting should focus on making a specific correction to a behavior or approach that is having a negative impact on patient care and/or the growth of your practice. This isn’t about improving a behavior—it’s about changing it. This should be a team discussion, addressing such things as patient complaints or interpersonal communication skills. If one of your employees needs a special correction, it’s best to meet with that person in private.

Regardless of your chosen meeting format, you want to be consistent. Team meetings should be held on a regular basis, on an established day and time. Make them mandatory and have an agenda. Be prepared and thorough. If you don’t take your meetings seriously, it’s doubtful that your employees will. Meetings are critical for team development and task management. However, meetings can easily fail without adequate direction and leadership. Lastly, create an environment in which all members of your team have input. Don’t be a team in name only.

This information is based on “Effective Team Meetings: Your Agenda for Growth” by Ken Runkle, President of Paragon Management Associates, Inc. and was provided courtesy of CareCredit, an endorsed company of ADA Business Enterprises, Inc.  Learn more about CareCredit here or calling 1.800.800.5110