Earn Patient Loyalty -Ginny Hegarty, SPHR

October 3, 2014

ADA Newsletter Hegarty Fall 2014

ADA Newsletter Hegarty Fall 2014

“We make money the old fashioned way… we earn it!” Oscar Winner, John Houseman’s bounding voice created this memorable catchphrase for an EF Hutton Investment Firm commercial over 30 years ago.The message struck a chord then… and still does. While we can absolutely shorten the learning curve to success, there are no shortcuts to the basic principles of success…not even in the digital world we now live in.

A study of the online reviews of multiple dental practices in a major metropolitan area revealed that for all the changes we’ve seen in how a business presents itself to the world, the bottom line of what makes a lasting positive impression remains the same. Read the full text of my article Score a Great Online Review and Earn Patient Loyalty (more…)

Team Meetings That Work

September 23, 2014

My favorite team meeting, the one I want to attend is “The Meeting After The Meeting”; the one that takes place in the hallway, sterilization area or at the front desk when the team separates into groups and has a no-holds barred discussion of exactly what should have been said at “The Official Meeting”.  It’s in this raw honesty that change is possible and we can create an agenda that fuels Team Meetings That Work!

The trouble is that “The Meeting After The Meeting” is private, by invitation-only and it’s a tough ticket to get.  

Click on this link to read the full text of this article as published in The Progressive Dentist Magazine to learn the surprising 4 steps to set yourself up for Team Meetings That Work 

Help Make It Right

September 8, 2014

Fly Eagles Fly

Offensive Coordinator Pat Shurmur was talking long & reflectively about young quarterbacks & learning curves… Not their learning curves… His.  “your quarterback needs to know that you believe in him. That no matter what is happening out there, you’re going to Help Make It Right.” 

Your team is counting on you to believe in them. In my experience most dental team members will live up to your expectations. While most doctors would prefer to focus on patient care and avoid the team drama,  you’ll find that you & your team will be happier and more effective if you take the lead. Instead of blaming, judging, or resigning yourself to the status quo… start helping.  Don’t think you have the time? You’re already spending time putting out fires that never should have gotten started. This approach will actually save you time as well as stomach lining. It’s easier than you think: How to Manage People Well Without Becoming A Therapist

The team is counting on your leadership. Here’s to a new season full of hope for you & your team. #flyeaglesfly

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/eagles/20140908_Foles__play_of_the_day__Not_folding.html#l2yPfmlm5dMzZg12.99

Is Fee-For-Service Dentistry Becoming Extinct? -Ginny Hegarty, SPHR

August 27, 2014

Is Fee-For-Service Dentistry Becoming Extinct

Depends… I think it needs to be a personal and conscious decision for every practice owner. 

There are some folks who are doing their Chicken Little best to convince everyone that the sky is falling, however, I believe there will always be multiple business models that can and will support successful practice.  Not all patients have the same needs, wants and values toward dentistry. Multiple practice models can and should exist to best serve all patients.

Continue reading for my full post as I join fellow Academy of Dental Management Consultants’ thought-leaders in sharing my opinion on page 4 in the link below http://bit.ly/1ARe14q of this post from PracticeManagement.DentalProductsReport.com/

The keys to success are clarity and focus:  identify your chosen model, make certain that your team understands your philosophy and your passion and has the communication skills to create and sustain success in your chosen model of practice.

Private, fee-for-service dentistry requires a relentless dedication to delivering a superior experience for your patients and your team. Those who maintain a business as usual approach to fee-for-service dentistry will find themselves competing with corporate and PPO practices, and struggling. Private, Fee-for-service practices can’t compete on price. It’s that simple. 

You can’t be everyone’s dentist. It’s your call. Differentiate, Communicate and Thrive. 

The Game Changer: Mastering Breakthrough Communication

July 22, 2014

Many thanks to Jay Freedman, D.D.S. & Associates, P.C.Montgomery Bucks Dental Society & TD Bank for a great day together.

  It’s such a joy to spend time with teams that are so passionate about making a difference for their practice, patients and for each other.  As a speaker, my goal is always to connect with the audience. My photographer, Tommy Meehan got a great shot of this at this event. What a terrific group!

This is one of my favorite programs to present.  It’s so rewarding to review positive feedback like this from Dr. Freedman:  “Ginny, your innovative approach to improving our communication skills, was a bit hit and a lot of fun. You have a gift for being able to create a safe, comfortable atmosphere where all members of the dental team can discuss sensitive topics and work through practice drama. Best of all, we have some new skills for avoiding the drama altogether!  You are right, the magic doesn’t happen until people connect and we’re so much better at connecting now. Thank you for a terrific day and a great program. I’ll be in touch to plan our next event together.”

Ethical Sales and Communication in Dentistry

May 5, 2014

Ethical Sales and Communication with our patients is one of the core values of the best dental practices I work with. Clear communication remains the most challenge aspect of both personal and business relationship growth. Dental Practice Report published our article The Importance of Creating and Building Relationships with the Dental Patient. Dr. Erin Elliott and I discuss the relationship rules that apply to our personal and professional communication:

  • People choose other people they like and trust
  • The best way to know what someone wants is to ask
  • Don’t make assumptions or you may believe them to be true
  • If you don’t like the answers you’re getting, ask better questions
  • There’s never a second chance to make a great first impression
  • If someone does not weigh in on a decision, they cannot truly buy into it

Here’s the link: Read my full article on the importance of creating & building a relationship with the dental patient published on Dental Products Report 

Swimming With the Fishes: Breakthrough Communication Success

April 16, 2014

Just back from speaking at the Excellence in Dentistry, Inc. meeting in Destin, Florida. The theme of this year’s meeting was “The Godfathers of Dentistry”  You may see in the photo that this was my second “Godfather” experience. This time I was dubbed “The Voice” and presented Breakthrough Communication Success, Six Surprisingly Simple, yet oh, so powerful steps to improve communication and bottom-line results with your team and patients:

#1 Ditch the Drama  #2 It’s a Simple Choice  #3 Challenge the Status Quo

#4 Set Clear Expectations  #5 Tap into Purpose  #6 Distinguish Yourself

What a thrill to be part of an awesome speaker lineup that included Dr. Gordon Christensen, Dr. David Phelps, Dr. Bruce BairdRachel Teel Wall & Wendy Briggs.

A stroll on the pier’s boardwalk at the end of the meeting ended with one of my heels falling 20 feet below into the bay, unretrievable. Nothing left to do but make a wish & toss the other one into the water. Considering the theme, I’m glad it’s just my shoes that are swimming with the fishes!

Employee Drama is Expensive

August 29, 2013

Employee drama, left unchecked is like a dust storm stirring up trouble as it blows through the office. Stick to the facts at hand to avoid being blinded and losing your way. Miscommunication and gossip create the whirlwind of drama.  Drama is expensive in terms of time, talent and bottom-line success. Stick to the facts and clear the air.

Here’s an example a team member submitted to Dentistry IQ along with Ginny Hegarty’s answer as published in an August 2013 Thursday Troubleshooter.

QOur office manager has been in our practice for 30 years and she has a very overpowering personality. She can be quite abrasive and acts very disrespectful at times. She comes and goes as she pleases and has even gotten to the point of having us do a lot of her work. I know she is valuable to the practice, but some of team members are leaving because of her actions. I really like my job and the dentist, and I would like to know the best way to handle this. Our entire team feels the same way as I do.

A: From Ginny Hegarty SPHR, President, Dental Practice Development, Inc., and current president of the Academy of Dental Management Consultants:

It’s very brave of you to want to step up and take this on, and I commend you for your courage. I think my response will give you the very best opportunity to create a positive outcome for everyone. I offer it with all due respect as I’ve been where you are.

There’s a lot going on in your question. Let’s start here. One thing that jumps out at me is that you’re making some judgments that I suggest you revisit. I say this because of your statement, “Our entire team feels the same way I do.” This tells me that rather than each of you talking directly with your office manager, you are all talking “about” your office manager. This is counterproductive and won’t help any of you.

I realize that it’s very difficult to approach someone that you see as “abrasive and disrespectful,” but have you given any thought to how the office manager may feel she is perceived or treated? Is it possible the office manager could be responding in kind to the negativity and tension in the relationship?

Here’s something I have confirmed over and over again with teams I work with. When asked, “If you were personally doing something that was holding the team back, would you want, a) a coworker to tell you directly b) coworkers to talk amongst themselves about the issue or c) coworkers go to the dentist/owner with the issue,” I consistently hear that team members overwhelmingly prefer that someone come to them directly. This kind of leadership and accountability involves constructive confrontation of the issues rather than involving others in your issues.

Once we involve others, we discuss our opinions and we start judging. By definition, judging is forming an opinion of somebody or something. If this is done before speaking directly with the person, these opinions are made without all the relevant facts.

These opinions then become the story we tell ourselves about what is going on, rather than what is actually happening. The story takes on a life of its own, drama ensues, and many well-intentioned people get hurt. This can be overwhelming for everyone on the team, including the office manager.

As time goes on, there can be so many layers and twists to the plot and so many hurt feelings, that people forget where the line between fact and fiction is. In my experience, everyone soon has a well rehearsed part to play and the practice moves further away from the truth into a soap opera of its own creation. It’s time to stop this insanity.

I have two recommendations for you:
First, I’d ask you to take a deep breath and revisit your story. Take your question apart line by line and remove your opinions so that you have only the facts at hand.

I think you’ll be left with:
*  The office manager has been there 30 years
*  You like your job and your dentist
*  There is a situation that needs to be handled
*  You want to help

Second, I would consider “how can you help?” You might consider one last behind the scenes meeting with your coworkers to discuss taking personal accountability to focus on solutions rather than blame.

Then, begin by addressing your own responsibilities or concerns with your office manager.  Start with one pressing issue, not a list of past issues. Your goal is to change the dynamic and make it more positive and productive. This is a process. When others come to you to discuss their issues, do not get involved; encourage them to also take their concerns directly to the office manager.

I’m not blaming you or your coworkers, your office manager, or your doctor. You’ll notice that I haven’t addressed the issue of blame at all. I don’t know enough to even begin to, and it would be counterproductive. It’s far more effective to discuss shared purpose and positive change with a forward focus. You all deserve better. Hopefully this is a good first step for all of you.

You might also want to address the bigger team issue, and realize that when this type of drama thrives, profitability generally suffers. What’s the best way to support the entire team to start over with new intention? What are your shared goals? How can you bring everyone together to work toward solutions and avoid blame? Often, this is best done in a practice retreat with an outside, objective facilitator guiding the group. Please feel free to contact me atginny@ginnyhegarty.com.

http://www.dentistryiq.com/articles/2013/08/thursday-troubleshooter2.html

Wild Smiles Breakthrough Communication Success

August 19, 2013

If you’re in the Fayetteville, Arkansas area this Friday, August 23, 2013 please join me for Wild Smiles 2013

 I’ll be presenting Breakthrough Communication Success and will be joined on the program by Garrett Gunderson, Dr. Marie T. Fluent, Teresa Duncan and Rita Zamora
http://courses.arbraces.com/practice/register

 

DentistryIQ: “I Don’t Get Paid When Patients Don’t Show Up”

May 30, 2013

A hygienist wrote in to Dentistry IQ’s Thursday Troubleshooter with this concern:  “I was wondering if anyone else is having to clock back in and out if a patient fails to come and yes, I am a hourly employee. I would appreciate any info.” 

Is this a viable option or a classic “lose/lose” solution? 

 

 http://bit.ly/140UsHL

Stop Team Meeting Deja Vu

May 13, 2013

Ginny Hegarty Morning Huddle Video

About 10 years ago I saw a pattern developing around team meetings. One practice after another seemed to be having what I called “Team Meeting Déjà Vu.” The team and doctors would joke and say “Can’t we just shuffle last year’s meeting agendas and reuse them again this year? After all, it seems like we just keep revisiting the same problems, we never really solve anything.  I’ll bet many of you can relate to that feeling.

To be clear, these were not mediocre or even average practice, they were highly successful practices like many of you, trying to figure out how to get to that next level of success. They were basically putting band-aids on problems, quick fixes that would last for a couple of weeks or months and then old habits would reemerge.  This “déjà vu” or inability to come together to create long-term solutions creates roadblocks that will affect morale and profitability & hold you back.

This is the first of my Morning Huddle Videos for Dental Products Report. View the video for a few quick ideas to shake things up and avoid Team Meeting Deja Vu

Watch for Ginny’s Video Series in Dental Products Report’s Morning Huddle eNewletter

March 22, 2013

I was thrilled to be invited to participate in Dental Products Report‘s Morning Huddle eNewsletter. We recorded a series of videos that will be shared with the DPR audience. DPR’s Editor-in-Chief Thais Carter coordinated the video shoot. Topics included: Let’s Talk About…  The Heart of the Matter, The Power of Focus, Energy Breeds Resuls, Team Meetings, Success in Difficult Conversations and Breakthrough Communication Success. I’m excited for the series launch and to hear your feedback and best take aways

DPR Editor-in-Chief Thais Carter with Ginny Hegarty

DPR Editor-in-Chief Thais Carter with Ginny Hegarty

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