1. Be an example
Be a level 5 leader also incorporates the other four levels of “leadership.” In a dental practice that is even more essential since in most dental practices the dentist-owner-leader is also a primary producer. It is important that the work ethic, passion, humility, and discipline be exemplified by you the leader. This is a fine line to walk, you do not want to be the all-end-all in the practice. In many respects, you must be two people in the practice: The Dentist Producer in the practice and the Leader. Developing your team, especially a level 3 manager with-in your team is key to becoming a great practice. By developing a Competent Manager (Level 3), you may, on a daily basis, wear the hat of a Contributing Team Member (level 2) and Highly Capable Individual (Level 1). Then you wear your Level 4 & 5 Leadership hat in your practices' development functions.
2. Be a catalyst for the vision and passion of the practice.
YOU must also drink the practice vision kool-aide. As the leader, your team has to know that you believe and are committed to the vision and the standards of performance and excellence. Also, involve your team in the development of the vision and direction; allow them to be participants not just spectators.
3. Systems are critically important
Develop systems in all areas of the practice: Clinical, Recall, Patient Base Growth, Finance, and H.R, to name a few. Systems should be usable, trainable, and tested. If they do not contribute to the main goals consider revising or replacing them.
The practice systems must contribute to the Hedgehog concepts, that will catapult the practice from good to great. Practice systems should also be non-reliant on the leader.
4. Build a Team with the right people
Develop your team based on mindset, character, attitude, and work ethic. With these factors present in your team members, positioning and training them for specific tasks is a relatively simple task. Without the character traits above, no amount of training will mold a person into a team member that will contribute to practice greatness.
5. Give credit to the team for the success of the practice. Build them up, foster, and encourage growth and development.
As you develop the team it is important to give credit and praise for the success of the practice; this will foster independence and encourage innovation that will contribute to the flywheel/momentum of the practice transition to GREAT.
Create a system and environment that encourages personal development. This could be through involvement in continuing education, internal training, and mentorship, or a process of added responsibility coupled with appropriate instruction.
There also must be an environment of transparent honesty. Team members must be able to be honest about confronting the brutal facts so that the practice can overcome issues that hinder its development. Likewise, team members must be honestly communicated with regarding their performance and contribution, in a way that fosters growth and improvement.