New Year’s (Re)Solution – A Common Dilemma


Helping to save what could be a terrible mistake made by both dental employees and employers. Stop it before it happens to you!

This time of year is always exciting; between the joy of Christmas and the coming New Year there is a lot going on for many.  There is another common occurrence that we often encounter this time of year more than any other. It’s the time when employees are hoping to see a wage increase, and either they or the employer or both of them do not necessarily go about addressing it in a healthy, professional manner.

Take the loyal, reliable, long-term employee that was anxiously anticipating a raise this year.  She loves her job and has been with her doctor for many years. She had already started planning for the raise she expected, making a personal “wish list” and deciding what her first new purchase might be.  When the holiday came and went with no sign of her anticipated increase, she was quite disappointed.  With the extended Christmas break and time to reflect, she began to believe that perhaps the years invested were not appreciated, and that this could be a sign that now would be a good time to reevaluate her position within the practice.

Probably the wisest and most appropriate thing for her do to would have been to sit down with her employer and discuss this in a proper manner where she could provide measurable contributions that she has personally made to the growth and success of the practice.  And perhaps over the course of the past year the doctor might have reviewed all that his team had contributed to the bottom line and who on the team helped to keep the production and collection high. Unfortunately, neither of these occurred.

With time to take action, the employee began to feverishly comb the want ads, scheduling as many interviews as she could fit into her open week’s time.  This was NOT because she really wanted to leave. She was very happy there and loved her co-workers, her patients, her job, and her doctor!  She had no intention of leaving, but was simply “crushed” and “hurt” from feeling unappreciated.

And so the series of interviews began, sometimes two in a day. She knew she had to gather her ammunition quickly since she would be back to work on January 2nd with no time to lose.  Her sole purpose was to see what another practice might offer so that she could prove her true worth to her doctor.

But is this really a healthy approach to the problem?  There are numerous people that lose time and effort: the employee, the present employer and even the hopeful new employer.


2 thoughts on “New Year’s (Re)Solution – A Common Dilemma

  1. Great strategies that Dentists should follow! Our Dentist clients hire us to build “virality” into every process if their practice (I.e., “Growth Hacking”) but if this subject comes up in conversation here’s what I recommend:

    Doctor should have (in writing) a clear definition if each employees job description as well as the OBJECTIVE means/tools that will be used to measure employee performance

    The measurements should be made available to the employee on an ongoing basis so that she (or he) knows how well (or poorly) she’s doing her job

    Raises should ALWAYS be based on performance (as opposed to length of service) and clearly outlined so that:

    1: Employees have a performance baseline
    2: everyone will know when an increase in pay and/or bonuses are warranted

    NOTE: performance reviews should be completed (at a minimum) every 90 days. Once per year is antiquated and ineffective. Too much can go wrong by waiting 12 months for a review.

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