10.12.12 Issue #553 info@mckenziemgmt.com 1-877-777-6151 Forward This Newsletter

Belle DuCharme, CDPMA
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Hire According To Your Management Style
Belle DuCharme, CDPMA

Hiring again? Your treatment coordinator has just given notice and the challenge to fill the position is again on your agenda. Traditional methods of recruitment include networking and advertising via online sites such as Craigslist with the resulting endless bombardment of resumes to thrash through. The common complaint is: “I received over 200 resumes for the position and I picked the first 50 to look at and deleted the rest.” Often the reason so many resumes are received is that the job advertisement does not contain enough information to narrow the field of applicants to those that are best suited for the position. Listing what you want from the person as far as job duties is only part of the information necessary for a job applicant to choose the right job.

If there has been turnover in your practice in the past, it is important to understand why this has happened to make sure you do not set yourself up for costly failure again. How long did the previous person in the role hold the position? If it has been difficult to find the “right person” it may be a red flag that there are unrealistic expectations or that there is a management style in place that is contrary to the type of person you are hiring.

According to Wikipedia, “management styles” are: characteristic ways of making decisions and relating to subordinates. Management styles can be categorized into two main contrasting styles, autocratic and permissive. Management styles are also divided in the main categories of autocratic, paternalistic, and democratic.

If you state in the advertisement that you are looking for a “self-starter that can do the job with little to no supervision” and then turn around and closely supervise and question everything the employee does, this will upset strong and competent employees and turnover among the best subordinates will be higher. 

The autocratic style of management is often seen in offices where the dentist manager makes decisions unilaterally and without consulting or regarding employees. This style limits the decision making freedom of employees and can foster a dependency on the leader. The autocrat or dictator runs a “tight ship” and requires the job done as directed. The dentist is sometimes seen as a micromanager in this style of management.

The permissive/persuasive or paternalistic style of management allows for and encourages feedback from the staff, but the decisions are still made by the dentist as the CEO of the organization.

A democratic style of management allows the employees to take part in decision making of the practice with a majority vote on certain issues with the dentist ultimately responsible. The leadership in this form of management must be defined with a strong vision of the practice goals otherwise there can be power struggles and a confusion of who is really in charge. 

A laissez-faire style of management defines the dentist boss as more of a mentor and motivator with a staff that manages their own areas of the practice. The staff members know their jobs well and perform without a lot of direction because they share the vision of the leader. This style of management fosters creativity. However, without a strong leader the risk would be loss of focus or direction, especially if there are new hires that have difficulty fitting into this loosely run system and need more supervision.

If the dentist sees himself/herself as a permissive or paternalistic style manager but has employed an autocratic style office manager to run the business area, this can cause miscommunications resulting in turnover. There will be a conflict in what type of employee is hired. For instance, the autocratic office manager may hire a person that waits for direction and asks permission before completing any task. The dentist may see this person as lacking initiative and decision making skills.

Stating in the job ad what style of management directs the organization will help many job seekers make decisions about your job offer. For instance, if your office has an autocratic style of management: “We are seeking a person that will firmly execute the job duties as directed by management. Our expectations are that you be accountable for your job duties and complete the tasks on time by the end of each day.” 

For a permissive style of employment or a style that encourages feedback and participation in management: “We are seeking a competent, self-motivated individual able to make sound business decisions to improve practice performance and communication with our patients. Active participation in practice building events and staff meetings required.”

Need help managing and hiring the right team? Contact McKenzie Management today for more information about our programs designed to meet your practice needs.

If you would like more information on McKenzie Management’sTraining Programs  to improve the performance of your team, email training@mckenziemgmt.com

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