As a dentist, you are without a doubt the leader of the practice. One can read a number of articles and tips on how to be a great leader, but often what we remember are the inspirational sound bites or short phrases that resonate with us personally. Setting up your dental practice was certainly challenging, or will be challenging when you embark on the journey. Leading your practice to success is even harder! Given that any business is as good as the leader leading it, it is important you find inspiration that holds personal meaning, and use it to guide you to success. Here are 5 inspirational quotes on leadership and leading your dental practice that might help you.
“In the simplest terms, a leader is one who knows where he wants to go, and gets up and goes.” – John Erskine, author
A leader is one who has full faith in him or herself and in his or her decisions. This self-confidence inspires others to follow. It’s important to assess your decision carefully, but once you’ve made it, start executing. Remember, there are leaders with a “big L” and leaders with a “small l.” You are inherently the “big L” Leader, and it is one of your primary tasks to enable and encourage “small l” leadership among your office staff. The following quote further makes this point.
“The best leader is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and the self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Hiring can be hard, but it is one of the most important decisions a dental practice owner can make. If you hire the right person for the right position, you will see your business improve in ways you had never even thought about. Alongside hiring someone great for the job, you have to have faith in your decision. Have them sufficiently trained and provide the tools and resources they need and get them aligned with your vision. Then, let them go and do their work. You will be amazed by the results, and you will see them come up with ideas you never would have yourself. Important here, though, is the necessity for you to be open to new ideas, even if they are not ones you had thought of, as the ideas from your frontline staff are often more closely connected to the patient needs than what you might think. Margaret Thatcher speaks to this well…
“Do you know that one of the great problems of our age is that we are governed by people who care more about feelings than they do about thoughts and ideas?” – Margaret Thatcher
When it comes to your business, you need to keep your emotions to one side. Too often, we negate our employees’ ideas because we feel our ideas are better, and it becomes a source of pride for us. Too often as the leader, we let our own emotions get in the way of a good idea. And not only do our emotions inhibit our ability to hear important information, but they can also keep us pointed in a bad direction for the business, even though it might feel comfortable for you as the leader. The next quote explores keeping your head about you.
“Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate, and doubt to offer a solution everybody can understand.” – Colin Powell
Every business has its ups and downs and problems with which to deal. A great leader is always someone who can face these problems head on and keep a calm head on their shoulders so they can think of a simplified solution. Pay attention to the ideas and thoughts presented, and then make a clear decision with action steps. Then move forward from there. Sometimes to help weed out unhelpful or feeling-based thoughts, you can write down what is swirling around in your head. Once on paper, you may be able to easily see the path you need to pursue.
“There is a difference between being a leader and being a boss. Both are based on authority. A boss demands blind obedience; a leader earns his authority through understanding and trust.” – Klaus Balkenhol
The number one thing a great leader does is listen. When you are talking with your staff, don’t think about the next thing you are going to say. Focus on what they are saying, repeat it back to them and make them feel heard. If your people feel like they are genuinely heard, they will feel valued and they will trust you. Always remember to listen.
Dr. Gale provides coaching and training to enhance leadership skills, interpersonal communications and team building. If you would like to learn more, contact him at email@example.comForward this article to a friend
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