12.15.06 - Issue # 249 Forward This Newsletter To A Colleague

Dr. Nancy Haller
Dentist Coach
McKenzie Management
coach@ mckenziemgmt.com
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Aspire to Inspire: A Creative Activity for Your Office

Regardless of your affiliation, this is a spiritual time of year. At first glance, pairing spirituality and leadership might seem incongruous or perhaps even dissonant. However, spirituality is about finding meaning. This is an important role for leaders – attracting and retaining an excited and effective group of people, and
articulating purpose to inspire them about their work.  

There has been extensive global research on the importance of inspirational leadership. It involves creating and sustaining an environment in which people achieve excellent performance. Inspirational leaders design and maintain an atmosphere that engages people and gives them an energizing vision.

Now this can be done in many ways. Certainly, hosting an off-site retreat is a powerful means toward that end.  Yet that endeavor does require an investment that many dental offices may not be prepared to make. If you’ve dismissed team building because you think it takes too much time and money, you need to be creative. There are many ways to infuse energy into your office and inspire your team. Use this holiday season to take advantage of light schedules and festive moods. Here’s just one activity that can promote relationship building and communication. You may be amazed how it helps to connect team members in your practice.

Have you ever arrived early to a meeting and noticed that no one is really talking to one another? Or, if you have a larger team, there may be conversation but it’s restricted to a subgroup or clique of employees? Maybe they exchange a quick hello as they grab a cup of coffee but then there’s mostly silence as people find a place to sit. 

Inspirational leaders take advantage of this pre-meeting time. Simply utilize a VCR or DVD player and a television. Place it at the front of the room and provide a movie or show that might have a theme that is related to a principle or theme you are trying to instill in your team. 

For example, Sometimes it’s not about winning, it’s about trying your best.

The Disney movie, Twenty Below Zero, is a laugh-out-loud film that is based on the true story of the first Jamaican bobsled team trying to make it to the Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. This Team (?) is a hilarious transformation from one that has “no idea” what they are getting themselves into, to a team spirit unsurpassed by even the best bobsledders in the world.

If your practice needs a ‘B-12’ shot of resiliency to get through tough times, the bravery, skill, creativity, and teamwork in Apollo 13 reflects these themes with great accuracy.

Choose a movie that you believe will trigger a discussion about the message you want your staff to embrace. The show can be something just as simple as an old TV series, or a newer, action-packed science fiction film. Ask your employees for a list of their five favorite movies and why each was so appealing to them. You’re bound to get some good ideas from their input. Plus, they’re more likely to meet this exercise with enthusiasm if they are involved in the planning.

Movies and TV shows are fun to watch, and they will no doubt bring back fun memories for your team members. The laughter that is heard will liven up the atmosphere of the room and help to wake folks up and prepare them for a fun and engaging team meeting.

For those of you who try this activity, email me your comments and movie list. I’ll send you one of our Ideas into Action leadership guidebooks as a thank you.

Wishing all of you a healthy, happy and inspirational holiday season!

Dr. Haller is available for team building and dental leadership coaching. She can be reached at coach@mckenziemgmt.com.

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