Finding the right employees for your orthodontic practice is often difficult and time consuming. So once you find good employees, you want to do everything you can to retain them. How do you create a culture of retention and raise up leaders among the employees you have? Keep reading to discover some tips for creating a culture of leadership among your employees.

Is your culture toxic?

Creating a culture that encourages growth and leadership is one of the most important things you can do for your employees. By allowing your employees room to ask questions, take leadership courses, and implement change in the workplace, you can create future leaders who will want to stay at your office. To do the opposite of this is to create a culture that is toxic, which will encourage employees to leave. No one wants to work in an office where their boss doesn’t communicate properly, doesn’t give them room to grow, and doesn’t encourage positive change. As a leader, you set the tone for the rest of the office–make sure the tone you set is one that helps employees leave work each day feeling accomplished and appreciated. 

Empower your employees

If you find yourself having to direct your employees on what to do instead of them taking the lead, you might need to help empower them. To help employees grow their leadership qualities, encourage them to ask questions and implement change. No one respects a leader who rules with an iron fist and has a “my way or the highway” approach. To become a good leader means to relinquish some control and allow your employees to question the ways you do things. By encouraging them to share any ideas or innovations they have, you make them feel like a valued part of the practice. And in working together as a team, you might discover some amazing ideas born from a culture of encouragement. 

Leader-Leader instead of Leader-Follower

Many workplaces use the Leader-Follower approach, which means the leader makes the decisions and the employees implement those decisions. This method of leadership has been around since ancient Egypt and has effectively helped many projects come to fruition. However, this method is best used when your employees are involved in manual labor. For workplaces that revolve around cognitive labor, Leader-Leader is a better, more effective approach. This relies on the premise that everyone can be a leader and should think and act like one. This helps employees feel valued and like they have an investment in the practice, which in turn helps them work harder and want to stay longer. 

Encourage learning

Make sure your employees have ample opportunities to learn and grow their leadership abilities. Encourage them to attend leadership conferences and consider going to a conference as a team. Or, read a leadership book, like Turn the Ship Around by David Marquet, and discuss it together.  

Good employees seem harder and harder to find nowadays, so hang on to the ones you have by making them an integral part of your practice and valuing their contributions.