Questioning Your Office Morale?
Get More from Your Team with These Small Tweaks
If your office has recently lost its normal buzz of light hearted chatter and high customer service ratings, you could have a morale problem on your hands.
Poor office morale affects every aspect of your practice and can keep even the most loyal patients from coming back.
When you notice a change in office moral, it’s important to step in early to avoid ramifications such as diminished customer service, reduced productivity and ultimately lost patients.
For practices attempting to grow or gain new patients, the following small in-office tweaks can help turn morale around and realign your staff towards positive growth.
1. Determine if Low Morale Is Affecting Your Business
Low morale isn’t always easy to spot. However, there are a few things you can look for to find out. When employees feel less engaged in their work, they may not cooperate as well with other staff or patients and can be less willing to adjust to changes set upon by management. To find out if you have a morale problem, ask yourself the following questions:
- Has there been high or unusual employee turnover?
- Have you received negative reviews or seen less return patients?
- Has your staff become adverse to change or stopped acting as a team?
- Have staff members stopped sharing friendly or personal conversations that are not directly tied to business needs?
- Are staff members contributing less than they used to?
If you can answer “yes” to one or more of these questions, it may be time to hold a meeting with your team to discuss what you can do.
2. Identify The Problem(s)
Worried about a recent negative review from a patient? Don’t ignore it! What patients have to say often holds the key about what is and isn’t working in your office.
For example, a patient’s online remark that they were “rushed out the door” may shed light on the fact that your staff has too much on their plate to deliver quality customer service.
Are you overbooking patients or is your office understaffed?
Identifying issues affecting workplace morale is an excellent first step in building an open dialogue environment with your team and showing your employees that you are passionate about their wellbeing.
3. Make Time To Recognize Achievements
Everyone loves a compliment–it’s natural! In a practice where raises, promotions and new benefits may not always be affordable, small recognitions of hard work and consistency can offer continuous rewards to an entire team, without the high price tag.
Get off on the right foot every day by making it a point to recognize individual and team successes in your office. If patients rave about their experience with your front office manager, let him or her know both personally and publically that you value their contributions to the team.
Does your practice have a Facebook page or other social media site? Recognize your Employee of The Month both in the office and with posts on social media. Not only is this an excellent way to recognize and promote the morale of your staff, but it shows your patients that you want the best experience for them as well. You may also add a fun motivational twist on a regular workday with monthly gift cards, giveaways with your practice logo and raffles for the team!
4. Create An Environment Staff And Patients Will Love
Home may be where the heart is, but we spend more time at work than at home. If your work environment is dated or lacking, you may need to redecorate! When you introduce your office to fresh and natural lighting, warm colors and soothing office decor, your staff and patients can both enjoy the benefits. Pediatric practices can especially benefit from decor updates that include kid-friendly themes and provide an uplifting effect to both staff and patients.
Don’t forget your office’s “fun” factor! With entertaining music at the front desk, daily jokes on the billboard, or access to a relaxing break room with room for play (anyone say pool table?!), your office promotes positivity and productivity by breaking up the day with morale-boosting fun.
Did someone say “donuts”? The same way a compliment makes us swell with confidence, finding little ways to treat your team with homemade sweets or coffee spreads positive energy and praise that they can pay forward.
5. Encourage Development And Positivity
Smiling is really contagious! When your team is motivated to share together in an open work environment you may notice that even difficult things become easier. Rather than drag their feet to install a new medical record system or adjust to updated office hours, a team that feels united and supported can take on challenges like these in stride.
What is the biggest ingredient to boosting office morale? More times than not it comes down to communication. When your employees know that their voices are heard and respected, they will feel more willing to share their concerns and problem-solve as a team. Ask yourself if your office could benefit from a routine morning huddle.
Positive mentalities find their ways into the minds of others through the simple gestures of sharing positive comments, greeting others with a smile, or finding opportunities to share and inspire laughter. Even at times when office morale fades, sharing positivity and encouragement may be exactly what they need to move forward.
What Can A Smile Do For Your Office?
At SmileMakers, our mission is to make you smile! For medical and dental practices everywhere we look forward to watching practices gain patient numbers and returning patients using the best in modern giveaways, practice promotion products and marketing materials. Ask us today how we can put a smile on your face!