A national survey was recently conducted to determine how you use your time. When asked if the practice had a morning huddle, 258 people voted and 60% said they did not. To be profitable, the solution is easy. It is necessary to close all the gaps that can be closed.
A well-orchestrated morning huddle can add 10’s of thousands to your bottom line and insure that the team receives consistent bonuses. How? By adding more revenue-creating opportunities and preventing missed ones.
Perhaps you’ve decided not to have a morning huddle because you are tired of meeting to read the schedule. Or maybe you don’t want to be in the office any more than you have to. It is understandable. This is what I know for sure: when my clients and the team are polled at the end of one year of consulting, 90% of the employees claim that the morning huddle had the most profound effect on the practice.
Here’s how to do it well:
- Believe that a morning huddle is like breakfast. Every day should start with it.
- Be a good example. As the leader, expect to arrive at the office 10-15 minutes before your huddle begins. Every team member must make the same commitment.
- Make it productive. Charts, schedules, accounts, business numbers must be prepared and reviewed on a daily basis, the day prior to the huddle.
- Allow each employee a block of administrative time daily. This time can be used to prepare a checklist for the next day’s meeting, finish up documentation for the day, confirm lab cases, and make follow-up phone calls. A 15-20 minute segment of the day can be set aside for these tasks. (The 20 minutes after lunch is ideal).
- Don’t waste time. Use a checklist to guide your morning huddle. Dentrix has a checklist that is easily printed. When discussions cause a disruption, post the topic on a team meeting agenda to discuss at your next staff meeting. Place the agenda near where you conduct your huddle.
- Sign up. Create a beautiful sign to let your patients know that, “In order to be better prepared for your visit, we are in a brief team meeting. We will be with you promptly at 8:00.”
- Start and finish on time.
- Be positive. Encourage team members to be responsible for bringing thoughts for the day.
- Stand. Don’t sit. This is not a coffee break.
- Let your patients know how important they are. Remember the finer points of what you discussed in the morning huddle throughout the day.
Once you begin having a morning huddle, even with its inherent obstacles, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.
Laura Jamison has been consulting since 1986 with Pride Institute, then 25 years in business of her own, Jamison Consulting. She has recently joined Henry Schein to continue providing business advice and team coaching. Her passion for coaching teams is evident in her commitment to providing the best quality experience in her in-office work with dental clients and her national speaking engagements. Articles have been published in Journal of Private Dentistry in the U.K., Trojan newsletters, AADOM Observer, Dental Economics and in Private Practice Volumes 2 and 3. Laura is also currently President-Elect of the Academy of Dental Management Consultants.