As a practice owner, you don’t have the luxury of just being a dentist. You also have to learn to master running a business and leading a team. You have to think about the vision, mission, and values of your business, and you have to make key decisions every single day. It’s complex, and they don’t teach you most of those skills in dental school, so how are you supposed to learn?
Meet Larry Broughton. Larry is an award-winning entrepreneur, hotel chain CEO, thought leader, author, mentor and coach, speaker and more. Prior to his success in the business world, Larry was a member of the U.S. Army Green Berets. Larry knows a lot about leadership, business success, and the key traits any entrepreneur or business owner needs to develop to strengthen their business and develop a great team.
For this episode of the Progressive Dentist Podcast, Larry shares his wisdom and experience as a wildly successful business leader and entrepreneur. He offers tips for being a better leader, strategies for better and more effective time management, and ideas for how to understand and utilize the strengths, talents and passions of your team members. I hope you learn much from my conversation with Larry Broughton that you’ll be able to integrate into your practice and your leadership.
A Client-First Focus
One of the pearls of wisdom Larry offered during our discussion that was specific to dental practices is the need to focus on your clients (patients) first. Going to the dentist can be a scary or unpleasant experience for many people, and so it is important to recognize fear and hesitation and try to make the experience as easy and pleasant as possible for your patients. Identifying ways to make the process simpler and easier for your patients is a key way great dentists can differentiate themselves from the competition.
This service mentality can also help you with your interactions with your team members. Larry shared a staggering statistic during our discussion: 67% of people feel either disengaged or actively disengaged from their employers. That means that an astonishing two-thirds of employees at the typical company either are putting in the bare minimum effort necessary or, worse, stealing or otherwise trying to “get back” at their employers. The key to happy and engaged team members is to recognize their strengths and them to do engaging work they love and are great at.
Speaking of recognizing the strengths of your team, Larry shared how everyone at his hotel chain takes two important assessments: the CliftonStrengths assessment and the Kolbe A Index assessment. These two tests help the team members, their supervisors and company leadership better understand their skills, strengths, how they learn and what they are interested in.
This knowledge allows Larry to ensure that everyone on his team is “sitting in the right seat on the bus” and bringing the right combination of skills, experience and passion to their role. If your best employee is stuck doing the wrong tasks, they aren’t going to shine and you’ll never know that they were your best employee. Aligning people’s roles within the business to their skills and interests will help you them feel more engaged and will allow them the opportunity to do their best work.
Larry Broughton is a visionary entrepreneur and business leader, and this post only scratches the surface of his wisdom. I encourage you to visit his website at www.thelarrybroughton.com for more of his thought leadership and to learn more about his leadership teachings. And, as always, please visit me at www.theprogressivedentist.com for more informative podcast episodes with other remarkable business leaders.