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How to Build Bullet Proof Morale

How to Build Bullet Proof Morale


Hey, everyone. I want to talk about the single greatest thing that is needed in your office for you to increase everything in your office. Your morale, your money, your conversions, and even your retention. And that single thing isn’t marketing, or plan, or a vision. It’s trust. You see, it’s not sweat, or hard work, or revenue that makes companies tick long-term. It’s trust. Trust touches every area of your practice. Last time we looked through the Harvard Business Review, we saw the statistics that people who work at companies where trust is high report 106% higher energy levels at the office, higher happiness levels at the office. You see, 74% lower stress levels, 76% greater engagement, and 50% more productivity than other people in other practices, in other businesses where trust is considered lower. And the list goes on, but you get the point, right? When people know that you have their backs, they will take risks for your benefit and the practice vision benefit. You see, when turnover happens, they fill up with people who look around and can I trust you?

When patients have downturns in their care, they look at, can I trust that you’re always on my side? Trust is really powerful, but what does it mean when we put it into context? Well, when we talk about trust, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s best friends at the office all the time. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t work to do. It doesn’t mean that I’m going to try and fail sometimes. It means that someone has your back, and you know that if you’re putting in the effort to try to do something good that’s in alignment with the company vision, and you’re having a hard time, that you’re not at risk because people are going to step up to help you. That’s what we mean by trust. It sounds like a basic expectation, but there are a lot of practices out there where they just hold everyone accountable to produce or die. Instead of showing them, this is the game we’re playing. Here are the rules we have to follow. You’re on our team. We know that there are going to be stumbling blocks, but I’m going to help you get through as long as you’re in alignment with our vision.

If we’re all focused on making this practice work, then all the work we do, all the stumbling, all the winning, all the succeeding, all the things that we’re working on, become almost self fulfilling prophecies of success. You see, if all you do is walk around berating people for not doing perfect work, you’re going to stop that trust from being built or you’ll destroy it altogether. So when we talk company culture, practice culture, we really want to talk about trust from the very beginning and lay out that game plan. This is what I’m looking for from someone in your position, and I’m going to have your back. I’m going to help you through this. And if you skills that you don’t know how to do, we’re going to help you get those skills. But what I’m looking for is that you stay in alignment with our practice goals and our practice vision. We have to be able to trust each other, or we’re never going to be able to work through these things together. And because of that, we’re able to default to trust each and every day. And when someone breaches that trust, because you’ll find times where that happens. Hey, I thought you were going to be working in alignment with this, and you went that way. Walk me through your thinking on that. You see, when they break your trust, you have to talk to them about it. You don’t go in guns blazing, ready to fire everybody. You just said, you know, what were you doing? I need to understand what their ideas were behind their actions. Did I communicate my expectations well?

Did the practice staff member have some other motive or insight that they were trying to do the right thing, but it didn’t make sense to me? Let me take the first role of investigation before I work through a role of discipline. Maybe there’s something else going on that they were trying to do for our benefit that just didn’t look that way. Because miscommunications happen, and when they do, when they do, it’s always good to take the ownership on the leadership side and say, “You know what? Maybe I should have explained this differently. Let me go through it one more time.” Because if you see consistency in them breaking your trust, they’re just the wrong person for that position. You see, if they outright lie to you, or they go behind your back, or their story starts shifting, once you give them a warning, you know, we can be a little bit tolerant, but we don’t tolerate repeat offenses. Untrustworthy people are going to be untrustworthy again. And it’s always better to just say, “I really like you. You’re a good person. You’re just in the wrong position. We can’t work together anymore.” So whatever my personal feelings about a certain person are, we can never let anyone jeopardize the trust of the company culture or the practice culture. And that also means that true trust starts with you. Sure, you need to trust your staff people, but you need to set that stage. You see, one staff person who trusts you and receives opportunities from you, well, if they make a mistake and you don’t live up to the trust that they need from you, well, that’s a problem too. So we’re going to treat trust just like money.

We’re going to save it. We’re going to pay attention to it. We’re going to utilize it. But even though you can’t count it like you can money, sooner or later, you’re going to see the culture developing. And if it’s built around trust, you’re going to have less turnover. You’re going to have greater production. All right, so start there. What is the trust culture of your practice and how well are you setting the vision and the dreams for that clinic and that team? And then are you being clear on your expectations from them? Because if you are, well, then you can expect it from them. Don’t ever think you’re asking too much or too little of someone. You asked for what you need. Let the smart people step up and provide it. But then you give them that baseline culture of trust, that I trust them to think through it, to work on it, and then to come with you if they’re stuck, before we end up with problems and failures or before there’s a violation of that trust. All right.

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