Understanding What it Means to Hire Slow and Fire Fast

I have a love/hate relationship with this advice. There is much validity to this statement but I feel like the simplicity of this leaves much room for misinterpretation and confusion that can slip in. I wish this statement had a caveat or a footnote that would shed some more insight.

The "hire slow, fire fast" mantra doesn't necessarily mean you have to take months to bring someone on board, or that you fire team members based on knee-jerk reactions or after the volcano of emotions has erupted. But as a business owner; finding, hiring and retaining the right team can either make or break your business! The important chemistry component, the makeup of your team can drive your practice forward, provide outstanding customer service, and help your business reach new heights.

Making a bad hire can really tarnish your practice reputation, which is why you need to take your time when it comes to finding the right person.

Five reasons for hiring slow:

  1. By hiring too fast, you may end up making some BIG hiring mistakes, or a situation that former Apple executive Guy Kawasaki terms "the bozo explosion." According to Kawasaki, "When you're in a rush to fill openings to respond to growth, you make mistakes. Unfortunately, many practices adopt the attitude of, 'hire any intelligent body, or we'll lose business--we'll sort everything out later." BIG MISTAKE!
  2. It is critical to make sure people fit in with the rest of your team. Understanding what makes up your current office culture and what your business growth plans can help with the hiring process. This formula will help you understand if these candidates are either a perfect fit or a lousy fit for your culture.
  3. You may find a way to avoid filling that position altogether. For example, if you take the hiring process slow, your current team could evolve to take on the responsibilities you were looking to add.
  4. You can be more certain about making a legitimate offer if you have taken the time to vet the candidate completely. This person may just be an amazing actor—they can look good on paper or answer your interview questions perfectly but in reality, maybe a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Do your due diligence by doing both background checks and reference checks!
  5. Your team is everything. If you have the right team in place everything clicks together, projects get completed more efficiently, patients are happy and life just seems to flow much better! You don't need to spend more of your precious time dealing with drama.

But here is the caveat: taking “too long” to make a decision on a candidate means you could possibly lose out on this amazing candidate while they are waiting for you to make a decision. On average, top talent gets snatched up within 10 days of being in the job market. Waiting too long for you to "wait and see what else is out there", could make this hiring process much longer than it needs to be. That’s why understanding what the right candidate looks like for your office ahead of time will make this process much more efficient!

Five reasons for firing fast:

  1. The moment you think that person is not a good fit anymore, you are probably six weeks too late. Take action to remedy the situation, understand where things went wrong and WHY! This will help you identify any “leaking pipes” (a.k.a systems and structures) and will help you be proactive to avoid this from happening again!
  2. Don't procrastinate, because everyone around you will begin to wonder why this negative behavior is being allowed to continue to happen. They begin to feel underappreciated and start thinking: “well if Suzy gets rewarded for doing the bare minimum…why should I keep working as hard as I have been?” Then you will notice their drive and work ethic will begin to decline! Your A player will now turn into a C player. A bad employee can poison the rest of the team--the longer they stay around, the more their negativity affects others.
  3. Your patients think you are building a world-class team and maybe you promote this on your website or on your advertisements. Don't disappoint them by holding onto someone who is a bad fit or worse who can begin to tarnish the reputation you have worked so hard to build!
  4. Your team is only as strong as its weakest link. You have likely heard this before, but it is just as true now as it was then. Your weakest link is pulling the rest of the team down.
  5. Stop those sleepless nights! The amount of stress that is associated with these HR issues has to stop! It is taking your focus away from growing your business and providing top-notch treatment to your patients!

But here is the caveat: avoid those HR issues by establishing an effective HR program to make sure you have set up very clear expectations with employees so they know what they have to do to be successful.

If they can't achieve those goals then they need to be given a warning. In fact, every single time an employee is "talked to," you need to document it as the business owner, or manager. Take time to understand what you can do to help them be successful at their job can make a HUGE difference! Is there more training, resources or tools they need so they can perform at their best?

Hopefully, this will resolve any issues but if a second warning is needed, explain that if they cannot do what has been asked by XX date, then your only option is to terminate them. Document that conversation, and then when you fire them to make sure you keep all documentation. If they come back at you with a legal claim after the fact, you will have some ammunition.

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The bigger goal here is that you have set up an effective hiring practice that helps you avoid costly hiring errors. If you have taken the important step of setting the proper expectations for your new employees, the wrong people (the bad fits) ultimately end up quitting before you have to fire them.

But remember, there are steps you can take now to be proactive: understanding your growth plans will help you determine who you need to hire. Having your practice guidelines outlined will help you weed out the people who are a bad fit and could hinder your practice growth. Establishing effective HR systems will also protect you from those HR nightmares.

 

Landing Your Dream Job in the Dental Profession

You may have just finished your schooling and you’re full of optimism! The very thought of getting a great job keeps your enthusiasm high. But is that excitement enough? You need to begin preparing your resume and start networking in the field. You need to get yourself prepared for landing your dream job. Let’s find out how you can do that.

Prepare your resume

Resumes are like snapshots of your experience and educational background. So you really need to put in a lot of effort when you are preparing your resume. Not to stress you out, but you need to remember that many others will be applying for the same job. You need to make your resume stand out and reflect your uniqueness. Do not just copy any generic statement from your friend’s resume and expect it to be fine! Don’t forget about the cover letter. It should go hand in hand with your resume.

Do your research

When you have interviews lined up, make sure you do your research. You want to be prepared for when you go for your interview. Think of examples of past experiences you can talk about. Also, remember to gather all the information you need to about the dental practice. Come ready with questions to ask during your interview. It is all about creating an impression. Social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook can be good places to do your research.

Attitude is everything

You have your credentials from the dental school to back you up in the interview. But what gives you an edge over others is attitude. Everyone likes a person with a positive attitude. Your smile, your gesture and your way of talking matter a lot. Don’t forget the importance of a handshake, it should be firm and exude confidence. Often during the interview, you may be asked why you have left your last job (or why you are looking for a new job). Do NOT badmouth your previous employer! It creates a bad impression. But what you can do is tell them about what you are looking to gain if you work for this dental practice. This is something every interviewer appreciates. (For example, I am looking to gain new skills/ experience in...)

Landing Your Dream Job in the Dental ProfessionProfessionalism is the key

When you go for an interview, you need to put your best foot forward. It will help you create a great impression. Little things like organizing your certificates and credentials in a proper folder or handing print-outs for your professional summary will be useful. Think from the perspective of the interviewer and come prepared. When you are looking to work in a professional environment, you need to look and act like a professional. Dress for success! Take some time to prepare for your interview; because preparation is the key to good interviews. This is your chance to create an impression and to show them why they should hire you. You can do this. Good luck!

 

Ideas on How to Lead Your Dental Team

We all want to inspire others and have a successful team. But when it comes to leading a team, you need to be cautious. All teams are comprised of people with different characteristics and different goals. Inspiring and motivating them to work as a team requires work and commitment from you as their leader. Here are some points to get your team motivated! Let's Go Team!!!

Help them to build careers

When you are leading your team, you should try to find out what each employee's individual goals are. Remind them that it is not JUST a job; it's more than that. Help them focus on their goals, and let them know that you want to help build their careers. You can create a work environment that supports the growth of individuals. It is one thing to just provide them with a job description, but another thing when you can help them to have a vision for their future, and also show them the path which will lead them to their vision. You can inspire them, motivate them and also boost their confidence to help them reach their goal. And the best part to having an empowered team is that it will help your business grow.

Appreciate your team

You must remember that showing your appreciation is very important to help your team grow. If your team does not feel appreciated, it is difficult to motivate them to take on new tasks. Appreciation can come in many different forms. A simple thing like a note complimenting them on a job well done can do wonders. You can call your employees to an informal meeting and discuss the major highlights for that week. By doing this, it will definitely tell your team that you have noticed their hard work. Awards are also great motivators. So, if you are planning to do something formal, it can take the form of an award!

Ideas on How to Lead Your Dental TeamInfuse some fun in the job

Of course, pay is a good factor when it comes to retaining employees. You pay them well, and they will definitely think twice before moving out. But at times, it is also more than the money. It is also about how much they are learning and whether they enjoy being at work and are having fun at the office. It might sound a little off track, but many employees feel that their growth is directly proportional to the amount of fun they are having while learning new things.

Building commitment in an unconventional way

If you feel that there is lack of commitment in your team, you should try to find out what the missing element is and how you can bring it back. Instead of stressing on the conventional management ideas like accountability or empowerment, you can motivate your team in a fun way. You can actually introduce team-building exercises or games that will help them to find joy in their work. I know what you are thinking... "I don't have time to do team-building activities," but it is a great way to bring your team together.

If you put time and effort into your team, your team will put the time and effort into the practice and will be shown the benefits.

We know it can be a lot of work to plan performance reviews but we have developed a guide that has everything you need to conduct an effective review with your team!

 

Performance Reviews in a Dental Job - Are they Essential?

The work of a Dentist and the duties of a manager are closely aligned, because in Dentistry, often you are the boss AND the manager. So, as a manager, it is your responsibility to do performance reviews. We know performance reviews aren’t a popular topic around the office watercooler. Regardless of how a boss feels about putting his or her staff under a microscope, regular performance reviews are an important and constructive way to evaluate the contributions an employee is making to your dental practice. Performance reviews can impact the growth of the organization along with the growth of your employees.

Define your expectations

Clearly, define your expectations to each of your employees. They need to know their current roles and responsibilities. Performance reviews offer them feedback on how they are meeting those expectations thus far and areas for growth and improvement. The employee should also come prepared and have their own thoughts and feedback about their performance. This will also create a benchmark for future reviews to see how the employee has grown in their role.

Communication is the key

You should always remember that unless you clearly communicate it, no one can read your mind and know exactly what to do or how you want them to do it! Communication is extremely important so that both of you know exactly where you stand and how they can do better from this point forward. The same applies to each of your team members! Ask open-ended questions during the review to help you get a better gauge on how they feel, where their head is, how they want to grow and know where the discussion is going to go.

Performance Reviews in a Dental Job - Are they Essential?For example, asking, “How do you think you’ve done this year? What have been some of the high and low points in your experience thus far? What would you like to see changed in your position moving forward?” Granted, some of the answers may not always be pleasant or what you want to hear — you are establishing trust and deepening your relationship. By being honest and detailing goals and expectations for the coming period before the next review. End the review with an offer for an open-door policy so everyone can feel welcome to reach out with constructive concerns and issues right away.

Always go for specific feedback

Vague talk and vague feedback will only lead to average performance or worse yet, complacency! As a manager, do not beat around the bush. If there is an issue, you must address it immediately! Create an effective performance-improvement plan that identifies the behaviour to be corrected, provide clear expectations and metrics about the work to be performed or behaviour that must change, identify the support and resources available to help the employee make the required improvements, and specify possible consequences if performance standards as identified in the plan are not met.

If an employee meets or exceeds expectations, take the time to offer them commendation and encouragement. Who doesn’t love to hear that you have done a good job? Performance reviews aren’t meant to be a negative experience, but use this time to inspire and motivate your team! Remember you are all on the same team and working toward providing the best possible treatment to your patients!

Tell them about your direction

All employees need direction. They might not address it, but they really need to know where they stand and where they should go from there. Performance reviews are those occasions where you can tell your employee about the direction you want to take the practice and your action plan to help reach those goals. It is just like steering a ship; you just need to chart your course before you embark on the journey together.

We know they can be stressful and time-consuming but we are here to help! Did you know, Stream Dental Staffing Solutions offers a PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT GUIDE? It was developed to help you and your management team implement regular employee coaching and performance reviews.

 

5 Ways to Stand Out in an Interview

So you landed a job interview to a great dental clinic (Way to go!). But... now what?? Sometimes the real battle starts after you have landed the job interview. As you prepare for the interview, you must keep in mind that there are a number of others candidates being considered for this position. How do you manage to stand out from the crowd? Here are 5 ways to create a great impression without being overbearing.

Honesty is the best policy

You must remember that you need to create an impression, but that does not mean you have to hide all your shortcomings. Employers actually prefer people who are honest about their weaknesses and show a positive trait about trying to improve in that area. Talk about something you had an issue with or made a mistake on, talk about how you managed/dealt with the situation and what you learned from it. No one is perfect, and we all make mistakes, but we need to own up to it and show how we can make changes and improve.

The first impression always counts

There is a popular saying that the first impression is the last impression. Often in an interview, it is very true. Most employers actually make up their minds about a candidate in the first 30 seconds of the interview. Dress to impress. Be positive and friendly. Also, make sure to start off with a firm handshake and you may have created the right vibe.

Think from the viewpoint of a potential employee

Imagine you already have the job! I know that might sound strange, but most other interviewees will be thinking what they can do or say to impress the interviewer, you might think from the perspective of someone who has already got the job. With that confidence, if you appear before the interviewers, the nervous attitude will be gone. And you can answer the questions more comfortably.

5 Ways to Stand Out in an InterviewListen to what the employer says

It is important to really listen to an interview. They may tell you some information about the dental practice or the clinic. They may also give you some valuable information about the team, the dynamics of the office or even about the Dentist. Listen to everything carefully. Come prepared with questions ahead of time, but also ask questions if there is lack of clarity. If you ask questions, it shows that you are interested, which in turn might enhance your chances of getting the job.

Learn to show appreciation

A quick email stating that you really appreciate the time taken to meet with you or a thank you note can be really helpful. Often it is seen that after the interview is over, candidates seem to lose touch with the dentist’s office. But this small gesture can create a good impression, and they might remember it.

Take your time to mentally prepare for the interview and think about ways in which you can create a good impression. Always remember that this is not the last interview in the world, but you should give your best effort and treat it like the final interview you will be going for! You've got this. Good luck!

How to Be a Great Boss in a Dental Practice

Welcome back!

What are some of the things that help to build a successful dental practice? Expertise, patient satisfaction, and professionalism, just to name a few. But is there something more? That’s right… the head honcho! There is a fine line between being a good boss and a great boss.

Establishing good team dynamics

Just being a good boss is not enough. You should understand that managing and keeping the team happy are equally important. Before you sign a contract with someone, you should chalk out the hierarchy of the office. You need to establish your position and what is expected out of your team. This is not a power game, but you need to map out what is expected of your team. Most problems arise from expectation mismanagement. You cannot have respect unless you have earned it. So make your stand clear about the different rules and policies which you think will be effective to run the office.

Communication is important

Communication is a two-way thing. If you expect your employees to listen to you, you should, in turn, listen to them. Try holding a monthly meeting to talk about what is working and what could use improvement. Ask for your team to offer suggestions and give their input. You want your team to feel just that... that they are part of a team! Having regular or quarterly performance reviews will help provide an excellent forum that will encourage communication.

Closely follow the office manual

When you are a dentist, you cannot enforce or follow the daily operations unless you know the office manual by heart. If you adhere to the policies, you will be confident and consistent in your approach. If you find anyone within your team disregarding the policies, you should talk to them and ask them to make the necessary changes. This is something very important for the smooth running your business.

How to Be a Great Boss in a Dental PracticeCreating the trust factor

If someone comes to you with an issue, it is absolutely mandatory to address it and try to resolve this issue. This helps to build trust. They should be able to trust you to come to you with their problems. If your team feels that you are helpless in a situation and cannot influence (or make) a decision, they will start doubting your leadership, which is not really the message you want to send.

Documentation can help

All dentists know the importance of documentation. You need to document everything from patient charts to personal issues. In case there is an issue, refer to the office manual, document the issue, review the entire incident and work with the individual to find out a solution. If the issue is related to performance, then sit with the person, set your expectations clearly, make that person sign the document, which notes that in case of any compliance failure, it could result in termination.

Even when you are a boss, you can be a good team player. Your team should look up to you as a leader and not always as a boss. Make the work environment a place where your team wants to come into work, where they know you will be there to support them and offer encouragement. Don’t just be a good boss, be a great boss! Your team with thank you for it!!

Until next time.

Ideas To Increase Productivity

Hello again!

We know running a successful office requires a lot of work! That brings us to the question of finding reliable ways to help increase productivity, improve practices, and increase profit margins. Here are some ideas that can help increase productivity in your dental practice.

Educating the team along with yourself for good practices

You need to educate yourself and also your team about good business practices, which can ensure improvement and growth. Begin with basics like increasing customer satisfaction, and learn to identify ways through which you can reduce waste and cut back on unnecessary spending. You need to motivate your team by telling them what they can do and how they can help! Ask your team to pay attention to concepts of value and how the practice can benefit from these ideas.

Think about incentives

Incentives play a major part in creating excitement among team members to excel. Who doesn’t love to be rewarded or recognized for a job well done?! The basic thing is that you need to keep your team happy to have a productive environment. However, there are two things to remember when you develop an incentive plan for the practice. First of all, think of how incentives can be earned and what kind of incentives you can offer. The first is inevitably related to good metrics like positive results from customer surveys. The second one, however, might be a little trickier. You cannot always relate the incentives with cash. Sometimes the employees cannot see the relation between hard work and money because by the time they utilize the bonus they simply forget about the association. Instead, things like a small paid vacation, shopping spree, spa days (just make sure to invite us!) or other rewards are much more effective.

Ideas To Increase ProductivityReinventing the patient experience

If you were to take a survey, you will find that most of the patients do not find a visit to the dentist’s office a pleasant experience (sorry about that!). Changing that perception holds the key to a successful dental practice. You need to change the mindset of the people and you need to make the patient experience very impressive. Whatever you do, you need to make the customers happy. And happy people will not only come back to you but will also recommend you to friends and family. Positive word of mouth goes a long way!

Keeping up with the latest technology

If you want to improve the entire process in your dental practice, you need to keep up with modern technology and programs. You need to have a good data management system, a modernized administration process and include proper business process software. This software not only helps to regularize the data, they also ensure that patients can securely fill out forms in compliance with legal rules. This helps to improve performance and reduce mistakes.

There are many other avenues you can take to make your dental office more productive, but these are just a few examples. Find what works best for you and your office. But one important thing to remember is having happy team members and patient's goes a long way towards a successful dental practice.

Until next time!

 

5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring Someone in a Dental Practice

Well hello there!

We know the process of hiring someone can be very stressful. You set up a job posting, you sort through all the resumes, you contact selected candidates for interviews and now comes preparing for the actual interviews. What questions should you ask? How do you know what questions are effective? How many questions should you ask? There is so much to think about.

When you have decided to hire someone for your practice, you need to find the best possible candidate. What are 5 questions you should ask, and what do their answers actually mean?

The purpose of this job

Centering a question around the purpose of the job is very important. It helps to understand and gauge the commitment of the candidate. It also helps to know about the perspective of the potential candidate. Does he or she really want the job because of their passion? Often the answers will differ. But you will definitely find someone who has an honest opinion about the job. An over-enthusiastic candidate may not always be the best person to hire. But look for someone who has a balanced view of the job.

Expectations from the job

Like all other jobs, in a dental practice, you need to have the potential to grow. The question that you can ask a candidate is where they see themselves in five years. A person who has the intention to grow will definitely help the organization to grow. So if you have a growing practice, try to find someone who shares the same passion. If there is a concrete answer from the candidate about their position in the clinic, you know that he or she has given some serious thoughts to this practice.

Talk about the skill sets

5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring Someone in a Dental PracticeThe next important question should be around the kind of skill sets the candidate has. Think about the job and think about the skill sets of the candidate. Do you think that this person is the right fit for the practice? Often when we hire a someone, we give the least emphasis on experience; but the emphasis is more on skill set and whether they have the intention to learn. Sometimes candidates show an enthusiasm to learn new things to adapt to the job environment. Think clearly as an interviewer: do you see that kind of potential in that person?

Finding out about their capacity to work in crisis

Crisis management is an integral part of a medical profession. As an interviewer, you should always give them an emergency situation and analyze how the candidate tries to cope with the situation. This is something that will help to understand about their capacity to handle stressful situations. And if you are hiring someone with experience, this is an obvious question. Often candidates get unnerved about such questions. See how they handle such questions and what their reaction to such queries are.

What about future goals?

When you hire someone, it is an investment. You do not want someone who will stay with you for a few months and you have to find someone new again. Ask them about their future goals. Do they seem really interested in the position? Do they have the intention to stay? If you detect a sense of an unsure attitude, you may have to think twice before taking them in your practice. Always think carefully before you hire someone.

Think of all the potential questions as an interviewer and analyze the potential candidate before you hire him or her!

In order to have a successful and profitable practice, you need to have the right team at your side. Your staff is the face of your business, and your office environment can make or break your success!Finding and hiring the right team members can be a challenging process without the right resources. It can be a complicated process, and potentially include negative legal repercussions if it isn’t done properly! Check out our NEW HIRE BUNDLE, it was designed to help you make sure you hire TOP TALENT everytime

 

 

How to Hire and Retain the Best Employees in Dental Practice

One of the biggest struggles every business has is finding and keeping great employees! It doesn’t have to be… Indiana Jones didn’t find the Holy Grail without using a map and neither should you!

Here are a few tips to help you find, hire and retain the BEST employees in your Dental Practice!

 

Determine your staffing needs

The only time you start thinking about your staffing needs is when you are filling a recent vacancy. We see it all the time, practices go into panic mode and settle for hiring the best candidate from the pile of candidates that apply! Big mistake!

Even before you have the need to hire someone, you should identify the traits, qualities, skills and cultural fit that you are looking for. Having this AHEAD of time actually helps you in the screening process. When you have a pile of resumes, you can just follow a checklist and easily discard those who do not fit your criteria. Better yet, hire a Dental Recruiter to help simplify your hiring process and streamline your operations- allowing you to do what you do best; provide top-notch service to your patients!

ON-BOARDING & INTEGRATION

YIPPEE! Your recruiter (AKA- Stream Dental), just helped you hire a ROCK-STAR candidate and it’s their first day! This is the start of your new relationship and if not started off on the wrong foot could end very badly and quickly! At Stream Dental, we really stress the importance of proper onboarding and integration of your new hire.

Did you know that 22% of employee turnover happens within the first 45 days of employment? Nothing worse than starting at square 1 after all that time invested to find them in the first place!

Take this time to really outline their role, responsibilities and your expectations. The biggest mistake we see is baptizing your new hire by fire! Throwing them into the mix and making them feel more overwhelmed than welcomed!

 

TRACK & MEASURE RETENTION

 

Don’t be fooled- just hiring someone is step ONE and now you need to nourish and grow this relationship to blossom into a long-term and loyal employee!

Start by reviewing your history of employee retention- has there been a recent high turnover rate? If so, this may mean your employees are unhappy with the organization, see little room for growth, or found a better paying job.

Combating those issues will help raise your retention rate and could save you thousands of dollars and hours upon hours of training time with new hires.

 

REVIEWS & FEEDBACK

Formal, annual reviews don't work, at least not to combat turnover. You need to meet one-on-one, at least on a quarterly basis. Spend the time to ask them what's frustrating them about their job. What they want to be doing--but aren't getting to do. Don’t take the answers personally but use this as an opportunity to learn about what’s not working and create a plan to make things better.

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Hiring and keeping good employees is crucial to the health of your office, but we understand if it seems overwhelming. If you're interested in learning more about how you can ease this process and ensure that it's done right, don't hesitate to contact Stream Dental today. We have the solutions you need! Check out our NEW HIRE BUNDLE which holds all the steps you need to ensure you hire TOP TALENT every time!

 

 

Avoiding a Bad Hire in YOUR Dental Practice

Do you know what making a bad hire can cost your dental practice? 41% of surveyed employers who said a bad hire in the past year had cost them at least $25,000. OUCH- that's a hard pill to swallow! Unless you enjoy throwing away money, you need to kick your bad hiring habits before it drives your business into the ground!

Hire an experienced recruiter

Recruiters have the experience and network of pre-screened and qualified candidates that are ready to find their next dream job! They have already invested the time to search for top-notch employees. They are here to help you save you time and money on avoiding a bad hire or having a position go unfilled.

Think about your practice.

This step requires some serious forethought! Remembering your mission/vision statement helps to keep in mind what your practice short and long-term aspirations are. This can help you analyze and understand the traits and skills needed to help you reach your goals!

Create a checklist

Now that you spent some time hammering through all the details; write it down and create your checklist. Really think about the traits and skills you are looking for and divide them into: must have, nice to have and non-negotiable.

Bring this checklist to every interview and use this as your road map to ensure you do not forget the big picture! Your practice success is counting on it!

Reference checks

All candidates who apply to the position have one goal in mind- to get hired! They will do and say whatever it takes to make sure this happens! Do not be fooled! Remember, you are investing your time, money and practices reputation on this person. Always ask for three references and do your due diligence!

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In order to have a successful and profitable practice, you need to have the right team at your side. Your staff is the face of your business, and your office environment can make or break your success! Check out our new hire bundle that has everything you need to hire the best people every time!