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  • Chris Ciardello

The Tippit Philosophy

Updated: Oct 29, 2021

Just the other day I was working with a client that is having a hard time keeping people in their office long term. As they were venting their frustrations to me they said, “I hire these people, put a lot of time, energy and money in training them up to my standards. Then they go down the street to another office with all the knowledge I invested in them. Now I have to spend the same amount of time, energy and money on someone else.” This is a very frustrating situation to be in and I am going to tell you what I told my doctor.

A few years ago an attendee in one of our workshops introduced me to their doctor and he ended up hiring us on to help them expand their business. He already owned a very big practice and they were planning on opening another location. As we worked together I got to know this doctor and he imparted the wisdom his father passed to him when it comes to dealing with turnover in your practice.

His philosophy was when he hires someone he wants to make sure they are trained up to his standards. No training was too small and he looked at the training cost as just the cost of doing business. I asked him “Doesn’t it frustrate you when they leave after only working for a few months?” He said, deep down yes it does frustrate him. However, he takes a glass half full approach to turnover. He reminds himself that when this person leaves they also leave with his reputation. He wants to instill high standards in his employees so when they leave his practice they will take these high standards to other offices and hopefully improve the overall quality of dentistry along the way. At the end of the day this is a tide that will raise all boats. For him, that is the ultimate definition of success.

This office is in a major city and does have the benefit of a large employee pool to pull from. This philosophy is a hard pill to swallow if you live in a smaller community. You may not have a lot of candidates to pick from and there may be a majority of them that have little to no dental experience. However, your community needs this philosophy the most. Smaller towns will have more crossover of employees than a big city would. Embracing this philosophy could improve the overall quality of care for the entire town through developing a bigger workforce for your dental community.

When you invest in your team, not only are you investing in your employees, and your patients, you are investing in the dental industry. Your team will gain this knowledge and hold on to it for the rest of their lives. The dental office is a scary and traumatizing place to a lot of people. If we can invest in our teams and hold ourselves to the highest of standards, then all patients will benefit.

You will still want to vet everyone who applies and make sure they have the right personality for the position. I want to encourage you to invest in training your teams, and to not take it personally when that team member leaves your office and takes that knowledge to another. Be proud that you helped make that person someone who is qualified for the job and has high ethical standards, because that person is leaving your office to help make our world a better place.

“The only thing worse than training your employees and having them leave is not training them and having them stay.” -Henry Ford

Chris can be reached at:

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