As the office manager, you need to build a cohesive team. You can't let petty rivalries and grievances split staff members into factions. You have to set the example by not playing favorites and going out of your way to include everyone in practice activities.
Get everyone involved during meetings. Effective meetings require participation from all team members in attendance. Unfortunately, people with strong personalities can take over a meeting. If you see this happening, intervene by saying something like: "There are a few people we still haven't heard from on this issue. Let's start with Laura ... ."
Don't play favorites. You may be friendlier with some team members than others. But as a manager, you have to be impartial when it comes to enforcing employee policies. You can't let one staff member come in 10 minutes late every day and not say anything because you two are good friends. Favoritism, of any kind, undermines morale and sows discord in the ranks, making your job that much more difficult.
Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the founder and CEO of Levin Group, the leading dental practice consulting firm in North America. For the complete list of dates and locations where you can attend his latest seminar, visit www.levingroup.com/gpseminars.
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