Why this dental assistant stuck around

Dental Assistants Recognition Week (DARW) kicks off on March 3 and is the perfect time to celebrate and learn from team members who are committed to a long and rewarding career as a dental assistant.

Dental assistants perform critical duties and enhance the patient experience. Through this series of dental assistant features, we will learn more about what keeps assistants engaged and makes them stay in the career and with their current dental practice or clinic. 

Guinevere’s story

Guinevere B. Juckett, CDA, CDIPC, CPFDA, CRFDA, EFDA, FADAA, FAADOMGuinevere B. Juckett, CDA.

Guinevere B. Juckett, CDA, has been a dental assistant for 34 years, working at the same practice in Ohio for 24 years. What keeps Juckett committed to her work?

"My employer includes me in training and continuing education (CE) opportunities," she explained. "We learn new technologies, new procedures, and I am involved in technology and equipment purchase decisions. These opportunities build trust and empower me to grow both professionally and personally."

Juckett’s employer also supports her quest for advancement by assisting financially with the cost of CE and providing cross-training on dental office management.

"Education and cross-training have contributed to my longevity within the practice," Juckett shared. "Learning all aspects of dentistry, understanding how the business operates, and being able to help in most every situation has made me indispensable. It has also allowed me to understand the struggles and celebrate the successes of the dentists and team members. Cross-training gave me an added sense of purpose and allowed me to utilize my skills in so many ways."

Strategies for employers

Juckett’s advice for employers who are focused on retaining dental team members is to invest in employees. Her career blossomed through encouragement and support from an employer, allowing her to earn four national certifications, three state registrations, and two fellowships. Juckett recommends providing employees the time, financial assistance, and verbal encouragement to grow within their dental assistant role. She also encourages employers to find cross-training opportunities that allow team members to learn more about one another’s work and grow cohesively as a team. 

These are low-cost appreciation strategies that keep dental team members engaged, strengthen the team via education and training, and build loyalty and commitment. 

Jen Hawley Price, MAS, MS is the chief partnership and engagement officer at the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) and the DALE Foundation. She oversees the design, implementation, and management of DALE Foundation educational products and supports key strategic initiatives, including collaborative work with key partners in the dental industry. Learn more at www.danb.org.

The comments and observations expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions of DrBicuspid.com, nor should they be construed as an endorsement or admonishment of any particular idea, vendor, or organization.

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