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A little show of appreciation can go a long way in raising morale and developing a positive office culture. In fact, recent research shows that 63% of recognized employees are more likely to stay in their jobs, and 40% say they would put more energy into their work if they were acknowledged more often. You don’t need to wait for a holiday or birthday either. There are five significant appreciation dates that will feel especially meaningful for those who work in the dental industry. Mark these dates on your calendar now and use our ideas to help you brainstorm the perfect celebration!
March 6 – National Dentist’s Day
This is a big one! Every March 6, we celebrate the work dentists do to keep patients’ smiles healthy. It’s also a public awareness campaign to encourage people to take care of their oral health. For patients, you can give away special goodie bags that include fun items like toothbrushes, floss, and magnets with your practice’s contact information. For the dentists who work in your office, you can never go wrong with something heartfelt and personal. Try collecting thank you notes from patients and present them to the dentist in a book or binder! Check out the National Dentist’s Day website for images you can share on your social media pages on the big day!
Second Week in March – Dental Assistant Appreciation Week
Dental offices are not one-person shows: dental assistants are the ultimate utility players who jump in whenever needed and keep the practice running smoothly. To celebrate, consider bringing in lunch or buying them a present to show your appreciation, such as flowers or a gift card to their favorite store. If you have social media pages, you can give them a special shout-out for all your followers to see! You can visit the American Dental Assistant Association’s website for resources you can use to spread the word.
Second Week in April – Dental Hygienist Appreciation Week
When patients walk out of your practice with a squeaky clean smile, you have a dental hygienist to thank! This week is a great time to show your appreciation for these hard-working teammates at your practice. In addition to the ideas already suggested, you can also gift your hygienist a CE course paid in full or a ticket to an industry conference or networking event. You can even print off fun activity sheets for your youngest patients to educate them early on oral health! Bonus: This role is also celebrated all through October for Dental Hygiene Month!
Fourth Wednesday in April – Administrative Professionals Day
While not tied specifically to the dental industry, you have an entire front desk team that does everything from taking calls to keeping records to getting patients checked-in. Why not recognize them for all their hard work? Team-based ideas like a lunch always work well, but you may also want to consider individual gifts since everyone likes to be recognized for their accomplishments. The idea of appreciation notes from patients also works great with this group since they are front and center at your practice. This day is also recognized by the International Association of Administrative Professionals, and you can check out their helpful resources on their website.
Dental Office Manager Appreciation Month (month varies)
If you want to get to the heart of every dental office, look no further than the dental office manager. Recognized by the American Association of Dental Office Managers (AADOM), this month celebrates the role that is the cornerstone of your practice. The gift of a professional development course can help expand their skill set and improve your practice. And since they have a pulse on everything in your office, you could present them with a book of thank you notes from your entire team. You can also never go wrong with a gift basket of their favorite treat! AADOM is a great resource for dental office managers, and you can check out their website for insightful blog posts, industry updates, and membership information.
The bottom line: Showing some appreciation for your dental team can go a long way. Acknowledging their hard work with a gift and recognition on an industry-specific date will boost morale and show them how much you value the work they do for your patients. So mark these dates on your calendar and start planning your celebrations today!