Content Dam Diq Online Articles 2015 07 Staff Motivation 1

Tuesday Tip from Pride Institute: Motivation myths, and how to change them in your dental practice

June 30, 2015
Dental employers, like many other employers, believe that certain things will motivate employees. Many of those tings are myths, and here are some tips for truly motivating the employees of your dental practice.

Much research and thought has gone into answering the thorny question about what really motivates people. Although it is generally agreed that intrinsic motivation is more powerful and compelling than extrinsic motivation, dentists as clinicians and leaders often still use external rewards and threats as a way to motivate patients and team members.

Carter Macnamera of Authenticity Consulting outlines several other myths in his work on motivation.

Myth 1 – “I can motivate people." Not really -- they have to motivate themselves. You can't motivate people anymore than you can empower them. Employees have to motivate and empower themselves. However, you can set up an environment where they best people motivate and empower themselves. The key to this is knowing how to set up the environment for each of your employees.

Myth 2 – "Money is a good motivator."
Not really. Certain things like money, a nice office, and job security can help people from becoming less motivated, but they usually don't help people to become more motivated. A key goal is to understand the motivations of each of your employees.

A key goal is to understand the motivations of each of your employees.

Myth 3 ­ "Fear is a good motivator."
Fear is a great motivator … for a very short time. That's why a lot of yelling from the boss won't "light a fire under employees" for a very long time.

Myth 4 – "I know what motivates me, so I know what motivates my employees."
Not really. Different things motivate different people. I may be greatly motivated by earning time away from my job to spend more time my family. You might be motivated more by recognition of a job well done. People are not motivated by the same things. Again, a key goal is to understand what motivates each of your employees.

Myth 5 – "Increased job satisfaction means increased job performance."
Research shows this isn't necessarily true. Increased job satisfaction does not necessarily mean increased job performance. If the goals of the organization are not aligned with the goals of employees, then employees aren't effectively working toward the mission of the organization.

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Tuesday Tips from Pride Institute are provided weekly on their Facebook page as well as in this column in DentistryIQ. To ensure you don’t miss any of Pride Institute’s proven methods to take your practice to the next level, visit, and like them on Facebook.