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The ADAA Creed - Enthusiasm

Posted Jan 01 2010 4:19am

"To be enthusiastic– for therein lies the easiest way to accomplishment."

                                                ~Juliette Southard~

Your success in life can only be as great as your enthusiasm.  You can spot someone who is enthusiastic about what they're doing by the light and life in their eyes.  Their whole face and demeanor gives it away.  There's no hiding enthusiasm, and there's no substitute for it either.  I'm not talking about false or forced enthusiasm.  You can spot a fake a mile away.  False enthusiasm is irritating, and just as bad as a lack of enthusiasm.  Actually, false enthusiasm actually is a lack of enthusiasm wrapped in plastic.  Someone tried to cover it up, but the lack is transparent.

Think about the employees or co-workers you've worked with in the past.  When I think of enthusiastic people, a few spring instantly to mind and make me smile.  Just being around them made you feel more energized because enthusiasm is contagious, if you have the frame of mind for it.  It's a "I pull you, you push me" kind of thing.  Enthusiasm is interactive, welcoming and compelling.  Now, when I think of people who I've worked with who've lacked enthusiasm I feel a heaviness as I picture them.  They are the people the word drag was invented to describe.  They make everything a struggle and spend more time throwing boulders into the path of progress, than they do actually trying to achieve goals.  They are the "It's good enough"  "That's as good as I get" people  They don't see potential as an ever-expanding journey, rather they see it as a stopping point. 

Enthusiastic employees raise the bar for everyone.  Unengaged employees hang on the bar to try to pull it down into their comfort zone.  Enthusiastic employees grow your practice.  Unengaged employees slow your practice.  Worse yet, unengaged employees want to discourage enthusiastic team members.  They know that they make them look bad and think it's easier to stop all that enthusiasm than it is to develop some within themself. 

What does an enthusiastic dental assistant look like?  She is well-groomed, her clothes are neat and clean, she has an open, smiling face and a pleasant attitude.  She looks like she loves her job and enjoys the people she works with.  What does she sound like?  She sounds upbeat, interested and involved.  She knows what she's talking about and when she doesn't, she asks someone who does.  She educates her patients, she is respectful to others and she has dignity.  She cares.  How does she act?  She is always looking for ways to help  others and to do things better.  She acts like she's happy to work in the practice and to take care of her patients. 

When you hire, look for the fire of enthusiasm.  Believe me, I know how easy it is to be fooled in an interview, so be sure to be very clear about how you will expect the employee to conduct herself on the job.  If you don't get what you want, be ready to address it and offer advise.  If it doesn't change, be ready to make a change.   Your employees help you accomplish your goals, enthusiasm drives accomplishment.  Got enthusiasm?

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