The end of last week had an entrepreneur focus for me, we were shortlisted for an Entrepreneur’s Award and I supported some young entrepreneurs in a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style event.  What struck me was the importance of the entrepreneur mindset in developing dental businesses.  How leadership, coaching and communications are all vital.  Attracting and retaining customers. Achieving our business goals.  Motivating the dental team.Bob Hughes & Helen Caton Hughes shortlisted for the FSB real-life entrepreneur awards

Let’s look at the young entrepreneurs first.  55 young people from across Coventry and Warwickshire.  Smart in their best outfits on a sizzling summer day.  My fellow dragons and I practised our 'mean' faces - but of course we couldn't keep it up for long in the face of their undoubted achievements.

They’d been selected for an intensive programme aimed at stretching their horizons.  Taking them out of their comfort zones and challenging them to raise awareness of some of today’s pressing social issues.

The job of us Dragons was to assess their ideas and support (or reject) their funding bids – based on a 5-minute presentation.  What struck me most was that many of these young people knew what they didn’t want – but were less able to express what they were aiming for.

This is a huge challenge for all business people.  When we clearly define our business and can express it to others – especially members of the dental team – we’re more likely to be successful.

Talking with a coaching client today, getting our staff to appreciate that what we do is a business, is a challenge in itself.  Especially in the care sector.

So it’s triple paradox.

  • Know what you’re moving away from – what you don’t want
  • Have a clear vision of what you’re aiming for
  • Express this clearly

Oh – and as leader, your role is to take the whole team towards that vision – step by step.

It’s not just our communications skills that need honing.  It’s one thing to be able to express what we’re trying to achieve.  It’s another to bring people with us.  Some people call this ‘buy-in’.  Others ‘engagement’.  It’s about winning others over to the vision – such that everyone’s pulling in the same direction.

If you’re interested, I’ve attached a success factors overview that sums up the seven success areas that business people need to be successful.

success factors for dental business owners download success factors overview

One of those success factors is ‘people’.  Surrounding yourself with the right people is a hidden secret of success.

Recently, a client talked about getting the right people in her team.  In small organisations such as the dental team, even one person who lacks the right skills or attitude, can hold everyone else back.

We explored the three key elements of attracting the right people to the team:

  • Express your vision clearly – show people what winning the game means for  your business and the kind of people who will fit best with that vision for success
  • Talk about your business values – show your people that it’s not all about winning – it’s also the way we take part – caring for our fellow team members, patients and their carers.
  • Be an authentic leader – who you’re being as a leader is as important as what you’re aiming to win and how you play the game.  Leading from the front – showing your desire to succeed whilst living your values.

And the Real-life Entrepreneur’s Award?  The final winners were Sign Solutions, a sign-language service using new technologies.  Congratulations to them – an entrepreneurial social enterprise.  Even though we weren’t the outright winners on this occasion, we genuinely enjoyed the taking part.

And what these examples have in common in the genuine pleasure I get from supporting others to be successful.  Developing today’s leaders in the dental team cheapest viagra or the entrepreneurs of the future.