“You are good. But it is not enough just to be good. You must be good for something. You must contribute good to the world. The world must be a better place for your presence. And the good that is in you must be spread to others....”
― Gordon B. Hinckley
If you're in a position of leadership, you must be good at something, right? At some point, in some way, you stood out from everyone else, and someone in charge thought,
"Huh, she's so good, I think I'll make her my office manager."
If you think back to the day the offer of this position was first presented to you, I'll bet you'll remember a mix of thoughts and emotions. You were probably flattered, possibly a little scared, and most likely somewhat proud of yourself. You were sure you could make an impact that would be positive for the practice and the staff. It's nice to be recognized for your hard work and a job well done. You couldn't wait to get started.
Then, reality might have hit you right between the eyes. In my case, a co-worker that I considered a friend, really struggled to come to terms with having me in a position of authority "over her." I didn't see it that way, but she did and she was determined to take me down. I was shocked and hurt at first, but as time went on and her behavior worsened I became frustrated and annoyed. When it got to the breaking point, the point at which I thought I'd have to let her go, thankfully some goodness somewhere inside me came through. I started to wonder what in the world was wrong with her and making her act this way. We set up a meeting and I realized she had gotten caught in a spiral. She had gotten trapped in her initial bad reaction and couldn't find a way out. I was able to open a window to goodness for her at that meeting and we were once again friends. I think part of the reason I lasted so long through her bad behavior was I recognized she was a good person behaving badly. It was my responsibility to find out why.
As a manager, finding that kind of goodness inside yourself, is essential to the success of everyone you lead, as well as your own. You see, you can't just sit there and bask in the fact that you are good at something, you have to help others become good, or better at what they do if you want to really matter.
Sometimes it's hard to pull any more goodness out of yourself. Most people don't realize how much stress managers face during the day. What everyone else sees you doing, is usually a fraction of your actual scope of responsibility. The better you are at what you do, the easier it looks. It's easy to feel resentful, or to think that nobody gets it. When you start feeling that way remember; that's not goodness talking, it's frustration, exhaustion and sometimes envy. It's easy to envy the fact that no one else seems to worry about production, collections, cancellations, fees, and the cost of doing dentistry as much as you do. Call on goodness and you will begin to think with your rational mind, rather than your emotional mind.
If you focus more on spreading goodness to your patients, staff, suppliers and yes, to the dentist, you will have the impact you knew you could have the day your boss came to you and said,
"I'd like you to manage my office."