Laura Bettencourt, right, with her Diamond Dental Coaching cofounder, Danielle Avila.

RDH Evolution: Empowerment, motivation, and support

Oct. 19, 2022
What do vulnerability and comradery have in common? They were both part of the RDH Evolution experience for Laura Bettencourt, and she highly recommends her peers take on the same challenges.

It took almost 15 years into my career for me to make career moves that empowered me. I’ve done little things here and there, but nothing gave me what I needed more than RDH Evolution.

Like most hygienists fresh out of school, I was nervous and unsure going into practice. I knew I wanted to work clinically, and I always had a passion for education. I was fortunate enough to land my first position at an incredible office and I worked with them for more than 10 years. I loved the rapport I had with my patients and coworkers. Life was great. 

An opportunity presented itself for me to teach clinically part time and I turned it down. I was comfortable and happy, and I didn’t want to change. This was my first mistake of my career, and it later became a learning moment. Fast forward to my family relocating and my son starting a new school; it was the right time to make an even scarier step and leave the wonderful workplace I called my second home. 

This is when change happened. At my new place of employment, I was challenged and given new opportunities, and I grew into a leadership role. A couple of friends and I collaborated, and our wheels started turning. We wondered how we could help our fellow hygienists more often. We wish we’d had mentors or coaches to guide us in our careers when we graduated from hygiene school, when we felt lost and unsure in our careers, or when we felt stuck at the same practice for many years. We wanted to give back and do more for our hygiene community. This is when Diamond Dental Hygiene Career Coaching was born. 

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As Diamond Dental Hygiene Career Coaching was growing, we were busy networking, and that’s when we heard about RDH Evolution from Amber Auger. We could not be more thankful to her for introducing us to this opportunity. When we heard about Evolution, we immediately knew we needed to attend. As we boarded the plane, we were filled with excitement and nerves, looking forward to the possibilities that awaited us. 

RDH Evolution changed my life, and I’m certain it changed the lives of all the attendees. I want to encourage all hygienists to attend RDH Evolution. This event accepts you as you are, challenges your mindset, and provides some special “pearls,” as Jackie Sanders calls them. This group consisted of recent graduates, entrepreneurs, CEOs, and everything in between. 

Our common ground was that we were all there to support and empower one another. On the first day of classes, the speakers were vulnerable, and that vulnerability showed truth and encouragement for the rest of us to be the same. It set the tone for everyone to get the most out of the next two days. Everyone took a little something different home from RDH Evolution, and here are my takeaways. 

Vulnerability goes a long way: The way the speakers were so open and raw felt authentic and inspiring. They shared personal stories that set the tone for Evolution. The speakers lead by example, allowing fellow attendees to be just as open and vulnerable. It was beautiful to share such inspiring moments with fellow like-minded hygienists. In those moments, everyone was there to support one another, judgment was left at the door, and support and encouragement were promoted by all. 

Imposter syndrome and fear are real: Everyone experiences these, and it’s normal. You don’t want to let these feelings hinder you and your decisions. We learned ways to break down fear so that it’s not as scary, and this has already helped me immensely. It’s a coincidence because this is one of the main pain points we hit with clients as coaches. It was a good reminder that it’s a practice I should continue. 

Say yes when opportunities present themselves: But you may be hesitant to say yes due to those nerves or fears. This is when change will present itself, and this is where opportunities await you. Everything is a learning experience. I wish this was something I’d known all those years ago when I had the teaching offer. But I don’t look back with regret at saying no because that decision led me to where I am today. I do look at it as a learning opportunity and a chance for others to learn from my mistakes. It’s healthy to get outside of your comfort zone. 

Network: It’s good to have friends. RDH Evolution not only increases your confidence and teaches you how to limit your fears, but it also connects you with amazing people who want you to be successful just as much as you do. You will forge friendships that will last a lifetime. You will be able to collaborate with brilliant individuals and companies that align with your core values. You’ll connect with people you can lean on when you’re having a bad day and celebrate with you when you’re having a win. 

RDH Evolution not only fills your cup with encouragement, love, and support, it helps you network with innovators, creators, and the dental world. I promise you if you attend the next Evolution, you’ll be amazed at how it can transform your life. It sure transformed mine.

About the Author

Laura Bettencourt, BSDH, RDH

Laura Bettencourt, BSDH, RDH, has more than 15 years of clinical experience. A mother, wife, writer, speaker, RDH, and cofounder of L’Diamante Dental Coaching, she excels in leadership, compliance, hygiene excellence, and periodontal protocols. Laura is dedicated to inspiring growth, empowering clients with confidence and clarity. Committed to education and mentorship, she instills a positive attitude in all aspects of life. Contact her at [email protected].