The saying, “you never get a second chance to make a good first impression” is true, whether you’re going on a job interview or working with patients. Your clinical success depends on having patients see you as a competent professional, and an approachable person they can feel comfortable with.
Janice Hurley-Trailor, BS, presents a program entitled “Optimal Image Impact” that delves into the powerful science of body language, verbal skills, and visual presentation, which are all important in communicating the right message to patients and others. Janice asks participants to perform a self-assessment in professional areas where they believe they excel, and in areas where they might need a little help.
Using this information, Janice can help optimize someone’s image for greatest personal and practice success. She also presents an uplifting program called “Clinical Etiquette” that discusses the top five ways team members can undermine efforts with patients and themselves without even knowing it. This program helps participants master the social skills to achieve consistent team success.
Janice’s programs help participants understand the relationship that individual choices have on others’ perceptions. Using real-life before-and-after pictures of team members who have made changes in their appearances both in and out of the office, Janice demonstrates the effect that these changes have, and how they allow others to see the team members as trusted and approachable professionals.
She also discusses the science of body language and how to master these skills, which allow patients to feel special, make them want to return to the practice, follow your recommendations, and share information with you.
Janice recommends both programs for all team members in order to increase their effectiveness within the practice. She uses PowerPoint, video, and group interaction in dynamic, witty, and spontaneous presentations. She encourages questions throughout her programs since they offer the audience powerful personal information to help them implement change.
Her programs can be offered as keynote motivational presentations or workshops/breakout sessions. Her keynotes are short with no handout material,
while her long programs provide audience participation and more in-depth information.
During her 25 years as a dental consultant (she has a degree in organizational behavior from the University of San Francisco), Janice discovered that while most dental team members believe their appearance is superficial, in actuality it has a tremendous impact on their success and on patients’ follow-through with recommendations. She learned the communication skills, both verbal and body language, that provide teams with the most effective success rates.
She includes this information in her consulting, stressing the importance of a team dress code, then video recording teams to see how they are perceived by patients. By using this very specific information, practices and lives have started to transform. Janice felt the time had come to spread the word about professional image in the dental practice beyond her clients, and began presenting instructional programs and coaching.
Her programs are marked with spontaneity and often take unexpected turns. For example, at many programs she asks volunteers to demonstrate styling. At one meeting, she wanted to demonstrate the fit of a jacket and chose a woman whose jacket looked great at a distance, but up close discovered the jacket did not flatter the woman.
Janice loves to help people feel better about themselves, while she is a consummate student of personal success. She feels that we can all use our gifts and talents to benefit others, and she is passionate about doing better today than she did yesterday. As a dental consultant, Janice is concerned with the changes in the economy and dental plans. She firmly believes that dental team members should be adequately paid for the quality dental care they provide.
She loves the opportunity to bring hope to others and to challenge her audiences to achieve the seemingly impossible, step-by-step. Janice stresses that one’s work is important, and that patients’ health, happiness, and beautiful smiles affect them in ways we may never know. She cares immensely that people’s confidence, career enjoyment, and professional success depend on being seen as trusted, poised, and confident professionals. That image begins with you – are you ready for the challenge?
Thought of the month: Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.John Lennon.
Ann-Marie C. DePalma, RDH, MEd, FADIA, FAADH, is a Fellow of the American Academy of Dental Hygiene and the Association of Dental Implant Auxiliaries, as well as a continuous member of ADHA. Ann-Marie is currently a business/clinical advisor for Jameson Management, Inc., a comprehensive coaching firm and also presents continuing education programs for dental team members on a variety of topics. She is collaborating with several authors on various books for dental hygiene and can be reached at amrdh@
aol.com or [email protected].
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