In the Trapped in an OP Facebook group, we lead frequent discussions about finding job opportunities and career advancements. With more than 15,000 members, we have a broad mix of dental professionals networking and helping each other advance. We have dentists, dental assistants, and other dental practice team members. We have speakers, consultants, authors, and other industry thought leaders. And we have speakers, educators, meeting planners, and more.
While our members represent a broad cross-section of the dental industry, they all have one thing in common. They all want to help each other achieve their business and professional goals. One goal shared by many of our members is career advancement. To some, that means advancing at their current practice or companies. To others, that means finding a new job, transitioning to a different role in dentistry, or leaving dentisty altogether.
No matter what your goal is, here are four surefire ways to make any career advancement or transition happen.
Know Where You're Going
As author and speaker, Jim Rohn, famously said, “Begin with the end in mind.” It's hard to hit a target you can't see. Thus, the first step to upgrading your dental career—or transitioning out of dentistry altogether—is to know where you're going.
Too many people know they're unhappy with their job and spend months or even years frustrated. But knowing what you want to get away from isn't enough to make a positive transition. You need to know where you want to go. Only then can you know what steps you need to take to make that transition.
Once you know where you want to go, take some time to understand what you need to do to get there. Then take action—even if you can only take a small step forward right now.
Do you need more education? Buy a book, take a CE, or sign up for an online class to build your skills or resume. Do you need to meet different people to find opportunities? Join an online or in-person networking group like the Trapped in an OP, Nifty Thrifty Dentists, or Dental Hub 360 Facebook groups. Do you know someone who has made the transition you want to make? Call them up to take them to lunch. The sooner you start to take action, the sooner you'll learn more about the position you're looking to move into and what you need to do to get there.
A good friend of ours at Dental Hub 360 always says, “We will become what we consistently do.” If we consistently exercise, we will become more athletic. If we consistently eat poorly, we will become less healthy. If we consistently work hard, we will advance in our careers.
Consistency builds momentum. If you know where you're going and what action you need to take, be consistent with taking action. Consistently learn, even if it's in small chunks. Consistently network, even if it's only a few minutes a day or once a week. Don't let weeks or months pass by without taking action.
Adopt a Healthy Mindset
One of the hardest parts of achieving any goal is to keep a positive mindset during the inevitable ups and downs you will face. You will have days—or even weeks—when you're stressed and nothing seems to work out. And you will have days—or even weeks—when everything seems to work! Staying positive and level-headed during the ups and downs will help you stay focused and moving in the right direction.
Are you ready to upgrade your career?
Whether you're looking to advance at your current practice or position or make a switch, these four ways will help. You'll know exactly where you're heading. You'll know exactly what you need to do to get there. And you'll take consistent action with the right mindset to ride the inevitable ups and downs you will face along the way.