Called to Lead

Hi friends, welcome back to The Call where I discuss topics on life’s most compelling call—to lead, serve, and love authentically!  This month’s topic is a good one… we’re talking about leading with inclusivity. 
This topic is close to my ♥️ Throughout my leadership journey, I have learned that failures make me better and I don’t have to lead like everyone else to be effective.  We know great leaders develop leaders, but are we truly leading everyone on our team toward their highest potential?  I believe we all have the power and potential within ourselves to be leaders, but we need the tools and support to reach our potential. I hope the information I provide helps you to tap into that true leader that lives inside you, and remind you of the importance in building strong boundaries around yourself so you can live, lead, and serve without exhaustion or resentment!

Two decades ago, I took a leap of faith and did something I had never done before; I built my own dental practice without any real business knowledge. Diving headfirst into this adventure, I had a lot on my plate. I was trying to lead my team while expanding the practice to multiple locations, bringing in associates, and teaming up with a business partner. If you would have seen me, or even more, if you had known me back then, it would have seemed like I had it all figured out. But the truth is, I was struggling big time. I felt out of place, and imposter syndrome had begun to sneak in. These factors paired with the fact that I was not setting clear boundaries all started to wear me down. I realized I wasn’t being my true self as a leader, which was stressful and put a dent in me guiding my team properly.  As dentists we have to show up for our patients, and as leaders we need to be there for our team. But we cannot do any of that if we do not show up for ourselves first. I mean, how could I expect them to be their best if I wasn’t at my best?

I know from personal experience how tough being a good leader can be. But by building a culture of belonging, we all can work to be better, together. Below are four points to work on towards building this culture.

These include adapting to discomfort, mitigating unconscious bias through acknowledgment, developing a small set of tools for fostering authentic belonging in your practice, and managing emotions. All of these steps will help you to build a culture of belonging not just for yourself but for everyone around you as well. These points of growth will help you to protect yourself and your energy, will enhance the quality of care to your patience, and will create a comfortable space and work environment for you, your patients, coworkers, friends, and family. At the end of the day, all of this leads you to being a better and more authentic leader.

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