“Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day. Teach him to fish, and he’ll never be hungry.”
No doubt you’ve heard this adage a time or two in your schooling or from your parents growing up. The same saying can ring true for you and your team too. It sounds great in theory to train your team to do a new task or skill, but then comes the actual time investment. We as dentists often feel that “ain’t nobody got time for that!” But then we keep trying to do it all ourselves, and feel so overwhelmed.
I recently had a chance to see Rory Vaden, author of “Take the Stairs” and “Procrastinate on Purpose,” a self-proclaimed expert and ”time multiplier” at a recent dental conference. He said that for every five minutes it takes the practice leader to do a task, it takes 30 times longer to train someone to do it. WHAT? How do we ever train anyone then?
Let’s consider this, instead of taking five minutes for me to place retraction cord around a prepped tooth, or take the PVS impression for the laboratory, if I was to sit down and train my assistant to do these tasks for 150 minutes one day (30 X 5 = 150 minutes), it may seem like an incredible expenditure of time and energy.
Then consider that there are about 250 work days per year. If I can save five minutes a day X 250 work days per year, that equates to 1,250 minutes minus 150 minutes for training = a gain of 1,100 minutes.
Take it further: 1,100 minutes gained divided by the 150 minutes of training invested = 733% return on investment
When considering the big picture, you gain so much more and in essence multiply your time, while at the same time empowering your team to do things that they have seen you do every day. Next question, how long would it take to train my children to do the laundry...