Maximize The Value of Your Dental Practice Today! | Schedule Consultation

Episode 206 – Requested Replay: Hiring & Training Your Team

“My preference is to hire people based on personality. With the right personality, the skills and systems can be taught.” ~Dr. Bruce B. Baird

What criteria do you use to hire people in your dental office? Do you hire people who have a lot of experience? I used to do that. But if you’re the type of practice that has solid systems, you may need to look at your hiring a different way.

In my early career, I almost always looked for people who had a lot of experience in the front office or as an assistant. But then I noticed something. Over time, the excellent systems I had in place were slowly changing, even though I didn’t want them to. It turned out it was the people I hired – who had a lot of experience – who were changing my processes.

In his book The E Myth, Michael E. Gerber says your business should be set up so that every system is so solid that you could franchise your business and someone else could replicate it. I wanted my dental office set up that way. I wanted every system so streamlined and solid that it was able to be taught to anyone.

So I had to reevaluate the criteria I used to hire a team. It’s only natural that people with experience would bring their past experience to my office. But because I had very specific ways I wanted things done in my office, I realized that to be successful, I needed to hire people with the right personality and then train them exactly how I wanted things done.

Today, I’m going to talk about my experience hiring, training, and empowering my dental team, including:

  • The role solid systems play in this model
  • What to look for in job candidates
  • How I had to improve my training and education skills

Never miss an episode! Subscribe on iTunes & Spotify. Visit us at


Dr. Bruce Baird 1:49
Hi, this is Dr. Bruce Baird with the Productive Dentist Podcast. So today what I’d like to look at and to talk about is how do you hire people? Do you hire people based on experience? Is that what you’re looking for? Are you looking for somebody to be working at the front, a front desk that has had a lot of experience at the front desk or do you look for people, dental assistants who’ve had lots of dental assistant experience? Is that your way of looking at it? Well, it was mine early in my career I almost always looked for people with a lot of experience and what I began to realize is, if you’re the type of practitioner, if you’re the type of dentist who has solid systems and has really you know, for collections, for greeting people for answering the phone for how you bring patients back how you do everything in your office should be set up, as you know, just like the E Myth.

Dr Bruce Baird 2:58
The E Myth tells you that everything has to be done in a certain way in a business as if you were going to franchise that business, which is kind of interesting and I read that book back in the early 80s, and it was one of those books that kind of changed the track of my career. It didn’t happen overnight, but I wanted to have the system so solid, that every system was tradable every system was something that not anybody could do, but somebody with the right personality could do it, and so what I would find is I would bring somebody in with a lot of experience and what they would do is they would bring their previous experience, which you would think is always good. They would bring that into the practice, and in a short period of time, and I’m not saying don’t hire people experienced by us, in a short period of time, what we would find is, they would bring their past experience, what was successful for them and what was unsuccessful for them in their past office, and they would bring it to the new office, and even though it was something that I wouldn’t be, I wouldn’t be asking for, some of the systems in the office would begin to slowly change.

Dr Bruce Baird 4:10
Have you ever done that where you, you’ve got a situation where you decided this is how we’re going to take care of our, this is how we’re going to take care of, let’s say, recare, we’re going to do it a certain way and you have your team meeting once a month, or once a week, or however often you do it, and you’re not paying attention on a daily basis and we’ve talked about this quite a bit. If you always inspect what you expect, but as human nature is we forget to do that. And now we’re two months down the road, three months, four months, six months a year down the road, and we start asking about our recare system, and the recare system is not even close to the way that you started that recare system and the way you wanted it, you know. We wanted to send out, you know, for recare, we wanted to always pre-appoint and then we wanted to call them 72 hours ahead, and then we call it with a reminder, we sent a text, and then we call with a reminder a day before the appointment and what I found was, well, that system was totally different, and why was it different?

Dr. Bruce Baird 5:17
What was different because that person who came in that had experience in this arena, what to their own way of doing it, because that’s, you know what they were used to doing, and that can be great because sometimes it’s a new system is better than the system that you have. I understand that, but I have expectations of the way I want to run my business. Now, early on in my career, I didn’t know what I wanted, I didn’t understand it. So I hired based upon just about any category. If the person seemed like they were nice, again, early in my career, if you could, if you had a pulse, I would probably hire you. You remember some of the stories I tell about, you know, going through the team, you know, one after the other, and I joked that everybody in Granberry used to work for me. I was such a bad boss, but the truth is, as we began to see you know, as we begin to see these, and office grow grew, and I began to see the people that I was bringing in, were bringing all of their own experiences, and it ended up, I ended up hiring five people, eight people, 10 people remember, we went from a team of about four to 20 in the first year, and what I found was, it was very difficult for me to keep any system in the office because every time I’d hire somebody that the system would change, and so, and again, early in my career, I hired based on experience, and I hate to say it, but you know, if the person was very attractive, and a good communicator, well, they had the job.

Dr. Bruce Baird 6:53
Not even based on experience, and what I found was, again, the difficulty in having what I call the model practice and the model practice. I did a lot of studies, a lot of work on what I wanted my practice to be like, that was what was important to me. This is the way I want my practice to be these are the systems I want to have in my practice. It’s not to say that it’s my way or the highway like it was early in my career, but I wanted certain systems and then I would evaluate each of those systems and I would determine you know, this was not working. I would talk to friends, I would talk to mentors, I would go to courses on different systems in my practice. What we teach at Productive Dentist Academy is these are the systems is this is how, this is what you do, this is how we greet this is the new patient exam, this is how we do everything within the practice, because if things are repeatable, consistently repeatable, and you see success in a system doesn’t mean you will change certain things.

Dr Bruce Baird 7:59
I’ll give you an example in my new patient exam. My new patient exam is always the same until I come up with a new phrase or a new way of talking about something and then I’ll place that into my one-act play, my routine and I’ll try it, if it works, great, I love it. If it doesn’t, well, then I’m back away from that now I’ll try something else in the future as they come about, but I think what became very important to me and we’ve talked about it is, when you’re building an Investment Grade Practice, or you’re building a practice that has value forever, that you want to make sure that your systems are very, very stable. My preference today is to hire somebody and for the last 15 to 18 years, is to hire somebody based on their personality, that somebody that can look in your eyes and say hello with a smile, that has, you know, has that character trait that people are drawn to, that people like, you know, you see it every day. When I go to Dell frescoes in Fort Worth, there’s three or four people there that I look at, and I go like, “Wow, what a great employee.” I go to, go here in town to several of the restaurants or I go to the bank, and I’m talking to somebody and you just see some people just there, they’re positive energy, and I know it sounds crazy, you’d love to, you know, you’d love for somebody like that to have experience, but the experience brings with them the baggage from their previous experiences, route laboratory, who I say is the best lab in the world. I always like to say that because I’ve been using the guys for 37 years. They don’t hire people with experience in a lab business, they train exactly the way they want it done, and I found that that really was very important in my own practice. I had to become a great trainer, I had to become somebody who could teach my employees exactly the way I wanted it done. Most of my team besides hygenist, obviously, but most of my team are people who had very little or no experience in the dental industry. So it to me, it’s extremely important for them to teach it my way. We’re running a play, our play has lives, our play has certain roles and characters, and I hire for those and we have the systems in place.

Dr Bruce Baird 10:43
Now if I’m a brand new dentist just starting out, yeah, I hired somebody with Dentrix experience because that was the software, and certainly, it wasn’t when I first started because there weren’t computers when I first started, but as we get, yes, I got somebody with that, but you have to be very careful and to really train. Training for an Investment Grade Practice, in my opinion, is probably the most important thing that you can possibly do. Take these employees, teach them exactly the way you want it done, and then take the time, it might be once every month, it might be once a week, take a look at that system, take a look at that front desk, how they do things, and, and evaluate it. Give them feedback, help them become the best version of themselves the best front office person, because my goal is I want to have the best chairside, I want to have the best hygenist I want to have the best across the board, you know, in all those different areas and is it easy? Well, if it was easy, anybody could do it, and so now you know being in dental being it a dentist and having a team of however many people you have no it’s not easy. It’s very difficult, but this has got to be an intentional activity. It’s got to be something that you do on a regular basis and what you’ll find is, the better job you do upfront, the less worry you have in the long run, and the easier your practice is going to run and the less stress remember what happens to productivity when you’re under stress? It goes up. Well, I love it when it goes down. I love it when you’re you’re checking the things that you need to check. So anyway, that’s the podcast for today. Do you hire for experience or do you hire personality and how that person is? So thanks again for the voting on the podcast and I look forward to sharing the book legendary leadership with you in the future here so next time, I’ll see you soon.

Dr Bruce Baird 12:47
Thank you for joining me for this episode of the Productive Dentist Podcast. If you found this episode helpful, make sure you subscribe, pass it along to a friend. Give us a like on iTunes and Spotify or drop me an email at don’t forget to check out other podcasts from the Productive Dentist Podcast Join me again next week for another episode of the Productive Dentist Podcast

Have a great experience with PDA recently?

Leave a Review

Need help?
Accessibility Options
Accessibility On Our Website

We are committed to continuously improving access to our goods and services by individuals with disabilities. If you are unable to use any aspect of this website because of a disability, please call (800) 757-6077 and we will provide you with prompt personalized assistance.

If you have trouble seeing web pages, the US Social Security Administration offers these tips for optimizing your computer and browser to improve your online experience.

If you are looking for mouse and keyboard alternatives, speech recognition software such as Dragon Naturally Speaking may help you navigate web pages and online services. This software allows the user to move focus around a web page or application screen through voice controls.

If you are deaf or hard of hearing, there are several accessibility features available to you.

Closed Captioning
Closed captioning provides a transcript for the audio track of a video presentation that is synchronized with the video and audio tracks. Captions are generally visually displayed over the video, which benefits people who are deaf and hard of hearing, and anyone who cannot hear the audio due to noisy environments. Most of our website’s video content includes automated captions. Learn how to turn captioning on and off in YouTube.

Volume Controls
Your computer, tablet, or mobile device has volume control features. Each video and audio service has its own additional volume controls. Try adjusting both your device’s volume controls and your media players’ volume controls to optimize your listening experience.

Read More About Accessibility and Why It Matters

Need help?

Oops! We could not locate your form.

Do not include sensitive personal, financial, or other confidential information (Social Security, account number, login, passwords, etc.). This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Helpful Resources

Below are links you may find helpful when scheduling an appointment with us.


Episode 209 – Requested Replay: What Does PDA Do?

“We didn’t set out to do it, it was our members who said we want...

Episode 209 – Requested Replay: What Does PDA Do? (featured image)

Episode 235 – Empowered Voices

“There is a privilege of standing at the podium. It’s not about...

Episode 235 – Empowered Voices (featured image)

Episode 112 – Requested Replay: Your Philosophy of Care

“Figure out who you are, who you serve, and then develop your...

Episode 112 – Requested Replay: Your Philosophy of Care (featured image)
In the Press

I’ve Arrived: From $100 in the Bank to Generational Wealth in Less Than 3 Years.

from Dental Entrepreneur – Winter 2023 By Dr. Maggie Augustyn...

I’ve Arrived: From $100 in the Bank to Generational Wealth in Less Than 3 Years. (featured image)
From Our Blog

Investment Grade Practice™ News – May 2024

Dear Doctor, Spring signals a time of renewal and re-energization....

Investment Grade Practice™ News – May 2024 (featured image)
Follow Us On Social Media


Stay informed on updates and upcoming events from our office.


Connect and learn more about Productive Dentist Academy.


Subscribe to our YouTube channel.


View fun photos and follow our team on Instagram.

Your Privacy
Privacy Policy

This privacy notice discloses our privacy practices and the use of Google Analytics 4(GA4), an analytic advertising feature. This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this website and the GA4 platform. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the website and GA4 platform, how it is used, and with whom it may be shared.
  2. The choices available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing

We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

While Productive Dentist Academy is the primary data controller, Google, in the context of providing Google Analytics service, acts as a data processor. We use Google Analytics 4, a widely recognized web analytics service provided by Google, Inc., to track user interactions and gather data for advertising purposes. As a third-party vendor, Google Analytics operates independently and maintains its own privacy policy, which can be found at We carefully select our third-party vendors for their commitment to user privacy and adherence to data protection standards. As part of our ongoing commitment to your privacy, we implement measures to ensure that services like GA4 comply with our high standards of data protection.

GA4 collects certain personally identifiable information from you as you interact with our website. This information includes but is not limited to your device ID, IP address, and geographic location. The information collected through GA4 is used to analyze user behavior, optimize our website’s performance, and tailor our content to better serve your needs. This data is compiled and anonymized, ensuring that it cannot be linked back to individual users.

Please note that GA4 may share the information collected with Google and other third-party service providers to enable data processing and reporting on website usage. However, we will not sell, rent, or share your information, especially your personally identifiable information, with any third party outside of our organization.

Your Access to and Control Over Information

You have certain rights regarding the data collected by GA4. You have the right to do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

In addition to opting out of any future communications from us at any time, you may also opt out of the GA4 feature if you so choose. You can opt out of the GA4 Advertising Features we use through Ads Settings, Ad Settings for mobile apps, or through the NAI’s. This link points to Google Analytics’ currently available opt-outs for the web 


We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline. GA4 also follows industry best practices to protect your data both online and offline.

To ensure data protection while we are using GA4, we are implementing additional security measures that include and are not limited to:

  • limiting data access, 
  • using secure protocols, 
  • managing data sharing with Google

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

Contact Us

If you have any concerns about the use of GA4 or believe that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, please contact us immediately. We are committed to addressing any privacy-related issues promptly and transparently.

By using our website and consenting to the use of GA4, you acknowledge and agree to the data collection and processing practices described in this notice. For more information about GA4 and its privacy practices, please review Google’s Privacy Policy on this link

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately.

Read More About Our Privacy Policy and Why It Matters

Terms of Service
Terms of Service

Entering this site or the links accessible through this site, you agree to be bound by this agreement. The information and the resources contained on and accessible through this site are made available by Productive Dentist Academy and/or its suppliers and vendors, and are subject to your agreement to their terms and conditions.

All contents copyright (c) Productive Dentist Academy

All rights reserved, Productive Dentist Academy makes this website available to all users for the sole purpose of providing educational information on health-related issues.

The accuracy of website, information, and resources identified are not warranted or guaranteed, or intended to be a substitute for professional health advice, to contradict health advice given, or for health care of any kind.

Your use of this website indicates your agreement to be bound by the Terms of Use and you expressly agree to be bound to the foregoing terms and conditions.

All materials on this website, including the site’s design, layout, and organization, are owned and copyrighted by Productive Dentist Academy, or its suppliers or vendors, and are protected by U.S. and international copyrights.

Material on this site may be used for personal use only. Commercial use of any sort is strictly prohibited.

Use of Resources & Information
This site may not be used as a supplement or alternative for health care, and is not intended and does not warrant or guarantee the quality or quantity of any services of any of the advertisers identified; further, the information provided is merely for educational purposes, and its accuracy is not guaranteed. Do not use this site as a substitute for health care. Please consult with your doctor or other health care provider regarding any health questions you may have. This site may not be used for health diagnosis or treatment. Do not use this site to disregard any health advice, nor to delay seeking health advice, because of something you read or see in this site.

You understand and agree that neither Productive Dentist Academy nor its suppliers or vendors or linked domain names are responsible or liable for any claim, loss, or damage of any kind, directly or indirectly resulting from your use of this site or the information or the resources contained on or accessible through it.

Productive Dentist Academy expressly disclaims any implied warranty or representation about the information or accuracy, relevance, completeness, timeliness or appropriateness for any particular purpose of any kind. Your use of this site is also subject to all additional disclaimers that may appear throughout the site.

Other Internet Sites Links
This site also includes links to other internet sites created and maintained by Productive Dentist Academy’s suppliers, vendors, affiliates, or subscribers. Be aware that Productive Dentist Academy does not control, makes no guarantees about, and disclaims any express or implied representations or warranties about the accuracy, relevance, completeness, timeliness or appropriateness for a particular purpose of the information or the resources contained on these or any other internet sites.

Further, the inclusion of these links is merely for your convenience and is not intended and does not reflect Productive Dentist Academy’s opinion on the accuracy or the importance of these other sites; further, Productive Dentist Academy does not endorse in any manner any of the views expressed in, or products or services offered by these other sites. All information in any site by Productive Dentist Academy, or associated or linked site, is extracted, read, used, or relied upon by you at your own risk.

Disclaimer of Warranty
Productive Dentist Academy and its suppliers and vendors disclaim all express or implied representations or warranties regarding the information, services, products, materials, and any other resources contained on or accessible through this site, including without limitation any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. All information provided by Productive Dentist Academy is made available “as is” and “as available” without warranty of any kind, or any express or implied promise, including, by way of example, its continuing availability.

Limitation of Liability
With respect to products, goods, or services purchased from any entity identified, listed, named or contacted through Productive Dentist Academy’s website, or any links to Productive Dentist Academy’s website, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, in no event shall Productive Dentist Academy or its suppliers or vendors be liable for any direct, indirect, special, punitive, incidental, exemplary, contractual, or consequential damages, or any damages whatsoever of any kind, resulting from any loss, which by way of example, includes loss of use, loss of data, loss of profits, business interruption, litigation, or any other pecuniary loss, whether based on breach of contract, tort (including negligence), product liability, or otherwise, arising out of or in any way connected with the use or performance of this site, with the delay or inability to use this site, or with the provision of or failure to make available any information, services, products, materials, or other resources contained on or accessible through this site, even if advised of the possibility of such damages.

You acknowledge and agree that the limitations set forth above are elements of this agreement, and that this site would not be provided to you absent such limitations.

You agree to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Productive Dentist Academy and its suppliers and vendors from any liability, loss, claim, and expense (including reasonable attorneys’ fees) related to your violation of this agreement or use of this site in any manner. Your use of this site shall constitute your acceptance of the terms of this Agreement, as revised and modified, if any, each time you access this site. Productive Dentist Academy may modify this agreement at any time, and such modifications shall be effective immediately upon posting of the modified agreement.

Productive Dentist Academy’s failure to insist upon strict enforcement of any provision(s) of this agreement shall not be construed as a waiver of any provision or right.

This agreement and the resolution of any dispute related to this agreement or this site shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Washington, without giving effect to any principles or conflicts of law. Any legal action or proceeding between Productive Dentist Academy or its links, suppliers or vendors and you related to this agreement or this site shall be brought exclusively in a state or federal court of competent jurisdiction sitting in Skagit County, Washington.

All materials on this website, including the site’s design, layout, and organization, are owned and copyrighted by Productive Dentist Academy or its suppliers or vendors, and are protected by U.S. and international copyrights.

This site contains links to other sites. Productive Dentist Academy is not responsible for the privacy practices of other sites that are linked to us.

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding Productive Dentist Academy’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use, please contact us.

Read More About Our Terms of Service and Why It Matters

Search the Website

Use keywords in the search box below to find what you're looking for.

Go to the Top of the Page