Five years ago (almost to the day!) I started a new adventure. I got a call in late Fall 2008 from my sister. She said that the doctor she worked as an Associate for was retiring at the end of the year, she was buying the practice and she needed a new Office Manager. She asked for me to join her. At the time I was working on my fourth year at another company and liked it. But with no hesitation, I said, "Yes!" Family comes first.
We went to visit our parents in Michigan that Christmas. I went a few days before everyone else. Right before I left, she gave me a binder to start reading on the plane about how to be an office manager for a dental office. That is when I started feeling a little overwhelmed. I was a 27-year-old about to become a manager for a well established practice. I was going to be the youngest of the staff...who was going to take me seriously?
I would love to tell you about my first day; however, I do not remember the first, second, or even first month! It was so much information to take in! In the first year we upgraded from dial-up internet to DSL, changed the office decor, went from paper to electronic charts, from x-ray films to digital x-rays, and can communicate with patients via emails and texts.
Even though we've gone through all those updates, we still follow Dr. Jones' primary vision: "Education, prevention and early intervention in a warm, caring, friendly atmosphere where YOU and YOUR choices matter." Each one of us really like and enjoy working here.
Thank you to all of those patients that have stuck with us through the transition five years ago. Thank you to all the new patients that have joined us along the way. And thank-you to all those that are currently seeking a new dentist and considering becoming part of our dental practice family.
My personal thank you to my sister, Ali: Thank you for letting me a part of your practice. When we were younger, I always knew that you would be doing something big and important and that I would have the opportunity to work for you (although, I thought it would be as your personal chef). Simply put, I love working here. I love the staff. I love the patients. Even though I grumble at parts (cough-insurance-cough), I love helping people!
Happy 5-year Anniversary!
It's been a wonderful year at my dental practice and I am so grateful to each and every one of my patients for making my dream come true every day. I wanted to have a dental practice that focuses on quality dentistry...but also...one that connects with people. I love hearing all your stories and laughing, and even crying with you all. Every day, I have a patient that opens my heart or my eyes to something new. I am the lucky one...so thank you. This is a unique opportunity and I am very grateful. I sit right next to you and hear all your triumphs and tragedies. I listen to your fears and we work through them...but you are the one who allows me the trust to take care of your smile, and step out of your comfort zone. I know that's not easy for many of you, so thank you. We are just a dentist office...but it is far beyond cleaning and caring for your smiles. I have learned so many things about people and relationships and life from all of you. I am full of joy as I reflect on the relationships that I have formed with my team and my patients here. In the years to come, I look forward to making new connections and building the old ones. So, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year...from my family to yours.
Sincerely, Ali Jones
In the next couple weeks, there are going to be a lot of pictures taken! Here are our tips for taking good family photos!
1. Clean, healthy teeth! - We are a dentist office...of course this would be our first one!
2. Make sure you pick a time where everyone is rested, well fed, and generally in a good mental place. Trying to scramble to get "the photo" when there are little ones that need a nap or are hungry is asking for disaster.
3. Take candid shots! These are generally the ones, I personally, love the most. Set shots are great for displaying, but the candid ones really get everyone's true nature. They also are great for documenting the moments. If there is someone in your family that has a good "photo eye", designate them as the picture taker...but be sure to take photos of that person, too!
4. I read a tip online (sorry...didn't catch the site) that you should try to avoid saying, "Cheese!" and say, "Uh!" with a smile instead. The "cheese" smile can look a little forced after a while.
5. Smile with your eyes and be natural!
6. Photoshop! In the above picture, we have Photoshopped our brother who lives out-of-state in the picture. This was meant more for the "ha ha" factor, but it can be done to look more natural.
7. Don't just keep the photos on the memory card! There are great free sites out there where you can upload your pictures, create albums and send to a local store to be printed for a great price. These places usually have great deals and online coupons, too.
Whether you set up a tripod in the family room, get a professional, or just snap away...we hope that a few of these tips help you get ready for next week. If you have tips, we would love to hear from you!
We hope that you all have a wonderful, safe Christmas and New Year!
Ali Jones, D.D.S. - Dentist