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Tips for Growing Your Dental Administrative Career

Teresa Spence, FAADOM with text, "Real-world insights from AADOM authors"

What are you doing to make a difference in your dental administrative career? Are you struggling to stay connected, motivated, or growing as a dental administrative professional?

Are you an office manager, practice administrator, insurance coordinator, treatment or financial coordinator, hygiene coordinator, patient care coordinator, or do you wear multiple hats?

As dental administrative professionals, we normally find ourselves landed in a position with little to no training or direction on what we’re to do or how we’re to grow.

Fortunately, there are limitless resources out there to help take you to the next level and connect to your position. You’ll never regret investing in yourself and taking your career further.

I am a firm believer in being committed, dedicated, self-investing, and taking ownership in every aspect of my personal and professional life. I think this decision has made a huge impact on the growth in all areas of my life, but it has mostly impacted my professional career as a dental office manager.

How I grew my dental administrative career


You must be committed to making a difference in your career by doing what it takes to make a difference in yourself and your job role. It’s not always easy, but it’s always worth it.


You must be dedicated to fulfilling your purpose or reaching the destination you have in mind for your career.


Investing in your own personal and professional growth sets you up for great success. Self-investment means you believe in yourself as a professional person of worth. It also means you plan for your own professional development and not leave it to the whims of others. You are worthy of anything you want to achieve.


Taking ownership means standing up and announcing that you’re responsible for executing the task before you. It sounds easy enough, but taking ownership of your everyday tasks leads to a lifelong opportunity to succeed in everything you do.

How AADOM helped me grow as a dental manager

AADOM has helped guide me to discipline myself to commit to my education, dedicate my time, invest in my own personal growth, and take ownership to attain the next level in my career.

Being a part of this organization has made a huge impact in helping myself and others to make a difference in their dental administrative careers.

If you’re asking yourself, “how can I do this?”, here are three areas that’ll get you started on the path toward a successful administrative career in dentistry.

First, get connected with AADOM.

The opportunities for growing and learning are unbelievable, and you have access to resources and industry experts that’ll blow your mind. Why try and reinvent the wheel or process if a member of the tribe is willing to share a proven method?

The annual AADOM Conference… This text opens a new tab to the conference website… is held once a year and you walk away with a renewed spirit, unbelievable experience, and ready to take your dental administrative career to the next level. You’ll not be disappointed by joining or attending.

Second, get connected with a local AADOM Chapter.

They’re located – or being created – throughout the entire United States. This is an opportunity for you as a dental professional to be connected at the local level.

You’ll find that the inspiration and motivation you receive once a year at the annual conference will now be fulfilled once a quarter at the chapter meetings. Local chapters are bringing in nationally recognized speakers, discussing industry key topics, and providing round table discussions to enhance your dental career.

Being connected at the local level has been a huge benefit for me and the practice that I am in.

Third, take the time to invest in reading, taking online courses, and logging into webinars.

AADOM provides a library full of web courses that’ll enhance your career. I have been in dentistry for over 30 years, and we as office leaders will never know everything (and the day you think you do will be the day you need to have a talk with yourself).

I have read books and listened to webinars on topics that I’m already familiar with, but I seem to always walk away with another tidbit of information or find that it’ll spark the motivation that I’ve been lacking in that area. I’ve heard several people say, “I do not have time for the extra reading or webinars,” and to them, I say you must find time if you want to grow in your dental administrative career.

If you’re looking for ways to grow in your current career, I encourage you to make the commitment, become dedicated to fulfilling your purpose, self-invest in your own education, and take ownership in making it happen.

The American Association of Dental Office Managers “tribe” is here to help you. You’ll be excited at the growth that you will encounter in yourself, your team, and your practice.


Meet the Author

Teresa Spence in black top and pearl necklaceTeresa Spence has been in dentistry for 31 years, most of which she has spent with Amelia Dental Group… This text opens a new tab to the practice’s website… in Fernandina Beach, FL.

She began her career as a dental assistant, and gradually learned more of the ins and outs of practice. She has held the position of practice administrator for the past 11 years.

Her first AADOM Conference was in 2011. When she came home, she got to work on developing what is now the AADOM Northeast Florida Chapter… This text opens a new tab to the chapter’s website….

Teresa became a Fellow of the American Association of Dental Office Managers in 2012 and is a two-time recipient of the Office Manager of Distinction award.



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