Dental Entrepreneur Woman - Spring 2022

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By Dr. Victoria Peterson & Maggie Augustyn, DDS


hink that strong-minded women have to sacrifice their intuitive insights in order to lead? Think again. Particularly in dentistry, which is dominated by a female workforce. Nearly half of new dental school graduates are female, 95% of dental assistants, 98% of dental hygienists, and 97% of office administrators are female. With the rising tide of empowerment comes an opportunity to shift paradigms. The old-guard, authoritarian leadership paradigm is giving way to the invitation to lead from the heart.

What does it mean to lead with heart? The heart is our emotional center of compassion, empathy, and connection. Heartfelt leadership inspires instead of commands, it invites, and encourages. Leading from the heart leans into the skills of active-listening, collaboration, and cooperation. Leading from the heart does not negate the need for structure, self-discipline, or boundaries. In fact, heart-felt leadership thrives with these structures in place. Please consider this, leading from heartfelt values makes you stronger, not weaker, as a leader. It brings the space to request and require people to show up at their best, without the blinders of fear and self-doubt. There are correlations of the physical heart and spiritual heart that apply to leadership traits.

PHYSICAL – SPIRITUAL HEART CORRELATION Life flows from the physical heart, pumping nutrients & oxygen; emotions flow through the spiritual heart. The heart must take care of itself first.

LEADERSHIP TRAITS Life (energy) flows from the leader; expressed through vision, mission, and purpose. Self-sacrifice is not leadership; it’s martyrdom. Leaders, even servant leaders, know they must renew their spirit and energy in order to be effective.

All other systems are dependent on the heart. Depression accompanies a hurt heart.


Business contraction (depressed results) accompanies a hurt team (poor culture).

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