Many topics were discussed in depth but membership topics received the most attention. Certainly, we want to retain long-time members and be aware of their needs from CADS but for most of this group, they have seen the importance of the intangible benefits of organized dentistry whether it is the ability to host the best clinical dentistry lecturers available or protection from outside entities who seek to influence how our profession functions. We all enjoy being a part of a cohesive group of colleagues to share ideas and experiences. Those of us that have been members of CADS for more than a few years have seen that belonging has great value.
The question becomes then, why are the new dentist joining and what’s in it for them? If they do not become engaged or if they feel unwelcome, it is likely that they will not participate in CADS. This is an important question because they most likely have not been in a position to see that the intangible benefits far outweigh the tangible ones. While the tangible benefits of belonging, such as a newsletter, ridiculously inexpensive great continuing education, and Member Benefits to name a few are important, it is all of the other benefits that really make a difference in our profession and in our careers.
The focus is to make all new members feel welcome from the very beginning. CADS receives from seven to as many as twelve new member applications each month. These new dentists are working to establish their practices and sense that belonging to organized dentistry is the right move to make yet not really knowing what is really in it for them.
At each meeting of the CADS Board of Directors, the Chair of the Judicial Committee presents the applications for membership for acceptance. It was decided that a board member would be paired with each new applicant to contact them and make sure they feel welcome from the very beginning by being their host at their first meeting. This is the meeting where they are introduced and voted into membership. We heard from some of our newer members that it was intimidating for them to come to that first meeting knowing very few or even not a soul. We ask that you help by making it a point to meet colleagues that you may not know at the meetings and make them feel welcome.
While looking back at the last strategic plan, it was generally agreed that all of the goals set forth had been accomplished. One of the key things that came out of that plan was the formation of the New Dentist Committee. This committee has been very active for a number of years now and is where our leaders are coming from. Typically, they host socials at various eateries and clubs around Austin. This gives them a chance to meet other new dentists and share their common concerns and ideas and learn together. (They already know how to party!) I hope you enjoy the pictures from past New Dentists events.