People in Business : Rachel Jackson
The Cheshire Magazine profiles some of the region’s biggest names in business
Rachel Jackson - Practice Owner, Superior Smiles
Meet Rachel Jackson who started working as a dental receptionist in 2004, progressed to a qualified dental nurse in 2007, and then developed into a lead dental nurse, practice manager, business manager and now practice owner.
What led you into your industry?
Like many people, I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I left school. I didn’t want to spend time studying for a qualification I may not use, and I was eager to get straight into employment, so I started working as a receptionist in a dental practice aged 17. Early on in my career as a dental nurse, I knew I wanted to progress and take on further responsibilities in a practice. I worked hard to get recognition, always going above and beyond my duties. I approached the owner of the practice I was working in for a promotion, and he declined, stating I was too young. So I moved practice. From then on, unless there was consistent opportunity to develop and progress, I’d move practice and keep learning.
Who was an early business inspiration for you?
My first boss! He had created a squat practice from a corner shop (this means an empty building with no patient list) and grew it quickly, establishing his reputation with delighted patients. I loved the feeling of making people happy – you sleep better at night knowing you’ve changed someone’s life that day either by creating a new smile, helping them overcome a phobia or getting them out of pain. He always pushed me to better myself, and I’m very grateful to have worked for him.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?
Hard work beats talent every time.
What’s the secret of great leadership?
Lead by example. Never be too proud to do anything yourself. I am fortunate that I have done every job I employ people to do and every day I get stuck in wherever required. I sweep the leaves from the drive or clean the toilet, just as the rest of my team do. What you do has a much bigger impact than what you say.
What’s the most significant leadership lesson you’ve learnt?
Don’t assume that everyone knows which path you are on. The business mission, goals and values have to be communicated to your team clearly and regularly, so everyone swims in the same direction. Create an environment where team unity and involvement are a staple part of the culture.
Has there been a truly pivotal moment for your business?
There have been many. From signing the paperwork, to the opening day, to the first patient testimonial. I could go on and on. All of them are special in their own ways, but I’ve learnt more than anything that every day is so different, and you can never predict what’s around the corner. I try to keep mindful that today is the pivotal day because it directly impacts tomorrow, as well keeping the realities of how tough running a business are in sharp focus.
Which areas of your business will you focus on in 2019?
We want to expand the practice with more surgeries, but we won’t rush this. We’ll never compromise on patient quality. Growth will come as a result of continuing to follow our principles of delivering the highest quality private dentistry with a patient-centric journey. Investing in new, high-tech infrastructure, along with the team development are key initiatives for Superior Smiles throughout 2019 and beyond.
Superior Smiles Knutsford
Cheshire Lodge , Bexton Lane , Knutsford , WA16 9AB
t: 01565 743180