Opportunities for growth are woven into the company culture here at Dental Depot for all those who want to learn new skills or develop their strengths. And for the people who like Christy Walker, there will always be room to do more. Christy, who was recently named Dental Depot’s Manager of Professional Relations, has been with us for nearly eleven years.
This September, she was recognized as our employee of the month. We sat down with Christy to discuss her time here, the lessons she’s learned, as well as her goals moving forward in this new position.
Dental Depot: So, how did you first get interested in dentistry?
Christy Walker: I always had an interest in dentistry. Initially, I was taking prerequisites for dental hygiene school but I opted to do the dental assisting program through Rose State College. Robin [Graham, Dental Depot’s Director of Education] was actually my instructor back in 2008.
DD: What was your experience like growing up and going to the dentist?
CW: I loved going to the dentist as a kid. I remember that I always much preferred getting a cleaning done, or even getting numbed, over visits to see my primary care doctor.
DD: So what brought you to Dental Depot?
CW: I was a young mother looking for steady work and I already had an interest in dentistry. Almost as soon as I finished my course at Rose State, I started working as a dental assistant with Dental Depot in October 2008.
DD: You’ve been here more than a decade – what about Dental Depot has made you want to stay?
CW: Dental Depot has great opportunities for perfecting your skills and growing within the company. I feel like we’re also very patient-focused in the care that we provide, and that’s important to me.
DD: Tell us a little about the different roles you’ve had here.
CW: I started as a dental assistant and then became the clinical support assistant – helping out in the offices to make sure their needs were met – and my newest role is Manager of Professional Relations.
DD: How has the switch been from clinical to professional relations?
CW: It’s good! I think it falls back to Dental Depot’s growth and recognizing our key players.
DD: What are you the most excited about in your new position?
CW: I want to be able to help as many team members as I can with new organization, systems and ideas.
DD: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen in your time here?
CW: The constant growth is so exciting to be around.
DD: What would you say your favorite thing about Dental Depot is?
CW: I’ve had great leadership from many different sources and I never would have gotten that mentorship or opportunities for growth anywhere else. I really love Dental Depot’s mission and vision. I believe they have the right core values and walk their talk.
DD: What’s the hardest part of your job?
CW: The hardest part for me is that I want to give 110% all the time.
DD: How have you learned to balance that?
CW: I’ve learned that my hard work pays off and that great things come with time, but you have to be persistent and knowledgeable.
DD: Do you have any special memories of your team or a patient you’ve helped?
CW: I have created too many great memories to count! One memory, in particular, was a patient that told me I made her feel that she was beautiful and human even though she was battling a rare skin condition. Compassion is what we are all about at Dental Depot. Until then, I hadn’t thought of the impact our service helps the community on an individual basis – one patient at a time.
DD: That’s incredible. What do your professional goals look like over the next 5-10 years?
CW: I want to keep moving forward. If we can perfect and challenge the imperfect, we can continue to make Dental Depot the great place that it is. A mountain can seem difficult but once it’s tackled, gives satisfaction to all. I have many projects and goals – that’s the beauty of it. Without goals, there’s no room for growth, and Dental Depot is all about growth!
DD: What’s the best piece of advice you would give someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
CW: Attitude is key. Don’t fall into the negative social cliques. Work hard, show compassion, and grow from your leaders.
When Christy isn’t at work, she enjoys spending time with her two daughters, ages 11 and six, and her wonderful fiancé. As a family, they enjoy arts and crafts, movie nights, and staying active at their local park and swimming pool. Christy enjoys drawing and problem solving (yes, that is her hobby) and used to be an avid runner. She wants to raise her daughters to be successful and kind, and looks forward to traveling the world and helping others as much as she is able.
Christy was nominated by her coworkers at Dental Depot for Employee of the Month. Here’s what they had to say:
“Christy was a past student of mine at Rose State College Dental Assisting Program,” said Robin Graham. “It is a pleasure to work with her at Dental Depot. She is a wonderful instructor with our students. She is kind and down to earth. She has such a special way of explaining things to our students that help them to succeed. She is always the first person to be willing to help out when needed and she never complains.”
“I could go on and on about Christy and her wonderful attributes,” said Ramona Wautelet. “She is one of kind and an awesome dental assistant. She couldn’t be more deserving of this award! Christy is such a good person, she brings it all to the table every day. Always willing to help and raise people up to meet their potential and higher. There’s never a dull moment, she’s very intelligent and a ray of sunshine.”
Dental Depot is a locally owned and operated family company. As such, we believe that the incredible group of doctors, hygienists, assistants and staff that make up Dental Depot are more than their job titles; they’re members of our extended family. In our family, we like to recognize when someone goes above and beyond, living the Dental Depot values. This August, we are proud to shine a spotlight on Employee of the Month Christy Walker.