A vet nurse turned dental assistant has taken out the Kalgoorlie-Boulder Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s customer service award for August.
Natalie Drake-Brockman moved to Kalgoorlie-Boulder three years ago and worked in hospitality before starting at Smile Dental on Brookman Street.
Many clinic regulars will have seen Ms Drake-Brockman behind the front desk, but her responsibilities also include working with dentists during appointments, assisting with dental implants and making mouth guards and retainers.
Ms Drake-Brockman said she felt lucky to have found a career which combined several of her passions.
“My background was in vet nursing but I have always been really interested in dental,” she said.
“When I was younger and getting my braces done, I was always asking them what all the tools were for.
“Coming from the vet nursing, there are a few things that cross over like doing teeth cleans and X-rays for the animals, but everything else I’ve learnt here.”
With some feeling apprehensive about going to the dentist, Ms Drake-Brockman said good customer service skills were essential in helping to make people feel comfortable.
“We try and make it quite a friendly atmosphere from the moment they come through,” she said. “We try and explain things when they come out from their appointments, too, because a lot of people don’t always understand everything, especially in dental clinic terminology.”