The Ugly Truth About “Surface Success”: What Dentists Need to Know

Text overlay on a blue background. In the top left corner is a white logo with the letters "RD" stacked and the word "RELENTLESS" below it written in a bold, sans-serif font. Below the logo is black text that reads: "Dr. David Maloley." Centered on the image is white text in a display font that reads: "THE UGLY TRUTH ABOUT 'SURFACE SUCCESS': WHAT DENTISTS NEED TO KNOW." Below this text, centered on the image, is black text in a sans-serif font that reads "DR. DAVE MALOLEY" followed by "Host and Coach, Relentless Dentist" and "PODCAST."Is your pursuit of success leaving you feeling drained and disconnected?

In this eye-opening episode, Dr. Dave reveals the harsh reality behind “surface success” and its hidden costs.

  • Unmasking Surface Success: Understand why financial milestones and external praise aren’t enough and may actually be harming your personal and professional life.
  • Deep Winning Defined: Discover how to align your practice with your core values, ensuring fulfillment and harmony in both your career and personal life.
  • Practical Strategies: Learn actionable steps to build a high-profit, low-stress practice that enriches your life and the lives of those around you.

Transform your approach to success, strengthen your relationships, and boost your practice’s efficiency.

Listen now to uncover the secrets to achieving meaningful success and a fulfilling dental practice. Don’t miss out—your journey to true success starts here!

Are you ready to upgrade your practice? Need help implementing the Dentists Ascend Method? Don’t miss Dr. Dave’s presentation: ‘How to Build a Referral-Centric, High-Profit Dental Practice Without the Team Drama — Even if You’re Currently Overwhelmed.‘ This resource is tailored to help you enhance your operations, boost patient referrals, and increase profits while creating a self-managing team. Perfect for any dental practice owner looking to win in today’s challenging environment. Check it out now!

Key Quotes:

  • “If it makes you a worse person, it’s not success. If starting a business tears your relationships apart, and makes you feel bitter or frustrated with people, then it doesn’t matter how much money it makes or external praise it receives. That’s not success.”
  • “Dentistry should be about helping patients, building meaningful relationships, and creating a positive impact on your community.”
  • “Don’t chase surface success. It leads to burnout, strained relationships, and a hollow sense of achievement.”
  • “When your practice is in values alignment, everything changes because we reduce friction. You and your team are playing to your strengths. You’re fostering an environment where everyone thrives.”
  • “Deep winners are here for all of it… They don’t live in the delusion that life should be ups without the downs.”

Featured on the Show:

  • People: Ryan Holiday, a writer and media strategist, left college at 19 to apprentice under marketing guru Robert Greene. He then built a successful marketing career and founded Brass Check, a creative agency. Holiday is also a bestselling author known for his books on stoicism and personal growth.
  • People: Seth Godin, is a prolific writer and teacher who has spent over 30 years inspiring people to “level up” through his writing, courses, and projects. He’s a bestselling author with 20 books translated into nearly 40 languages, and the founder of the altMBA, a life-changing marketing workshop. Godin is passionate about igniting ideas and helping people make a difference in the world.
  • I appreciate your feedback. Let me know what you learned and loved here: [email protected].


Unlocking the Profit Puzzle: Why Your Dental Practice Isn’t Making More Money

Imagine a dental practice where every action propels you toward greater profitability and personal fulfillment. A place where marketing turns patients into advocates and your innovations set you apart. This isn’t just a dream; it’s within your reach.

Our journey begins with a tale of a dental practice drowning in complexity, not debt. Your next steps await, from relationship-building to marketing audits, innovation, and cost reviews. It’s time to create a thriving dental practice, and our podcast is your trusted guide.

What’s In It For You:

  • Maximize Patient Loyalty: Inspired by Peter F. Drucker, the Father of Modern Management, learn how to transform first-time visits into lifelong relationships.
  • Boost Your Referrals: Uncover Drucker’s principles applied to dental marketing, turning your patients into your biggest advocates.
  • Increase Your Profits: Find out how Drucker’s wisdom can help you scrutinize and optimize your costs for a healthier bottom line.


  • Immediate strategies to increase patient retention and referrals, all inspired by Peter F. Drucker.
  • Practical tips to optimize your operational costs for higher profits.

Perfect For:

  • Dental practice owners who want to unlock higher profits.
  • Dentists looking to innovate and optimize their practice.

Tune in to elevate your dental practice’s profitability and patient experience, guided by the timeless wisdom of Peter F. Drucker.

P.S. Reveal the hidden potential in your dental practice. Take the Dentists Ascend Quiz for your customized results.

Key Quotes:

  • “Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are ‘costs.'”
  • “There’s a transformative shift that happens when you move from merely conducting transactions to building relationships.”
  • “Effective marketing isn’t just about attracting new patients; it’s about crafting experiences so memorable that patients become promoters of your practice.”
  • “Innovation is all about those small, thoughtful changes that can dramatically improve both efficiency and the patient experience.”
  • “Every time a patient comes in, they have a choice whether they return or not.”

Featured on the Show:

  • People: Peter F. Drucker, Austrian-born American management consultant, educator, and author, whose writings contributed to the philosophical and practical foundations of the modern business corporation.
  • I appreciate your feedback. Let me know what you learned and loved here: [email protected].


The 3 Big Ways Dentists Kill Their Confidence

Are you tired of struggling to grow your dental practice in a challenging economy? Do you want to finally find the path to profits and understand what’s been holding you back from achieving your goals? It’s time to take control and elevate your practice owner’s confidence in 2023. In this episode, learn how to enjoy BIG practice growth and overcome any obstacle that stands in your way.

Dental practice owners: Do you want to take your “impossible” and make it easy?

  • If you want to enjoy BIG practice growth in a challenging economy…
  • If you want to find the path that brings you the most profits and competitive advantages…
  • If you want to understand what keeps you from getting what you want year after year so you can elevate your practice owner confidence in 2023…

Tune in now!

It’s time to set your sights high and take your dental practice to the next level. Success is just around the corner!

Listen in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Check out our New Case Study, “Discover How To Recession-Proof Your Dental Practice In The Next 60 Days So That You Increase Profits & Avoid Losing Key Team Members” now at:

Key Quotes:

  • “When you think of the challenge, think of a high-growth opportunity and lean into it.”
  • “Mastery takes time — there’s a maturation process.”
  • “Confidence comes from a commitment to mastery. Commitment is 100% word. If you’re 98% committed, you ain’t committed.”
  • “Mastery is a pursuit of practice until it becomes automatic. And once it becomes ritualized and automatic, your mind and body connect and allow you to focus on the bigger picture.”
  • “Each of us is a one-of-a-kind phenomenon, and your path will be unique. So be courageous and defiant of the right way.”
  • “If you’re always on a mastery path and you’re always learning, the learning creates the skills, the skills create the value, the value creates income, and you can continue to compound this as time goes on.”
  • “If you know where you are and where you want to go, the first pathway may not work. The second one may not work, but you try multiple pathways until you get to where you need to go.”

Featured on the Show:


Discover Why Most Dentists Have Careers of Quiet Desperation

“Remember to be careful when following the masses; sometimes the “M” is silent.” — Anonymous

Today’s problem that we’re discussing is that we live in a society looking for bandaid solutions, quick fixes, and magic pills. These things lead to a lack of accountability, leading to a lack of results — which I call the commodity trap. I don’t want you to be in a situation chasing down the masses and living to someone else’s vision and version of success and live the rest of your life in quiet desperation. Step into the possibility that we can all choose a mastery path.

In this episode, I discuss why the masses are asses. So if you want to:

  • elevate your practice owner confidence,
  • avoid the pain of being a dabbler, obsessive, and hacker,
  • be the most sought-after dentist in town,
  • know how to prioritize your skill stack for fun and profit,

Listen now! This episode is for you.

Tune in and find solutions to common practice issues at  Prescriptions for Your Practice.

Key Quotes:

  • “Lots of dentists are worried about the commoditization of dentistry, but those same dentists likely aren’t de-commoditizing themselves and working on elevating their confidence.”
  • “The first move to mastery is not outward but inward — Robert Green”
  • “You feel called to do certain things, or you have unique skills or unique strengths that aren’t common. They might be easy for you and really hard for somebody else. And you might get frustrated at somebody else.”
  • “What we’re looking for in a dental practice is complementary strengths, complementary life’s tasks that help us synergize.”
  • “The path to mastery is a windy road. Our vocation is a windy road. It is not a straight line. And so, we have to engage on this journey.”
  • “Leadership and marketing are the ways that you multiply yourself.”
  •  “If you want fulfillment, and you want more money, and you want a better lifestyle, then the operative word is grow.” 

Featured on the Show:


Educating Your Community Through Dental Marketing with Grace Rizza

Educating Your Community Through Dental Marketing with Grace RizzaIn 2009, in this dusty space in Avon, Colorado, I spent all my cash on learning for a six-month Ortho, Sedation, and Invisalign because I wanted to be this marketable person. One thing I could say, it is much harder than it looks — but not for Grace Rizza. She’s been growing businesses at the age of 22, and her approach to business is both commendable and inspiring. It’s no wonder she was a 2019 Honoree at the Daily Herald Business Ledger’s Influential Women in Business Awards.

Listen in as Grace Rizza shares the importance of branding and effective dental marketing. It can be considered “unethical” not to market because you have a community of people that don’t understand how you can help them. Make sure that people know who you are and what you do to help them.

Tune in and get more insights on Magnificent Marketing

Key Quotes:

  • “Who’s going to teach your community if you don’t.”
  • “People need to stop trying to go viral and stop trying to be cool. They need to educate.”
  • “Just know what you’re trying to accomplish with your marketing before you just start trying to do everything everybody else is doing, come up with a concrete plan.”
  • “Don’t skip the branding process. Don’t skip the part where you ask yourself, or your advisor asks you, how do you want to be known in the community? What’s your intended reputation?”.
  • “The right advisor will allow you to dream, but we’ll also tell you when you’re being unrealistic.”
  • “Your time is a currency.”
  • “The most expensive information is mediocre information.”
  • “If marketing brings you joy, okay, put it on your plate. If it doesn’t, you need somebody to do it.”
  • “What is your marketing and your branding, that visual aspect, what is it saying about you behind your back? Is it creating the right first impression? And then when those things are in alignment, then you should start the advertising piece, SEO still gets the best return on investment.”
  • “If you’ve got great reviews and you’re ranking on top of Google, you will get new patients, and it will be consistent.”
  • “You should have professional video ads that create an emotion.”
  • “If you are comfortable on video and articulate, that’ll make your trust factor go up.”
  • “People want to see real people.”
  • “The most important thing that came from this today was treating marketing as an investment and not a cost.”

Featured on the Show: