Powerful Lessons Learned from the Dying with Tom Grass

Powerful Lessons Learned from the Dying with Tom GrassThis episode features the incredibly insightful Tom Grass as he recounts the story of how he found dentistry and the path that led him to this career. This is one of the most powerful conversations I have ever had on the show, as Tom delves deep into the importance of being present and how to avoid always looking to the future or your next achievement.

We discuss what Tom calls the UFO method and how to use this when approaching unpleasant discussions or delivering difficult news. You’ll learn how to create satisfaction out of inherently unsatisfying experiences. Listen in as we share personal stories about making connections with the people in our lives and touch on the responsibility you have to yourself to do the same.

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Key Quotes:

  • “The minute you turn your patients into problems, tasks, or room numbers, you’ve failed.”
  • “Dentistry checks all my boxes; you get to take care of people for a long time, you get to know people, and you get to be hands-on.”
  • “Hospice is really good at showing you all the pieces and parts that surround someone’s life.”
  • “You don’t know what people are living with, what people regret.”
  • “Tell people what you need from them and give people what they want from you.”
  • “When you are caring for people, you are giving away your emotional energy to them.”

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Naren Arulrajah on Leaving Behind Me, Me, Me Marketing and Connecting on a Personal Level

Naren Arulrajah on Leaving Behind Me, Me, Me Marketing - RD Podcast

When it comes to marketing, many practices and businesses tend to focus on the wrong things. Naren Arulrajah explains what is going wrong and how to truly focus on the customer, relate to them in a real way and leverage social proof. His advice on handling failure, being an effective leader and gaining the trust of your customers is extremely real and valuable.

Naren discusses how he originally failed his way to success and how his rough start ended up pointing him in the right direction because he was willing to learn from it and make necessary changes. He also shares some great advice on how to establish authority and create real relatable messages that clients connect with. Naren provides many tools to strengthen your impact and lead people in a way that brings out their strengths.

Key Quotes:

  • “Every good thing that happened to me came out of failures or came out of dead ends.”
  • “I don’t believe in managers, I believe in coaches.”
  • “I don’t believe in this idea of, “Let’s work on your weaknesses” because if I work on your weaknesses, you’ll have strong weaknesses. So I believe in this idea of how to bring out the best in you – your strengths.”
  • “The more it was about me, me, me – the less I got what I wanted.”
  • “Marketing – the way you get people to know you and then choose you.”
  • “We are social animals – We do what others do. So when someone else buys a product and writes a review, now we trust that.”
  • “When somebody is being grateful and at that moment you ask them for a favor, they will say yes.”
  • “We don’t trust people who say they are perfect.”

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Dr. David Maloley on Clarifying Your Vision and Being a Great Leader

In this episode, you’ll get to listen in to Dr. Dave’s recent interview on the Business of Dentistry Podcast. He shares personal stories of his own challenges and the valuable lessons he learned as he built his career. Listen in to hear his inspiring words about finding clarity, what it takes to be a great leader and more.

Key Quotes:

  • “Life moves fast. I used to think about five-year plans and ten-year plans, and now a quarter goes by, and I’m like, I don’t want the same things I wanted 90 days ago.”
  • “That’s, I think, a struggle in society, but certainly in dentistry as well, is like you start living out somebody else’s dream and then realize it too late. If you can always be course-correcting, I think that’s probably the best advice, to have a beacon, which would be like your annual plan or even your life plan.”
  • “It takes some serious time alone to reflect and design [a life plan, but] otherwise your schedule will get full of other people’s agendas.”
  • “My theory was in 2017 that if I did nothing else but worked on myself, that I could make my practice grow, and I didn’t need to be constantly turning all these knobs like hiring somebody or a new marketing tactic or new phone skills.”
  • “If you’re the CEO of a dental practice, if you’re the lead producer in a dental practice, you’re the racehorse, and so you have to create ways—whether it be through delegation and leadership or just flat out automating or eliminating things from your life—so that you’re not feeling run down at the end of every week.”
  • “What are you doing to take care of yourself so that you can serve? It’s kind of a paradox like you need to be selfish to be selfless is really something that we have to come to comfort with.”
  • “Courage is not the absence of fear. It’s doing the things that you’re scared of because you know that gets you to the destination that you want.”
  • “Sometimes we use perfectionism as a badge of honor because it sounds really good, but sometimes it’s just fear and excuses packaged in a nice little wrapper with a bow on it.”
  • “Your teams need psychological safety, so they need to be able to ask their dumb questions or make their mistakes without feeling chastised; they need to know that you have their back.”

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Taking the High Road to Better Dentistry with Dr. Bryan Stimmler

Taking the High Road to Better Dentistry with Dr. Bryan Stimmler

Sometimes the biggest challenges we deal with as dentists are moral dilemmas. It can be tempting not to admit to making a mistake—especially when you know a patient wouldn’t know the difference—or to advise someone to undergo an expensive procedure they don’t really need for the sake of making a higher profit. We’ve all been there, including Dr. Bryan Stimmler.

The owner of North Brooklyn Dental Care, Bryan is a big proponent of sharing the challenges we face as dentists, not just the successes. In fact, helping others to learn from his mistakes was his goal in starting The Better Dentistry Podcast. In this episode, Bryan opens up about the difficulties he’s faced along his dental journey, his own major mistakes, and the important lessons he learned as a result.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “I don’t care that you can do veneers, you know, I can do veneers too … I want to see a screw-up. I want to learn from your mess-ups.”
  • “There’s not a healthy communication on the challenges that [dentists] go through—whether it’s life or the business side of things or the clinical side of things—and we need to open up some discussion on that.”
  • “To be a good dentist, to do better dentistry, you’ve got to get your ego out of the way and you gotta do what’s right. … Better dentistry is getting back in there [after a mistake] and getting it to where it’s supposed to be and then swallowing your pride and apologizing to all of the patients that are waiting for you because you screwed up.”
  • “There’s a quote that kind of goes along the lines of, when you think your life is tough, someone’s always had it worse.”
  • “When someone’s quiet a lot of times, and then they dish out just a one-liner—those are the ones you need to listen to.”
  • “I hear from residents all the time that they don’t feel like they’re learning anything, and when you’re in the thick of things, you don’t even realize what you’re learning. We’re watching you work, and I can see your clinical proficiencies from when you started until when you ended, so you are learning, whether you think you are or not.”
  • “In hindsight, [my associateship] was so valuable that I’ve actually told residents, go find a bad associateship. If you have the intentions of opening up your own office, go see what the worst of the worst is. … You’ll find out everything that you shouldn’t be doing, and that’s much more valuable than getting an associate position at a place that is a well-oiled machine and you don’t even know what they’re doing that’s so good.”
  • “I always tell people to find a mentor. … Find some mentorship and read a lot.”

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Following a Non-Linear Path to Success with Dr. Chris Green

Following a Non-Linear Path to Success with Dr. Chris Green -  RD Podcast

Do you feel like you don’t have your future quite figured out yet? Don’t sweat it. Being successful doesn’t mean you have to know every detail of where you’re going. The key is being willing to put in the work and keep moving forward. Just ask today’s guest, Dr. Chris Green.

A third-generation dentist and the owner of Green Dental Care, Chris says he’s still figuring out his vision, and he has accepted that the road to get there isn’t always a direct path. In this episode, he shares what he’s learned along his own non-linear dental journey, as well as the importance of knowing that finding your path to success can be a fluid process that you continue to figure out as you go.

 

Key Quotes:

  • “A smiling dental team—that’s the type of thing that can make up for a lot of flaws.”
  • “When we think about leadership and owning a practice, we think so much about first impressions. But last impressions are super powerful, as well.”
  • “Dentists a lot of times either put not enough focus on their practice or too much focus on their practice.”
  • “That’s the beauty of the profession: You can run a practice however you want and create a lifestyle. … It’s an exciting time to be a dentist in my mind.”
  • “One of the things that it took me a while to figure out is that if I was the most interesting or the smartest guy in the room, then I wasn’t learning or gaining anything.”
  • “Some of these practices just need new energy—they need a young, hungry dentist to get in there and be a little bit better of a leader and be a little bit better of a businessperson, and if you’re a lot of that, then the sky’s the limit.”
  • “For me, it just hasn’t been a linear road to get to the vision—I still don’t know if I have my vision totally figured out. It’s a fluid process. The more I know, the more I realize I don’t know, and as I learn more, I realize that there are many ways I would have done things differently, but you’ve just gotta keep plowing ahead.”
  • “The simple epiphany I had was that I could always make more money, but I could never make more time.”
  • “Sitting down once a year, or once a quarter, or however often to evaluate your vision, write it down and reverse-engineer how you’re going to get there—that will get you in the right mindset as to not expect shortcuts.”

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