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The Ultimate GPS


When driving, have you ever approached a busy intersection with a non-working traffic signal?  The scene is generally one of chaos and confusion.  Hesitant drivers gingerly inch their vehicles forward until they’re certain it’s their turn to cross the intersection.  Other, more daring drivers speed through the intersection, presuming that less aggressive drivers will yield them the right-of-way.  Lacking authoritative guidance on how to proceed, people do whatever they think is best.  The result is disorder and inefficiency.

As illustrated by the nightmarish intersection, movement without strategy gets nowhere.  For movement to make a difference it must be guided and directed by a unifying plan.  “Leader” is the name history gives to the person who steps forward to channel the energies of people into productive outcomes by providing clear strategy.  Leadership is defining core and setting the course for those that you lead.

Take a Long Range View of the Future:  The 180 Degree Mindset

When driving a car, you don’t fix your vision only a few feet beyond the front bumper.  Instead, you peer into the distance so that you can anticipate curves in the road, locate upcoming turns, and steer clear of any potholes or debris on the roadway. Looking farther ahead gives you the reaction time needed to pilot the car safely to your destination.  In fact, the entire trip has a purpose: The destination.  You normally don’t get in a car to go somewhere without having that destination in mind along with a course to take.  In dentistry, change is the curves in our road that we travel.  Warning signs are infrequent and danger is lurking just around every corner.  In dentistry, people are lying to you.  We have become distracted by the “counterfeiters” in dentistry: Those who either don’t know or don’t care when they point you and your practice in the wrong direction for sustained growth and profitability.  These “counterfeiters” influence the way you look at trends and facts while swaying your purchasing decisions and practice strategies toward something they can sell you.  Counterfeiters are known by their constant change in direction and strategies in order to sell you what they consider the newest and best, while forgetting that just six months ago they said something different with the same poor results.  It is all about the sale, not a long term relationship with you.  I would be ashamed to run into a past client or someone who had heard me speak or read something I had written and not be able to stand behind everything I presented to them over the years.

As a leader, you’re responsible to look ahead, sense impending change, and make the course adjustments necessary to keep your organization on track. Remember: You cannot see the future with your head in the sand. To lead strategically, it’s essential to withdraw from the urgency of day-to-day business in order to plan the direction of your organization’s future.

Most of us find that just putting out the fires in our day-to-day practice routine limits our ability to actually be proactive in planning the course we should take to insure future success in dentistry.  In this vein, I want to suggest that you take the time to reserve a place for our 180 Degree Dental Journey at the end of January.  Take the time and refocus, make course corrections, and increase your momentum towards a new commitment to your profession.  Bring the entire office and spend two days with us making a difference in your practice.  There is no cost, nothing to buy, just show up and begin again to enjoy Dentistry.

Michael Abernathy DDS
[email protected]