For many reading this article, you see things differently than those around you. For sure, you see things differently than generations gone by. The title or saying, Taking Home the Gold, is a direct reference to the Olympics and winners in a competitive endeavor. I remember a time when a trophy or medal actually meant something. It wasn’t given as a participation emblem, but rather a level of excellence where the majority of the competitors lost. I understand the psychology of winning, and the importance of getting up every day and competing. But in life there will always be winners and losers. Winners often times have to sacrifice and give up one thing to get another. There will be set backs and hardships along with the thrill of victory. Not everyone will win, but everyone will take home something based on his or her engagement and commitment to trials and setbacks.
Dentistry is one of those endeavors where we perform in front of our employees and patients. While there are no officials to award a gold medal, there are judges, and these judges are the patients who vote with their feet and pocket books. Dentistry is just a small consumer driven business where our results speak of the quality of our performance. In dentistry, it is “common place” to find the “average practice”, which by most standards has a lot of room to improve. It is “common place” to see that most dentists (94%) will never be able to retire with dignity and at a level that they experienced when practicing. It is “common place” to see doctors struggle with addictions and divorce. Far too often, it is “common place” to see stress and disappointment take our doctors way too early.
I vote we turn back the clock and move away from “common place” and chase “common sense”. It doesn’t have to be the New Year to establish new goals. It doesn’t have to be a catastrophic event to make a course correction. After all, the greatest reason that any business never reaches greatness is that they have gotten fat and slow and end up being just “good”. Average is never a destination; it is merely a signpost on the road to better things for those that strive and stay engaged. Part of turning back the clock would be to dig out that t-shirt we used to wear every day we came to work when we started out. It was the “whatever it takes” t-shirt of commitment to make today better than yesterday. It is “common place” to find that most dentists lost that shirt decades ago.
With this in mind, I want to take a shot at being your coach in the upcoming competition to get out of your rut, recapture your dream, and reengage with your practice. I haven’t written four or five articles in thirty years where I actively tried to push you to hire Summit and let us carry the majority of the weight of change for you. A couple of weeks ago, we published, at the end of an article, four or five ways that would allow any office at any level of cost to start that trek back to “common sense” strategies and a different level of commitment. I for one think that anyone with a “common sense” approach to success could easily see how this type of investment in a world of financial uncertainty will pay huge dividends. Sadly, it is “common place” for most doctors to take the easy way out and, like they do on most things; think, “I will do that someday”. Just look back. It’s “common place” to see that this has been your strategy that you have followed most of your career. It has yielded less than stellar results, while the current of mediocrity has swept you down the path of least resistance. I admit it. Anything worth doing seems to be uphill. It has a cost. You have to want it bad enough to spend the time and money engaged in striving to move your practice from one level to the next. Don’t be that “common place” doctor that lets things happen to them. Be the “common sense” individual that sees the advantage in being proactive and consistent in their leadership of a dental practice that year after year outperforms the majority of competitors just down the street from your office. This is how you Summit.
“The highest ROI I know is self-investment. What greater asset do you have? Yet people make every excuse possible not to better themselves if it means spending money. It’s not like they’re starving, or the house is falling apart. It’s just a refusal to invest in themselves, which, I believe, is often rooted in this fear: “What if I invest and still don’t get better? What does that say about me?” Alan Weiss
Michael Abernathy, DDS
PS. I have reprinted below the various ways to allow us to partner with you to have that practice you always thought you would have.
Summit Mastermind Group – Meet online via Zoom with Dr. Mike Abernathy and a group of ten (10) like-minded doctors twice a month for four (4) months to explore the barriers to growth in your practice and how to overcome them. Cost is $195 per month.
Online Group Coaching – A series of monthly (12) Zoom meetings with doctors plus team members from a select number of practices. Sessions will be recorded for any that might have to miss or for future training purposes. Cost is $495 per month.
Online Personal Coaching – One year of online coaching via Zoom tailored to the specific needs of your office. Additionally, you will receive a recorded instructional video each week plus unlimited email, text, and telephone support. Cost is $1295 per month
Blend of In-Office and Online Coaching – One of our consultants will be in your office for one day every quarter (4 visits total). Additionally, there will be scheduled Zoom meetings on the non-visit months (8 sessions) plus unlimited email, text, and telephone support. You will also receive access to our library of instructional videos. Cost is $2395 per month.
In-Office Coaching – A minimum of at least eight (8) in-office visits from one of our consultants each month plus Zoom meetings on non-visit months and unlimited email, text, and telephone support. Cost is $2995 per month.