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December 16th, 2020

Episode 112 – The Power of Clinical Mentorship with Patti Sooy

How would you feel if you knew a patient flew out of state to have a procedure done that you could do? And the reason they left was because they didn’t know you did that procedure? Today, we’re honored to have with us Master Coach Patti Sooy who just returned from an in-person, clinical mentorship with a doctor who experienced the above scenario. Systems, processes, and training are crucial, but today Patti takes it to the next level by sharing the secret sauce behind strategic mentorship including:

  • The unexpected benefits of personal coaching from master clinicians
  • Shining a light on blind spots – key aspects of implementing a new procedure that could ensure your success, or cause you to fail
  • Two surprising results of in-person clinicals


CHAD: Hey, everybody, it’s Chad Johnson with The Everyday Practices dental podcast. Can you imagine that? Although you offer some services, your best friend going to the dentist down the street, in spite of the fact that you’ve spent $20,000 to learn how to place those implants comes over and says, Hey, I just went down the street and got an implant. I would be frustrated. And today we’re going to talk with Patty from productive dentist Academy about our experience that we had recently with Dr. x, who had that same experience happened, and he wanted to do something about it. Let’s invite Reagan and Reagan. How are you doing?

REGAN: I’m intrigued this morning, Chad.

CHAD: Wonderful. And and to string this out and find resolution to this problem. Patti, how are you doing today? Excellent. Patti, can you tell us a little bit about this, the story today and how you helped.

PATTI: Yes, we have a client, a current client with Productive Dentist Academy. And he was a little frustrated about that very situation that happened for a same day type smile or a full case than yours. Okay, full case, smile. And that patient went actually went out of state to do it. And to get that smile re done. And he was extremely frustrated. And he was looking around for courses that would help him with his organization and his clinical skills to provide that opportunity for many patients in his community and outwards of his community. And he just didn’t find anything that was offered that was hands on that he could observe and see how to make this happen in an efficient, effective way for his patients.

CHAD: So, Patti. To put this in reference for the listeners today, really, you’ve had quite an extensive career working with doctors and helping them achieve their dreams and their version of success, which could be different for every single doctor. And one of the things that I think is very interesting, I know you’re passionate about is helping doctors take all that they’ve learned and put it into real action. So how does this compare Patty, you know, to some of the other stories over your decades of service and helping I mean, for listeners, there is no brand care, she is known as the $60 million coach, she really is passionate about results. How does this compare to to what you’ve seen, especially in the time of COVID right now when things we have to adapt and pivot and move to meet to meet our clients? Is this a new situation? Or is this something that’s been around for a while.

PATTI: You know, it’s it has been around it’s it’s something that PDA has has offered in the past, but not during COVID. And you know, we we have a dentist now that’s on faculty that has a passion for serving his patients at a level to get them a new smile, give them new hope for their smile, and get them in and out in one day and make a big difference. So we want to share that message with many other dentists and be able to give them a window into how how that’s being done very successfully within that practice. And so I get to help with that. And I just helped partner with this that our faculty doctor in creating a workshop that allows our doctors to come and it’s not hands on necessarily for them but it’s hands on experience because they get to watch in in live you know live action and and see what they’re doing differently and what they can expand on and ask lots of questions and create a plan for how they take that back to their practice.

REGAN: So how did Dr. X discover this? Dr. X got frustrated and it was obviously probably hurtful to know that this doctor could provide the service at least disappointing right?

CHAD: At least disappointed I would be I would well I guess that my passion kicks up I would be frustrated as about like Dude, I could do this why are you flying out of state for this is ridiculous. How did the question even even come because we’re talking about a bit of a shift in mindset that that isn’t triggered some actions?

PATTI: Yeah, he was talking to PDA lead coach Valerie and they ended up looking into some options with our strategists, Chris. And they know what’s going on in the background with PDA and some of the workshops we’re creating. And they said, could we make this happen for Dr. x by this date? Because he wants to do it for a patient by this date? Can we make that happen? And we do. And we did.

CHAD: So if I were a doctor, and I wanted to, to implement a new procedure, how then does the coach help facilitate that? I mean, you just talked about the strategy to it. But you know, so someone right now in the audience is going okay, that’s me. So how, what’s step one.

PATTI: Step one would be just reach out to anyone in PDA if you’re not a PDA client, you know, reach out to me, Or each out to someone at PDA, and we can put you in contact with the right people to see what it is. Because we really want to know what you want to accomplish with this, what it is, because we don’t want to just throw a course at you and have it meet maybe this and maybe it is we want it to impact you at the level that you are, actually we want it to blow it out of the water for you, we want you to leave knowing, oh my gosh, I got so much more than what I really asked for by attending this course. And, and so just reach out. If you’re in coaching right now, reach out to your your lead coach, and say, Hey, tell me a little bit more about this. And then they’re going to question you to make sure that time is right. Because you have to you do have to have your ducks in a row to be able to do this. To have actionable steps for you to get to there. Absolutely. Chad, the doctor needs to know why this is important to him or her?

CHAD: Well, for example, I tell people when they’re considering going fee for service from a PPO strategy, that the first thing you have to do is convince yourself that you need and want to do it. Because if you can’t go to your team and explain why you wanted to do it, you’re hosed? Because like if you don’t believe it, why should the team believe it?

PATTI: Right? You’ve got to be a leader. In this, whenever you want to change something or expand on something, you got to have a team that’s behind you. And they have to understand the why behind it. And so this doctor chose to come on his own. And so it was a little bit different. We would highly recommend you bring a lead assistant, maybe a lead treatment coordinator, some a couple of people that can help you implement this when you go back and that their eyes because their eyes are going to pick up different things than the doctors eyes and hear different things.

REGAN: Okay, Patti. So let’s back this up a little bit. The doctor going wanting to go where and wanted to accomplish what.

PATTI: So the doctor would decide, okay, this is something I want to know more about, or I’ve dabbled in it. But I really don’t know how to. And I’m going to use same day smiles as an example. That was this case. So I want to know how to effectively prep and deliver a smile in a day for this patient. So they leave at the end of one day, with a gorgeous smile. And it changes their life, it changes the patient’s life, I want to know how to do that effectively, efficiently. without stress. I want to know how to do that.

So that’s one thing. I mean, you could do it on implants, you could do it on just scheduling flow being productive, because as a faculty member happens to have a, you know, is very productive also. And so how do I do it? I’m interested in knowing about that, and I want to do that. Okay, so I want to go and watch this doctor do this and his team and how they support the doctor. So I want to do that. Sign me up. Okay, well, that’s the easy part. I mean, that’s the easy part. We can get you signed up, we can get you there. What we want to make sure of is that you know why you want to do this, and that we have some we have at least one pre meeting, to be able to put down on paper what it is you’re really wanting to achieve.

And then we’re going to help you achieve it. We’re going to help you with steps to point you in the right direction as Chad said, actionable steps that because what we don’t want you to do is invest your time and energy and money into a program and then just go home and not change anything.

REGAN: So I have a question for Chad then that kind of looks it looks at this from a different from a doctor’s perspective. Whatever equipment you have, or whatever services you Want to provide? We’ll pick serac? Because you went on the same day smiles track? How is this different? How is going in person and observing a doctor different than, I don’t know, attending other programs or attending a lecture?

CHAD: Well, you get asked dumb questions that you otherwise wouldn’t. That’s what it comes down to. His you know, like, because when it’s just you, and you get to go, so do you, do you? Like, I know, that sounds like a dumb question. But do you have to like, put it in the oven then after it Mills? And then you know, like, they go, yeah, you just see, watch, we just put it in the oven and you go, Oh, why didn’t they ever just say that? So sometimes it allows for you to ask a dumb question. I mean, it reminds me to of Victoria, always saying that success requires support.

And we’ve heard more of that this year from Victoria mentioning that, and it reminds me then that it’s not just for you to learn it, but for your other team to go, Oh, I see how that’s being successfully implemented. And I could do that. And I’ve seen it in action. So that’s why it’s important for me to like, and this is all subconscious thinking, right? But okay, so that’s why it’s important for me to get the periodical before I see the patient, I saw how they did that. And even sometimes when you go train, or you’re getting trained, you know, however, which way ever way that works.

When you’re showing someone how to do something, sometimes they might be watching going, Okay, I wouldn’t do it that way, though, because I could do it better. And now I know that I could do it better with that. So okay, so even though this taught me how to get to that point, I might even be able to surpass this standing on the shoulder of those giants, by you know, doing this or that it actually reminds me of a dentist. And I went and job shadowed him in, I think it was undergrad, and did amazing cases. And, and as he was doing his work, he had his gloves on.

And he was looking with an impression. So he had his gloves on and was working with the temporaries and, and everything like that actually doing same day smile stuff that we are talking about. And he took his thumb with his glove on and he is wiping it in his nose trying to basically pick his nose. And at the same time, then he asked me He goes, do you think you could maybe someday Do you know work like this? And I thought to myself, I’m like, well, step one, I’m not going to put my gloved finger in my nose. So yes, what he was doing was awesome. But it also showed that it’s like, in my mind, you know, you can learn from what not to do as well, right?

REGAN: Oh I hadn’t thought  about it from that perspective at all.

CHAD: I know. But you know, like, it’s true. If someone came and watch me, they’d probably be like, I don’t like how he, you know, pushes the cord down too much, Well, fine. Now you know that that’s what you want to do. So it doesn’t always have to be a positive experience for it to be a positive experience, you might go and go, I liked 80% of what they did. And one thing that I didn’t like was he never seemed to smile at the patient, okay, well, then that’s something that you learned.

REGAN: So it’s gonna, it’s going to make you aware, it’s going to make you far more aware of things that you are typically you could be blind to also, yeah. So you might, you might not be aware that you’re stuffing your nose, and you’re writing your nose

PATTI: Well, and if you ever brought that up with that person, but you know, like, so but you’re, you’re now able to, to make a decision, you know, and it’s become, yeah, aware awareness is is okay, I’ve, I’ve now brought it to the forefront of my mind, this is how I want to do it. And here’s a couple things that I don’t want to do. And that’s a lightyears ahead of if you just watch the video passively on it, because you don’t get to see the whole picture. They, they square in the video camera on the tooth, but they don’t show what the assistants doing outside of the pan of the view. So that three dimensional experience really matters.

And I’ll tell you what else is when I’ve had people, you know, come to the office, and they’re there watching and observing. They’re like when we go to a barbecue in the same strip mall, you know, when we go to lunch that affords for time to talk stuff out to and say, Hey, you know, when you were doing that, why didn’t you this or that? Oh, that’s a great question. I’ve used that before. And I didn’t like it. Here’s why. Or, you know, I’ve actually never used that before. Maybe we should order some in tomorrow. We could try that together on this this next case, you know, stuff like that. Wow.

REGAN: Thank you. So So speaking of clinical mentorship, and that there are many different elements to it, Patti, let’s talk about the ripple effect. So you have had the opportunity to consult within every aspect of the practice. And what Chad just opened my eyes to is the the clinical portion of it the actual physical, this is what I’m doing. And then but there’s all these different elements that fall into place. So could you talk to us about Dr. x traveling to see another productive dentist that’s on faculty to sit Behind him learn from him. And then there is the ripple effects. So talk to me about the team that’s involved, how does this doctor get the message out? Because that’s what we kicked off the hour with was, you know, I might be able to provide the service, but are my patients going to know? What are all the different areas that that doctor should be looking at?

PATTI: Such a great question, Reagan, because when when we initially brought him in, it really was very clinically focused, he really just wanted to see sequence and he wanted to see how it was done. What he wasn’t really thinking about was the communication process, the intake of that patient, necessarily how we screen that patient, what we know, who’s screening that patient, the financial obligations that the patient will need to make? And how can we make that comfortable and affordable for a patient? So more people will say, yes, how do we get people talking about it internally, within our office and externally? So there’s a marketing component also? And then, and then how do I delegate and really get my team on board? So there were a lot of questions that were asked, while we have breaks at the at the, at the meeting, or during the day, the clinical day.

And just so much great conversation came out of that and chat, I’m so glad you brought up what you did. Because, you know, there were things that and we learn from each other, we learn as we go, it’s so much fun for Dennis to be able to share some things, yes, he learns he learns things, too. They’re not like, you got to do it my way. Or right now, this is something that has worked for me, I want to share that. But if you have something that has worked really well for you, please share that with me. Because I’m very open to that. And you just get better together, you get better together. And and so once they’re aware of all the little things that go into this, that maybe they haven’t thought through, it helps them then to start going, Oh, wow.

Okay, I could really, I could really Polish this now I could really, I could really take this places, when I have this in place this in place this in place, sure I can do the clinical now I feel a lot more confident. And I’ll get better and better at that. And if I want to really be efficient at it, there’s a lot of other things I can do. And I’m not going to get to do it if I if my patients if patients don’t know about it, or if they can’t afford it.

CHAD: So I have to open those things up to dentistry is very isolated. And so it’s cool because when we’re able to do this kind of stuff, when else during the year or during the next decade, are you going to be intentional about collaborating with other dentists. It sometimes it doesn’t even happen with specialists. It’s awesome, like Suresh goal when he collaborates as a periodontist with the the general dentists that refer to him and that he refers stuff to them. And it’s so cool. But you know, not everyone has that. And so, dentistry is very isolated. It doesn’t afford for collaborative learning. But this is an opportunity to be able to do so which I really like.

REGAN: Well, it’s awfully intimate learning, isn’t it? I mean, this was a one on one thing, how many? I Oh, I got a two pronged question for you, Patti. How many? What kind of an investment timewise? Was this for Dr. X? And, and how long do you think true implementation really would take? So the goal for this doctor was to do same day smiles? What has CEREC the machine had done it before, but just not in the same day scenario? So what is the reality of this? What type of time investment and commitment does this doctor want to be making to achieve this?

PATTI: Yeah, so the the commitment in the time forward. I mean, when he came, it was, it was a day and a half of time commitment to come to travel. Well, it’s probably about two days with travel, to come in and watch and learn. And then to take that back. I mean, it could happen as fast as if he had people in mind. I mean, he could start putting that into play in the next 30 days. The marketing aspect of it are getting the word out, you can you can start speaking internally like this, as long as you have a good message. And that should be planned that should not be random.

That should be a planned message with your team and your team are the best ones to plant the seeds right for Have you ever considered Have you thought about this. And so your team can be very powerful in that and then you bring in somebody with like PDA marketing and you start getting your message out there, digitally. That’s one way you could do it through direct mailers. You can do a lot of different things, whatever your budget allows you to do. And then you continue to build that and layer it and then pretty soon you are like the expert in your area and anytime Same Day smiles or implants or something pops up, you can go now that takes a little more time to build. But with internal discussions, you could start he wanted to this was a goal of his, he wanted to be able to start attracting four cases a month. Now, that’s not going to happen in the first month, right? He knows it’s probably not going to happen in the first six months. could it happen by the end of the year? I think even if he got two cases a month by the end of this first year, he’d be thrilled he would be thrilled. So it’s more a matter of how do I do that.

And then what happens when I’m getting a lot more than that? What happens? And that’s where that team delegation is part B of your plan. What happens when I’m truly successful in this, then what do I do? How do I build on that?

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