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May 15th, 2023

Episode 158 – The 2 Attitudes That Hold Dentists Back

I’ve never understood people who don’t want help. If you’re struggling with something, it makes sense to reach out to people who have successfully handled what you’re having problems with.” ~Dr. Bruce B. Baird

There’s nothing wrong with being ignorant. All it means is that you don’t know everything. 

The arrogance, well that’s another problem. Being arrogant means you don’t want to listen to anyone else. In combination, arrogance and ignorance ruin more dental practices than just about anything else. 

The problem is there are a lot of us out there who think that because we’re dentists we know everything or can figure it out for ourselves because we’re intelligent people.

If we were just talking about you, well you’re entitled to make those choices for yourself but when you have a business, team, and patients to take care of, it’s not just you your decisions affect. There’s much more at stake.

In my career, I reached out to many successful people for help and here’s the thing, by listening to them I expanded my thought process and I got better results. 

I’m committed to helping independent dentists like you reduce your stress and build a business that allows you to do the work you love. So I challenge you to join me today for a discussion about:

  • The cost of being arrogant 
  • What mindset you should have when viewing your dental practice
  • Ideas for finding the right mentors and coaches

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Dr. Bruce Baird
Hi, this is Dr. Bruce Baird with the Productive Dentist Podcast.

Ignorance and arrogance, are a.. they’re a terrible combination. You know you can’t explain to somebody who already knows, thinks that they know everything, you can’t explain even the simplest concepts and so what I try to help doctors feel comfortable with, is that you know, we’re just like you, I mean, we’re, you know, we have dental practices, we’re working in these practices, things happen, you know, the good days, the bad days, and, you know, we reach those same levels of frustration, but it’s what we’ve done to solve those issues, what we’ve done to change those issues and, and I really think that you know, in hiring, in hiring a coach or for me, it’s not hiring a coach and it’s something I’ve talked about as a Productive Dentist Academy for a long time.

I’m, I don’t want to just hire some consultant who happens to have been working in a dental office at some point in their career and they bring in everything that they knew in that one situation, that office they worked in for 25 years and I’ve had, I’ve had nine different consultants in my practice over the years and what I’ll say is, I’ve had great consultants, they all have something to add, they all have something to, you know, to give us, give us some new ideas and new thoughts.

You know, I’ve had, as I say, nine different consulting groups come into my practice and again, it was usually one person’s idea or one person’s thought process and I always wanted Productive Dentist Academy coaching, to be something that was more like a football team and I’ve talked about this before but really, when you hire PDA, you’re not just hiring one coach, you might have one that comes in the office and works with you, personally but we also bring in everybody on our team. So it’s kind of like that football team, you have a quarterback coach, you have a defensive line coach, and offensive line-wide receivers, linebackers secondary and so we bring 5, 6, 7 people who’ve all had massive amounts of experience over the last 18 years, working within the environment, Productive Dentist Academy. What’s so exciting is the results that we see because every practice, you know, when you, when we come into practice and start working with you, all of a sudden, we say, you know, this is better off for Carol, or this is this would you know, Callie would be perfect for this, or this is the perfect situation for, you know, for whoever that has had the experience. So where you’re having the issues, where you’re having the problems, we actually bring in the specialists to work with you on that.

Having said that, you know, that’s something that I’ve always wanted, we’ve gotten away from it, at different times but we’re now probably more focused on that than anything else. He is helping you from, from front to back, from the OSA womb to tomb from, you know, from the beginning of your practice to the end of your practice and we work with lots of young dentists. We work with dentists and mid-career and we’ve worked with lots that my age, you know, slowing down trying to decide what they want to do for the rest of their life and where they want to if they want to continue practicing, if they want to sell their practice and get the best value forward.

Those are all the things that we kind of pride ourselves in giving people options that they didn’t know that they already had I talked about that are you ready to sell your practice in the last couple of podcasts, but again, you know, do you know your EBITA, and who’s figured it for you? Is it the DSO that’s coming to buy your practice, or is it somebody who knows, knows you, and knows your business and gives you an accurate reading on that? So what to me is again goes back to, you know, arrogance and ignorance. It’s like, ignorance is not a bad, being ignorant is not a bad word. It just means you don’t know but being arrogant means you don’t want to listen to anybody else and I just found it through my career that I listened to just about anybody. I want to find, I don’t want to reinvent the wheel, although I’ve reinvented the wheel multiple times. I don’t want to. What I want to do is find somebody who has done things that I would like to do and then look to them as a mentor, look to them as somebody I can ask questions to. It’s not about me trying to figure it out all by myself, which there are a lot of dentists out there, I must say, probably a majority, that figure, it’s, you know, I’m a dentist, and I went through all this schooling and, you know, I should be able to do this on my own. Well, it’s different when you’re running a business, when you have a team when you have patience, and communication and clinical skills and I mean, you go down the list over and over again and again, I’m always wanted to find somebody. I mean, I can, I can name you to know, the people I’ve named in the past, the John Coisas, who clinically I want to hear, I want to hear everything he has to say, you know, the Mike Pico. So I want to hear what Mike has to say, I want to hear what Carl Mitch had to say when it came to implants.

I wanted to hear, you know, what Pat Allen was saying about connective tissue grafts, why? Because once I, once I listened to them, and once I went to their course, I never thought about that particular procedure the same way ever again and so it allowed me to expand my business, it allowed me to expand my thought process, you know, in business. Early on with Paul Homily, listening to Paul talk about, you know, the big implant cases, the doc’s weren’t making the kind of money they thought they were making because of overhead. You know, there’s just so many people, great Stanley talking about business and investments and I kind of go down that list and these are people who I listened to very carefully formulated my idea of their concept, and how it made the best how it fit my practice the best and when I finally put it in play in the office, it was usually much smoother. If I had gone through that process, go through that thought process, going through that, talking with other dentists who have done the same thing that I’m attempting to do to, to get, you know, better clinical results, to get a better team to get you to know, and I just see the same folks out there, struggling over and over again every year because they’re, you know, they listen, but they don’t put that knowledge to work. You know, and, you know, I always look at things, the 80-20 rule, only 20% of the dentists out there are going to reach your potential. Hope you’re one of the 20%, 80% who are going to, you know, get the Tony Robbins tapes and never listen to him. They’re going to get them, you know, the using other people’s money for real estate and never buying real estate. That’s just human nature. That’s what happens but the 20 percenters are the ones who get committed to improvement. They get committed to getting to know what’s, what’s the best thing to do and, you know, David Phelps, and other great guides, dentists guy who came through PDA, who was teaching dentists financial freedom through real estate. So and I’m, you know, I’ve worked with Dave, I want to constantly improve, I got the opportunity for summer, my, my, my chairside, for 20-plus years. I got a chance to go to her son’s graduation party. He just graduated from high school and they asked me to say a few words and the one thing that I said, that I wanted the kids to listen to, and I really want everyone to listen to, is you get out of school, you think, “Oh, well my learnings over and I’m done, I can finally go to work and make money.” Well, you can, but why not, why not understand that life is a learning experience from the day you’re born until the day you’re you’re gone? Yeah, I’m totally committed to learning new things. I’ve said this before but Cynthia, my wife said, Why are you watching those tapes on printing and all this stuff?

You know, Cory was doing these tapes and I said, “Well, honey, you know, I’m really interested in this.” She goes, “Why you’re with, you know, you’re retiring.” I said, “I’m not dying and I’ve just, I want to know, I want to know what’s out there,” and I’m challenging you if you’re listening to this podcast, to step back and find out where you’re headed. You know, what things do you want to accomplish? That goes back to goal setting. We’ve talked about that multiple times, go back and read some of those podcasts that we’ve done but where do you want to go? Find people who’ve already gone there, get to know them. One thing I’ve found to be true is that dentists who have become very successful in many different areas in dentistry, from business to clinical, well to across the board, are more than happy to help them help and share their experiences.

You know, the Mark Costas, you know, the Gary Takacs, you know, these guys all share what they know, and what I’m going to implore each one of you to do is reach out, you know, get a team behind you. It’s not, it takes the pressure off of you, no question about that, it takes the pressure off of you, doesn’t add pressure to you and if it if having a consultant or coach, or whatever you want to call it is adding pressure to you, then you got the wrong coach, you need to find one that is empowering you, that is lifting you up, lifting your team up, giving you the information that you need to create your best life and your best practice. So those are my thoughts for today, you know, I just heard those two words, arrogance and ignorance and you know. I’m ignorant about a lot of things and if I actually become aware of it, I want to find somebody who’s really good at it and listen to him but it’s that arrogant. It’s an arrogant Doctor mentality that really gets a lot of us in trouble and so think, think hard, and hopefully, find, find the right mentors, find the right coaches, and you’re going to find yourself in a very successful business and your life is going to be more fun, you’re going to be more successful, your family, you’re gonna be able to take care of them and this is something that don’t try to do it all on your own. So remember arrogance and ignorance. All right, talk to you next time.

Thank you for joining me for this episode of the Productive Dentist Podcast. If you found this episode helpful, make sure you subscribe and pass it along to a friend. Give us a like on iTunes and Spotify or drop me an email at don’t forget to check out other podcasts from the Productive Dentist Academy at Join me again next week for another episode of the Productive Dentist Podcast.

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