BY Albert L. Ousborne Jr.,DDS
If you could drastically change your personal and professional lives for the better, would you want to know how? Suppose there was a way to improve the balance between your personal and professional lives. Would you want to know about it? How about finding out about a way to greatly improve your practice's bottom line? Would you be interested?
One evening, about three years ago, my phone rang. It was Dr. Joe Blaes, the editor of Dental Economics, with a proposition for me. Would I be interested in cochairing a dental meeting regarding a mission to answer the questions I just proposed? We both knew the economy was beginning to have serious negative effects on our profession, and we wondered if we could plan a meeting that would offer benefits and returns far above the cost to our colleagues. Through what has been the best kept secret in dentistry, the American Academy of Dental Practice Administration, we designed a unique program that offers an opportunity to truly enrich the lives of our fellow dentists and everyone associated with dentistry. In the past, the Academy has required sponsorship by a member for attendance, but, together with the Academy, we've opened the doors because we know all dentists will benefit from this meeting. Could we really meet our goals to help our entire profession attain prosperity, life balance, and renewed passion? You be the judge.
Our destination is the brand new Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, a spacious suite hotel located directly in the heart of the strip. All suites have balconies and direct access to the meeting space without requiring entrance to the casino. There are three swimming pools, the country's top chefs, and exquisite service. Because we contracted the suites when the Cosmopolitan opened, we were able to acquire bargain basement rates. The hotel's small, intimate atmosphere will foster friendship, fun, and fond memories. Our plan is for you to feel comfortable while learning and sharing with your colleagues.
Our mission required a program serving the interests of dentists, spouses, guests, assistants, hygienists, lab technicians, and exhibitors. After three years of planning, what has evolved is exciting, spectacular, and most importantly, it will be a great return on your investment. You and I are flooded with meeting invitations that are all hype. We get pumped up, attend, and return home deflated. Unlike typical seminars, this meeting will inspire you throughout the year because you will meet many of the leaders and speaker-consultants personally. You'll have the opportunity to develop a personal relationship with them. We've designed the meeting so that most of the speakers will be around for most of the duration, with adequate social time for you to converse and network with them. You'll discover new ideas, new techniques, and most importantly, new friends.
The meeting will begin the evening of March 6, with a brief opening ceremony followed by a strolling dinner. You'll find relaxed social time to begin new friendships and renew old ones. This is your chance to mingle with the masters and experience "flying with the eagles." I don't know about you, but I've learned more during these personal times with speakers than when they were on the podium.
Here are some of the topics and speakers we've assembled to make this meeting a must. The formal speakers' programs will begin March 7.
We'll lead off with Bob Danzig, who will present "The Leader within You" based on his new book. Bob is inspiring, motivational, and humorous.
Four futurist dentists will discuss "The Practice of the Future." Why not be prepared for dentistry's future? We'll show you where it is headed and how to be ready.
"The Bale/Doneen Method" will expose you to a simple test for preventive cardiology that could even be administered in your office in the future. The oral health connection to strokes, cardiac disease, and diabetes will be explained in detail, as well as what you can do about it. You will be amazed!
Kristie Nation will update you on "What You Need to Know about Social Media and Networking." Are you prepared for the digital marketing techniques of the future?
Allen Schiff, representing the nationwide Academy of Dental CPAs, will speak on "What's Happening Financially in Dentistry." How does your practice compare?
Linda Drevenstedt will improve your practice by elaborating on "Seven Brain Principles that Maximize Effectiveness." Linda's message will keep you riveted.
Bill Howard, MD, will present "Preventing Injuries to Sports-Minded Children, Concussions, and Competitive Sports." What happens on the field and what can we do to best manage it? Your family needs to know.
"The 3D Summit" will be a presentation on the latest technology. Dr. Joe Blaes will discuss "Digital Dentistry and Growing a Progressive Practice in the Future." Dr. Blaes, together with expert dentists on digital technology, will cover "Practical Use of CAD/CAM," " Using Your Team to Increase Practice Performance Using 3D Digital Dentistry," "Practice Use of Cone Beam," and "Seeing Things from a New Perspective with 3D Radiography." We'll bring you up-to-date and help you sort out whether some of the new digital technology is for you.
Imtiaz Manji will discuss "Adapting to the New World of Dentistry." What is this new world? Imtiaz will have you spellbound on this one.
Drs. Rhonda Savage and Wendy Bach will chair a "Women's Mastermind Group." The ladies are increasing in dentistry's numbers. Their special concerns and problems will be explored and discussed, and solutions will be presented.
Lois Banta will present "Putting the Fun Back in Dentistry." Tell me your practice could not benefit from some daily humor. Lois will tell you how to make it happen.
What a lineup!
In addition to the speakers' programs, there will be interesting exhibitors, many of which you've not seen at other meetings. We've sought out some unique exhibitors to expose you to some new ideas. Afternoon optional tours will be available, as well as the famous Las Vegas shows at night. These are offered for our groups or for your personal attendance.
Mark March 6-9 on your 2013 calendar now. This will be the culmination of three years of planning for the dentists who value being in the top 10% of our profession. No short-term hype. No big hat and no cattle. This is your opportunity to choose long-term benefits for your personal and professional lives. It takes only a small difference in raising the bar for you and your practice. This is my personal invitation to you and your guests to join Dr. Joe Blaes and me to make it happen. Call executive director Kathy Uebel at (847) 234-4404 for reservations. She'll send you the necessary information to be part of this special event. We look forward to seeing you there!
Remember, back in the late 1960s, Dr. L. D. Pankey took pity on a "green" young dentist who happened to sit next to him at lunch. It happened at an AADPA meeting, and I had struggled to get a one-day pass to attend. As a result, he invited my family and me to come to Florida and observe his practice. His mentorship was priceless. His advice changed my life! Never could I have believed through that contact and meeting attendance that I would one day be president of this prestigious organization.
Now it's my turn to extend a helping hand to others the same way it was extended to me. Dr. Joe Blaes and I want to pass the baton. Just remember, though, you have to reach for it. As Dr. Pankey would say, if you are not content, step up and pay the price. Come join us. Reach for it!
Our hope is to "share the love," as the current AADPA president, Dr. Dale Kennedy, says so well. In so doing, I'll see you at the top!
Albert L. Ousborne Jr., DDS, is a practicing dentist in Towson, Md. He has served as president of the American Academy of Dental Practice Administration, and lectures on creating a successful practice with professionalism. You may contact him by telephone at (410) 828-1177.