Of plans and hopes and blessings of men

Dec. 18, 2013
This month's cover story is the Best Pearls for Your Practice for 2013 with an unusual twist. We have selected 21 Pearls this year and 14 of them are "Video Pearls."

This month's cover story is the Best Pearls for Your Practice for 2013 with an unusual twist. We have selected 21 Pearls this year and 14 of them are "Video Pearls." You will be able to view most of these products in a clinical setting at my dental office that will help you to decide if you want to try them. In order to see them, you must go to digital.dentaleconomics.com to view the digital edition of DE. I hope to make Video Pearls a regular part of the monthly Pearls for Your Practice in 2014.

When you receive this issue, 2013 will be quickly coming to an end. I hope it was a successful year for you and your team. Where do you want to be in December of 2014? Unless you future focus and plan with your team, you will never make it. If you don't know how to do this, I have another idea for you.

I have just finished reading Dr. Michael Abernathy's new book, "The Super General Dental Practice." He is known for running his practice at a 50% overhead and having the best-paid team (including himself) in the country. The people who work for him are trained to become practice owners so that they care as much about the practice as he does. Now, I have a great deal for you! You can receive a complimentary copy of his book by going to www.businessofdentalpractice.com. The book will be sent to you absolutely free of charge. Make your practice more profitable and ultimately more fun for the whole team.

This month, Dr. Rick Workman has a new monthly column titled "A Perspective on Leadership." These words of wisdom are going to be something that every reader will want to pull out to save. The first column addresses "The Unavoidable Truth About Problems." Because Rick has seen so many different dental practices, he has a totally unique perspective to present. It is about the tools that every dentist needs to be the best he or she can be. I know you will enjoy this new column.

As I write this, I am on a plane returning from Atlanta in the middle of November after attending the Carestream Users' Conference in Atlanta. I was attracted to this meeting because they were including CAD/CAM users' seminars along with the usual SoftDent and PracticeWorks software users' seminars. The faculty was outstanding including many of the Carestream experts who spent most of the three days answering users' questions. There are two winners in these types of meetings -- the attendees and the company.

Before the end of my first trimester in dental school at St. Louis University, I had joined the U.S. Navy as an Ensign (one gold bar) in the Dental Corps. When I graduated, I reported to the Naval Recruiting Station in St. Louis. I was sworn in as a Lieutenant JG (one silver bar), and then I was sworn in as a Lieutenant (two silver bars). I received orders to report to the Fleet Marine Force at Camp Lejeune, N.C. I spent two years with the Marines including six months' sea duty in the Mediterranean Sea. I was very proud to serve with the U.S. Marine Corps and felt I belonged even though I never wore their uniform.

The other night I was watching some YouTube videos and came across the Marine Corps Ceremony for Sgt. Dakota Meyer, Medal of Honor recipient at the Marine Corps Barracks in Washington, DC. It was one of the most moving ceremonies I have ever witnessed. I hope you will seek out this video. I wonder how he was able to risk his life in the face of sure death on the battlefield.

After the Marine Corps musical groups finished an inspiring concert, General James F. Amos, the Commandant of the Marine Corps addressed the audience. He spoke of Sgt. Meyer's bravery under fire from an enemy ambush in Afghanistan. All of the men were pinned down by heavy fire but four were in a helpless condition. After being refused help from artillery and helicopter support, Dakota led a force to save the four. After he fought his way through extremely heavy fire, he reached them only to find they were dead. General Amos praised him for always being faithful to his comrades and never leaving anyone behind. Semper Fi!

May the blessings of this glorious season be yours now and throughout the New Year.

Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor
email: [email protected]

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