by Joe Blaes, DDS
You are probably getting tired of hearing me say that this is, without a doubt, the very best time to be a dentist. But each time I travel to speak or to attend a meeting, I find further justification for saying this. Many dentists tell me their success stories in many different areas of the country. They tell me of starting practices from scratch that are now highly successful. And they are starting these practices in the face of discouragement from all sides. I find a common thread of commitment among these dentists.
I think this quote from Anthony Robbins really says it all: I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life's greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent. As simplistic as this may sound, it is still the common denominator separating those who live their dreams from those who live in regret.
I saw this level of commitment firsthand the last few days as I attended a meeting hosted by Linda Miles. This is an annual meeting called the Speaker Consultant Network, or SCN for short.
I watched in fascination as Linda shared her commitment to dentistry to people on "Level One" who wanted to start their speaking or consulting careers. People often wonder how a dental assistant with a high school education could possibly have risen to the heights that Linda Miles has. I think that commitment is the answer.
I watched for another two days as Linda interacted with speakers and consultants who have completed Level One, started their careers, and are back to learn more at Level Two. When I listen to their stories of success and failure, the common theme is constant and consistent commitment. We all can learn from these very dedicated, committed speakers and consultants. I believe that they are serving the dental profession very well.
I had another great experience in commitment on May 17 and 18. Sixty-two dentists came to Chicago for a hands-on workshop on prepping teeth for veneers. This group of dentists spent two days with me learning the principles of tooth preparation and then using those principles to actually prepare teeth on a model. They did composite mock-ups, made temporaries, and seated veneers. They learned about case selection, smile design, case presentation, marketing, and lab communication. They came with a commitment to learn, and I had the pleasure of teaching them. It was a great experience.
I will teach this course again in San Diego, Calif., on Sept. 20 and 21, 2001. If you are interested, call (800) 544-9605 for more information. If you are committed to joining the "Aesthetic Revolution," this is the course to help you on your way.
Another great example of commitment was the annual meeting of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) in Boston over the Memorial Day weekend. Hundreds of dentists and staff members went to Boston to learn from the best of the best during the four-day meeting of the AACD. It was a great meeting; I had a wonderful time renewing old friendships and making new ones.
Be sure to mark your calendar now for Cosmetic Dentistry 2002 to be held in Las Vegas on Feb. 14 and 15. Give yourself the best Valentine's gift of all and commit to a terrific two days of learning sponsored by Dental Economics. CD 2002 will feature many opportunities for hands-on learning in workshops, along with a great lineup of speakers who will help you take advantage of the many opportunities that cosmetic dentistry offers for your practice. This meeting will feature excellent speakers for everyone on your dental team, including the clinical assistants, hygienists, and business assistants. Make a commitment now to take your practice to the next level by attending CD 2002.
Finally, remember that your dreams can become reality if you are willing to make that constant and consistent commitment to make them happen.