Everything Dental Blog November 2019

Creating Magic 

Every now and then we’ll hear something, see something or are exposed to something that is truly magical. When things appear to be magical, it isn’t the result of magic, rather it is the result of creative thinking (innovation), great planning, unusual talent or a product of Mother Nature. 

Most innovation is the result of exquisite imagination or the relentless pursuit for improvement. From early childhood, our education and societal pressure has taught us to be sensible and compliant. Practicality is a safer and more comfortable position to take, as it avoids perturbing societal norms. However, when we suppress our thoughts and ideas, we consequently dull our creativity. 

Another possible reason for lack of innovation is the fear of being wrong or making the incorrect choice. Fear of failure has prevented millions of great ideas with potential. In corporate America, many great ideas never see the light of day because of structured culture that controls the flow of communication. Creative ideas and solutions are often blocked by layers of management, jealousy, politics or lack of chutzpa. In this case, the C-suite’s messaging never makes it to the stakeholders and the ideas and concerns (messaging) from the stakeholders never make it to the boardroom. 

A person or a business’s disposition could also block great ideas from ever seeing light of day. Attitude and mindset play a significant role in business development and team harmony. Those that see the world of opportunity as scarce may embrace any idea, weak or strong. Those that view the world of opportunity as abundant tend to be more selective; analyzing each opportunity and striving to identify the optimal solution. They identify ideas with a high probability of success that yield operational and financial benefits. 

In corporate America, many great ideas wither at the vine or are forgotten because they are fiscally conservative and have a finite amount of resources available for exploratory assessment. They don’t want to distract or disrupt the organization from ongoing projects and priorities. Corporate leadership has the benefit and burden of being in the know. They’re aware of dozens of initiatives or projects, from various business groups, going on simultaneously. As they do their research and understand the legal, regulatory and integration challenges of these proposals, they are determining which projects are in alignment with the company’s short and long term strategies. This explains why seemingly popular projects get sidelined or canceled. 

Entrepreneurs have another hurdle beyond identifying opportunity and the capacity to execute. Unlike large corporations that have the financial, legal and regulatory expertise, an entrepreneur must secure funding and must be willing to accept a high level of compliance and financial exposure. All entrepreneurs manage the fear of failure and the fear of the unknown well, but only the fiercest of entrepreneurs have the capacity to accept extremely high debt and risk. 

The Magic behind the brand. 

Every company wants their product or service marketed in a way that respects the brand and resonates with prospects and existing customers. People connect with brands that provide innovative solutions, value, reliability, pleasure, and status. There is another brand attractor or hook that is in vogue with consumers today. It is brand affiliation and membership. Affiliation and membership provide a sense of belonging, empowerment and special privileges. For companies pursuing a stronger relationship with their customers, solid brand identity and membership engagement is the precursor to developing a digital marketplace. 

Branding is more personal than most people realize. A professional golfer may use a certain brand of clubs and wouldn’t play competitively without them. In dentistry, most clinicians gravitate towards a preferred brand of restorative materials and instrumentation. Such brands as 3M™, Dentsply™, Adec™, and Hu- Friedy™ can introduce virtually any product and the dental consumer would think it’s a premium product. The same goes for suppliers and service companies. When a dentist doesn’t know where to buy a specific dental material or piece of equipment (technology), they’ll call Henry Schein. They trust Henry Schein Dental™ to carry the brand, have it in stock and deliver or install it quickly. Popular home and electronic brands like Apple, LG, Black and Decker, and Samsung have great relationships with their customers too. Most American consumers have more than one of these brand appliances in their homes. 

Brand Reputation 

Abe Kasbo, CEO of Verasoni Worldwide, always says “Your reputation is your brand”. All brands and companies are susceptible to bad press, negative social media reviews and bad customer service experiences. It is nearly impossible to achieve five-star ratings from every customer but you must never stop trying. We know that good brands thrive and bad brands have a shorter lifespan. All feedback, including bad reviews, can be helpful and harmful. On one hand, a bad review will identify opportunities for improvement and training within your organization. On the other hand, a bad review can negatively impact your brand, reputation, and team harmony. 

Brand affiliation and loyalty can be really strong and very fragile at the same time. It takes constant contact, support, and trust to protect and enhance a brand. If a brand disappoints you or is in conflict with your beliefs and value system, you will move on. 

Dental Magic 

The magic of modern dentistry from the patient’s point of view is usually much different than that of the dental team. Many clinicians and dental teams are hyper-focused on clinical production and profitability and fail miserably at customer service. While the clinical and administrative team’s responsibilities vary, both are responsible for creating an amazing customer experience. Very often, team members could enhance the patient experience by making subtle gestures and quick decisions but they are not empowered to do so. On the flip side, patient’s value clinical excellence, but they return and refer friends and family to your office because they were extremely happy with their patient experience. 

Any consultant will tell you that running on schedule, providing a full range of dental services, having reasonable fees, being conveniently located and providing great customer service is how you attract and retain great patients. 

Dental Magic is more common than we think. Every day dentists and their teams prevent disease from spreading, restore broken down teeth and provide patients with ‘life-like’ restorations. When a patient can enjoy foods they haven’t been able to eat for years its commemorative. When a person loves their new smile and it boosts their self-confidence – it’s magical! 

Magic and luck 

We’ve all had magical moments in our lives. These monumental moments have made our simple lives extraordinary for a time. It’s the celebration of these moments that makes life worth living. 

Hard work and commitment are not always rewarded in the workplace but it can expose you to opportunity. In other words – “Make Your Own Luck”. When luck, circumstance, and desire meet, you must take action. This is how we make magic happen in our own lives.