An active year of new introductions has began to show a pattern of leadership within dentistry. It seems every time I hit a new market, I'm always directed towards a short list of names of who I need to talk to next. This usually will start out in conversation with a new client, practice coach, or established vendor who will direct me to the next 2-3 dentists that they demand I must talk to.
The names of these 2-3 dentists or specialists will almost always repeat themselves from others in that market. These are the ones other dentists look up to for their next move on practice management or technology. It is not uncommon for me to hear "if Dr. ___ is using it, then maybe we should try it". The power of having these leaders on board can not be under-estimated.
The pattern of these "leading" dentists carries over to their practice success. Many of them also have unanimous respect within their local study groups, alumni or dental associations. Leadership by example has overcome the politics of gaining influence.
How did they earn this level of respect from their peers? I've found that they simply say "yes" when presented with a decision that can bring them value. They know that keeping their mind open to new ideas has brought them the success they have today.
I've sat face-to-face with these leaders, I've talked to them by phone after hours as they search out new technology for their practice, their emails come unsolicited to my website over a holiday weekend. They know that keeping their practice ahead does not come from following what others do, it comes from taking the next step before others do.
Saying "yes" sounds simple, yet not many can consistently do it with confidence. Without the leaders who do say "yes", we would never have innovation in dentistry. They search, they listen, and more importantly they're not afraid to support what they believe in.
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