Carlos leverages his experience as a professional comedian to create an engaging, educational, and entertaining CE experience - his events are both informative and hilarious! Carlos Rodríguez grew up in New Jersey and currently lives in Atlanta, GA. He has been married for over 25 years and he and his wife have 2 wonderful children. Carlos has always loved and had a passion for comedy, especially standup. When he's not busy cracking jokes, his hobbies include photography, fishing and camping. He served honorably in the US Navy as a Dental Tech for 3 years and transitioned to civilian life in 1990. He has been a dental hygienist for 23 years and has a passion for making his patients smile! Carlos has performed in clubs and colleges and for fund raising and corporate events all over the east coast!
VIDEO - DUwHF #1188 - Carlos Rodriguez
AUDIO - DUwHF #1188 - Carlos Rodriguez
He also has a fun and lighthearted Podcast with Sandy Lee who also is a Dental Hygienist. Its the perfect way to unwind on the drive home after a long day at the office. Never heavy or boring and its occasionally somewhat educational, check out the “Off Your Flosser Podcast” on iTunes , Google Play Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, YouTube and Libsyn.
Howard: It's just a huge honor for me today to be podcast interviewing Carlos Rodriguez RDH who leverages his experience as a professional comedian to create an engaging educational and entertaining CE experience his events are both informative and hilarious. Carlos grew up in New Jersey and currently lives in Atlanta Georgia he has been married for over 25 years and to his wife and has two wonderful children. Carlos has always loved and had a passion for comedy especially stand-up when he's not busy cracking jokes his hobbies include photography fishing and camping. He served honorably in the US Navy as a dental tech transition to civilian life in 1990. He has been a dental hygienist for 23 years and has a passion for making his patients smile. Carlos has performed in clubs and colleges and for fundraising and corporate events all over these coasts he also has a fun and lighthearted podcast with Sandy Lee who is also a dental hygienist it's the perfect way to unwind on the drive home after a long day at the office never heavy or boring and is occasionally somewhat educational, check out the Off your Flosser podcast on itunes google play podcast stitcher Spotify YouTube and listen. Carlos I had the honor of seeing you when you were in Phoenix so just a few weeks ago wasn't it or last month?
Carlos: Yes sir
Howard: and oh my god I am a huge fan of stand-up and you crushed it we had a blast I brought my office we loved it, how are you doing today?
Carlos: Well I'm well again thanks so much for coming out that was that meant a lot really appreciate it
Howard: are you the only dental hygienist who's the comedian in the United States?
Carlos: I tell people I am I I don't know if there are others or that or I'm sure there's funny people but I started off trying to do wanting to learn stand-up so I can make funny see ease see courses like like what you saw and I just I just went head over heels into into staying up and I wasn't even thinking about dental for a few years and I'm just having too much fun doing just just stand up it's uh it's it's uh I don't know i I'd almost do it for free if I could you know if I could afford to I would do it for free it's it's the most fun you can have with your clothes on you know.
Howard: It's the most brutal form because you know like I mean we could spend the whole lecture talking about how it applies to treatment plan presentation just everything like when you're you know when you look at so many dental lectures there they use the PowerPoint as a crutch and they're boring and they lose half the audience at the first break or a lunch or ever but when you do stand-up there's no props there's just you a microphone and they decide whether or not they're gonna like you trust you and think you're funny in one minute.
Carlos: Yeah 30 seconds or less.
Howard: Yeah 30 seconds I mean talk about fast and furious.
Carlos: Yes sir
Howard: I learned that in my when I started lecturing I started lecturing in 1990 so I'm coming up on 30 years of lecturing and in the first few years about two or three times my luggage didn't make it it got lost and that was back when we had like six or seven carousels and I'm wearing you know sweats that I traveled in I don't have my suit I don't have my slides and the show must go on and I was just a nervous wreck before it started and then at the end of the seminar I always said that was the best damn seminar I ever gave and that's when I realized that stand-up like when you walk into the patient room I mean that first 30 seconds engaging eye contact shaking it's everything everyone would be much better at treatment plan presentation if they went to their local comedy club or their improv club or anything like that.
Carlos: I'm a firm believer I'd totally I couldn't agree more and not just because that's that's what I do but I you look at me you, you met me I'm a pretty big guy um the friendliest looking guy in the world you know.
Howard: I thought you were the bouncer when we walked in.
Carlos: Yeah yeah people think I'm security all the time no I'm a hygienist and no one believes me you know anyway but I have to be I've used humor my whole career just to connect with people or it's not gonna work you know I have to come across as over-friendly and luckily for them I like joking around a little bit I have so much fun at work it's ridiculous I get away with murder.
Howard: So why do you people always say that public speaking is the greatest fair I mean I've never been in a funeral and I heard someone say well at least are not public speaking it's a good thing they're dead why do you think public speaking is so feared?
Carlos: You know I don't I don't know why other people I think it's one of those things where you're afraid to fail you're afraid to make a mistake or to not or to not look as smart as you are. I remember when I started doing stand-up I had a mini panic attack every every time for six months just saying I'd have to talk myself into it and you know everybody's funny with their buddies but going up in front of a bunch of strangers that you don't know and just talking to them and trying to get laughs that takes a special kind of crazy.
Howard: Well you know I always thought that you could tell who was practice management consultants will tell you that when they walk into an office they can tell in 60 seconds if they're crushing it or not I mean if you walk in there and it's a library and nobody's having fun it's high staff turnover patients don't come back they're always doing marketing until they're 65 years old and then when you walk into an office and everybody you can just feel it I mean they're fun they enjoy work they're having fun and dentists aren't the most relaxed people I mean they seem to be a little more uptight librarian.
Carlso: A little bit
Howard: Than stand-up comedy.
Carlos: A little wound tight yeah yeah I would agree
would you say a little or do you think they're a lot wound tight.
Carlos: Well it depends on who you're talking about I've known guys that were um that probably to be medicated at work you know and then I know other guys that are real kind of laid-back but most of them are somewhere in the middle but it's a stressful job you know even on the best day most people don't like coming to see you am i right?
Howard: Yeah well I mean seeing you for a cleaning a lot a lot of people wanted cleaning what whiter brighter teeth don't you think that you get a little better patients than the dentist who's coming in with a toothache?
Carlos: Yeah yeah most definitely but there's still people like the first time to the office and they come in and I come for them and they're like I got insurance why do I have to see this guy you know.
Howard: Yeah I've always thought and I've always thought it looked like in Phoenix and ASU is in Tempe and they have an I don't know some art house whatever but they have a six-week night to school and in stand-up comedy which I went through they have one in improv a lot of the receptionist said to me that these young dentists on Friday and Saturday night if they would just go be a bartender and just learn how to talk to drunk people that'd be a little easier if they could just learn how to talk it would solve so many of their problems.
Carlos: Do they not teach like communication and stuff in dental school no?
Carlos: Just just the skills right
Howard: Yeah and I love stand-up because I've done stand-up comedy you know I've done every comedy place in Arizona several times and my gosh it's just it's such a performance to walk out there with only a microphone and in 30 seconds they're gonna boo you off the stage I mean I can't tell you how many times I walk on the stage and the guy walking off just lost and started crying freaking out yeah panic attacks before you walked in i saw it all the time they be in the back room and they'd be writing the jokes on their hand or their water bottle it's like no that's exactly what's perfect about this are just go out there and just crush it and don't be technical you were amazing.
Carlos: Don't overthink in.
Howard: Yeah and you just it's just about relating to the crowd you just look at them and you relate and you work the ground I think you made eye contact with everybody in that room twice in your hour gig I mean..
Carlos: Yeah I tried yeah
Howard: No no you didn't try you you crushed it you got me through my office I mean I was also thinking that you know every time you go lecture at a dental meeting they always show you the Excel spreadsheet about how dental meeting attendance has been drifting down and down decade after decade and then they get mad at me because dentaltown has online CE so we have 400 courses they've been viewed a million times and I say well you know maybe your meeting should lighten up maybe it should have some more fun what's the number one complaint at every other every dental meeting there is nothing for the staff and there you are there you are making it fun for the whole staff all the receptionists everybody felt engaged I mean I just think he crushed it.
Carlos: Oh thank you so much man I it was at my absolute pleasure and I had a fantastic time after I went back to Phoenix and I did Mark Costas is Dental success seminar Institute their annual thing and that was maybe three weeks ago and six hundred dentists and i was the special guest the special speaker no one knew that it was a stand-up and it was just fun to watch them going okay well alright what's this guy gonna talk about and then it was like hey everybody just let your hair down let's laugh a little bit let's have some good you know some good times so.
Carlos: I think there's not enough of that in dentistry we need to laugh a little bit more and just stop being so serious all the time you know there's the time in a place but most things you can you can joke around with you know I think so.
Howard: So what was it like being a man and a traditionally I mean when I was in dental school everyone in the hygiene school was a woman however was that when you started 25 years ago versus today?
Carlos: Well I was in the Navy and it was all guys and there were very few females see what I'm saying so the receptionist was a guy the dentist the assistants the hygienist the lab guys everybody was male and then I get out and I go to hygiene school and I'm like we're all the ex-navy guys were and I was the only guy in the class there were no guys in the class before me and none in the class after me so everybody knew who I was but I even though I didn't know they'll never like who's the guy you know and I used to I said this isn't my proudest moment but I used to smoke cigarettes back then and you know here I am with a denim jacket and work boots you know on our non clinic day he's coming in from having a cigarette break and they're like what's this and oh he;s a student you know looking like maintenance you know is ridiculous but I was pretty good student too so.
Howard: So what is the dentists hygienists relationship look like from your side of the coin what what I mean I'm sure there's a lot of dentists lessness a lot of hygienists how could they work better as a team together?
Carlos: Oh that's exactly the word I would use a team it needs to be more of a team you know the hygienists are in their hands on they're looking in the mouth for you know twenty thirty minutes whatever it is and you know I can give you a good rundown on check number thirty the distal margin looks though you ain't just break you down for him or else at that point it's just because mechanical if all you do is just clean teeth that's it's kind of boring you know I think.
Howard: So talk about your off your floss or podcast on you've put up 26 shows you started on November last year with your first one tell us your journey about that and how you came to the off your flosser podcast?
Carlos: I started trying to do my own podcast which was on a video format and you can still find the twelve episodes that I did on YouTube and that's What the Floss that's that's my channel what the floss with Carlos Rodriguez and you know it's in a format where it's just mean in the camera and it was just so hard to do yeah because it took a lot of work and I would edit it a little bit but the episodes are absolutely ridiculous and they make me laugh and I've gotten people come up to me at different conferences and be like I think you're hilarious why aren't you on television and I'm like that's a very good question and I don't think that you know that that's that accurate but it just makes me laugh and I just want other people to laugh and I just kind of abandon it because it was just a bit too hard to do just by myself and Elijah Desmond recommended that I team up with somebody he goes you got to start back up you got to start back up and he introduced me to Sandy and you know she's a little wacky you know we have a fun time and it's just and it's the dental ish is very laid-back and well we're talking about just the dumbest things but it's there's enough podcast talked about the oral systemic link and periodontal disease and oral cancer and all these heavy subjects and we were talking about zombies and unicorns the other day it's just absolutely ridiculous but it's like you hanging out with some friends so if you get a chance Off your Flosser podcast.
Howard: Well I am when I started so basically you're doing just a sound only podcast now just
Howard: On iTunes?
Carlos: Yes sir
Howard: because the videos too complex?
Carlos: Well it was too complex for me by myself but now it's even more complex I would imagine because there's two of us you know we do an hour show every week drops on Friday around noonish and
Howard: Now is she's a is she a hygienist or a dental assistant?
Carlos: She was a hygienist also.
Howard: So is she a clear choice is a sandra Lee lake or what is this nice and early or sand early Lake?
Carlos: Sandy lee on face
Howard: sandy Lee RDH
Carlos: Just Sandy Lee
Howard: Alright so what do you what do you think are the the is your audience you think it's more hygienist more receptionist dry hands wet hands is a dentist what anything's listening to this?
Carlos: You know I think it's you know she's got a pretty big following on Facebook on she's got a group called light-hearted RDH and it's just what it sounds like and that's kind of like the group that I want to be associated with I want to keep it light-hearted and fun there aren't a lot of guys I don't think in the group I'm one of the few and yeah it's just you know we just try to have fun man you know.
Howard: Right on so what are you on on the light-hearted RDH that's a Facebook group and then I just tell it to hygienists us so or where does she live I mean do you guys both live in Atlanta?
Carlos: No no she's in st. Louis and and I'm in Atlanta.
Howard: So how do you you do it you do it over you guys call each other over Skype?
Carlos: Yeah we Skype we do it on it's interesting we made her get a microphone so we record our audio on separate tracks and we FaceTime with you know headphones in microphone so we can hear and see each other and then our audio gets recorded onto a separate track she sends me the file and I blend it together in software so it sounds like we're in the same room.
Carlos: So you do all that technically yourself?
Howard: Yeah wow
Carlos: It takes me it takes me hours man yeah so eventually I'd like to be able to afford to have somebody do that for us but you know I have more control that way and I and we make it as fun as possible I don't know if you've ever heard it but the sound quality is exceptional.
Howard: Yes I definitely have heard it.
Carlos: The content is ridiculous but the sound quality.
Howard: Well you know I'm that was the that what we did at dental town did these things were so hard that actually dentaltown actually started its own podcast studio because people were saying they could only do sound file because video makes the so complex so we actually built our own studio that other people are using where they just Skype in the video sound and then we just we just packaged a forum then upload it to iTunes and YouTube and all those places and it's advantage for us because people put their podcast for free on iTunes but you can also put them for free on dentaltown and Hygienetown anybody can do it you can just you can just upload your podcast and it's it's great marketing.
Howard: because a lot of people get in their car in the morning they open their 65,000 dentists have the dental town app so they open up the podcast section and they see what they're in the mood for and if you look at that they're listening to they bounce all around no one wants to listen to Joe Rogan seven days a week you know I mean they write they want to try all these different podcasts.
Carlso: Well how do I get in on that well if you go if you go to dentaltown under help has instructions and then it says I'm okay and this is how to upload your podcast and everyone who's done it said their iTunes exploded there so they might have found it on the dentaltown app and then subscribe to it on itunes.
Carlso: I will send you my RSS feed i'll handle that thank you.
Howard: So do you think and do you think in i mean you can do this 25 years and you work for a big organization that has about 13 offices so you've worked with a lot of dentist do you think do you think attitude correlates with their success on how they communicate with dentist or or what advice would you give a dentist? I mean how many different dentists have come into your operatory and done a hygiene check?
Carlso: Oh man over 20 years honestly I'd say maybe forty, forty five different guys and ladies.
Howard: So which one's more successful than the others what would what did they do that was more successful than the ones that did were least successful?
Carlos: I think it's a combination of things I think you have to have some form of personality a little a little personality mix with a little humility you know what I'm saying and a little humor never hurts a little you know being able to laugh at something it never hurts to just be a nice person this is what how I look at it they come to us this is a dental office the dentists have advanced degrees the patient's know this is Dr. Jones for instance but if you all you come at them with is high you know ten dollar scientific words and you're over talking the patient you know if the guys are an engineer you might want to level up and just hit them with the technical jargon if it's someone who's maybe not as you know you you sort of match their their energy you match their their their language capabilities I don't want to hear your vocabulary I want to know that you're a decent person and that you're gonna take care of me and not do a bad job I don't know.
Howard: Yeah but with but let's dissect this harm because we know how company we know comedy well because we both done it for a quarter of a century. You were perfect I think the best comedians they always play on their weak spot you when you make a joke about the hygienist the patient the wives the spouse whatever at least half the people just think you're a jerk you walk out there and did it correctly where it's all self-deprecating humor you know those comeatingings look in the mirror and they say okay what are all my flaws and then they worked that because it's so easy for someone to laugh at you but it's impossible for half of the humans to laugh at themselves. So when the dentist walks in there and makes fun of the hygienist or the patient or the receptionists or anything else they fail they fail miserably you need to make fun of yourself. I mean I'm short fat and bald and I love it because it gives me so much material and I'm my opening line at the deals is you know I love I love being a grandpa not just because of diabetes and erectile dysfunction but because I have five grandchildren you know but if you pointed to the old man at the front desk and said I bet you have erectile dysfunction half the people would say god that was just really really rude.
Carlos: Yeah that was harsh.
Howard: and then rule number two it doesn't have to be true when you're making fun of yourself I mean you just just not at all it just shows that you have confidence because you're making fun of yourself and you just don't make fun of other people. Another problem I see in my area for 32 years since 87 is you know when patients are coming in from across the street and the guy across the street is your alcoholic drinking buddy that you love but it's you can just sum up politics religion sex and violence people don't want to hear your thoughts on Trump they don't want to hear your thoughts on happy Easter they just they just don't they hurt it's too much for them.
Carlos: I'll add sports to that so that lists too.
Howard: Tell me why
Carlos: You know I live not too far from University of Georgia and if you're a Florida State fan or if you're a Michigan fan or Ohio State I people get kind of militant about football I don't know if you
Howard: and rightfully so I'm an Arizona Cardinals
Carlos: Here in the south but it's just and I'm kind of laid-back I don't care one way or another you know I had a lady try to engage me the other day into a Trump conversation and I had to say hey you know what just to be honest I don't even follow politics so can we just change the subject you know oh I'm sorry I didn't mean to to try to get you into a thing and I'm like yes yeah that's exactly what you're doing you know and I don't have time for that I'm not I'm not getting into a political debate. I you know look we're not doing that man you know she was trying she was trying.
Howard: Yeah I I you know I always said um politics religion sex and violence I never thought of sports but that's really interesting how you're an exceptional comedian and you came up with sports that is interesting. Especially here in Atlanta I mean that's Super Bowl that was had to be the most stressful thing you guys ever went halftime I went that my house and car that you already won the Super Bowl and then the Patriots came back and took it I could
Howard: I'm so glad I don't have that gambling gene I mean I I know he knows but I would have bet my house car and 401k that you're the halftime that you would have won.
Carlos: They should have they should have I heard no no how true this is that they started celebrating at halftime.
Carlos: You know they had to have yeah how do you come there it was a different team on the second half I mean it was painful to watch I told my son ago this is almost boring he goes don't say that and then the tide started turning he goes this is your fault you try to blame me it's a fight at the house.
Howard: and these dentists they don't realize it but Facebook has two billion users and I don't know I forgot the stats I think it's like half of America logs onto it every day and these guys are sitting there and and patients and employers I know dentists don't care about employees as it works themselves but patients Google you and then there's a Facebook page and they're all there your and you're either Pro you know you know global warming Trump Hillary socialized matters.
Carlos: Flat ironed.
Howard: Oh yeah I mean it's like they don't realize they have a mile long track record that people are looking at saying well I'm not going to that guy he's a jerk
Howard: I can't believe...
Carlso: He's a wackjob
Howard: and it's like no now on Facebook can you set up an anonymous account I mean could I set up a Facebook page where I'm just like smiley Tooth or grandpa Howie?
Carlos: I think you can totally do that all but to answer what you were just talking about my facebook you don't know my children look like you don't have no idea any idea what my wife looks like it's just me hey I'll be at the improv I'll be at punchline I'm going to Phoenix I'm going here I'm going there there's no political I am you know what I you don't know who I pray to if I pray what political affiliation I have hey it's just down the middle it's just cuz just for that very reason that people research it and I don't need any crap you know life sucks enough last thing I want to do is get into argument with somebody over something's dumb.
Howard: So I think most comedian experts say self-deprecating is the best humor do you agree with that or do any others come to mind like I wouldn't think in sports?
Carlso: You know I like observational stuff you know something you ever notice when like why are their Braille keys on the drive-through ATM you know if you're blind you probably shouldn't be driving you know it's that's all I'm saying yeah it's just silly stuff like that and it doesn't offend anybody. I'd rather be boring than offensive what do you think?
Howard: Well yeah and the other thing is like this
Carlos: I don't want to offend anybody.
Howard: I mean like like my my two oldest sisters are Catholic nuns I mean so if you said one right-to-life deal you just lost them for eternity and it's like if it's kind of like Ruth Bader Ginsburg she said something I'd just about knock me off my seat she said the reason you don't get angry or take anything personal or whatever is because it will lower your chance to persuade them and you're not gonna persuade someone to get optimum oral health dentistry done if you offended them you're not getting and the other thing is being 56 people I don't see anybody change their mind in politics sports religion sex and violence. I mean you could send my two older sisters to a 40-day convention and what do you think the odds are you could convert him to just being a Lutheran which I still don't know what the difference between Catholics and Lutheran's are I mean you'd have to be a lawyer to figure out but let alone change into like Islam or Judea or Hinduism I mean you you're not gonna change anyone's mind so talk about something where you have a chance to persuade them.
Carlos: That's all I'm saying
Howard: To brush and floss every morning and every night it's let's start there we're worried about Buddha you know nice month you know let's just floss on a daily basis you know.
Carlos: I don't know.
Howard: Now Buddha he's got to be the best I mean he's short he's bald he's got a big belly you and I have to have to be Buddhist.
Carlos: Yeah you know if I have to yeah you know it kind of look like them you know.
Howard: Oh my god so in stand-up you you said 30 seconds I mean 30 seconds they're gonna decide if you're gonna they're gonna give you a break.
Carlos: I've seen people come out and go a lot you know I work at the club so I can go whenever I want and I observe people that I don't know and I'm like what's this guy about you know and I find that some people come out you like I like this guy's face I just some about him I don't like you know what I mean you know and a lot of times maybe it's just instinct but yeah I don't like their act either and there's other people that come out and they're just super friendly and they smile and they laugh at themselves and it's just it's it's it's it connects it's it's the connection for lack of a better word it's the connection with the audience where you feel that you're I'm we're talking with you not at you.
Howard: I saw one of the most interesting studies in the world and was talking about beauty and it's very hard to set out so they set it up just in Scandinavia they set up just at universities they did only freshmen and they would show they were they were doing research and the only thing they could find totally significantly significant was attitude they would they would tell you something sad or think of something sad they take your picture and then they'd say okay now tell me about the happiest day your life and you would they take another picture and then they would Center those around and the person who was feeling happy would score two or three points higher on a one to ten and they've always said that you know if you want to be the most beautiful person in the world engaging you got to be feeling, you got it you got you if you're feeling it they're feeling it. I always thought the biggest bombs or when you're going in there I'll never forget the two worst lectures of my life my dad died Wednesday and I had to lecture Thursday and Friday both crowds were huge they were planned six months in advance and I told my mom I said you know I it's disrespectful to my dad and I just got a cancel just now the funerals not for three days your dad would absolutely want you to go give these things you go give these things and I couldn't even mention it to the crowd because I would just burst out bawling if I did.
Howrad: and you I'm if you're you know if you walk out there you gotta be feeling happy and funny and engaging because if you walk out there and you're struggling with something internally they all pick up on it instantly.
Carlos: Oh yeah yeah you're right but that's what separates the professionals from the you know from the yahoos you know all hell can be breaking loose but it's show time you got to get up there in and do your do your thing do your act you know I think so.
Carlos: I could have uh yeah all kinds of stuff going on I did a a show I was on my way to do a show and a similar situation my dad calls me and he lost my brother's phone number he's like I need his number I'm like what's wrong he goes his wife is in the hospital and she's not doing well and this is my younger brother's my dad's second marriage and my younger brother with with her and him and so I gave him the number I go I'll call you back I had to go do a show for two hours and host it and introduce a bunch of comics and was I'm leaving my mother calls me and says that you know she was gone but if I thought about that I wouldn't have been able to do the show yeah I mean there was nothing I can do I'm in six states away there's nothing I can do I just put it on my mind do the show and then deal with that the aftermath you know later so but it's tough life is tough.
Howard: but you know it's the same thing with them um comedians like like the only comedian I really don't like is anyone who uses props because I just think I know I'm a purist but it just distorts the art I don't want to see your hand puppet I don't want to see you carrot top open up a box and pull out a bunch of stuff because why don't you just why don't you make a film I mean why don't you just bring an animator out there why don't you just you know you know so I like to pure art I like the deal and dentist you know when they go out to lecture they're standing behind a podium they're not even looking at you they're looking back at their slides and they're going through slides and then you look at the same dentist in his operatory and he's trying to explain something he's got to pull out a model and then pull up a screen. I mean if you can't tell if you can't look someone in the eyes convey energy and tell them they're tooth broke and it's gonna need a crown over a little cap over the top it's no big deal I mean if you can't do that without 14 different crutches and powerpoints and software you don't even get it. I mean you're talking to another human why do you need a PowerPoint presentation.
Carlos: Yes some people don't aren't visual or you know they need a picture just to see what it is you look at that you know. I think there is a little bit about there's a value to having you know I don't know about a whole you know ninety minute video on it but I'll draw somebody a simple picture what's a crime you take the tooth out and put another no let me draw you a picture it just goes over the top you know and then I don't even do crown so why am i drawing them you know but I think whatever it takes if you're not if they don't understand then you're not explaining it correctly that's the simple thing so if you tell them they don't get it then draw a picture then figure out an easier way. I have all kinds of little analogies you know what my and it's funny because some of my doctors will pick up using some of the verbiage that I use. Like I had a guy come in hey this happens once or twice a week at six or seven cavities and needs a crown and maybe a root canal or an extraction or something and they're like man that's a lot of stuff where do we start I go we'll listen you didn't break it overnight we're not gonna fix it overnight let's start with the worst things first and it will just slowly if it takes a year it takes a year if we can get it done in six months we'll do it in six months so and they go oh okay cuz if you think I gotta have all this stuff done in the next two weeks it's overwhelming no one wants to hear that you usually like hey pump your brakes you didn't break it in two days we're not gonna fix it in two days we got it we'll start with the worst ones first it's common sense to me I guess maybe I'm crazy I don't know.
Howard: So in your 25 years of doing this how would you break up the patients I mean do you think so half are afraid of the pain and half are friend of the cost or or some love it like how would you break up the the market from your view of 25 years?
Carlos: I think I think most people have a concern about the financial part you know and they I have people trying to talk me out of you know getting a bridge or you know whether they need a scaling and root planing that's a big one you know I don't know I don't get a lot of objections I and I don't know if it's I just keep coming at them from different angles till they finally get what if they have any questions what I'm trying to say or I don't know I try to like you said just connect and just be honest with you of people.
Carlos: I know I didn't say I didn't say anything right there yeah useless answer.
Howard: You're in Atlanta are you in Atlanta?
Carlos: Yes sir
Howard: and that's a big prosperous successful City and yet you still say that most people are concerned about the cost of dentistry.
Carlos: Yeah you know the basics like I've had I can't tell you how many time people go well we got we got to get a full set a complete set of x-rays well all you want what the insurance is gonna cover and I'm like well you know that may not be a oh well how much is this gonna cost all the time all those times I get those objections all the time.
Howard: When I ask dentist and by the way on dentaltown if you start a thread you can start it as a poll and so I hear people all the time saying you know 25 percent of dentists do this or that I'll say wow that is really fascinating can I see the poll on that and it's always a gut feeling now I say well you know guts are filled with fecal matter that's only your opinion but on a dentaltown you know it's 20 years old and so I've got 20 years and a poll in fact you can just click the polls and just read all the polls and even though most of the polling is only a few hundred votes in a population of only a hundred and fifty thousand general dentists in America are practicing 32 hours a week or more a hundred two hundred three hundred votes is more than significant I mean god when they're trying to tell you who's gonna be the next president I'd say it's CNN will only pull maybe 1,200 people out of a country with 325 million so they're very valid but when I asked him what really stresses you out the most they always say the staff or the patients which means a human interaction, what advice could you give these introvert scientists librarian engineer physicist dentist to make to be less stressed with their team and their patients at a human level?
Carlos: I think fundamentally eye contact you know paying attention you ever talk to somebody and they're glancing off somewhere else doctor face in the and in the phone or something you're like I'm talking to you I think it's just one of those just like that that's you know we got to have that eye contact and in intone i don't know i think it's a multiple ways to do it and everybody's a little bit different some people you know aren't aren't comfortable but i think you if you're in a health care feel like we are you got to be comfortable talking to people.
Howard: Yeah eye contact them there I read a very neat paper on seduction and when another speaks another human looks at you and you break eye contact a look away they immediately think you're weak or submissive or passive and women in particularly they want someone who can really promote their their children's support their children so they're not looking for someone who looks way but but they said that when you just maintain eye contact that you can measure their pupils dilate there's more blood flow in the Vermilion border eye contact is everything and shaking their hand or you know they just it's um and that's why I don't like the models and the videos and all that because then they're not making eye contact all those are fine if they're not a crutch if you're not leaning on that I was hoping that they're gonna close deal but it's all about another thing with monkeys since we're a monkey without a tail is when you look down at them they feel threatened so you sit in your chair and if they're in the dental chair raise them up so they're looking down at you.
Carlos: Yes sir exactly
Howard: and then they do that confident and superior so you're underneath looking up in fact dentistry is the craziest professions because the most vulnerable monkeys and humans are is laying on their back with their throat exposed because that's how they all die a carnivore and a throat wrap you know is gonna give you the rear naked chokehold and that's how you die so for two million years we're setting up at trees watching our aunt Carl you know laying on the ground while a hyenas choking them out and then we asked all of our patients to lay on their back lift their chin up expose their throat right and they're like I mean was your next best idea I mean...
Carlos: Yeah what I again because of my size I'm a lot bigger you know I'm a big guy I'll sit somebody in the chair and I'll write like you said raise them and and in the body posture is yeah I kind of sit back if you're sitting all you know all in somebody's face and might be a little too intense lay back look my hands are right here let's talks and I go well let's talk to me about your teeth well there's nothing to say and it's I you know I try to throw a little tester joke in there and then once I tell them that I do stand up then they're like it that kind of gives me the permission to to mess with them a little bit more now they're kind of expecting it you know but if you say something and they're not responding and you give you a sideways glance you know just do your job and keep it moving this person is not in the mood you know what I mean but I think it's all about connection it's really it's something you have to practice I think but uh you really need to because I mean what are we for not without relationships man.
Howard: Oh yeah I mean there was this I mean humans they're there you live by this or die by this I mean there's the greatest thing about being alive and they're the worst thing about being alive I mean I would have hated to been born on earth and then they only Homo Sapien I mean that would have been a very confusing existence so the greatest things in your life are your family and friends but then other people you know I mean they're you know all these terrorists and all these toxic things and all these things like that are going on but I've also noticed something is you dentists or listening um that treatment plant you know a lot of dentists are not gonna pay attention until you materialize it into dollars and paying off their student loans but if you have staff turnover you're gonna have patient turnover if you want to keep your staff long-term you'll keep your patient's long-term and if you can't and with dentistry if you can't convince sell educate to your hygienist and your assistant and the front desk away this person needs this specific dental treatment well if they don't get it the patients never get it and then when and then when your staff gets it then when you leave the room how often whoppers if a hundred people after the dentist does their exam on a hundred patients in a row how many of them when the dentist leaves the room what is the top three most common things they say to you?
Carlos: What did he say you know right you know what was that what do I need and then they'll nod yeah yeah sure and then I gotta explain it to them you know and I think if you're right if the team is not all on the same page with you're spinning your wheels spin your wheels how much something is gonna cost and what the sequence is gonna be.
Howard: Yeah and you know it's sad because the the front office you know the back like your job is extremely predictable flow I mean you have a patient every hour do you schedule an hour for a cleaner how much time you get?
Carlos: An hour
Howard: I know so those thing you work 8:00 to 5:00 you have the patient every hour the front desk is set up there the phones might not ring for 20 minutes and all sudden six incoming calls come in and then all sudden you know you can check out three patients in a row and all three may need nothing and then the next three all want to review their account balance since 1912 and you know I mean so the you never know what's going on and I think it's so sad when the dentist does the exam whatever they walk up there and then they start asking all the questions for the front and when I had associates doing that in my team I would just say well you know if you're busy take them back there and go interpret them let him let the doctor know that this patient just came up to me and said well what's the difference between a bridge and the partial I mean I mean come on doc you were in here for a half an hour and they asked me what he's never seen a bridge and a partial so if you just yeah I always felt it was it was it was OD call it up when you're helping son enabling someone's behavior if every time they come out and they and they have no idea what's going on you should just start taking it back to the doctor and say doctor if you don't want to present treatment let's not do it but it's really hard to have your patients come out of here and we have to do all the treatment plan presentation because nobody knows what the hell you're saying so either let's give it up in the back and we'll because if they're in the room we can finish our phone call check out a patient then go in there and present but you want to do the presentation and then they come out and we have to do it over the counter not knowing what the hell's going on on our side.
Carlos: Yeah that and that's just it's a communication chain it has to all the links that have to be intact everybody's gotta know what the other people are doing it's communication man communication and clear concise communication it's all about clarity if you don't understand something then I need to explain it till you understand it, I can't make any simpler.
Howard: So what was your last episode 20 SEC's I just came out on April 19 so it's three days ago it says USS dysfunctional family criminal annex in Walmart taxes dog eating things they shouldn't coffee bad tattoos Tiger Woods Facebook live events and honey badgers. So was there anything to do with hygiene and all of that?
Carlos: One of the tattoos is is I can't believe I'm telling you this I have a tattoo I had a another website was called a king of comedy RDH.
Howard: Right and you took that down right?
Carlos: Yes we called it dentistry I call myself dentistry's King of Comedy which is a little arrogant but somebody's got to own the space right now so our my son's got a couple tattoos and I ago I wanted the artist who did his one they had a mom and dad tattoo to do my dentistry skit of comedy and I wanted a tooth with a crown on it so the guy jaws it up he made him look a little aggressive I said now I want him friendly put a smile on him he goes you want teeth on the tooth I go yeah what sounds stupid when you say it that way but yeah I want teeth on the tooth and he draws a tattoo and in the tattoo looks like it's the most sketchy looking he looks like a very suspicious and it's a horrible tattoo you know what see it?
Carlos: Okay yeah check this out doc.
Howard: I love it oh my god
Carlos: Is that a crotch he goes no man that's your goatee I gave him you go I made him look like you and he colored in his eyes my color no it's too late now I'm running around with a typo on my arm you know.
Howard: Oh my gosh I'm you gotta put that on the neat thing about dentaltown is the board like that it's all searchable where it's hard to on Facebook to go back on someone's post just three days ago but the we have a thread called dental tattoos and it's pretty damn cool two pages of dentists, hygienists, assistants showing them their tattoo you got a post-it on there it is amazing you would not believe how many dentists have a tattoo of a tooth on their toe or their finger there in fact one of the best employees i ever, true story it was it was back in 87 i was interviewing for an assistant and this assistant she seemed kind of aloof and she wasn't I don't know I just wasn't feeling it and I'm just gonna end it and not hire them and I went to shake her hand goodbye and when she shook my hand they saw a molar on the inside of her wrist and I like grabbed her hand and turn around looked at because I knew as I said anybody who works in dentistry who would commit to a tooth on their human body eats live breaths and dies dentistry oh right she was like the best assistant I ever had until her husband moved and they went off to California but she would come in and and she seemed I don't know she'd be tired or whatever and low energy but minutes and walked in the room it was like she went on stage and when she walked right into the operatory she her voice went up louder her she was she was doing a presentation and she just owned dentistry and I am I just saw I would hire anybody with a tooth tattooed on their human body because I know they're into dentistry I mean it's true they're totally into dentistry.
Carlos: Thats hilarious
Howard: What other tattoos do you have as far as like what are they related too?
Carlos: Well I got a the microphone that's right next to it got...
Howard: For stand up?
Carlos: For stand up yeah and my wife likes the flowers she wanted some color in it and she was paying for it so she's like get some flowers on it and I have a heart with the kids names in it in case I forget who they are.
Howard: but think about that you know you have one for your kids one for your standup one for being a hygienist and and those are three things that you own and love and the pudding you permanently tattooed it on your body I mean it's just yeah.
Carlos: I never thought about it that way but you're right.
Howard: That's next-level stuff what is your most favorite podcast you've done 26 podcasts off your flosser podcasts on iTunes what was your favorite one and why?
Carlos: I can't remember the number but there was a one where I told the story of playing tag in the dark when we were in high school about 15 and one of my buddies and his dad used to rebuild cars and we take a car out of the garage and nobody had a license and we drive it to the park and for some reason we're playing tag and this park had a little creek that was maybe three feet deep and maybe six feet across and I can easily jump it in the during the daytime I'm trying to get to one side of the park and from one side to the other and I jumped and I missed time it and that lands short and I smashed my shin against the rock order of this Creek River thing and I roll over to the grass and I swore my leg it felt like I broke my leg and we were all dressed up as ninjas that's the funny part and I remember holding my leg going ninjas don't cry ninjas and I wanted to cry so all the guys come up and we're all just laughing our asses off because I'm laying in the grass talking about ninjas don't cry one of the guys that was there has three boys and his boys know me as the guy who came up with ninjas don't cry so you know yeah your son off a bike and he'll you'll see him truck his lip will start to quiver yeah uh then just don't cry you're a ninja right you don't I mean so he turned that silly experience into a life lesson for his children which is absolutely ridiculous and which is about the story of my life.
Howard: Well you know I think how I think if dental meetings and you know it's so funny because what did we just talk about we just talked about in the beginning that I said don't talk about religion politics sex violence you added sports which was very intuitive to me and then you go to these major meetings like the ADA and who do they always get to be their keynote speaker some damn politician I mean over the years it was Kemp that was Bush it was it's only some damn polish and I'm like okay you're the America's Dental Association don't you know that some people gosh like maybe half the country don't agree with that guy cuz he's a donkey instead of an elephant or an elephant instead of a donkey or whatever the hell and then if you came on and and was yourself and I would say your humor was I mean it wasn't rated R what would you say pg-13 or what would you call your humor if it was on Hollywood?
Carlos: I think that night it was a little bit more pg-13 you know but I even my worst stuff is not that you know what I mean it's not bad.
Howard: I cant tell you how many times I've done a seminar I mean I've done a thousand of them and so many times well Mrs. Whimple was very upset me so she walked out she said you said shit three times shit is rated G we were not dropping the f-bomb I didn't know nudity no violence no one.
Carlos: Right right
Howard: It's crazy
Carlos: You didn't expose yourself
Howard: Yeah and look at look at R rated movies like it you're a mammal so you give birth to live young and you and you feed them milk and you show a breast and it's immediately rated R and half the country just wants to shut down the movie theater but then if you show a family film like Rocky or something where an m16 or Rambo kills like a hundred people in the movie oh that's a favorite movie then after church let's take all the kids to the Rambo movie and watch them kill a hundred other people and then if someone's had a mammary gland they're like oh my god call the mayor shut this place up and I have the hardest time explaining to people that okay what you just heard was pg-13 max now I would love to go back on there I could make it rated R in a New York second and I could make it read it xxx in half a second but that's not nothing that's what I do when I do comedy stuff in Phoenix like when I do those shows around here I mean it's like brutal and they laugh and then you go into a dental club and give them pg-13 and 20 rows are the people I don't like you say shit did he say poop what did he just grab his crotch I mean oh my god it's like what is wrong with this profession and then and then and then and then like say then they're keynote speakers or politicians and I don't care who you are a libertarian a Republican a Green Party a Democrat let's run over half the country and that's that's their best idea and I'll tell you you're in Atlanta they Hindman meeting I'll never really asked me to speak and they said now now when you come you're gonna wear a suit and tie right I mean you have to wear a suit and tie and I said hell no I wouldn't even consider it I'm like oh you can't have you speak if your not going to wear a suit and tie well then find some guy with a suit and tie I mean don't be calling me I'm not gonna be something I'm not but it is so hard to technically explain to a dentist the difference in pg-13 R and X and and there's no one ever been at a dental convention in our racks and you just do pg-13 and then they just freak.
Carlos: You know I and I think that goes back to it dentistry needed to just relax a little bit maybe not so much on the you know on the x or the R but some things are are just funny can we just be people for a minute you know what I mean I don't know if this is the time of the place but Dr. Paul Homily I'm coming out to his course in July and I'm gonna help him teach people how to add humor to their presentations to make them a little bit more interesting so if that's of interest to anybody you go to Paulhomily.com and sign up for the the July course I believe it's a 28th 29th what the one in late July whatever one that is and he's the guy's a genius with the word in speaking and he gets it and the reason I think why we get along is because we can have a frank conversation and just be with two regular guys and I'm just you know excited to come be able to share this gift if you will and how people try to make people a little bit funnier you know.
Howard: Yeah I'm trying to find out when his uh courses that you just mentioned I'm a Paul homily let's see oh yeah that's name of course just because you're an expert doesn't make you interesting June 6th and 7th in Gilbert Arizona which is right up the street from the dental school you know what you should tell Paul to do have him send the AT Still dental school a deal and Tom that their dental students can and like you know some you know the course for a full participation as 1595 for audience only it's 595 he should do something for the dental students like 195 or 95 because though they're those kids need it the most but yeah Paul is just a master just because you're an expert doesn't make you interesting what a great guy he was on the show he was episode seven four three.
Carlos: So what we're doing is just because you start you tell stories doesn't make them good and that's the thing we're doing and I can't believe I got my stupid face on here.
Howard: No that's on that's just amazing uh Paul's all that community now let me give you a background on Paul because
Carlos: It's the 26 and 27th that's the one.
Howard: What is it?
Carlos: July 26th and 27th Just because you tell stories doesn't make them good.
Howard: Just because you tell stories doesn't make them good July 26 or 27 they're all in Gilbert.
Carlos: I'm gonna help make them gooder.
Howard: I wonder why their all in Gilbert I wonder what's going on in Gilbert.
Carlos: I think he's got a nice little spot there where the classes are held called the falls.
Howard: Living here in Phoenix but yeah so Paul you know I am when I went to when I was a baby and just got out of school and I went to the mission student Pittsburgh with Carl Micsh it was a seven three-day weekends at the University of pets where I first learned about Paul and I think he was trauma where was he from I think he was from ah what was it a shuttle maybe South Carolina Fort Mill Fort Mill South Carolina and this guy was just it was the only guy at the whole mission state I was selling the majority of all the big cases and and everybody thought South Carolina didn't have any money and he was doing the most and back then they were subperiosteal and Ramos frames and things that you know don't even exist anymore and he was just doing them all day long he would do his laughs to me he always say selling the whole full mouth really going in there and doing it that's why I'm down here with Carl you know every other weekend trying to turn to learn all the technical stuff but he never ever had a problem selling the full-mouth really doing it I always thought.
Carlos: He knows how to talk and he can talk to anybody yeah yeah I've learned so much from him already but uh yeah so I'm excited going on there cuz he doesn't let anybody shoehorn in on his on his lectures because he's so good at doing it in himself but you know we hit it off man so I'm excited.
Howard: Yeah so what about inter staff like you've been in there 25 years you know you go into so many offices and there's something toxic going on whether it's assistant AIT's a hygienist or the front desk or the doctor spouse or whatever what do you what do what are your insights on that?
Carlos: You know you have the occasional bad apple if you will and there's some people that are just toxic they're just some people that are just just straight-up just not nice people you know and they'll eventually shoot themselves in the foot but I think for the whole of the organism you guys cut off the bad part and sometimes the other people go.
Howard: What I always thought was bizarre is that you meet someone at a at a meeting and you can determine their talks that can like three seconds and it's like okay how do I know this person is completely toxic and you don't and I just felt like they'll come up and they'll say well will you talk about this and this then they'll look back at their doctor in their world or eyes and discontent and then I'm like how long you work there and she's like I've been there three years I'm like wow three years you're completely toxic you just rolled your eyes at your employer. I mean do you think what do you think they know they're toxic and just don't know how to deal with it or how do why do you why do you dentists keep toxic people?
Carlos: I think some people don't know they're toxic and they need to be you know talk to you know a little pep talk a little team meeting or some and then there's other people that just like chaos don't like the Joker they like pissing people off you know what I mean it causing you know disruption and disharmony just because they like doing it that's fewer and I don't know why to keep toxic people I don't know I'm at the age I'll be 50 in August and I don't have time for for toxic people if we're in a conversation 90 seconds and I'm stressing out I'm done have a nice day you know not in the prefer in the dental setting I got to do what I got to do but out in a club or something I can't I can't do it I'll walk away from people.
Howard: What have you ever wondered what percent of Americans I mean I know we don't live in other countries and would know but what would percent of Americans you think are just toxic?
Carlos: Man that's a good question I don't know but maybe maybe eight percent.
Howard: Okay so you say one in ten?
Howard: Yeah and it's you fight you're hires flow and you fire fast and I mean when you've got someone toxic on the team you were on the cruise with our buddy our friend the dental crews you were just on you know you take your staff on a cruise you take them to meetings you do all these things and then they're just toxic and backfiring on you and the way like taking your staff on a cruise would be a return on investment is if they all stay with you five 10 15 20 years I mean it's not it's not it's only a return on investment if you slow down to staff turnover and when you look at staff turnover wages is usually mention fourth and one through one two and three I don't like the people I work with I don't like the leader I don't like my manager I don't feel good about what I'm doing and the dentist thinks he's gonna overcome all this toxic crap by having like a bonus system I mean I mean you know how many wives how many men things are their spouse is gonna stay with them because they're successful it's like your spouse would rather live under a bridge in a box and be happy then live in a big mansion with some toxic ass.
Carlos: Yeah I agree
Howard: So how was that cruise?
Carlos: The smiles at sea?
Carlos: Smiles the Seas is amazing man all have you ever been?
Howard: I have not he asked me to go on that but the thing about luxury is they they book you years in advance and so I you know I couldn't do it in fact it was so funny just he said we'll just cancel and I say yes can't cancel some gig that you're ahead but how was Smiles at sea?
Carlos: I've been on three or four of them and they just get better and better every year better better every year he has two events they're going back to Cuba in October and unfortunately this year I couldn't make it in March and I got a gig and where am I going Minneapolis so I can't go in October I really want to go I want to go to Havana I want to go to Cuba but you know you have the couple different tracks on CE you have team building team and bonding like no other you know they have fun events it's very social they give away a ton of stuff a ton of stuff scholarships for hygienists to get there they're bachelors they give away instruments tools you name it and Plus you know excursions and then when you're not taking classes you're at the beach on the pool deck or you know on a horse somewhere you know.
Howard: I think Elisia Desmond RDH and another hygienists I think he's amazing guy and then and Dennis what they realize that the same skill to keep your spouse is the same skill to keep your staff is the same skill to keep your patients and what dentists fail to focus on the most say they always want to talk about new patients and marketing and should they have Facebook ads or Google AdWords or direct mails was like dude you live in a town of 5,000 and you've practiced there 25 years so for 25 years in a town of 5,000 you still need new patients and then I look around your office and no one's even worked here for three years and you know so you know I always thought that it the worst personality you have you need to move to a bigger city because you could be the worst dentist in Phoenix and in your lifetime you couldn't piss everyone off but the worse scenario is when you got a really bad humanist dentist in a small town and everybody figures out that that there there's nastic it's like if you're toxic you need to be in downtown Atlanta New York City Miami yeah and if you look at some of the greatest companies where were they born rural America like Walmart I loved Sam Walton's early stores were you know his wife at the end of church there's some lady to walk up to him and say I just bought these shoes from your husband I'm week ago and the heel already fell off and he won't take him back and then Helen had to go tell Sam and she'd say he'd say well that's not my responsibility I I didn't make the damn shoe and she and she say Sam this town's got 5,000 people that whole family is never gonna go back ever so we do this once a week for five years we're out of business so that force Sam to he'd have to take it back and then that made him mad so then he pushed that up the value chain and the next time the guy came in sold him 10 pairs of shoes he say hey not this one your exchange so he pushed refunds up the value chain which forced all these American companies to start going for quality by the way his book was made in America he didn't even he didn't even have that imports I mean it was all made in America you know it was just amazing but I look at some of the most amazing dentist and they're all rule I mean I mean you know if you're just because your policy works in Manhattan or Miami doesn't mean it's gonna work in Tulsa Oklahoma and when you get to small town then I'm really interested in how this is working and so...
Carlos: Now that personality comes into play now your people skills come into play how you treat people come into play yeah you can be a jerk in a big city just like you said is you can't you can't piss everybody off but I don't know I have a small I don't say small I have a fair a good-sized following of patients I called my VIPs and I had one lady come in she's like I try to come see you I had to reschedule cuz you're going out of town I'm like but didn't they have a replacement she goes yeah but I don't want to see somebody else I want to see you they told me I had to wait two months to come back and see you I go well listen do this next time that happens so don't get upset just thinking you have Carlos call me tell them it's Mrs. so-and-so and and leave a message and I'll call you back and I'll find your spot and I'll come in early or I'll stay late one day and we'll work it out and I've said that to several hundred people and maybe 20 people have taken me up on it but knowing that that you care that you will work with them makes all the difference in the world.
Howard: So I can't believe we went...
Carlos: Very simple
Howard: we went over and over and over his website is CarlosRDH.com CarlosRDH.com his podcast is Off your Flosser podcast if you want to have a dentle meeting think outside the box don't bring in the mayor the governor or some guy running for congree no religion sex politics violence or sports bring in Carlos I've watched him in action he had my whole staff laughing their heads off everyone loves a guy I love you Carlos I think you're good for dentistry and you got to post your tattoo on dentaltown I think that's gonna be talking about lightening all things up but he's off your flosser podcast. Carlos thank you so much for coming on the show today.
Carlos: My pleasure sir thank you Dr. Farran, have a good one.
Howard: It's Howard do you buddy, always.