"You don't learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over."
School taught you "why" things had to be a certain way. School teaches you how to get the answer, but is this always right? My thought was always "who" decided the "why"? What made that the only way, and what was wrong with thinking there might actually be a better (and easier) way.
There is a lot of ego involved in teaching. For all the years of learning what you do - at some point you feel that you can apply those principals and you are the best at it. It's interesting that so many people with "masters" and the greatest "coaches" are not the "players".
The difference between being the master and the coach compared to being the player is the ability to take a risk. Without these people who take risks, after they have learned from the best, we would never accomplish anything! Somewhere along the road a caveman decided they needed a round wheel to move things more efficiently. Even though "OG" showed him how to push things and build muscle, the student decided to take a risk and put a round object underneath and life became better.
When you go to school, you are lucky, or ARE you lucky enough, to learn whatever the master is teaching you? Maybe you decide that you can do it better. Thankyou for teaching me how to get from A to B but I am going to stick a round object under this and get there quickly. Cya.
You go to school and you learn what they want you to know. If you stop there, that's all you might ever know.
Take that knowledge and start applying it to real life and you run into interesting situations. The "text book" didn't cover that - so you send it away to a "specialist" to deal with.
Everyone has to start somewhere. The specialist had to learn from another specialist who had to learn from a specialist. Somewhere along the line, there was a person who took a chance and must have tried and failed before they became the "specialist".....
You only know what you know, and I know it's not easy.
Success is no accident. It is hard work , perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.
35 years of constant improvement would describe my life as a consultant. I am a master at discounting cotton rolls. I can teach that to anyone. Not everyone that sells cotton rolls can appraise a practice, help market a practice. Read a balance sheet. Perform human resources and understand 20 different materials that might resolve a troubling issue. They may not have the thousands of contacts and years of experience to address important and difficult treatments....
Selling the cotton rolls cheap is the basics. What are the basic skills of your trade? What you learned in school pretty is what everyone who passed should be able to perform. How well they do it...that may be a different manner. But if the gist is that 'everyone is the same' then how will you possibly gain a valued and loyal following?? How will you advance in your career and be happy? Do you just want a paycheck, get off early and really have no interest in becoming better? Really?
Think about that - and then think....how can I make my mark on the world. Make my brand more valuable. Everyone can sell cheap cotton rolls. Maybe everyone that went to school with you can now do a basic endo procedure. Cement a crown. Seat a patient, and mix an IRM.
What can you learn to do that will keep you interested? Make you better? What will you do that will gain the loyalty of patients? The referral and recognition of your peers.
Be good. Get better. Keep learning.
Education and Skill is one thing, creating opportunity is another...
I can't stress enough....you only know what you know.
My friends that have continued to learn new skills and invest in themselves and their practices are successful! I GUARANTEE YOU when they look in a mouth and they see a missing tooth, they see an opportunity to help a patient. Not only because they LEARNED how to address the issue, they have also made the investments in the technology to do so.
These skills have opened new doors. A deeper understanding of surgery. Endodontics. Orthodontics. Cosmetic and restorative courses. Advanced education helps create the opportunity to help your patients!!
It's interesting to hear how critical some people are of others that have gone on to learn skills and treatments. The "must be nice" that my wife Karen talks about in her blog ( https://www.behealthycoaching.com/blog/must-be-nice ). Instead of recognizing the HARD WORK and SKILL and the RISK that some people take - they believe other people are simply doing something "wrong".
After all the years of watching my friends succeed in this business - I would take away that the most "successful" of the bunch NEVER STOPPED LEARNING. They always took risk and continued to educate and invest in themselves. It has kept their careers interesting and they have become the masters of their destiny.
A $12,500 treatment plan....accepted.
Several of my friends have commented recently and shown me pictures of cases they have on the go. They have told me how excited they are to start these treatment plans - but would never have tried without the encouragement to continue their education and expand their skill.....I say it's a lifetime of this!
If you are a young dentist reading this - listen to this "old man" of the business. KEEP LEARNING.
If you are experienced, but not enjoying the "daily grind"....learn something new, challenge yourself.
If you are bored. Get your heart pumping and commit to learning something new with your chosen career!