Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran
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Living an Abundant Life with Dr. Bill Blatchford : Howard Speaks Podcast #65

Living an Abundant Life with Dr. Bill Blatchford : Howard Speaks Podcast #65

4/14/2015 2:04:07 AM   |   Comments: 1   |   Views: 1214




Is it possilbe to work less days and make more money? Can vacations boost productivity? Should new graduates take out more loans to buy a practice? Dr. Bill Blatchford answers these questions and more in this hour podcast interview with Dr. Howard Farran.

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HSP #65 with Bill Blatchford audio


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HSP #65 with Bill Blatchford video


If you are considering buying a practice or want to learn more, call Dr. Blatchford at 541-389-9088


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Howard Farran: It is an extreme honor for me today to be interviewing my idol…when I got out of school in 1987, Bill Blatchford was already crushing it back then, and when I got out of school, I listened to a lot of people and you were my instant idol. I can’t tell you how much I worship the ground you walked on. My assistant Jen, we all drove down to Tucson and I was so lucky because at the end of the Tucson seminar, your flight was in Phoenix where I live and you were saying how you needed to find a cab right back and I just felt, I said well I’ll give you a ride.

 

Bill Blatchford: Yeah, you did.

 

Howard Farran: And me and my ex wife Judith, we thought we were the luckiest people in the world because we got to give the man…we got him two more hours…we had 90 miles back to the airport and we just thought we are the luckiest people in the world, but Bill thank you so much for all you did for me personally, thank you for all that you have done for dentistry. Another thing I am proud of you, I should have listened to you earlier. You were always into health and I didn’t get that memo until I turned 50 and gosh every year on Bill’s birthday he does his age in push ups. Now I am not going to tell you his age, if he wants to he can, but I’m 52 and I can’t do 52 push ups. I mean… dude, I don’t know anybody that can do that many push ups at 88. So you’re crushing it in health, health is the only true wealth and you were teaching me how to be wealthy in dentistry and now I am 52 and you are still my idol and how to be healthy so you can make more wealth in dentistry. So I want to start, I only get you for an hour and here is the little stop watch thing, but I first want to ask…here is my first question to you. You have been in dentistry for what 50 years?


Bill Blatchford: Oh well close to it. I graduated in 1970.

 

Howard Farran: You graduated in 1970 and it is 2015 so that is 45 years.

 

Bill Blatchford: Plus four years in dental school, 49.

 

Howard Farran: So Bill you are…when you hear kids walk out of dental school today, a lot of them play a violin and say, oh Bill you know when you got out of school there was only three dentists and anybody could be successful and this and that. Now I’m walking out of school and I’ve got $300 000 in student loans and when you walked out of school they were closing down dental school. I’m getting out of school when they’re opening up dental schools, so my first question to you Bill is, are the golden glory years of dentistry, are they behind us? What would you…here is my first question, what would you tell the 5000 graduates, this is March, who is going to be walking out in two months, 5000 American kids are going to walk out, they’re going to say congratulations you are a doctor, here is the bill for $350 000 what would you tell that kid?

 

Bill Blatchford: Well first off, thanks for inviting me and 20 years ago I was that old guy at 52 that you are now, so anyway I look forward this opportunity. I think that is a great question and there are two ways to look at world. About 95% of the people look at the world from a place of scarcity, in others words, to answer the question these students have. If you are coming from scarcity you would say my gosh, when you got out of dental school we were graduating 3500 dentist a year, now we’re graduating 5000, almost 6000 and the opportunity is not there but you want to remember something. The other way to look at things is from abundance. I mean think about this for a moment. Think about opportunities in the world. I mean you build Dentaltown when the internet came along and people were saying oh my gosh, the print media is dying, print media is dying, newspapers are closing, newspapers are going broke, the newspaper gets thinner and thinner every morning, but where do we go for our media today? And look at the billionaires that have been created in this new environment of the internet and as you were talking this morning, the iPhone. Now think about this. Back about 300 years ago, oil in the desert was just something that got camel’s feet dirty. Think about it, it had no value, oil had no value. 1900 comes along, the Industrial Revolution and the big billionaires were made in the oil business. Well now we’re kind of moving on beyond that, but I think now in dentistry here is the thing, it is true there are a lot of dentists graduating. It is true that they have a lot of debt, way more debt than we had. I graduated from dental school with practically no debt. Now here is the other thing that I will point out. I also worked practically full time all the time I was in dental school. I also was married and my wife was teaching full time, so we had a very good income, and today nobody works Howard, and that is a mistake. If I can get the message out there, these dental students, I hate to say, I almost said kids, but I need to be careful. These dental students have got to shift to a new paradigm. It’s okay to work while you’re in school. It’s okay to work, have a job. I worked, I drew blood, I drove taxi cabs, I worked in medical records, I worked in hematology…you know there are all kinds of jobs available.

 

Howard Farran: And Bill, every year they take the students loan money and like 5000 bucks and do spring break in Cancun.

 

Bill Blatchford: Exactly and it’s part of that and I am telling these kids and they are coming out of school, because it’s…and then they’re telling them that there is only way you can pay of you student debt is to go out and work for corporate dentistry and I do not like that. It is a trend that I have worked for the last 30 years to work for private practice. Fee for service, dentistry because I still believe that we deliver the best care to the patient. We are more responsive to the patient and all these reasons. They can’t pay off their students debt Howard, working for 100 000 to 150 000 a year. I mean do the math, on 350 000 and I just spoke at Midwest University recently, to the students there, the graduating class, these kids are $400 000 in debt. Well do the math, at 5% they’re going to pay that off in 10 years, that’s $40 000 in principle over the period of time and the average is $200 000 at 5%, it’s a $50 000 a year payment and $40 000 of that is taxable. So let’s take their $150 000 a year, and that’s generous, new graduates in the urban areas aren’t even making $150 000, but if they are making a $150 000 their first expense is taxes. Taxes are going to take $40 000 of that. Now we are down to $110 000. They pay $40 000 on their student loan, or $50 000 on student loan. What does that leave them with, $60 000 to live on? That’s not going to work. They’d be better off to have not gone to school and work as a dental assistant if they’re going to do that. The only way is to go out and buy a practice and get in and start making some money. They cannot pay off that debt and the banks are still loaning money and I think with good advice, I’ve advised banks to loan money to these students and I get a call, I won’t say weekly but at least once a month I get a call from a banker that says Bill, you’ve been in dentistry a long time, I’ve got a student here and he’s got $400 000 in student loans, he wants to buy a practice for a million dollars. Tell me about the practice? And I say, well Mr. Banker, pull up paper and pencil and let’s do some math. Generally it works. It generally works, we can generally pay off the student loan and we can pay off the practice and actually have a pretty good standard of living if they’ll do that. But if they follow what the dental schools are teaching, going into corporate dentistry or get a job, they’re in trouble. They’re going to have a real hard time. Well you do math in your head as quick as I do.

 

Howard Farran: But I also think there is something different about this generation like, I didn’t have a car my first five years of college. My youngest son is 19 and he doesn’t have a car, and you go to these dental schools and they all drive $30 000, $40 000 new cars. They take a spring break every year and go to Cancun. I never went to Cancun on student loan.

 

Bill Blatchford: No, I didn’t know where Cancun was.

 

Howard Farran: Yeah, so a lot of these…I look at the variants. I mean how come some kids are getting out with $150 000 and then the average might be $300 000 and then there’s kids with $450 000, $500 000 and then they act like they’re a victim.

 

Bill Blatchford: As you know, my daughter is a dentist, she graduated and she actually went back to school at 31 and decided to become a dentist and she already had two, or she had gone to school here in Tucson, fashion merchandising, worked at Nordstrom for a year, got a second degree in commercial interior architecture, designed medical offices for six years. At 31 came to me and said dad, I think I will go to dental school. Now she already had…and she was married, her husband is an architect and they don’t make much money, architects don’t make a lot, but she decided to go to dental school and when she graduated, I mean she had between $150 000 and $200 000 of debt and most of that was through my wife and I, so it puts you in a little different situation but they didn’t live as lavishly. I mean you won’t believe this, but she and her husband had one car and so she walked to school. He dropped her off in the morning, she walked home every night for four years. It was good exercise for her and she didn’t need a separate car, but you go to the parking lot for dental school and like you say, you’re seeing $30 000, $40 000…

 

Howard Farran: And what I also think is bizarre…okay so when I got out of school in May of ‘87 there was two offices and I worked at, one was seven to one Monday through Sunday and the other one was from one to ten Monday through Sunday, seven days a week. So I worked 7 am to 10 pm seven days a week and it took four months to get my office open, so I just quit my day job, so when I opened up my office I was seven to one, seven days a week and every night for the first year at one o’clock I went to the other one. So I worked 7am to 10pm seven days a week for the first year and with all the complaining about student loans, for me in Phoenix, I ran an ad to hire a dentist to come in on Saturday and everyone is like, well I’m not working on Saturday.

 

Bill Blatchford: Right.

 

Howard Farran: It’s like you’re not…you have $300 000 in student loans and you won’t work Saturday?

 

Bill Blatchford: I know.

 

Howard Farran: I worked seven days a week and didn’t…oh my God.

 

Bill Blatchford: Well we can reminisce about that and that’s a big issue I believe, but I think the bigger thing, the bigger picture that we need to look at here, is just go back to my abundance for a moment. See what I see today in dentistry, this is the golden era of dentistry, this is it. I mean it has never been better. It has never been this good. I mean think about it. They think well, it was great back then but here is the thing. What did we have available for services? Well we did fillings, we were just barely making the shift into composites. I mean composites at that time, insurance companies would not even pay for a composite. Most dental schools were not teaching composites. I actually took my amalgamators out of the office and 1980 and I was never doing amalgam…somebody, I went to a course and he said put the amalgamators in the trunk of your car and take the bus to work. Well I put the amalgamators in the trunk of my car and rode my bicycle the next day. No more silver fillings. Those were available. Then we had crowns, think about the crowns we had. We had gold crowns and porcelain fused to metal crowns and I, not to throw cold water on anybody, but they never looked really good and if a tooth was missing, if we had to remove a tooth, the only solution was to put in a bridge, which meant you had to prep the teeth on either, well you know all of that sort of thing and think about today, what’s available in dentistry. First off, we shifted from dentistry being remedial, you know when I graduated you know people would say well I hardly ever go to a dentist. I went to a dentist once, I had a toothache, had the tooth removed, haven’t needed a dentist since. That is all the public thought of when they thought of dentistry was relief of acute pain. We’ll wait until we get advanced periodontal disease and have our teeth removed and make a denture. Well truthfully I had to promise head of our prosthetics department that I would never make a denture and if I made him that promise, he would graduate because I hated dentures, I didn’t like doing them, but look what’s available today. We’ve got, first off we’ve got a healthy public. They are living a good 15 years longer and they are hanging onto their teeth so huge opportunity there that wasn’t available then. Secondly we’ve got cosmetics that came in and that made American public aware that their smile actually has something to do with their success in life and the public is now, at least in the United States is thinking along these lines and some of the other countries are following along so that is available. And then implants have absolutely changed dentistry. I mean the fact that we can now remove a diseased tooth and place an implant and place a restoration on that is something we did not have available to us, although I did join an implant study club in 1972 and started placing blade implants back there in the early 70’s and most of them worked. But I think the opportunity is really here. The business model today is so much better than the business model was in the 70’ the 80’s and the 90’s. I mean today, I look at what my clients are doing, I just look at what my clients are doing today and I have clients that are earning a seven figure income of net income from the practice of dentistry and they’re doing this in a three to a four day work week. They are doing this and they are taking eight to ten weeks off a year, which is kind of my trademark, it to…life is first and your practice is something that supports your life, not life takes what’s left over after you’ve worked a lot. I think the opportunity in dentistry today is greater than it has ever been in the past. I really do.

 

Howard Farran: Yeah and I want to throw one more perspective out there. The weirdest experiences I feel personally are, you know I love lecturing around the world. I’ve lectured in every continent several times and I’ve lectured in 50 countries and you’ll come back from Africa or Asia, you’ll come back from where there are seven billion people, three billion live off three dollars a day and then the minute you land you start hearing all these Americans talk about how bad everything is and how bad the government is and I was listening to this guy telling me how our government, it’s all bribes and cheating and I’m sitting there thinking, well if that’s what they do, then that’s what everyone should do because I’ve been to all those other places and I’m always really, really glad to get back here. And then when you read history books, I go back and people think it’s so tough now and I go back. So in 1862 almost a million Americans are killed in the Civil War, and then we go into World War One which coincides with the Spanish influenza. So the flu kills 5% of the entire planet plus World War One. Then we’re sent into a great depression and then we go into World War Two and now people are whining about 2015? You just want to look at them and say, you should have to live in Asia for at least a month a year, or Africa or go back 100 years in time, because I mean at some point you’ve just got to call bullshit.

 

Bill Blatchford: You know, as you know I belong to a coaching program. I have been, you know I coach doctors and I believe that coaching is important and I’ve been a member of a program called Strategic Coach for eight years.

 

Howard Farran: With Dan Sullivan?

 

Bill Blatchford: With Dan Sullivan and one of the mantras that we have at Strategic Coach is that we always go big. Always go big means always begin in gratitude. Something my wife and I have done for years is in the morning before we get up, we talk about the things that we have to be grateful for. If you live here… see I work at this, I work at living in abundance. I work at not coming from scarcity and I think the normal human situation has always come from scarcity and if you think about this, I believe the world is divided into two groups. The people that occupy Wall Street kind of put the numbers on it, you know the 5% and the 95%, well I’ve always felt this way. It actually, quick story, it started one time I flew my plane down to Mexico and we were in Loreto on the Baja, and we’re sitting around the pool one afternoon…

 

Howard Farran: By Cabo?

 

Bill Blatchford: North of Cabo. Loreto is about halfway down the peninsula.

 

Howard Farran: Okay.

 

Bill Blatchford: And we were sitting around the pool one afternoon at this funky little Motel, it wasn’t even a motel it was just a little motel and you didn’t want to get into the pool, so we sat around having beer instead of getting in the pool. The water didn’t look too good, and there was a fellow there named Malcolm Smith and Malcolm Smith is very famous in a very small group of people on motorcycle racing. Malcolm Smith and this dates me a little bit…goes back to On Any Sunday I think was the name of the movie. Steve McQueen, he was with Steve McQueen and the last, there was a movie that Steve McQueen escapes from jail, a prisoner war camp and rode across…you remember the scene. He jumps on his motorcycle and he jumps the fence, well that was actually Malcolm Smith on the motorcycle. It was not Steve McQueen. Anyway he was leading a group of people down the Baja on motorcycles and they had a helicopter on standby, and an ambulance and all this stuff, and I am going wow, this really sounds great and we got talking about various adventures we’d been on and he said yup, he says about 5% of the people in the world do everything, you are the 95% who watches on TV. I said aha! I am always going to be in the 5%. Now this is not money, it’s enjoyment, it’s level of relationships, it is physical fitness…it is just everything about life. Well then when I started with Dan Sullivan he starts talking about the 5% see the world from abundance and 95% see it from scarcity. So these students or anybody can be dentists. I mean I talk to dentists from my age and they’re also still in scarcity, there is not enough out there for them. I mean look at the population of the United States in 1970 compared to now. Look at the disposable income of people in 1970 compared to now. This is the opportunity for dentists. It’s not the fact that there are more dentists graduating, the fact that they’ve got this debt. When has the American public ever had the disposable income that they have right now? I am taking about disposable income…as you know I was just in Tanzania and there I followed you on that one.

 

Howard Farran: We both climbed Kilimanjaro in 2014.

 

Bill Blatchford: In 2014.

 

Howard Farran: The tallest mountain in Africa. 19 000 feet.

 

Bill Blatchford: The tallest mountain in Africa 19 000 feet and you did it…you were smart, you did it in you fifties, I did it in my seventies. So it was…but yeah I was able to make it to the top and I was the first one in our group back down to the high camp, so I felt good about that. But you go to Tanzania and you see what these people have. I’m like you, I’ve been all over the world and the United States- we’ve got it made.

 

Howard Farran: Oh my God.

 

Bill Blatchford: Disposable income, and I had a financial advisor early in my career, Rick Mercer who...you know Rick Mercer and he said you want to remember that anything beyond a third of a bowl or rice a day is a luxury and his evidence was…and my wife and I just looked at him like he is crazy. And he said my evidence is a third of the world lives, or two thirds of the world lives on a bowl a rice a day and so look at what we spend money on today.

 

Howard Farran: And it really changes your mind because I came back from Tanzania and somebody complained because I left the toilet seat up and I do realize that three billion people, their toilet is a pipe in the ground.

 

Bill Blatchford: Or actually there’s a large number of people who don’t even have a pipe. They’ve just got a hole in the ground.

 

Howard Farran: I was like, I mean I flew to Katmandu 20 hours and went to the first class business section of the international airport of Katmandu and the toilet was a pipe, a hole in the ground and then you come back to this rich, fat, lazy country and they had to move the toilet seat. Oh my Gosh, I’m so sorry the crisis you have. But speaking of abundancy, I’ve got to tell you something in all honesty. Whenever I meet a dentist who does work four days a week and he is doing a million and a half and more and taking home $500 000, $600 000, he is usually your client.

 

Bill Blatchford: A lot of them are.

 

Howard Farran: So I want to walk through…to the people who, pretend, or talk to the viewer about what do you do for dentists? What are your logistics, how does you consulting program work, how are you different from others? I mean I know you and I have always been biased against real dentists who’ve been dentists, ran practices because a lot of consultants you can tell, they don’t even have a prototype for what they’re talking about. I mean they’ll say something and my bullshit factor is like…so do you own an office where you actually do this? And they’re like no, I lecture at conventions and I write articles for magazines, but I like real guys like us because we’ve got a freaking prototype. I mean, and I know you, the same thing, if it wouldn’t work in Corvallis, Oregon, well you wouldn’t tell some guy in Kansas to do it. I mean you and I worked this crap out in real prototypes. But tell people what you do.

 

Bill Blatchford: Yeah, here’s what I think. I think the thing that makes me different. First off, I went into dentistry…I grew up on dairy farm. You know dairy farm is seven days week, 365 days a year and you get up and milk those cows and then you put in a full work day and you milk the cows again. So growing up, you know my family, I have two brothers and my parents and we went on two vacations while I was growing up. We went one time, we took a week off, somehow my dad arranged…I was in the second grade and we went to Yellowstone Park for a week and again, I was in about high school junior high and we took three or four days to Oregon Coast and that was it. And I said there’s got to be a better way to make a living and actually my mother reminded me of this several times. She said it was a day…sorry…but this is…my mom told me this for years. I was actually on a hay baler on day in the dust and she said, I said to her there’s got to be a better way to make a living than this. And she told me (unclear) and I believe I found it. So I looked around to find a better way to make a living. What would be a great living? I want to make a difference for people. I just said it wasn’t just all about money. I mean there’s a lot of ways to make a lot of money and I found one. I mean I’ve done well in dentistry and I’ve done well in this, but I wanted to help people, but I wanted to be in control. I wanted to be able to control my time. I mean because as far as I am concerned, time is the only thing on this planet that we’re short of. There is a finite amount that we get and every one of us has got a certain amount of time and when it’s over, depending on your religious leanings, as far as I am concerned on this planet, it’s over. So I want control of that time and I looked around and dentistry was really good. I wanted to be a veterinarian, and our veterinarian discouraged me and I talked to four or five dentists and they all had pretty good control and so I said well dentistry is good. But I got into dentistry because it looked like a good business. A pretty simple business, and I know you’ve got your new book out, how to uncomplicate dentistry. I looked at dentistry, it’s the most simple business in the world and people don’t get this. I mean think about it, we’ve got about six things we do. Dentists tells me they don’t know their fees and I say come on, you only do six things! Learn them! Of course I turn to hygienists and they say you only do four things, learn the fees for heaven’s sake! It’s a simple business. We treat… people come in, they’ve got an issue, we find out what their problem is, we find out what they want, but we find out the bigger picture of what they want long term and then we provide a solution. They write us a check, we do the treatment and then they promise to come back in six months. Can you think of a business like that? Not even a restaurant gets you to promise to come back in tomorrow and have dinner, but we do that and we run it out of generally one location, so it’s real simple. So we sit down with the dentist and we say okay, what would you like your life to be and I say if were are sitting here together Howard, 20 years from now, You’ll be 72, I will be 92.

 

Howard Farran: Your dad lived to be 92?

 

Bill Blatchford: My dad lived to 92.

 

Howard Farran: So you’re going to be alive in 20 years.

 

Bill Blatchford: I’m going to be alive, my mother and father both lived to 92 and they were healthy until about the last two years. My wife’s mother lived to 100 and she was healthy until about her last two years. So we’ve got some longevity. But we’re sitting here Howard, we’re sitting here 20 years from now, looking back at your life, what would be the highlights that you would like to bring out? What are the highlights that you want to bring up? What are the things that you see yourself doing, what are the things that you see you and your four boys…this is not about business, this is about your life. What are the things that you want? What’s the legacy that you want to leave your family? I’m not talking money now I am just talking experiences, training and values. What are the things you’d like to leave behind? So we start with that and then we say okay, let’s talk about financial. What financial situation would you like over the next 20 years? Now we’ve got that figured out. Let’s say okay now let’s design a dental practice to support that. In other words…see I believe in dentistry, this is why we are so fortunate. In dentistry we can create a business, we can create a practice to support almost anything that we want. Think about it, there aren’t too many businesses like this, but in dentistry you tell me what you want and we’ll figure out how to do it. So we don’t have a cookie cutter, so I have clients who work over 200 days a year I think last year my doctor that worked the least worked 106 days so incidentally…

 

Howard Farran: So the range is 106-200. So that is a 100% variance.

 

Bill Blatchford: Exactly. And the thing is the two doctors I am thinking of currently, their gross income was the same. Their gross was the same but one really likes to work and one has got two young children and family and he just got back from Argentina. He was in Europe about two months ago, goes to Europe about three times a year and he is providing these experiences and he is doing two million dollars. I mean it’s not like he’s just barely getting by. He’s grossing two million dollars in a small town in Oregon. His net is roughly 45% of that, so around $900 000 and he worked 106 days last year. That’s a pretty nice life.

 

Howard Farran: The funniest reason why someone would be a dentist, Mike DiTolla, his dad closed every August, they went to Hawaii every August and he said I’m going to be dentist because I get to go to Hawaii every month of August.

 

Bill Blatchford: Howard you probably didn’t know this. I’ve never worked in August. I have not worked in August since 1974. I’ll tell the viewers this, I started this and I practiced in a college town, Oregon State University and every summer…

 

Howard Farran: Is that the ducks?

 

Bill Blatchford: No, I’m out of here.

 

Howard Farran: I am sorry.

 

Bill Blatchford: I am out of here.

 

Howard Farran: Which one?

 

Bill Blatchford: The beavers.

 

Howard Farran: Oh the beavers, okay. I had a 50/50 chance and I blew it.

 

Bill Blatchford: That’s right, so anyway. So…summer term was over and they literally rolled up the streets.

 

Howard Farran: And what city was this?

 

Bill Blatchford: Corvallis, Oregon.

 

Howard Farran: Corvallis, and wasn’t there a president of the American Dental Association from Corvallis?

 

 Bill Blatchford: Yes there was, Bill Ten Pas was from Corvallis. And all the dentists sat around from, again, from scarcity and they were all grumping about how slow it was and all this sort of thing, so you know we just got to thinking, my wife and I got to thinking it was totally against conventional wisdom and we did not tell our parents of course because you know, we were just getting our practice started and of course both our parents came from this background of work, work , work and if you’re not here you are going to go broke and so we decided that we would…our daughter was 18 months old and we decided to go to Alaska for five weeks.

 

Howard Farran: Nice.

 

Bill Blatchford: So we loaded up our Chevy Blazer with all our camping gear and I love to fish and so we loaded up all our stuff and we got on the ferry in Seattle and drove to Alaska and drove all around Alaska, camped and fished and came home and we came home and we always tell the story to our audiences in our seminars, I came home. The checkbook was overdrawn and the appointment book was empty and we survived and I thought you know, if I can survive this year just a few years out of school I could probably do this every year from then on. So we did, we took every August off and we just closed. So again, do I see the town as quiet and everybody’s left and there’s no business or do I see an opportunity? And what I saw was an opportunity to take a month off.

 

Howard Farran: So did you drive all the way on the Canadian coast to Alaska?

 

Bill Blatchford: Yeah we took the ferry system to Alaska. The Alaskan ferry system at Seattle. It goes up the inland passage to Alaska, you get off in Haines and then you drive across into the Northwest territories and then up into Alaska and then we drove all the way home.

 

Howard Farran: That was still my favorite vacation of all time, Alaska.

 

Bill Blatchford: As a matter of fact, my wife and I are going to spend three months this summer on a boat. We’ve spent three months on out boat now for the last 20 years but I do business on the boat. I do my business by telephone so I’ve got a satellite phone and with my cellphone I can do it.

 

Howard Farran: Well talk more about that, so when someone…is there any typical new customer client dentist that you see? Is there an age range, is there a problem range?

 

Bill Blatchford: There’s no age range. I have brand new doctors, we have a program for young doctors, we call it our leap program, where we actually help them evaluate practicing situations to get into.

 

Howard Farran: It’s called elite?

 

Bill Blatchford: Leap. Like jump, and we do that for new clients and actually we did that and I do want to plug this, this is our no nonsense transitions book, and this is my daughter. You see she got her good looks from her mother and she’s a dentist in Portland and so we saw all these students coming out and getting in trouble buying into these practices and so we evaluate practices from a business point of view. I want to go back to this thing about our clients. So let me figure out the simplest business plan that we can figure out for them. You want to make half a million dollars. Well let’s figure that out. How much do you want your overhead to be? Well everybody says the magic 50%, so you need to do a million dollars of production. Alright, how much vacation time would you like? Because I’m really big on vacation time because I…you see I shifted my paradigm. This is a huge paradigm shift. If you people listening to this get nothing else out of this podcast but this: in the old paradigm from the Industrial Revolution, we’re talking 200 or 100 years ago, vacation were dolled out as reward for hard work. In other words, you come to work for my company and if you work here and you show up for work every day, I’ll give you a week’s paid vacation at the end of a year and if you work for me two years, I’ll give you two weeks vacation and so forth and it caps out somewhere in the three week range for most workers. For the paradigm, you’ve got to shift out of that. Vacations are actually preparation for effective work. You see when I came back from Alaska five weeks break. I mean I came back first September, I mean I was full of it. I had so much energy, I was just ready to get going and all these others dentists in town you see were beaten down and woe is me and how bad things are, because I had a terrible August. Well I came back and all the students came back to town just like I knew they would. 20 000 students came back into town just like they do every year like clockwork and I’m just, I’m excited. I’m ready to go to work and they’re all still complaining about their bad August. And so, vacations are preparation to be productive. So we teach our clients that. That’s a huge part. You see I’ve studied dentists, I’ve studied dentists for 40 years and I’ve looked at number of days, days of the week and I look at one factor. You’ve got a MBA and you studied a lot of figures in dental practices. I look at numbers too. There are some numbers that are really critical and one of the most critical factors beyond how much you want to net and how much you want to spend to do it, how much dentistry do you present to patients on a daily basis? You see I’ve got this theory, and it’s just a theory. If I give you an opportunity to have something done, like for example putting an implant in for that missing tooth or putting veneers on those scraggly, brown teeth you’ve got in the front, if I give you the opportunity. If I let you know that’s available you might do it, but if you don’t know it’s available there’s no chance you will do it. So one of the things that I coach my doctors on every day is how much dentistry do you present to patients? Now of course my, you’ve been listening to me for years so you know this, but my idea that nobody needs any of this dentistry, we don’t even need our teeth and my evidence always is telling patients that my grandparents lived long, useful lives without teeth and therefore everything is optional. So but we only present dentistry that we would present to our family but at the same time, if I present it, it might get done. Are you with me? If I don’t present it, it won’t get done so I studied on 62 doctors, actually these were in Western Canada, I studied them for two years and I checked, I kept track of diagnosis per day, in other words dentistry presented, and I did it on a graph against days of the week. Well I found Monday was always the best day. Tuesday, Wednesday pretty good, by Thursday it’s dropping off and this was back when dentists were working five days a week and I found Friday, they’re losing it. This is when they walk into hygiene and the hygienist says you know I’ve been talking to Howard about a crown on number 30 and you’re tired and you’re worn out and you don’t want to do it, and you’re afraid if you say yes, I’ll have to do it and if you say no I’ll have to talk you into it, so it’s easier to say let’s watch it. So I watched this on these doctors and then I studied the same thing on weeks since a vacation. And I found a dramatic drop between six and eight weeks on 62 doctors and now I’ve been studying that for 30 years and it’s still true. So what makes sense here? Don’t work five days, as a matter of fact we’re finding that our most productive doctors are working a three day workweek and as one of my clients, and I take doctors on trips all over as you know, and I was on a trip with one of my doctors and he had worked about 110 days and one of the other fellows on the trip was working about 120 days and their production was the same and the one who worked the extra ten or fifteen days was a little concerned and this doctor made a quote, which is really good, and he said that if I can do a $15 000 day, if I can produce $15 000 in a day, why would I do three fives? Why would I do three $5000 days? Why would I do a ten and a five if I can do fifteen in one day? Well I mean those numbers sound phenomenal but if you’re doing general dentistry, crown and bridge and you’re doing some implants and you’re doing, you know just, it’s easy to do a $15 000 day, for him. But a lot of doctors sit in their office doing this and doing $3000, $4000 days. The same client said, and I believe in a daily production goal, I really believe in this and you’ve got to schedule to something. And he says if I’m not booked to goal every single day I’m in my office, I’m working too many days. You see there’s a different between demand and capacity as we know. I mean we can increase capacity, but that doesn’t always increase more demand. So we teach, we set up a model for these clients, how to do this. We drop a model for them and say, does this work for you? Because it’s got to be their model, they’ve got to go home and do it, and then what I do is I coach them and I have two other people that coach with me, and we coach them on a monthly basis. Here are your goals for this month, how did you do? And then I put on a couple of seminars for them during the year, two days a piece and then I send a consultant into their office as well to do the details. I don’t get involved in the minutiae details. 

 

Howard Farran: To do a dollar’s worth of dentistry, how much do you think you have to present?

 

Bill Blatchford: That’s an interesting statistic. I can give you 100% acceptance rate and I always ask this at seminars, put your hand up if you’d like to have 100% acceptance. And then I relay a story of a practice I went to in India one time, and he had 100% case acceptance and it’s oh yeah, I’d love to have that. It’s real simple. Let me tell you how it works. We got to his office at 10 o’ clock in the morning and there was a line down the street. You’ve been to India, you know. This was a small town about halfway between Bangalore and the west coast of Calicut and all he did was extractions. Lines line up down the street and you walk in, he unlocks the door, he lets the first 10 people in and they sit in the bench and he goes down the row and he says can you point to one that hurts today, and they point to a tooth, do you want it out this morning? Uh huh. He goes to the next person. Which one hurts today? You want it out this morning? Uh huh. He gets 100% case acceptance. So I said if you want very high case acceptance, don’t present much dentistry. Just present basics. I say if you’re going to present ideal treatment, now to me again ideal treatment is what I would do for my own family. Now, I have my mouth, I have 28 units of bonded porcelain that was done by one of my clients, Dr. Rice Spoor about 18 years ago, so to me that was ideal. Does anybody need this? Absolutely not, but if you present treatment that is ideal, now understand, I had a bunch of posterior fillings and all that stuff but anyway. If you present what’s ideal, I say three to one is a pretty good ratio. But again, I hate to put a number on that because it’s all dependent upon what you present. Like I talk to a new client, you do cosmetics, oh yeah. Well how often do you present veneers? Oh all the time. How many did you do last year? Now I have this printout because when you come to this, I forgot one thing that we do: we always meet personally, face to face with a new client for almost six hours in this conversation about where you want to go and how you, we design a plan for them. I’ve got all his information, right here doctor it says you only did five veneers last year. How many did you really present last year? Well obviously the answer is not very many. I said what if you presented a set of veneers a month, what do you think would happen? Well you’d probably do one every other month. Well what if you presented a set of veneers every week? Well you’d probably do at least one or two a month. Well what do you suppose if you had that conversation with a patient, now I’d have to be talking to a patient with a good new patient flow or a large recall program, what is you or your hygienist had that conversation with a patient every day? What would happen? So you see it’s really a matter of how much opportunity your patients have, and again it’s like this abundance. They’re buying new cars, they’re buying…I mean look at that television set. Do you know that in the depth of the recession, 2008-2009 that about 70% of American homes swopped out their television set for a large, flat panel screen? In the depth of the recession we made a complete shift to television sets across America. And we’re talking, totally discretionary right?

 

Howard Farran: Yeah and you’re absolutely right. We’ve all seen the phenomenon that, I mean in the 80’s LVI was a big thing and these dentists will go to LVI and Bill Dickerson would get them all fired up so they would come home and they’d be charged up so they would sell the bejesus out of veneers for a year or two and then after about two years they weren’t doing any because they lost their enthusiasm.

 

Bill Blatchford: You hit it right on the head, it was not because of the recession in 2008 and 2009, it was because we quit making it available to our patients. I mean just like yesterday, we came to Phoenix, we had a rental car, we got those little Camaro convertible and it’s got a heads up display. Now my wife just got a new Tahoe like a month ago. It doesn’t have the heads up display for the directions. She said wow, how come our car doesn’t have this? We’re thinking all of a sudden she’s got to have this. And that’s America and if they know it’s available, see I didn’t know the heads up display was available or the Tahoe wouldn’t have it. I didn’t know it was available.  

 

Howard Farran: I saw this in my whole career. You know I signed up for the AGD and got my MADG and FAGD and MAGD and you would go to a course, I remember I went to a course by G. John Shoe, you want to learn how to do apicoectomies, I’d never done one in my first 30 years of existence. Now you’re doing them all the time. You go to a Carl Misch course, next thing you know you’re doing sinus lifts and bone grafts and it’s just, so what I’m hearing you say is that, if you’re working five days a week and you’re burned out and you’re tired, and you’re going in on a hygiene check and say oh it looks good, whereas the guy that’s taking off three day weekends or four day weekends is going in there pumped and jacked and ready to go and presenting all the things that could be done, because I agree. The dentistry, when you hear an orthodontist, they come back and they say well, the orthodontist said my child has to have it because he has a malocclusion, I said really he has to have it? Well go back and have the orthodontist stick his finger in between your child’s teeth and tell your child to bite as hard as he can. I mean my mom and three brothers didn’t walk out of high school with one tooth. I remember one time, my dad had so many uncles and most of them didn’t have teeth or dentures and they would be sitting there eating almonds on denture less ridges, so all of this is luxury.

 

Bill Blatchford: It’s all luxury stuff and that’s good. But you know going back to this, and the other thing that happens, when a doctor starts working three days or four days and takes eight or ten weeks off, when I say vacation I’m talking time out of the office. Time out of the office, because one of the things that I see, these big producers I work with, and I mentioned to you earlier I’ve got a group of my big doctor meeting coming up, and these guys are all doing at least 1.6 on up to about 3.5 million. These are single doctors, no associates and they’re all doing this in a reasonable number of days and they’re all doing 3 million, 3.5 million.

 

Howard Farran: So 1.5 million a year on reasonable, what’s reasonable days?

 

Bill Blatchford: About 120 to 140, somewhere in that range.

 

Howard Farran: 120 to 140.

 

Bill Blatchford: And at 1.5 million they generally have about four staff members.

 

Howard Farran: Just four, two assistants, two receptionists?

 

Bill Blatchford: Yeah two hygienists, one assistant and one in the front.

 

Howard Farran: And a million and a half? And what would their average overhead be?

 

Bill Blatchford: 50%, 55%.

 

Howard Farran: So can I comment on that?

 

Bill Blatchford: Yes.

 

Howard Farran: Again that’s a working thing. I mean these dentists, they have to have three or four assistants, they can’t take an impression, they can’t make a temporary, they can’t take an X-ray so if you just have all these staff.

 

Bill Blatchford: Well I think, see here’s the thing and you know my history a little bit. I practiced for 20 years and I was doing a million dollars in 1985 and if you remember, you don’t know this, well you do, you got out of school about that time. Crowns were $275 to $300 where I practiced and I’m doing a million dollars. Well that was a lot of dentistry in those days. It’s still a lot of dentistry but still a lot of dentistry, but now that would be about a three million dollar practice but I started that and I did it by merging a couple of practices together and that was my growth strategy which is still a fantastic growth strategy, just buy another practice and merge the patient base. I had a big staff and the next year, I did that with half the staff. I mean I had this little epiphany because I made a million dollars and I made $300 000 net. My buddy across the parking lot did $600 000 and he made $300 000 net, and I’m thinking wait a minute, who’s so smart here? It’s a story I won’t go into but anyway, over a period of about three weeks I cut my staff in half and we still did the million dollars the following year. So I’ve been known for 25 years of figuring out systems that we can get by on a small team. A very small team so I’ve worked with a clinical side, how can we be efficient here? How can a dentist do a million to a million and a half with one dental assistant? Well, so you just hit it right on the head right there. Maybe you don’t need someone to do every single thing for you. Maybe you can’t go to your private office and get on the internet and play games for two hours during the day, but you don’t come to office to play games. You come to office to do dentistry. You play games on Thursday and Friday when you’re off. The front desk for example, here’s a real simple thing. I mean if you think about it what goes on at the front desk, how can we simplify it? Well a number of years ago I walked into an Apple store, and I walked into the Apple store and I picked out my computer and the young man, he’s got dreadlocks and piercings and tattooed sleeves and all this and he pulls out his smartphone and he says how would you like to take care of that today sir? And I pull out my credit card, he swipes the card and he said would you like your receipt emailed to you? And my phone rings in my pocket and I’ve got an email with the receipt and I said wow! That is neat and it was about two weeks later, I go to the Nordstrom store in Portland and I buy something and the sales associate pulls out his smartphone and swipes my card, and I get an email while standing there, and I said how can we do this in dental offices? Now think about this. Real simple thing. What is the area, where do most dental offices, what service do we provide where we send out most of our statements?

 

Howard Farran: Hygiene?

 

Bill Blatchford: Hygiene! So I’m the hygienist, I figured after a hygiene visit I say Howard, your fee today is $200. How would you like to take care of that? And you say well can I put that on my credit card? Absolutely. Howard I need your autograph right here, the yellow copy is yours. Ka-ching! Think of the steps we just eliminated. Now since we’ve already made the next appointment for that patient in hygiene, the next step is to collect the money in hygiene and now you, as the patient think about this for customer service. If Apple, who, they’re taking over the consumer computer world and Nordstrom who did very well during the recession, known for customer service, if it’s good enough for Nordstrom and Apple, dental offices hello? We do it. At first I get push back from the hygienists, oh we can’t do that. We don’t know our fees. I said you do four things- learn them. It’s not too hard.

 

Howard Farran: I want to go back to something you said 45 minutes ago. I’ve always thought it was strange when kids are coming out of school and they would say, there would be like three…they want to go back to Piqua, Kansas. That’s where they’re from and there’s three practices for sale and one’s for $200 000 and one’s for $300 000 and one’s for $400 000 and they always want to buy the cheapest one and you said something very interesting that, and I always thought that was crazy because if there were three houses for sale and one was 1000 square feet and one was 2000 square feet and one was 3000 square feet, well if you had three kids you’d get the 3000 square foot and then at the end of the 30 years of your house, you’ve still got a 300 square foot home to sell. I mean you’re buying a house that’s bigger and if you have, let’s say you come out of school and say you’re Mormon and you want to have five kids and you want to have a 4000 square foot home and a stay at home wife and you decide I really want to make $400 000, then you would be saying well then you don’t want to buy a $200 000 practice. You want to buy a million dollar, because what you’re buying is a cash flow and so if you are a single guy and you don’t want to get married and you just want to have a Harley Davidson and play four days a week, well you might only need a little practice and a little condo but, so you need to buy a cash flow. So your daughter, and you guys wrote this book, so I want to go back to Leap. And then you also mentioned mergers and acquisitions which is a very common strategy in the Fortune 500. They’re always doing mergers and acquisitions. So can we talk about buying and selling practices for kids out of school?

 

Bill Blatchford: Absolutely. I’m glad we came to this. This is one of my favorite subjects. You talked about the $200 000, the $300 000 and the $400 000, I’d probably advise them to buy both these and I’ve done this. I’ve had people starting their practice and they’ll buy two practices and if they can, they’ll merge them into one office. They’ll pick out the nicest physical facility or the nicest location in town and merge those two practices. Now you’ve got something. That little practice is very difficult to actually make the cash flow work and pay off that student loan. That million dollar practice, absolutely. We’ll do that. We’ll look at that. A couple of pitfalls that we’ve run into on this, and this is something that’s occurring. There are a lot of baby boomers right now, they’re getting ready to retire and people are telling them, brokers in particular and people doing transition seminars, they’re appealing to the practicing dentist, sell your practice and you stay on as the associate. Well that is just total baloney. I’ve got a one doctor practice this week and next week it’s going to support two doctors? One with a million dollars of debt? No, it’s not going to work so I always ask, I have two questions I always say to a doctor who’s thinking about bringing in an associate or selling part of his practice, and I’ll say doctor how many patients are you currently turning away? Well how many patients, well you’ve got 120 000 doctors in your network, how many doctors on Dentaltown are writing in and saying gosh I’ve just got so many patients I don’t know what to do with them. I’ve got so many new patients I can’t handle them.

 

Howard Farran: None.

 

Bill Blatchford: None, that’s right. And the second question is, doctor if I came in as your associate or if I bought the practice and kept you on as an associate, how much of your personal income would you like to give up? And the answer is none. So I don’t understand how we’re going to do this. So my best transition really in buying a practice is, buy the practice and my daughter just did this, I mean she just did this. I encouraged her and she decided where she wanted to practice in Portland and we actually chose which past of Portland and she intentionally chose kind of the blue collar side of the river as opposed to the other side where there’s a lot of dentists and everybody’s got a big mortgage and a Mercedes and a BMW on lease and she bought the practice in this little suburb called Milwaukee and she bought that practice in April of her senior year. We didn’t tell anybody at the dental school, they frown on that sort of confidence, and but her transition was done this way. The senior doctor check cleared the bank on a Thursday afternoon or a Friday, he left and she walked in Monday morning, introduced herself to the patients, hello, I’m Christina Blatchford, I’m your new dentist. Thank you for coming in, how can I help you? And we grew that practice 30% the first year. I will also say this, and this will scare some people. Of the existing team members, none of them were there at the end of the first 12 months. And I kind of use the analogy that, when we get a new football coach and by the way Oregon state got a new one this year from Wisconsin, you know the entire coaching staff is changed. We don’t keep the offensive coordinator or the defensive coach, we don’t keep those people. They bring a whole new coaching staff in and I think there’s some merit in that, and then in April, another practice came up for sale two miles away from her, a broker called and said are you interested in this practice and she immediately said yes I’ll take it, without even, I mean she said yes, I’ll take it and by the way how did she purchase that practice the first one? She went in, took a look at it and said dad I want this practice. I said why don’t you make an offer? Broker was a friend of mine. She said no dad, I really want this practice. I said well make a full price offer. So that practice went that quickly. The other one the same way and now she’s merged these two practices and what we do is, we open the sieve at the bottom. This is a whole other subject. Every practice has the bottom 20% of their patient base. We let them go. We let them go and now she’s doing what the two practices were doing and she still does it in a three day workweek, one person at the front desk. And when I ask her receptionist will you need more help at the front desk, she goes absolutely not. Now we’re on a bonus system where they get a percentage, they get 20% of everything we do.

 

Howard Farran: Now is this all in your book? And how does a viewer, my viewers what I’m hearing is, most of these podcasts, most dentists have an hour commute to work and you might first think well that’s in LA or Phoenix in traffic but most of them are rural like, a lot of these guys…

 

Bill Blatchford: I know your clients. Your clients in rural areas get on your podcast and they drive in circles for an hour just to listen to what you have to say.

 

Howard Farran: These guys tell me that they live in a town of like 7500 and they’ll have a 70 mile commute to a town of like 650 so if this guy is driving down the road, we’ll have it in the notes. My podcast, it’s the only one where we send it to a transcription service, so they can log onto Dentaltown and have all the notes, but how would someone buy no nonsense transitions?

 

Bill Blatchford: They just need to go to Blatchford.com.

 

Howard Farran: Go to Blatchford.com, BLATCHFORD.com.

 

Bill Blatchford: They should also look up the million dollar leap program. That’s how we’ve increased practices to a million dollars.

 

Howard Farran: And that’s on Blatchford.com?

 

Bill Blatchford: That’s on Blatchford.com and another thing I think doctors should look at, and I think one thing that we didn’t mention today is I developed a term called retire as you go, about- I introduced it in dentistry about 30 years ago. It’s something my wife and I talked about 48 years ago and that was design our life first and work around it. Design our life and work, in other words let’s design our life and then design a practice to support that life and that’s rather than working until you’re a certain magic age and I’ve got the number in the bank and I’m going to quit, no. I decided 40 years ago that I’m going to enjoy every single moment and, am I going to die the wealthiest dentist? No, but what’s wealth? What is wealth? To me…

 

Howard Farran: Happiness and health.

 

Bill Blatchford: It’s happiness and health, it’s family, it’s relationships and enough money to enjoy that and enough money that you don’t worry about money, but beyond a certain point.

 

Howard Farran: Is it okay to ask, how much is your consulting service?

 

Bill Blatchford: Well yeah, the Leap program that we do is $25 000 for the year and we will work with a doctor as long as it takes to find that practice and I don’t get paid a commission for them making that sales, and no broker has me in their pocket, so I’m purely objective: this deal will work, this deal won’t work. That’s all I do and then I’ll work with them for 14 months after that to get them off to a good start.

 

Howard Farran: And the Leap program is more kids coming out of school?

 

Bill Blatchford: It’s kids coming out of school, yeah. And then my coaching program is $59 500 and that includes, it’s a 14 month program and then I have an alumni program called Connection and people are paying $495 a month for that program and I’ve have people…

 

Howard Farran: $495 a month?

 

Bill Blatchford: $495 a month and that gives them access to us, they can talk to me on a monthly basis, they can come to our seminars, they’re on our forum and they have all the advantages of being a member but they just get, it’s basically $6000 a year and I’ve had people in that program, I just had- my longest standing client in that program, I’ve just put him on merit status, he gets to come to anything we do and I don’t charge him anymore. I have several people on that status but they’ve been on there 27 years.

 

Howard Farran: So Bill, so okay I’ve only got you fore eight more minutes. I want to get more specifics. Talk to this dentist driving to work and he’s going to be at work in eight minutes, describe the dentist’s situation who would benefit most from your help? What’s keeping him or her up at night?

 

Bill Blatchford: Well I think anybody. There are two things, one is they worry about do I have enough net income? Is my net income, am I being paid for what I’m worth, as hard as I’ve worked, am I taking home enough? Am I able to take care of my family, put some money away for retirement and enjoy my life as I go? I think secondly they’re thinking about I’m just working. I’m working 250 days a year. This is not what I planned on. So the things that I help them with the most and last year, I don’t have the numbers for 2014, 2013 our clients, now we take between 50 and 60 clients a year and I turn down probably a third of the doctors that apply to my program because- for several reasons. But of the ones that join the program, in 2013 we averaged $150 000 increase in net income. That’s net income, that’s per doctor. That’s take home pay at the end of the year and we generally drop the number of days they work, I mean we have seen doctors come in at 240 days, we’ve seen doctors come in at and I’ll take them right on down. I’ll take that 240, I’ll take him down to 180 days that first year so it’s 60 more days of free time. Now that gives them time to not only have free time and go out and do things, like I enjoy hunting, fishing, kiteboarding, boating etc. Time for CE and you mentioned it. There’s tremendous CE courses out there they’ve got to get involved in and learn to increase their skills, but we’ll drop the amount of time they work but I think the other thing we do is we dramatically simplify their business. Simplify the business. Now when I say simplify the business, one of the things that we look at is virtually all of my clients operate at staff overhead at 20% or under of their gross. 20% or under. National average is over 30%. Well there’s 10%, I can hand you right here. You earn a million dollars, you give me $59 000 and when you meet with me for six hours, I’m going to have you $100 000 back in staff savings this year.

 

Howard Farran: Okay let me pin you down on a couple more specifics. So this kid is coming out of school with $300 000 in debt and everything he reads in all the dental journals is that he immediately after $300 000 in student loans needs $150 000 CEREC CAD CAM, $150 000 three dimensional CBCT deal and a $50 000 laser, so he just doubled his dental school debt. Do you buy in that you need $300 000 more 3D, CBCT?

 

Bill Blatchford: No, I don’t. I don’t buy that at all. For example, my daughter. My daughter, she just ordered a CEREC. I think the technology is wonderful. Many of my clients have CEREC. I’m wild about the technology but if you’re not doing a million dollars a year and have about 10% lab bill it makes no sense whatsoever. Just because you have a CEREC, I’m not picking on CEREC, it could be E4D, any of the CAD CAM technologies, it’s just math. At what point does the amount of work that I would do with that unit surpass what I’d be spending on my lab bill? And so I don’t buy that at all. 3D, are you placing implants and doing sinus lifts and block grafts at this point, right out of school do you have the skill to do that service? Well of course not so then why do you need 3D imaging and if you need a 3D image of a patient at this point in your career, there’s probably a radiology lab or an oral surgeon or somebody who has that technology that you could send your patient to and have that done.

 

Howard Farran: By the way, that was the best advice on the deal. Every periodontist and oral surgeon is dying to go meet a dentist, so if you call them and say can I send a patient over, they’re like yeah!

 

Bill Blatchford: And so do you have to buy that? Of course not! Of course not, you’ve got to have a budget.

 

Howard Farran: And a lot of these people will buy a $300 000 X-ray machine and use it three times a month and then the periodontist is sending you bouquets and cookies and flowers and trying to take you out to lunch, he would have done all those for free.

 

Bill Blatchford: He would have done it for free. He’d have done those for free.

 

Howard Farran: So one last thing, I’ve only got you for two more minutes. One last thing: so what if this dentist is driving to work right now and he knows there is a practice two miles down the street that is for sale, is there any numbers or metrics that come to mind, an easy armchair analysis? How many patients, how much money?

 

Bill Blatchford: The best number he can remember right now is a real good one. It’s 541 389 9088. Call me and run those numbers by me and I’ll tell him exactly what to look for and I’ll tell him is this a good thing or not.

 

Howard Farran: Okay say that number again then.

 

Bill Blatchford: 541 389 9088.

 

Howard Farran: And if you’re a woman dentist listening now, please write that one every women’s bathroom wall you ever use for the rest of your life for a good time. No, but is there any metric of like a number per charge? Should there be a dollar value, is there any low hanging…?

 

Bill Blatchford: It’s all different. It’s all different and I don’t think the rules of thumb, I don’t think I can throw out a rule of thumb because if you think about the United States where we’re talking to most of these dentists, I mean you think about it, you’re a rural practice in Maine, or you’re an urban practice here in Phoenix, those numbers don’t even match up.

 

Howard Farran: Well Bill, we’re out of time and all I want to say is if you’re listening to this on iTunes, you’re really cheating yourself because these are the two best looking bald dentists that ever walked the face of the earth. Seriously dude, thank you for being my personal idol, thank you for being my role model, thank you for all that you’ve done for your patients, your family and for dentistry. You’ve been a big force in my life.

 

Bill Blatchford: Thank you.

 

Howard Farran: Alright buddy. Thank you very much. 
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