Over his career, “Dr. H” has developed and expanded more than twenty dental offices. His current Tucson- and Phoenix-based dental specialty practice, Valley Endodontics & Oral Surgery, consist of ten offices, making it the largest Endodontic/Oral Surgery practice in the Southwestern United States.
VIDEO - DUwHF #1173 - Steven Hymovitch
AUDIO - DUwHF #1173 - Steven Hymovitch
In 2017, he and his wife Julie, co-founded the Scottsdale Leadership and Coaching Center, where they develop and enhance individuals, and teams’ aspirations to lead others effectively through various facets of leadership training.
Howard: It is just a huge honor today to be sitting in the podcast studio with Dr. Steven Hymovitch in my own backyard. We both I've been a big fan of yours for thirty years I mean you let me read his bio. So Dr. Steven he goes by Dr. H or everybody calls him around town doctor Dr. H. Dr. Hymovitch DDS we both have an MBA from Arizona State University go ASU and he has CEC a certified executive coach. Over his career he has developed and expanded more than 20 dental offices his current Tucson and Phoenix based dental specialty practice Valley Endodontics Neurosurgery consists of 10 offices making it the largest endodontic oral surgery practice in the southwestern United States. In 2017 him and his wife Julie co-founded the Scottsdale leadership and coaching Center where they develop and enhance individuals and teams aspiring to lead others effectively through various facets of leadership training. Twice I posted his book The Dentist who gets it, the no BS blueprint for success by endodontists Steve Hymovitch on Amazon. The dentist who gets it is a book for those in specialty healthcare health care or business in general who are looking for momentum in their business in life Dr. H looks past quick fixes to putting the time in for success. He guides readers to a path where they can marry their head and hard to be successful both professionally and personally. This book fills a void for those in health care that set off in an uphill battle for success after graduate school daunted by debt and lacking business acumen. Dr. H is a self-made man shares his tried and true methods for success from keeping pace with the latest health care trends to leading in today's environment to managing balance sheets to selling a practice for a profit using self-deprecating and smart humor the dentist who gets it is an enjoyable read that helps readers figure out where they are and want to go. I can't tell you what an honor it is that you drove all the way from Scott where'd you drive from?
Steven: I drove far from Scottsdale.
Howard: So I hope you whenever they come visit me and Phoenix I always have to pack a gun did you have to pack up or are you carrying today when you come visit me in Phoenix.
Steven: I'm caring some extra weight but not a gun.
Howard: So your book is on Amazon that we have so much in common we're both dentists we both got a ASU MBA and after MBA you know we both wrote a book. I always say that I have four kids but writing a book was is like a child I mean it takes nine months to make a baby and it takes nine months to write a book. How was your journey on writing a book?
Steven: It was tough to be disciplined to just stick to it I actually do a lot of flying around the country, especially for my son's hockey tournaments and those and my son was in New Jersey last year and spending the time in the plane that's what I did my most writing but just sticking to it and going through the edits and just reading it and reading it again that was really tough for me but it was like glad I got it done.
Howard: When you said flying around the country at first I thought you had your own plane then your when you said you're writing your book I was like I hope you're not the pilot and writing your book at the same time.
Steven: Where that's what I wanted to say you can't fly and text right at the same time.
Howard: Yeah, how's the book doing and what are the major takeaways?
Steven: I mean basically it's actually doing pretty well is actually was Amazon had it as one of the best-selling new books that was in dental practice management so I was happy with that. Thank you very much I know that you sent something out there a few weeks ago that helped Thank You Howard very much. Some of the big takeaways are you know here's the thing you know a lot of dentists they come out of dental school all they know about dental practice management is very little and what I remember from dental practice management was one thing the difference between leasing and purchasing equipment that's all I knew and as you know that is like the one of the point zero zero one percent of having a successful practice. It's basically takeaways the things I've learned over the years all the mistakes I made actually no I haven't really made any mistakes I've learned a lot of lessons and I've just taken all those lessons and sort of putting them in a format that other dentists can read things that I learned the hard way and hopefully they'll learn without making all the same mistakes.
Howard: Yeah I almost thought I had to write my book because I mean if you don't read you just live your life but every time you read auto I was always amazed at how many amazing people Thomas Watson jr. of IBM the founders of home depot, all these guys wrote an autobiography telling you everything they learned the hard way like say if you fall down it's a lesson you get back up successful man fall down seven times get up eight and my gosh all my heroes were pretty much dead guys who wrote an a biography and I think I read before I threw my library way because you know now you know I have done through this twice after at the end of college you threw away all your albums cuz you know let's go I'd throw away to record correct two orange crates of album because I knew to all go to CD and then fine I'm sitting in my libraries all these books and I you know so I threw them away but you know I read a thousand books probably all in history autobiographies economics and I felt it was like giving back to the next generation and these young kids come out of school I mean why would you want to graduate at 25 and stick your tongue in every light socket known to man when you and I have probably kissed half those light sockets and wrote a book to tell you don't do that this is what you got to do but I want to back all the way up first because I know my audience and podcasters they're all kids I'm a grandpa I got my four kids made five grand babies we I still read books when I'm sitting on an airplane next to someone reading a kindle I feel sorry for them but so there when I say drop me an email Howard@dentaltown.com or leave a comment in the YouTube subscription but probably a quarter of them are in dental school and the rest are all you know they're all 30 and under Millennials only like one guy a month sends me an email that he's as old as me. They're saying that when you and I graduated it was a good old days we were lucky we were in the right place the right time and now they're coming out of school three to four hundred thousand in debt the average is 283,000 and they say it's just not the same as it was. Do you agree with that or do you disagree with that?
Steven: I agree with that somewhat obviously the kids coming out now and by the way I don't know when I started saying that it must have been like nine or ten years ago I started saying the kids coming out so I knew that was the time I mean by definitely hit 45 or so but I'll be honest with you I went so I graduated dental school in 1988 and talking at a specialist then that should I go into perio or go into endo have I talked to the periodontist and oh it's terrible it's so saturated now go into endo and then the endodontics would say going to ortho and of course they'd always want you to go into something else. So you know what it never really gets easier I think the only like maybe GV Black didn't complain about the competition but I think it's always been tough it's tough for now but you just have to you know you just can't I think the difference in now and let's say twenty years ago maybe twenty or thirty years ago you could put your shingle out you know you do good dentistry and that's good enough where it's changed I think is you have to really be learning yeah yeah you can't just stay in your cave you have to go to meetings like dentaltown there's a lot of resources out there you can't just sit back and let it happen you know you can't just let your you can't just you have to lead your life you got this wait for it to happen and then sit back and say wow this is really tough.
Howard: Well we have 400 online CE courses on dentaltown and we're hoping that you grace us and make us of course someday. Think you'll ever do that on dentaltown online CE?
Steven: Absolutely now if the course is gonna be on how to get ready for the next marathon like I will not do that one but absolutely I'd love to do that.
Howard: I would love that Millennials love it, they would rather sit on their iPad and take a course one hour at a time for the price of an uber drive to a bar then fly clear across the country and drop 3,000 for a weekend when they're you know when they're tough. When you talk about hang up a shingle though that's what I did I came out here in 87 hung up a shingle but isn't it really different being a specialist because when you hang up your shingle I mean I was marketing b2c business a consumer trying to get the average Phoenicians to come see me but back in the day when you opened up you were trying to get referrals from general dentists to send you their molar endo, how was and I'm so glad I have you on the show I don't think I've ever really had you be on the show that talked to the specialists that are listening right now that's a pretty different game what was it a different game back then the same way is a different game right now?
Steven: It was a different game look as you know here in Arizona when we came out here.
Howard: From Canada
Steven: From Canada from Montreal the other no...
Howard: So do you speak French?
Steven: With a really strong English accent let's just say when I go back up to Montreal and I speak French they'll answer me in English. I'm not trying to put one over on them basically haven't figured out.
Howard: Were you born in Montreal?
Howard: Was that so what was your native tongue was it French or English?
Howard: Huh I always think of Montreal is French.
Steven: but 80% is French but basically the west side of Montreal is mostly English and the east side is mostly French.
Howard: Okay and is the east side French about the same dialect as Paris?
Steven: No it's like the difference between you know I was in Europe last year and if I hear French accent from the province of Quebec I'll know right away from Quebec is the difference between English not spoken in England prepared to the Bronx I'm gonna go say it's like night and day.
Howard: Yeah Spanish is that way I've noticed for 30 years my patients if you're from Mexico you think they say right up here from Cuba you think there's there I Argentine Chile or just out landed and then there's yeah so Spanish is a very dialect language you know.
Howard: Back when you open your door it was a different what was the game of getting molar engo's?
Steven: So first of all it was a lot different or a lot less specialists as you know there are no dental schools here it really was the perfect place at the right time but here's what's changed it's like wait what we had to say earlier on about how things are a little bit more difficult. So it used to be if your work was good you sat back and you were busy but now I think the practices that thrive they know they kind you sit back it's not just having good work the general dentist assume the work is good but that just gets you in the door that's however what are you doing for them now you have to offer CE courses, you have to do lunch and learns you have to do that kind of lecture stuff. The days of as you said last week at your convention just dropping off donuts and cakes that doesn't do it anymore. Well they may they may gain a couple of pounds but they're not gonna refer to you because of that.
Howard: Yeah it's interesting how when you said they assumed the work is good it's so bizarre to realize from the consumers point of view that dentists physicians MDS hospitals got so good we almost became a commodity. I was looking at studies where like when say you're 30 and your appendix ruptures and then call an ambulance and then you get your appendix removed everyone in the family just assumes well they took you to the University Hospital McGill I mean that they assume that part is perfect and they just start focusing in on all the comfort creatures of the hospital did you like the staff did you like your doctor things like that but it's so bizarre that dentistry got so good that when you're marketing the peep the baby boomers as opposed to the baby boomers my age I'm 56 they have had enough traumatic dentistry to know that some dentists are good some are bad some are painful some aren't painful but the Millennials they only had you know they had fluoridated toothpaste fluoridated water they just had a few fillings and cavities they just assume all dentist or created equal all the hospitals are created equal. So it's really the differentiation the marketing differentiation to older people is fading away and the Millennials are just seeing us as a commodity that a molar root canals is a molar root canal is a molar root canal any it anybody that does it same.
Steven: No absolutely and then the other thing that has changed a lot you know talking to a lot of dentist that refer to us they have to know that when you send a patient over a they cannot be thrown underneath the bus so you for example I've heard examples like this in the past there may be the odd time not from any patient, not that any of referring dentists in Arizona that I know of but there's times you'll bring a patient in they have you know called for many many weeks and they have a new crown that was put on and you ask the patient so when did that start waiting for the answer to be crown was cemented on it started having those symptoms and you might hear every once in a while well actually it's been it was killing me even though I had even when I had the temps on it was killing me now of course in our mind we're thinking hmm that wasn't too smart to have cement on the permanent crown like you don't say that to the patient if you said that to the patient is the kiss of death. I mean look that happens sometimes you want to call the general dentist up and tell them here your situation needs a root canal but you have to do things you it's what's in it for the general dentist, if there's a patient in pain and they're Lesley off that day you have to see the emergency it's not just that you get a puff again to the apex you have to see your Berg disease you have to be there for the dentist I have to just know you have to communicate those are the things that have to happen now and maybe 20 years ago you didn't have to do that extra stuff you have to do that now or else you're dead in the water.
Howard: So I mean you built the largest endo or specialty program in the in the southwest so you have marketing reps that go that market to b2b dentist or b2c consumers?
Steven: No, right to the right to the general practices.
Howard: So is it all endodontics or oral surgery too?
Steven: Endo and oral surgery
Howard: Endo and oral surgery I noticed the pediatric dentists are doing so much better when they hook up with an orthodontist and make a one-stop shop. Why endo with oral surgery why not endo and perio or what why the endo oral surgery that marriage happen?
Steven: Like most things that I did it's more like just sort of happened and the opportunities came up. I'll tell you how it happens myself basically we had some general dental offices playing have you ever thought about doing oral surgery no I'm an endodontist but it's really if you think about it it's really the same business model you can grow your practice quickly if you see emergencies do the right thing treat the patients well you can grow the practice. Now you didn't mention the combo for example a perio an oral surgery that would never work, you know why that wouldn't work right?
Howard: Because they always want to place implants.
Steven: Absolutely but endo in oral surgery is it's great and in even some cases for example patients referred in to fast to be extracted it's not salvageable well we'll call up the general dentist and say hey the patients already here you want to have the tooth extracted, so it works in cases like that.
Howard: I actually like that because you know incentives matter I mean if they didn't matter I mean look I mean look at 1989 or 1990 when the Berlin Wall fell I mean you look at the population of Russia and the population of the United States and look at the GEP. Free enterprize did significantly better than a centrally planned economy that's amazing but I always felt trouble with an endodontist because I'm if they didn't extract the teeth and place implants was only incentive this is just a retreat to tooth and then almost all of going back to 1987 I opened a lot of times they would retreat root canal tooth and six months later I'd pull it and then the pace is like I gave that guy 1,500 bucks and I had to throw it away so I call back then I said yeah refund they'd always say no no no you know I do my best what could I do and it's like when that when I start seeing some endodontist do the extraction and placing implant or in your case where the endodontics works with an oral surgeon I thought okay they can make the money with the root canal or the implant and I just think in the incentives of life I feel safer that they're gonna treat it more like their own tooth do you agree with that or not?
Steven: I totally agree with that.
Howard: totally agree that's a revolutionary statement.
Steven: No no but what about the you mentioned about you would get upset with the endodontist who did the retreatment and then send them back to you had to be extracted. I'm surprised you didn't mention the case about the endodontist who did the retreatment then the apical and then you had the extracted tooth you must have really loved that. No I think no but here's the thing about you know this is the baby by my revolutionary statement I know there are some endodontists that place implants and that's one thing too by the way that happens they have to talk to their general dentist before you can't just go ahead and do that because maybe the general dentist works with another periodontist or oral surgeon who places implants. So I'll say that the other thing about it is again it's all communication it's all communication you can't do anything like place an implant or even extracting truth without talking there a general dentist ahead of time.
Howard: So we both see in the valley here that I mean when you focus on the customer yet patient focus that a dentist focused it's a success like if I take my kid to a pediatric dentist and they want to have concerns about the bite I'd rather the orthodontist just be there I don't want to get a referral card and drive down the street and fill out another turn all that stuff and you're talking about world surgery with endo, do you see any other matches? I mean there's ten specialties now anesthesiology and what if someone comes to your place and half the country says they're afraid of the dentist half the country says they're afraid of the cost of the dentist so you got. How many locations do you have?
Steven: There's no one left then your up to 100%
Howard: How many locations you have?
Steven: So we have two locations in Tucson and in metropolitan Phoenix. Regarding how many anesthesiologists...
Howard: That's in the I mean one out of a hundred dentist doesn't happen I mean seriously congratulations on that type of success that is top 1/100 of 1% have 10 locations.
Steven: Yeah a lot more aggravation though, I'm just kidding.
Howard: It's a whole different set of problems but you got your MBA now ten locations I'm just saying that one out of a thousand dentist will never reach that it might be one what would you say one out of five thousand?
Steven: Maybe something like that.
Howard: Yeah that's very rare.
Steven: I mean I think it's becoming less rare but yeah it's...
Howard: and if you thought of ten locations well he's from Canada some Canada how many locations would that be?
Steven: That would be like a hundred locations, I mean there's only so many igloos you could put your practices in.
Howard: So I'm afraid of a molar canal I mean we've seen it for three decades or why do you get that why is it rotted off they're just afraid in fact I'm going through that right now I'm having a preventing treatment care I've had this plantar fasciitis in my foot and it's really bothering me and the pediatric are the podiatrist once you give a shot at cortisone in my foot and just the thought I mean my foot sore and the thought of jamming a needle in there... I won't even do it so do you have anesthesiologist?
Steven: Yeah actually we do, you know for the office of the oral surgeons don't do IV sedation when needed but we've had cases where it is I think a little bit more complicated or let's say it's maybe a few endos on you know a twelve-year-old or so we'll bring an anesthesiologist in but their the experts bring them in if we think it's something that's more than usual.
Howard: So what do you say to people when they say there's no hospitals in Arizona where I can do the sedation and do the cardiovascular bypass I mean in all the hospitals in America don't they ever right here in Arizona don't is that the anesthesia have to be an anesthesiologist and a surgeon you can't do both in a hospital so why so they I think I only continue to see that in dentistry like an oral surgeon's office.
Howard: Is that something that's going away and then the ADA you got to comment on that they just passed the tenth specialty just a few weeks ago so now they just added dental anesthesiology as a specialty. So do you think the endodontists and the oral surgeon is coming out of school will stop doing sedation and it'll be a dental anesthesiologist?
Steven: I think that the endodontists that don't feel 100% comfortable doing sedation they will bring someone in and I think it's a good thing if they you know I think it's enough sometimes to concentrate on doing the root canal and not have to worry about you know the patient's vitals or so and if they can cost you to do better job in the root canal by bringing somebody in all the power to them.
Howard: So do you think you'll ever combine anesthesiologist just for a general dentist that wants to bring a patient in to do fillings and or pedo or is that you I was talking about combinations we talked about pediatric dentistry plus ortho is a much better business model than two separate places. You've combined endo and oral surgery wildly successful to ten locations, do you think there's any other marriages among the specialties?
Steven: I think I had to breakdown what you were saying no but I actually believed I think bringing in an anesthesiologist it's something we've actually started entertaining.
Howard: and you're referring dentists might really love it.
Howard: because they could come in and do that.
Steven: and by the way is you know you know most patients that are really afraid of dentists I mean the ones that haven't been to a dentist in twenty thirty years if you asked them, as you know there was some event that happened when they were like seven years old or eight years old it's the same story, I went to my old dentist and I was killing me I told him it hurts and they just kept on going sick don't worry about it just hold on. So they actually have reasons why they haven't gone and if it takes being put under to do their procedures I think it makes sense.
Howard: Yeah it's funny I am I could never understand I had childhood early childhood trauma with anxiety with that where I was always afraid of dogs and here I was a wrestler all through high school and it could be like a little bitty a little bitty poodle and it's come around and my heart would start racing I think myself why is that ten pound dog scaring me it didn't matter and then I got married and my ex said where'd you get that scar in your butt and I so I've never seen my butt I'm not aware she's like trying to show me with the mirror and so then one time where my mom's house and my ex asked my mom where's Howie he's got a big scar in his but what is that you oh when he was so little we lived under tan he was running across the yard and the big dog neighbor dog pounced on his back and took a big old chunk out of his butt I thought that's why but the minute I understood that you know you start rationalizing it that there's good dogs but you know it actually helped and now you're not gonna believe this but last week I actually got a puppy are you got a baby dog and it doesn't scare me but it but I so if they're scared any what might not even have been a dentist it might have been some physicians taking a popsicle stick halfway down his throat saying aw and gagging a little two-year-old and now he's just afraid of anybody in his mouth because he was so little he doesn't doesn't understand when that fear comes from.
Steven: Well and as you know you know most people will fear for example the low fear needle from a dentist a lot more than going for having your blood drawn.
Howard: or a tattoo.
Steven: Exactly haven't yeah but basically it's just the fear of not having the control it's in your mouth you don't see what's going on if it's on your limb or depends on where your tattoo is or you put it on your butt like to go along with your scar that...
Howard: You know why I don't have any tattoos
Steven: Why don't you... no.
Howard: You'll never see a bumper sticker on a Ferrari I have four sons two have tattoos so that's my razz to Buster in to half my boys but back to its you know it's 2020 are you still doing all your marketing towards dentist you're still there's not really a b2c play? I mean there's not a we see the lawyers with all the billboards called Goldberg and Osborn is it just a better return on investment going to dead general dentists as opposed to just going to the consumer?
Steven: Well you know I've actually thought about but what would an endodontist put on a billboard come to Steve Hymovitch, he can really get on your nerves.
Howard: He's deeply deeply unnerving.
Steven: That was a good post other day I saw you on LinkedIn that was fantastic. No but here's the thing I've thought about when it comes to oral surgery you know there's a large group up there that does b2c basically both there cases are you know $80,000 cases I don't know if we can mention who they are?
Howard: Sure absolutely
Steven: Their Clear Choice
Howard: Clear Choice the implant centers
Howard: Clear Choice
Steven: and I don't
Howard: We had the founder oral surgery on the show.
Steven: Oh cool I mean the only thing I just have to be aware of and who knows we might implement that in the future but then again because right now 99 percent of our patients coming from referring dental offices.
Howard: What percent?
Steven: I say 99 percent are all referred in the other 1% are people that I've had a root canal two years ago they know they need another one and it's like what happened the first time. So we have to be aware of will that hurt our business model the way it is. So I don't know.
Howard: So what's what's successful so how many so for ten locations how many marketing representatives you have for 10 locations?
Steven: So we have two reps and Phoenix and one for Tucson.
Howard: and what do they do?
Steven: So basically I'll tell you what they used to do what they used to do was just drop off like you mentioned...
Steven: Drop off the cookies.
Howard: Cause they know top dentist like me are committed to diabetes.
Howard: It's my goal so you said so it used to be cookies.
Steven: but now you know now it's a matter of what's in it for them and then we started offering CE courses for the doctors and but everyone does that now too and it's a sort of stay ahead of the curve. That's what we talked about earlier on you just have to whatever's going on you just have to be like a step ahead and the one thing that I really noticed or a lot of officers notice a rep will go in and in most practices of reps now and they'll go in and say by the way we're having a CE course for the doctors and I'll tell the office manager the front desk staff here good here's the flyer they can learn about implants or whatever it is but no one ever like what about is the office manager like a chopped liver. So we just started we're having now like lectures on leadership for the front desk staff and I don't know what else does that now maybe hopefully if you're an Arizona like don't listen to what I just said but I'm just kidding but that's I think that we just would be a step ahead so now it's not what are you what are you doing for the doctor we're doing for the staff now, you have to give them something that no one else is doing.
Howard: Yeah they these kids just don't get it that the reason I'm not afraid of DSO's is because the patient's just always come back and they say well every time I go there it's a different dentist it's a different hygienist and then when I go into the dental offices that are crushing it they've learned how to retain staff 7 10 12 15 years and if you can't keep your staff it's the same skill to keep your wife your staff your kids. I mean like you know when you yeah I mean it's it's just all human it's like just why do your kids not want to see you why'd your EX leave you why do you know your staff quit after 2 or 3 or what you know it's that turnover thing and if you figure out relationships it's a reward in every aspect of your life.
Steven: Absolutely and you know I know we've seen articles about giving staff bonuses which we do but that's only part of it I mean the staff you know we know patients think this and staff does too what's the expression you know people don't really care how much you know until they know how much you care and you have to be you mentioned I think the word as being authentic earlier on they have to know you that you have their back it just can't be that the staff, they don't want to feel that they're just there to make you more money. If you're doing something for them letting them grow letting them go on CE courses and you know give them at the end of the day it's not just the raise is also saying hey Mary thanks for staying late tonight I really appreciate it you staying for the emergency you have to do stuff like that you have to be authentic with them.
Howard: and I want to talk about some of the myths I've noticed about leadership like a lot of them a lot of people think like the customers first know your staff is your tribe and when a person comes in and starts dropping the f-bomb and screaming my receptionist I pick up the phone and call 911 about once a decade and my staff comes first you're not gonna abuse my staff because you're the customer I'm gonna give us money. I'll so fire you and the first one I had to fire was my favorite drinking buddy and I I don't want to say John's last name it'll get back John but I loved him but my staff can stand him and the way he the way he is I saw past it but he's this guy but I just see the little teddy bear in him but anyway. There seems to be a lot of missing in leadership I'm the the the staff wants you to protect them and lead them. What do you think are some of the current miss and leadership versus what you have done to roll out ten offices?
Steven: I think first of all everyone has their own style of leadership and a lot of people might think you know what I do not talk like MLK or JFK or any other alphabet soup leaders not everyone could be Gandhi but everyone has their own style. My style is I think it's what people see I'm authentic I remember when I first started my first office you know we had a water cooler we had our five gallon you know bottle we had to be changed every day and I did that not because I wanted to prove something that's just who I was and I think they know if they ask me a question I'll tell them the honest answer they know that I'm not perfect definitely not perfect for sure they figured that one out pretty soon but they know I'll listen to them I really care what they think.
Howard: The staff?
Steven: The staff.
Howard: I you know I am last week I lectured at the Florida Dental Association on this a couple days ago as a Townie meeting but I'm surprised you know I've left you a thousand times how many staff come up to me and they say will you talk about this and I'm like okay about why well our doctor does this well did you ask your doctor about that Oh he'd fire us and then I've been in dental offices with really nice guys that I like and the staff will come back and ask a question about a radiograph and they'll say well if you want to know that go to dental school that's above your pay grade I thought what how I mean if your own assistant doesn't understand what you're doing how did that would have to affect the treatment plan acceptance rate if you can't explain it to your assistant how the hell are you explaining to your patient what would,why do you think some guys like us are more open book with our staff and others have this you know this snewed this higher level?
Steven: I think you know I don't know who uses this expression but I really believe it if you think you're the smartest guy in the room you're in the wrong room and I'm not even in that room but people that are in the trenches they know what morning you think they know. You know it's really funny when some people bring in consultants that there's a problems with culture in an office they're bringing a consultant some consultants are good but what they're doing is they're just talking to the staff that you've never talked to all right they usually know if there's a problem in the office your office manager unless the problems the office manager.
Howard: Yeah, you know what almost every dentist's office told me they're a whole get their whole stick is they go to the office and they want a 30-minute closed-door interview with every staff member and doctors spouse if they're involved in the office and after they just do that for you know half a day they totally understands everything's going and that doctor has never done that it's not even aware of half the issues and they're just like how them. I mean so in marriages communication communication communication say with staff why do you think they'll go tell a consultant everything they think is right or wrong with this practice but the doc doesn't know?
Steven: I think it was a doctor didn't really care to think about knowing it's all basic stuff they all know that kind of stuff just ask the people just knowing and again knowing that other people have opinions. In Fact I know we've gone we went through dental school we did well we forgot that specialty school we did we think we really were really smart you know do you by the way you do know this while we're talking about being really smart difference between God and an oral surgeon right?
Howard: That God knows he's not an oral surgeon.
Steven: Right so but that doesn't mean that you can't get information or what's going on by the staff and I think that just where it comes from. You know I just knew you want to surround yourself with smart people and if I think I'm the smartest person that I'm really not smart so all the answers are there. You know what did they say something I think people have to bring it to salt it in because it's better than not talk to the staff least I'll talk to the staff we know there's a lot of someone there's a book out there and said does a consultant what does he did is he borrow your watch and tell you what time it is, now that's partially true but if you're not gonna get the information at least I'll find out for you but just knowing your staff they care they want they want they want to help you.
Howard: and a lot of specialists don't even real they don't even it's like you know you always hear this joke about I'm not a racist you know they say I have a friend who's you know whatever Hispanic or whatever and and and then they'll say something like no now that that's racist and specialist it's so funny they don't even know they're elitist because you'll hear them in a group oh so are you a dentist no I'm an orthodontist oh I'm sorry do you mean you didn't go to dental school you don't have a DDS degree you have a DDS degree you're a dentist and I only one time was with the oral surgeon and the waiter said so are you all dentists, there was four of us and oral says yeah we're all dentists and I thought damn dude that's I've been a dentist 20 years you're the first oral surgeon that told a waitress you were a dentist.
Steven: Well I mean what I have found though is I found like by being in an endodontist that and $8 will get me a venti macchiato at Starbucks.
Howard: So can you expand on what you talked about in your book doctor Steve's four steps to leadership nirvana?
Steven: You know usually I find like the first step is like being the boss you're someone's boss and normally you get that well you're promoted you the office manager your someone's boss that's usually the first level and by the way I've by doing a lot of research on writing the book I realize even being a parent doesn't make you the boss can we've all you have four boys and I have three girls and two boys and they've all told me one time to two years old hey Dad you're not my boss. So even beyond being a parent it's not not your boss no the second level is what I call like being friendly to them and what I mean by that I don't mean that as a weakness but they respect you they respect you. You know you can not just tell them what to do if they feel that you're not authentic if they feel you do something different of what you say you're not gonna lead them anywhere. The third step or whatever a third level I think of leadership basically you have to be the delivery man for delivery woman you have to produce so you can be be their boss be in charge of someone have a group underneath you you could be friendly they can respect you but if you haven't done anything if you haven't produced anything they're not gonna follow you they're not gonna lead you. So for example I'm sure someone works for you for being a any any of your social media stuff or at your office you've been there done that so they're gonna follow you now it's not just because you're nice not just because you're a good leader it's actually because you produced something that's the third thing and the fourth thing I find like a good leader is a mentor it's not just okay I'm a good leader I've learned I've read a lot of books but what am i doing for them. I might training them had a lead that I want to grow their leadership and that to me is the fourth step the highest level of being a leader.
Howard: I shouldn't ask you this question because you're a boy but you know when we were in school was mostly all-male profession and all the workers were pretty much female even in the hospitals I mean there's a million MD's there's a two hundred eleven thousand dentists but when you go in the hospital is its high 90 percentile that it's women and some of the women are saying that you know we still have a mostly female workplace but that they respond to women leaders differently than they respond to male leaders. Do you think that's true I mean neither of us are experts I can tell you don't even listen to his answer because he's a man but when these young women these 25 year old dentists they were your associate they watched you lead you sold her the practice you walk out the door and she says they treat them differently because they're girls do you believe that not believe that you think there's some truth to that?
Steven: I'm not saying this is right or wrong and I think you probably will agree with me on this. If you took a room of a hundred dental assistants and it just is the probably the large majority are female.
Howard: What percent like what percent of all your dental assistants are female by 10 locations?
Steven: I'd say 90%.
Howard: Yeah, yeah same here.
Steven: and the fact of the matter is and others may not sound right but it's I think you'll agree with me and if you ask them raise your hand if you'd rather work for a male dentist and then raise your hand for a female dentist and I think the large majority if not all of them but rather work for a male dentist. I just think that's though I think that's...
Howard: and do you think that's because we're Homo sapiens or a male-dominated society whereas the other grade a bonobos is a female domicile just like the great whales the female is half the size and she's the Alpha and she swims down the middle and those big bull whales do what she says and I'm surprised at the lack of research even when I was in MBA school ASU when you're talking about management I said well you know when they would quote studies I said well where's the bonobos studies they're there females are the Alpha and they just say I don't think there is any and I'm like well there should be a lot of that but do you think it's because they're born a homo sapien and homo sapiens is a male-dominated society as opposed to a bonobos female do you think that's why they're raising their hand or do you think it's more culture tradition or something?
Steven: I think it's more cultural tradition and again I may be seeing the wrong things here but I think a lot of look male dentists or all dentists we want to be the good guy we don't be the bad guy but I think growing up you know grew up in the 70s and 80s we used to hear the word you don't to be a male chauvinist pig we've heard that one before no one's heard about that recently and I think we want to make sure that we never ask a staff member for can you bring me a cup of coffee he's like we're just trained we just don't do that anymore we don't to give any appearance that we're taking advantage of the fact that someone's a female not that they need us to protect them but I think that's the way we are we want to make sure you know we tell Mary the end of the day great job we just we want to be like that we want to be like that I mean hopefully we should be like that was our wives too I have to work on that one but I think that's part of it and I think now what I've heard talking to some female assistants like why do you not why would you prefer to work with the male dentists they're saying not a large sample size but the ones i've asked that question to you I think because some female dentists they don't have to think that they don't have to suck their little stern with asking an assistant feel assistant for an instrument I think they're less apt to hesitate about not saying something the wrong way or hurting their feelings. I know it sounds this may be a little controversial but I think if you talk to most assistants I think they agree with me.
Howard: Well you know I why I always thought there is a huge biological component mean a you know if all the sapiens gorillas chimpanzees orangutans Gibbons are male dominated and bonobos for female there's got to be a genetic component but a lot of it is cultural too. I saw with my in my own family I I'm so sensitive to women because I grew up with five sisters and I could, we lived about a hundred yards from our Arkansas River I could swim in it and fish in it anytime today my sisters could not swim in the river and I'd ask mom well white why can't they swim with me I don't want him to drown and then I'm like wait let me swear does that mean you want me to drown her and I'd always think to myself why is what is my male anatomy going to do in a current in a river that my sister you know I mean I mean is a some life-saving device. So they're coming out of school they're the ADA The American Dental Education Association says they're averaging 283 thousand dollars in that what is your top financial advice for young dentist entrepreneurs?
Steven: I mean I think get some financial mentors, now by the way I would I've changed my answer a little bit I think maybe you said it right on last Thursday at your convention which I think was the like I think might be in reality the best advice right and you said and I quote I'm sure you'll tell me if you if you got this wrong the best financial advice to tell a young dentist would be a don't get married if you do get married don't have any kids but that being said but I but that's sort of true but I'm married and I have five kids I went in...
Howard: but I was saying that to put it in perspective because you know they just whine about their $283,000 and dad and a site that's the cost of a kid.
Howard: So you had five kids I had four kids let's say you went to dental school and you're gonna have five like Dr. H or four like me will have one less kid and now your whole student loan thing is gone and you've you're old enough to have a lot of friends that I'm sure that have got divorce how many of them did their divorce cost more than their student loans?
Steven: A lot more
Howard: So I mean God a lot more I mean so so your student loan is seems so big to you cuz you're you're in dental kindergarten school near a baby so when your 25 year old baby and you see this 283 you think that's a lot of money but there will be a year where you will make that and more in one year.
Howard: So every one of you kids are I don't care what you graduate in student loan debt there will be a year will you will show that amount to the IRS in one year. So back to financial advice for young dentists entrepreneurs you're saying get a mentor.
Steven: Get a mentor though I don't think a mentor that is less successful than you pick someone who you trust you know make sure you have a good accountant make sure you have a good financial advisor. The other thing I will say this if you want to start off quick before you make any appointments with any professionals read The Millionaire Next Door that's that's when you got to read.
Howard: The one written by the two PhDs?
Steven: Exactly I think one Stanley is the name and basically you gotta read that because it talks so much from a lot of dentists a lot of dentists to make if they do very well in terms of income but they may not make the amount of income of a plastic surgeon I just learned about how to live in how to live within your needs that does mean you have to drive a used you go but you can go to lose weight the controlling things and sort of save early if you can.
Howard: I love that book The Millionaire Next Door the surprising secrets of America's wealthy came out in 1996 by Thomas J Stanley William Danko but it was a compilation of two PhD researchers and so much of his mind-blowing I think the most mind-blowing thing to me which I've always said is which occupation made the most millionaires you would think it'd be oh it's gotta be physician/surgeon dentists and it on it was teachers and why because since they made so much less money their ego says well I'm not gonna buy a big house in a big car and take vacations in Hawaii I'm just a little teacher so on vacation we're gonna go camping so they saved and they saved consistently on a smaller amount of money so by the time they were 65 they had more money than dentists physicians and surgeons and everyone says it's not what you make it's what you save and what stresses me out with dentists is when I'm with they're with as a company you know I mean and I know the dentist and he's all stressed out he wants to increases his production he asks me what to do it's like dude you already collect a million and take home 300 why are you so stressed well because they live in a 5000sqft home they don't go camping at the lake they fly to Hawaii and then i'll ask them i'll say name me one aspect of your life where you live below the median and then I'll say is it restaurants because I've heard your wife said this is the thing that annoys you so much as I say well I don't do chain restaurants it's like well what are you royalty. I mean I thought you're just some bumblebee from Iowa and you met him at Iowa and now you're above chain restaurants. I mean I don't even I don't even like restaurants if the food doesn't have a picture because if they don't have a picture of the food like they did all the quality restaurants like the IHOP and the Waffle House I mean you know it's just gonna be a hundred dollar meal for two for no apparent reason but and they're their wedding rings to big you'll never see you'll never see the female in a dental marriage with a little quarter carat diamond it's always some big three carat thing their cars are Benzes and Range Rovers I'm like where do you live below average and that's why the teacher will be a millionaire and not how much money they produce and collected its how much they consistently saved living below your lifestyle.
Steven: If they do go spent two weeks in Hawaii and you ask them why are you spending two it's in Hawaii well I'm so stressed out fifty weeks of the year I'm worried about money that's why I have to spend two weeks in Hawaii to sort of compensate for that.
Howard: Yeah oh my god just quit spending so much money and my car you know to own up to it my cards are 2004 and I'm gonna go to the Lexus dealer tomorrow because the front light bulb burned out every time I go in there they're like well if you just give us your car and ninety eight thousand dollars you can have a twenty nineteen like I go from my home to my work I mean white white and of all the places that you would drop a hundred grand come why would your first idea to be to upgrade your car.
Steven: Well it's really for...
Howard: A hundred grand to upgrade your car that works perfectly fine.
Steven: but here's the funny thing about that now if you ask them to let's say take a few extra CE courses or go to a convention no no that's outside of my budget. What it was the Ben Franklin it said something like the best the best investment is on your education on yourself that brings you the best returns but that's the funny thing about it no problem spending money on the car but not on yourself.
Howard: Yeah so I asked you I asked you the question wrong answer I said what financial advice would you give young dentists entrepreneurs and I'm just gonna tell you the same question at the finance well just what general advice would you give the young dentist entrepreneur?
Steven: If you're running your own office and you talked about this last week I think was the management guru Peter Drucker said you can't manage what you don't measure and you know you can talk to certain dentists and all four examples go plain not that any does complain of course I complain but they'll say well my cash flow is terrible yeah I think my accounts receivable are terrible and you ask them so what percentage of your accounts receivable are over 90 and the look on their faces if you ask them how many neurons are in your index finger because you know they're not measuring it so of course they can't manage it so just knowing you have to look at the numbers don't just go by gut feeling. I think you mentioned.
Howard: We got guts you know I got a lot of guts why I'm gonna be Pro guts.
Steven: Well I feel actually I felt bad about that too you mentioned the last week I'm just storing in case there's ever a big catastrophe out there I have a lot of you know pistachios and other nuts I'm storing them for the winter.
Howard: Fat is just feature meals already eaten and I am ready for the asteroid yet I climb in a cave and hibernate for six months. I want these kids not to learn everything the hard way what are some of the mistakes you made that you think they should learn from you telling them about it as opposed to doing it themselves?
Steven: Number one getting a mentor if you can join a mastermind group being with other people that have seen around the corners it turns out some specific things I've learned personally I have to follow the new adage in my mind hire slow and fire fast. Too many times in the past you know I may have may have had that employee I go home and vent like every night for two years or so and instead of like no you have to coach them you have to counsel them and I mean really coaching and counseling not like the first step before you fire someone but at a certain point someone's may not make it and you have to can't let that go on for two years.
Howard: Yeah it's my my biggest mistake too I mean my mistakes hanging out there everybody can see it I mean my company's 31 years old and the five or six management people that run the entire thing of in their 20 years. So it took 10 years to build a management team and it was it was trial and error and it was thinking that it was more important to go get my fellowship in the mission institute and my diplomat and the International Congress oral implantology of my FAGD. I was so busy as the cook in the kitchen learning every recipe I could and I wasn't focusing on my management team that and going back oh my god would have been so much easier to spend seven three-day weekends with Carl Misch if I would had the team I have now but like my office managers 20 years Laurie the president is 20 years Ken the programmers 20 there they're all 20 years. So don't spend 11 years working on your craft I would I would get out of school start working on your team hire slow fire fast as soon as you get a bunch of people committed to your vision your team your business every year that they stay on the team means I'm responsible for less and less I mean why would you hire really smart people and then I get out of their way. I mean I don't want to you know I could go on and on about that. Another problem I see with dentists is natural selection I always give the example of bipolar where the United States had a 4% rate and Europe had a half percent rate and for 20 years they just thought okay well obviously that couldn't be and they're measuring it differently and it took him literally 30 years before they had a John Hopkins psychiatric hospital I wrote a book how a little bit crazy leads to a lot of success who are the most likely people in Europe to say you know what screw this country I'm gonna get in a boat where one in eight sink in the Atlantic and land here with this shirt on my back it was a bipolar trap. I mean all these crazy manic people came here well the dentist is a natural selection I mean you need to have a strong emotional quotient but there they were selected because of their math and geometry and physics and chemistry skills which is usually some geek in the library. So how do you how like your scottsdale institute on leadership you're getting a lot of dentists that, dentists they're scientists. Do you think the typical dentist has a bigger gap from understanding the emotional quotient feelings they got the IQ or they wouldn't be a dentist you can't say oh I'm a dentist and I have a low IQ and I'm not smart now you're a doctor but do you think their IQ is almost against an EQ?
Steven: Well yeah they off you have a high IQ but it's not really their fault that their emotional quotient isn't that high I mean in the high school we learn how many of you have learned algebra in high school all of you how many have learned about self-awareness none of you. How many have learned you know history all of you, how many of you learned how to do with other people knowing how their emotional intelligence is like none of you. So no one has learned any of this stuff so it's just a matter of being aware these sort of things that we were never taught so and that by the way that seems to be like the secret sauce for it with a lot of CEOs they all have high IQs so it's not as if that's not important but the difference between the studies have shown this the ones that have higher EQs they're companies do better that's just the fact. So we just don't know how to deal with certain issues and the first things to do with yourself know it used to be called you know in the old days it was anger management.
Howard: Yeah great show.
Steven: but you cannot if you wanted to put on a course saying come and give a well given electron anger management no one's interested in that but if you have emotional intelligence that's people are interested in that but I really think that's like one of the key ingredients like these days you have to know that how to deal with people.
Howard: and that's with the Scottsdale leadership and coaching center when did that wouldn't that all start?
Steven: We actually my wife Julie and myself we founded that two years ago just knowing you know I feel like endodontics an oral surgery technically you know I know that we know that however I really really started to start believing and I did my executive coaching certificate that secret sauce the thing that's missing in a lot of offices is the leadership is emotional intelligence and that's why I figured I can't just have it in my mind I want to teach it I want other people to know about it. I really do feel that that's really that secret sauce that people have to know about.
Howard: When you're talking about emotional intelligence you also talked a lot about marrying the head in the heart is that emotional?
Steven: I you know you know I started thinking about that concept I about marrying your head and your heart and one of the examples you know we talked about you want a higher slow and fire fast and look dentist in general we want to be the good guys I'm a naturally dealing with patients all day you your comment on patients don't worry about it I've done this a few times before don't worry about it but you have for example at that employee in your head you just know she's just not cutting it, I mean she's just not you've cancelled her or him you've coached that person and you just realized look I'm not sending your office or my office but I've heard rumors of sometimes an employee is not the sharpest tool in the shed that happens sometimes right but our heart may be saying but you know what every year you know he or she gives me a birthday card and they bring me in a gift card for Starbucks that's what my heart is telling me and we want to be the so we do what happens we're on 10 years we may have the same employee going home and bitching about it at home to our spouse and just but there's a way of you can marry that and this consultant actually once I heard him speak and said, well there's a way to fix that you can fire the person but you can still send them a birthday card every year you guys don't meet them once every six months at Starbucks so it's just a marriage well knowing what's in your head but you want to and you have to sort of work around you can't just totally want to love an employee you have to make the business decisions sometimes.
Howard: I love dumb Abraham Maslow's book on management because it was a I already massively respected him as an anthropologist him and Desmond Morris for my two favorite anthropologists and he wrote a book on Mezo management and I see we were asked talking about girls earlier, Abraham as if I'm your boss I can't be your friend because I reserve the right to fire you you're not gonna fire your mom you're not gonna fire your sister and you're not gonna fire your best buddy. So there has to be some professional lines drawn in the sand where I want I don't want to be toxic I want to be I want to be there for my tribe but I am the leader of the tribe. Imagine if you were that coach of the ASU football team and your best buddies were the athletes they came in said uh I don't want to workout today we were out partying till 1:00 a.m. and you laugh and I go yeah I get it you know I mean that's not what you're that's what the players need their players need a coach and you're their coach you're not their friend and a great coach will make that athlete rise to new levels.
Steven: Absolutely you know many many years ago I used to been in the Army Reserve up in Canada and but in all in the army anywhere in our forces you have that's why you have a mess hall for officers you're a mess hall for senior NCOs because yes you can be friendly yes you can be nice you can be authentic but you can't be buddy-buddy with them and you can't be buddy-buddy with someone who you may have to fire in the future.
Howard: You remember that movie you be it was a submarine movie you be one 46 or...
Steven: John F Kennedy?
Howard: The submarine moved the world war 2 summary where they were trying to stow.
Steven: The German movie right yeah.
Howard: They're trying to steal the German Enigma and Matthew McConaughey says why didn't I get the promotion and basically it came down to like are you ready to send your real popular the crew are you ready to send them on a mission where they might not come back and Matthew McConaughey thought about it he says see just the fact that you hesitated already and are you ready to tell your assistant no you're five minutes late and they say well my baby sitter look there's flight attendants you drop off their kids and go on a four-day flight. I mean there's four million people the value in the valet don't don't tell me you're the only one with a kid and a babysitter. I mean you have to be their manager.
Howard: I want to ask you some that DSO's are getting big now do you consider your ten locations are you a DSO?
Steven: I like to I don't consider ourselves a DSO, now we might from I guess from an official point of view call myself that but I just feel the reason I don't feel that like deep down because I manage I think I care this may be a little biased here I think some DSo's just managed by P&L. I don't think they necessarily get the leadership and emotional intelligence stuff and growing their people maybe some do but not all of them do and that's why I think so my gut reaction to that is no but I guess if according to the what measures are DSO are I guess maybe we are.
Howard: Well are all those doctors that work for you all those endodontists or oral surgeons are they all employees or any of them partners?
Steven: None of them are partners yet
Howard: None of them are partners yet so they're all employees?
Steven: Their all employees.
Howard: Well I mean that it's amazing that you could get that many people to sign on and do it I mean it speaks volumes of you if you're listening to say now that guy's an idiot well the proof of the pudding is so overwhelming the opposite of that. How do you how do you attract and retain highly educated endodontists and oral surgeons who say no I don't want to own my own place I want to I want to work for you?
Steven: Well first of all you you ask me the question are they all employees or partners and I really believe they're employees from a tactical IRS standpoint but when I mention about talking about staff and talking with office managers getting their input they're not treated like employees whatever that word is treated like employees. I mean the doctors for example they know I don't tell them how to schedule patients I don't tell them what rotary files to use so I treat them my partners and I really do. So how do I track them, I think when I interview anyone first of all I think if they want someone who's down to earth are authentic I think they'll definitely want to work with me if they want someone to walk in and say hi I'm Steve Hymovitch I got my MBA and you're the opportunity to learn with me like they're looking for that and I'll tell them like don't just go to someone else. So I think just knowing and by the way the other thing I do I always tell people on it when I first talked to him on the phone cuz no one no programmer orals well don't want a no program in Arizona there isn't a no surgery program I always say to you to them you know I can give you any amount of crap over the phone but I wanted to talk to the guys and gals I work with me talk to them and they'll tell you and I think that's my biggest selling point so I think that's why they work with me and that's why I think they stay with me.
Howard: Now do they all have the same pay structure I mean endodontist and oral surgeons, do they all they all have the same pay structure?
Steven: Well first of all any of my... I know I'm just saying if I'm talking about endodontists here I'm not gonna give the answer on that one because then they may you know they may be mad at the oral surgeons and neurosurgeons may be mad at the endodontists sort of saying that half they'll basically no they all have...
Howard: It's all based on supply and demand I mean if it's harder to hire an endodontist and a general dentist or an oral surgeon and endodontist it just is what it is. I hate it when teachers say well why does the arizona diamondbacks hitter why does he a pain a million dollars here and I get paid 30,000 air well can you hit a ball out of the ballpark that matters in baseball.
Steven: Absolutely no so basically I mean they all get pretty oh very high salaries I mean you need to do that to attract any specialist these days.
Howard: Salaries as opposed to production?
Steven: Both yeah I mean a high base salary but if they produce more they'll make more right because if you if you just say hey here's and some practices do this especially in the East Coast here's your salary but if you work twice as much as someone else you're not gonna make any more there has to be some incentive for someone to produce more.
Howard: So I want to ask you a question and you should be biased against the answer cuz you don't wanna hurt your business but I would advise a again that the retail business I mean we've both got a MBA from ASU and the retail there's so much research on that on their retail goes back 300 years from around the world that you know you had these little shop houses of two or three hundred square foot you lived above them in the next generation put you out of business because they went to twice the space they went to five hundred square foot the next generation went to a thousand and 2004 though and now we maxed out you know we got these Ikeas and Walmart's that are 250,000 square feet it's just convenience and and what's cute is when I go back to developers like the first time do you won't even believe this when I tell you the first time I I always did a tour about every five years in Australia but starting in 99 I applied down I do Auckland New Zealand Melbourne Sydney Perth Adelaide Gold Coast and I'd do that like every five years. When I first went down there you couldn't go into a grocery store and buy everything you needed for dinner you had to go to the bread shop you had to go to the butcher shop you had to go to the wine shop I mean you had to go to six different shops whereas Americans would walk into a Kroger or Costco and get it all at once. Do you think the future business model is that instead of you have ten locations that the endodontist actually comes to your office and does her molar root canal for that one-stop-shop do you see yourself lining with million dollar practices will come in every every friday and do your endo or some like that or do you think is that some of you thought i'm sure you've thought about it?
Steven: Yeah I thought about it and when I first of all but I'll say is I think you asked the wrong question you said what do I think it's not about what I think. You know I grew up in Montreal all the dentists were in professional buildings when I first came down to Arizona seeing a dentist in a strip mall like oh my god there's something that I can't believe people go to that but they do that's so what I think that doesn't necessarily mean what the reality is so the end of the day it's not what I think I know patients these days look people are still economies going pretty well now may change the next year or two probably will but they've been in times were you can't tell the boss hey I need another day off to go for another procedure to have to drive to a different location the end of the day it's about convenience that's why offices if you want to expand you have to have extra hours you can't just have bankers hours you can't just close at three o'clock the way bankers even they've changed. So I think that's convenience is where it's at so what I think of course I'd rather have it that it's just the endodontist we have our own fiefdom and the oral surgeons have their own office but I think that's you gotta go where the customers are right and what they want and I think it's just becoming more more that's what's in it for the patient.
Howard: Yeah you just in what's funny you know how we said that racist people usually don't know their races there's no I got a friend that's you know that and then they say something that's racist. Dentists always say they're their patient-focused but they're not their dentist focus their hours or 8 to 5 Monday through Thursday the patient the consumer can call over the lunch hour that's when your phones are being forwarded I mean you could name 20 things about the average dental office that are all doctor focus and not patient focused and they think they're all patient focused.
Steven: Well they're just not well they think because they have maybe a picture that's up in the wall that says our patient is number one but they call upon let's say Friday at two o'clock and there they have their faces blowing up sorry the doctors golfing why don't you call us up on Monday morning so that's about exaggerated a little bit.
Howard: No you're not exaggerating and I have data for Arizona because I live here but I have data for the United States but let's just focus on Arizona where you and I have practiced for decades. Eight and a half percent of emergency room visits in the state of Arizona or odontogenic in origin. Wow in fact I always thought if I was gonna do a deal like you oral surgery and endo I would be putting my locations in the biggest Hospital emergency rooms so in triaging you say it was this tooth is this mouth related okay you need to go down the hall and turn to the right eight and a half out of a hundred I mean that's just crazy it means we're not doing our job.
Steven: Right and the sad part about most of those patients will get a prescription for antibiotics and here's some pain meds that's not really helping them.
Howard: Yeah have you ever had a patient come in with a two-foot by two-foot radiograph of their of their skull for a toothache?
Steven: No but I have...
Howard: I had that one time.
Steven: I've had patients coming in just going to the ER on the weekend and they were referred to the ENT and realized it was like a lower molar that was causing them their problems.
Howard: So you said and I'm gonna hold you to it that if they email you you'll give them a free copy of the book?
Steven: Yes if you email me at email@example.com.
Howard: Oh no you can't say aol.com only her grandpa uses an AOL account.
Steven: Well I think myself and eight other people still of AOL so onlyendo endo, if I have to spell endo then maybe you're watching the wrong podcast here onlyendo@AOL.com just put in the subject matter I want my free book, send me your address I'll be more than happy to send you out a copy.
Howard: That is so nice you and why are you doing that why are you giving a free copy of your book?
Steven: You know I like to you know I it makes me feel good knowing that like you talked about earlier on the mistakes I've made or the lessons I've learned never made mistakes just a lot of lessons I like sharing that I like other people there's you can give a little and people will receive a lot by it.
Howard: So but finish, we went way over an hour we need to stop. So talk more are you and your wife Julia are you guys having fun at this at this Scottsdale leadership coaching Center?
Steven: Absolutely and really reason I really we both love it it because all these concepts about leadership, emotional intelligence they're all common sense stuff but people don't hear about it they don't know about it and it's just a matter of when you when you actually give a lecture it's not like giving like in biochemistry that you gave something the krebs cycle when everyone looks like there's a deer in the headlights they don't understand what you're saying but all these concepts you can learn about you people understand they can say okay I get it I can I can do that and it's stuff that you can apply in the office the stuff you can apply at home. Emotional intelligence I mean I'm gonna have people can you some dentists yell at their staff but they'll never but oh they won't yell at the staff they'll yell at their kids and there's like there's lots to learn there's way to ways to grow and this is basic information a lot of people just don't know about.
Howard: So I've noticed one thing on tattoos no one ever gets one tattoo it starts off on a journey same with books no one ever writes one book I've written three is this your final book or do you think there'll be another one down the road?
Steven: No that will be another one.
Howard: See did I not call that Buster.
Steven: and you know one of the chapters are really enjoyed writing and the first book was on emotional intelligence and the more I heard the mores dealings I've had with some of my staff talking other doctor about their staff there were so many other topics that I never even mentioned in the first book such as now I'm not talking about your office or my office I've heard of other murrs maybe having employees that could be passive-aggressive. So I had to put a chapter on the passive-aggressive employee we've never dealt with those but I've heard rumors about that. What about the employee who is the victim everything oh she's trying to she'd make me look bad I entered the data correctly I gave the wrong employment information that's because someone is someone else's fault so there's just so many more things about mostly intelligence I wanted to get out and that's I'm finishing that up right now and hopefully by this summer that the emotional intelligent dental office will be out.
Howard: You know when you when you talk to someone at a party that's not in dentistry they think that root canal it's probably the most complicated thing we do and I always tell people that understanding how the human mind works is a hundred times more difficult than learning how to do a root canal. I mean humans are so complex even at my age I'm still amazed it's usually the older and older I get to realize you realize how amazingly complex human mind is. I mean you can sit there and you sit there and because all your kids in one room and and how they all went through you know it's a waitress that came to the table and this person was upset this first didn't care if this one yeah I mean they're just I mean humans are just they're just so complex. We're so out of time, I have to stop final question I know you're a fan of the movie The Godfather what are your favorite quotes from The Godfather that applied to a dental office?
Steven: Well I'm not gonna say leave the gun take the cannolis I won't say that line but basically you know a couple lines that I really like using or think about when it comes to employees it's not personal, it's business. If an employee just isn't cutting the mustard you've coached them you've cancelled them you're not being a bad guy making them accountable so it's not it's not personal as business and the other one I do you know to me like endo oral surgery that's not my life is it provides with the things I can do with my family and I like the line basically a man I think Don Corleone's said this to Johnny Fontane and a man doesn't spend time this family isn't a real man so it's really important for me to spend time with my family we go on summer vacations together we go to a certain state over Christmas every year I won't mention that one.
Steven: Hawaii but what we used to use frequent flyer points so that's that oh yeah that's one of the other things about financial advice get points so you got to pay for those trips.
Howard: Yeah I knew uh the funniest Hawaii story I have is on my little kid with the oldest one Eric he couldn't have been ten we went to Hawaii and all of a sudden this lady lets out this god-awful scream we're waiting to get into a restaurant I look at this lady and she's looking up there's like this 50-foot coconut tree and Eric's up there climbed up there hanging on a branch knocking coconuts off who would have guessed later he'd have been a rock climber I mean the guy just.
Steven: It's funny talking about the things our son say and this is made me come down to earth you know we think we have offices and we think okay just when we started thinking that we're okay we're very important and I remembered this is what my I always repeat the story about my son David when he was 2 years old and we were in front of a group of other parents and he actually said I want to be like my dad I want to be like my dad and I remembered like for those I've actually thinking wow that's what it's all about no joke and someone said to me what do you mean by that and he said like the pee standing up and that told me all I needed to know.
Howard: Yeah my boys say the sweetest things they always say and I'm there I'm there man. So if they want to do the Scottsdale leadership coaching Center I mean is it like these are like a one day class is it like a 3 3 Day weekend what is the format?
Steven: All of the above we're gonna be starting up for office managers a series of five lectures on office management, leadership. We're also gonna have like some Wednesday lectures on motor intelligence any questions only endo you're already sending me the email about getting the free books any questions about it I can give you any more information about it.
Howard: Well you know one of the best things the Pankey Institute did for marketing is they have a for one week classes, so it's a big stretch to go from an ad in dentaltown magazine to canceling production for a week flying to Key Biscayne Florida and go there a week so I told them to do and they did it was very successful I said we'll just condense the whole week into one hour and they made for one hour courses corresponding to each one of their weeks and I hope you do that I think it'll be I think it'll be great marketing on your side and again these Millennials I think a lot of times the Millennials before they go commit to go spend time away with someone they like to see them they like to hear them they like to see if they're on YouTube before you know so they know what so it dis intermediates it's too big a leap from flyer to go to Scottsdale so it's kind of an intermediate step give it give them an hour online CE course on dentaltown and I think the more I can vouch that the more you get to know this guy then we're gonna love them Dr. H thank you so much for coming over.
Steven: Thank you for having me it was an honor.