Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran
Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran
How to perform dentistry faster, easier, higher in quality and lower in cost.
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866 Using Data to Understand Patients with Glenn W. Gerlach III : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

866 Using Data to Understand Patients with Glenn W. Gerlach III : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

10/19/2017 11:05:15 AM   |   Comments: 0   |   Views: 215

866 Using Data to Understand Patients with Glenn W. Gerlach III : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

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866 Using Data to Understand Patients with Glenn W. Gerlach III : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

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VIDEO - DUwHF #866 - Glenn Gerlach

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AUDIO - DUwHF #866 - Glenn Gerlach

Glenn’s substantial business acumen and insight have been deployed in a wide a variety of areas, notably, process engineering, supply chain management, disruptive technologies, sales and human resources.

Early on his career, Citrix Systems’ senior leadership team and his peers recognized Glenn’s gifts – among them, his aptitude for navigating clients through operational challenges and generating innovative solutions. He played a key role in a successful process re-engineering project during his 2010-2011 university internship, where to this day he maintains a mentee relationship with the COO.

Later, as the 4th member of the SaaS-based HRIS liability management HR4Health team, Glenn showed a flair for engaging customers and team members in the areas of pre-sales, training, support and renewals.  During his time with HR4Health, the team accelerated growth by 370% year-after-year, while boosting customer satisfaction and one of the most important company metrics, Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR). It was here that he emerged as a trailblazer and trusted partner, in the opinion of leaders, peers and customers alike.

Glenn’s leadership and technical skills as an Identify partner have been instrumental in growing Identify’ highly adaptable collaborative technology platforms, designed for the benefit of the luxury medical and dental industries.

Howard:  It is just a huge honour for me today to be podcasting interviewing Glenn W. Gerlach III, co-founder and CEO of  I never do commercials, these are, I called Glenn, he did not call me, he probably is still wondering who the hell I am.  I called Glenn, he’s got a substantial business acumen and insight has been deployed in a wide variety of areas, notably process engineering, supply chain management, disruptive technology, sales and Human Resources.  Early in his career, Citrix systems, senior leadership team and his peers recognize Glenn:’s gifts among them his aptitude for navigating clients through operational challenges and generating innovative solutions.  He played a key role in a successful process re-engineering project during his 2010/2011 University Internship where to this day he maintains a mentor/mentee relationship with the COO later as the fourth member of the SAAS Base HRIS Liability Management, HR for Health Team Glenn: showed a flair for engaging customers and team members in the areas of pre-sales, training support renewals.  During his time with HR for Health, the team accelerated growth by three hundred and seventy percent year after year by boosting customer satisfaction, and one of the most important company metrics monthly recurring revenue MRR.  It was here that he emerged as a trailblazer and trusted partner in the opinion of leaders, peers and customers alike.  Glenn:’s leadership and technical skills, as an identified partner, have been instrumental in growing, identifying highly adaptable collaborative technology platforms designed for the benefit for the luxury of medical and dental industries.  So let’s get started with, if my homies want to, what is it?  What do you exactly do?  Where are you at right now, you’re in San Fran?

Glenn:  San Francisco, yeah.  

Howard:  Which part of San Fran?

Glenn:  Just outside San Francisco, Marin.

Howard:  Marin?

Glenn:  Yeah, Marin County San Raphael.

Howard:  How do you spell Marin?

Glenn:  M-a-r-i-n.

Howard:  So you’re in the high tech area and you’re out there where it’s all going down, you probably can see Google and Uber and Facebook and E-bay and all these great companies.  So what are you guys, what’s up your sleeve with dentistry at

Glenn:  Yeah, so my partner lives in Texas and she, she’s actually got the very in depth knowledge of dentistry, that’s where that came from.  My background was in technology, sales, understanding the customer, I actually met Trudy at HR for Health when I sold the practice that she was consulting for the HR solution, kept in touch with her over the years.

Howard:  What’s her last name?

Glenn:  Henderson.  Trudy Henderson.

Howard:  She’s a dentist in Texas?

Glenn:  No, she’s got an interesting background, she is actually a well versed in high reliability operations from her background in 27-years in the nuclear industry, very well qualified.

Howard:  How did she get in dental?

Glenn:  She was consulting, she wanted to bring high reliability operations to another industry after she finished her career in high reliability operations in nuclear, and if the story is correct, she might see this and get mad at me, but the story is correct, she came out to San Francisco with her husband for work, he is in high reliability operations nuclear as well and she was looking for a way to expand what she was doing.  Went looking for jobs, reached out to a practitioner in San Francisco who had 13 or 14 locations at the time and said, look, I want to come on and consult, give me a shot, she’s been doing that for four or five years now.

Howard:  Yeah, that is amazing, people don’t realise that in the airline industry in the United States, if they had a 99.99 success rate that means there’d be four aeroplanes falling out of the sky every day.  Nuclear power plants, they can’t ever have a problem, I mean, Three Mile Island was their closest mess up and that was 30, 40 years, how many years ago was that, 30?

Glenn:  You’re asking the wrong guy.

Howard:  When did Three Mile Island burp out some gas, so yeah, Trudy Henderson 1979?

Glenn:  1979.

Howard:  So what is Identify doing then?

Glenn:  So what we’re doing is we’re taking technology, the use of high reliability operations and putting them together to change the way the practices engage with the patient, the customer.  At the end of the day what we found in our pilot study with the practices is that technology has changed every other industry. If you look at Amazon, your experience and my experience on Amazon are so significantly different because they use something called customer profiling.  They have the ability to take data points from your phone, where you walking, what you’re going by, Google used to read your emails, right, all the where you’re visiting on the web. ..

Howard:  It’s creepy, you know what I’ve seen at my house, you’ll be talking to your son about something like this and you’ll go to do a Google search, and you’ll type in one letter and it spells out the, what you were going to search, so they’ve turned on your microphone and knew you were talking about this and heard me, say, well, search Google.  So I mean, they say in their terms and conditions they can turn your microphone on and I’ve seen that happen to me all the time, I don’t really care because I don’t want to type out the damn search but I know they’re listening to my conversations or something’s keying them, like I might just be saying, well, I’ll search Google and they turn on the microphone.  Because I mean, I’ve seen that three times this month.

Glenn:  Yeah, and it’s like a fun joke I used to play on a couple of my buddies is I’d get on their computer and search something ridiculous like toilet seats, the next thing, for two weeks that’s all that pops up on every website they ever go to is advertising for toilet seats, it’s hysterical.  So they, but they’re able to do that through millions of points of data. HIPPA laws don’t  let you do that inside of a practice, right, you, it’s like they’re silo, that person exists as a customer profile elsewhere and you can’t bring that into the practice and use that as valuable knowledge to then work with that patient or help convert that patient, right.

Howard:  Okay.

Glenn:  So what we’re doing is we work with psychologists to create, on the front end of our platform a pre treatment questionnaire, and basically out of this questionnaire we’re able to gather a ridiculous amount of insight about the patient.  What their wants are, their needs are, their readiness, the urgency, are they the decision maker, do they have special events coming up.  Then that all plays into the backend of our software where we use machine learning, and AI is the buzzword that is thrown around constantly and I don’t, we don’t have Google AI but we have computers that are analysing the data that we receive back to produce scripting for the practitioner to use when they talking to the patient.  So it’s, let’s say Suzie has an appointment, calls in for an appointment and we get the information that she’s got a wedding in 17-months, she is insecure about her smile, she’s got the right urgency and she is ready to buy.  We’re going to tailor that script so that we can say, look, you’re probably a good candidate for clear liners because in clear liners with an accelerator we can have you all tuned up well before the wedding so that you can get wedding pictures taken, feel better about yourself when you’re up there smiling and these pictures are distributed to your family and friends, and then that hits on that emotional level which is not manipulative, it is a way to understand your customer and what they want and need because they’re not often going to walk in and tell you that.

Howard:  You know who buys the most cosmetic surgery?

Glenn:  Who?

Howard:  The lady who just got divorced and is now signing up on Match and Tinder and all that stuff, she wants to get all fixed up as she gets returned to the market.  I mean, I’ve been doing this for 30-years, when you mention wedding, that’s what everybody talks about but my fix them up for a wedding, that hasn’t even been ten percent of the fix them up after they’ve been married for ten, twenty years and they’re going to return to the market.  I mean, seriously, talk to any plastic surgeon, so you should hack into and tinder, and I tried to sign up for plenty of fish but they rejected my profile and said I was a whale, they told me I had to lose 50 pounds and reapply.

Glenn:  Well, the camera adds ten pounds so.

Howard:  So yeah, so this is, wow, this is interesting, so this the tomorrow we talked about today, right?

Glenn:  Yeah.

Howard:  So have you rolled this out, how long has this company being going on now?

Glenn:  So we did a year-long pilot study where we actually, so before the pilot study began it was Trudy and I talking about her experience and everything that had gone on in the practice she was consulting for, and I had helped her with that over the years and how to basically build an actual model that we could replicate that from and deliver it.  So we did a year-long pilot study in 15 locations, the results were really staggering, and one of the areas that we saw significant improvement in was Invisalign and then Invisalign teen, and Invisalign teen, oddly enough, is one that Invisalign has had a very tough time capturing that market, there is a lot of competition there.  But for us we were able to understand through the pre-treatment surveys, but we were able to understand if the kid is coming in and they’re not the decision-maker, they haven’t had the pre-treatment requirements needed, we’re not going to try and convert them.  We’re going to build an action plan for a few steps beyond that first appointment, we’re going to make sure we recommend that they bring the decision-maker in, whether that’s mom or dad, and then we know how to communicate with the child as well as the parent as to why it’s important to the child.  Because a lot of times we find you, have a patient that comes in there, maybe in their teens, they’re headed into high school and they tell the parents, look, we want a more expensive treatment solution, the parents are going to be like, I had braces, you have braces, no big deal, get them done, whatever.  But when we communicate to the parents why it’s important to the child which they’re using, and expressing through the pre-treatment exam the emotional and psychological areas behind why they don’t want to walk into high school day one with braces, that’s a much different conversation with mom and dad.  It doesn’t feel salesy for the practitioner and it tends to have a much higher conversion ratio.

Howard:  So are you rolling it out now, you’re past your business site, now you’re rolling it out?

Glenn:  Yeah, we’re actually, so Appster, I am not sure if you’re familiar with Appster but they’re the top development firm in the country, they agreed to take on our project in November, and we’re in the process of …

Howard:  Last November?

Glenn:   … Last November, and what we’ve been doing is looking for the practice management software and we’ve narrowed it down to two right now that we’re going to pick to go with.  The practice management software that we want to use to deliver it to….

Howard:  Who’ve you narrowed it down to?

Glenn:  We’re not going to say right now.

Howard:  Well, I mean, it’s Dentistry Uncensored.

Glenn:  It’s uncensored?

Howard:  Yeah.

Glenn:  Well, oh, okay.

Howard:  This show is Dentistry Uncensored.

Glenn:  One of the largest ones that we’re talking to and I guess it’s not a secret is Dentrix, and that would be.

Howard:  Yeah, that’s the largest that is owned by Henry Schein.

Glenn:  Yeah, so that would be a fantastic one because we want to build the platform around what their customers need as well.  Because I’m sure you’ve talked to tons of technology providers and one of the hardest things that I’ve seen in my time of selling technology to anyone is, everyone gets so crazy about implementing something new in a practice or a business.  Because it’s like, this is going to be more work even if you promise less work for them, they think it’s substantially more work and they hate it, and so adoption is low.  So we’re built to be, I mean, it’s time to see.

Howard:  Who was your second choice?

Glenn:  When I, that one I don’t want to talk about, I am not going to talk about it right now, I know it’s uncensored but I gave you one.

Howard:  Is one of them Open Dental?

Glenn:  Nope.

Howard:  Because email me and I will reply back because it is my experience that Dentrix, you could talk to them until you are blue in your face and drop dead, and I mean, it’s like talking to a wall.  Open Dental is the fastest-growing practice management software system in America, if you go to Dentaltown and you do a search for Dentrix, Eagle Soft, all those companies, most of the threads are a bitching, moaning, whining, complaining session.  Then you go to Open Dental which is in Portland Oregon and it’s just raving fans, also Open Dental is the only one that doesn’t advertise because they’re growing so fast, they’re almost growing too fast, in fact, it took me two years to get Nathan Sparks to come on the show because he doesn’t even want more exposure because he’s trying to build new buildings and exploding.  But I think if anybody is going to listen to you, it’d be Open Dental, and full disclosure, I used Kodak owned Carestream, I’ve been on Soft M for thirty years, thirty years I finally switched to Open Dental and thought about it, but anyway, that’s how I like.  Also, as far as Invisalign, dude, Invisalign is headquartered where you live in San Francisco, have you gotten to talk to Joe Hogan?

Glenn:  Yeah, we have actually, one of the, one of our biggest advocates, one of the practice owners we did the pilot study in is actually good friends with him.  So we’ve had conversations with Invisalign, great company, another company that just moved slow, I mean, at the end of the day we’re not going to be the only one’s out there doing this.  Right, this is, we’re ahead of the game right now but we want to get this to market so that we can show practices on a large scale what this can do for the business.

Howard:  It’s wild because I was reading, I mean, artificial intelligence, that’s going to be one of the biggest job destroyers in America.  I mean, driverless cars, if they rolled out driverless cars they think five million Americans would lose their job, I mean, every semi-truck driver, every taxi driver, every Uber driver, I mean, this artificial intelligence...How close are we to artificial intelligence?

Glenn:  In all the articles I read everyone says, oh, it’s maybe ten years out, but the advancements that just keep coming so much faster, I think anyone has a fricken clue, to be honest, I think it’s going to be on us much sooner than we think and the world in five years is going to look much differently.  Because the more and more data that can be crunched and the more understanding that these computers can have, the better it’s going to be, honestly, I think right now it’s the need for like quantum computing to be able to do that, or the need for a larger ability to process the information for AI to really reach that level that’s just going to blow our minds.

Howard:  Well, when it comes out I’m going to buy the first one and take it to a Farran family reunion so we could finally have some intelligence when our family gets together.  And we finally could sit down and say, look, there’s now intelligence at a Farran family reunion.  So is there anything my homies, so they can’t buy it today, they can’t do anything today, this is a, you’re talking about in the future?

Glenn:  Well, yeah, we have a waiting list on our website, actually, and there’s quite a few doctors that have seen the results inside of the practices that we’ve done, the pilot study that have gone ahead and signed up for the waiting list.  

Howard:  So did you put my name on the waiting list.  So I see home, who are we, contact us, clients, investors, news.  So clients, investors, that’s where I need to go?

Glenn:  Yeah.

Howard:  So when do you think you’re going to roll this out?

Glenn:  I think quarter one next year.

Howard:  So that’s around the corner, it’s already August 15th, I mean, it’d just be a blink and you think, so you think Q1 of 2018 you’re going to have this technology which is, if you tied it in, does it have to be tied into a practice management software or could this just be a standalone tablet where when they check in, you ask them these survey questions and they might help you to decide this key and this person might be a prime candidate for Invisalign, bleaching, bonding veneers.  I mean, how do you see the rollout Q1 at 2018?

Glenn:  Yeah, no, I mean, we could roll it out that way but that’s not going to be the most effective, I think for it to be set up so that when Suzie Q calls in for an appointment, all that the front desk needs to do, nothing changes, they schedule that appointment and we’re going to fire off either a text, email or a call based on the patients preferences in 42 different languages to get these questions answered.  If we ask them when they come in, it’s one way to do it but I think the best way to do it is to have as little resistance from inside of the practice so that we can scale it.  

Howard:  Nice, well, then if you’re going for Q1 you’ve got to move fast, you should talk to Open Dental first, you should talk to Nathan Sparks at Open Dental, we did a podcast with him, did you ever change the name of that to Open Dental if they did a search.  Just do a search under Howard: Dentistry Uncensored for Open Dental, it’s Nathan Sparks, but, so what else can you tell my homies today?  Or should we just get you back on the show after you launched, or what was your goal today, what did you want to talk about today?  I mean, I’m the one who asked you, not you asked me, but why did you accepted my invitation, I found this to be a very interesting concept and I thought my homies would love to hear about it.

Glenn:  Yeah, I mean, for me, one of the things I recognized with all of the practitioners, not all, we don’t want to make blanket statements here but practitioners coming out of dental and orthodontic school, I don’t believe there’s much training on delivering what the customer wants versus what the customer needs.  At the end of the day, the patients are coming in generally to service a need, whatever they need done, they’re coming to you generally.  But that very rarely gives the practitioner an opportunity to say what do you want and how do I better the experience, because if I make the experience better for you, you know, you’re not going to go down the street to my competition who is offering relatively the same service for relatively the same price.  What makes these customers stick in an age where the consumer has changed completely based on technology access to information, they have the ability to take a practice and either make it succeed or fail based on what they think and post on social media.  How do you make sure that customer knows we value you, we value your opinion and we actively adjusting the way we practice our business to service that, right.

Howard:  Right.

Glenn:  So for me, it’s one of the things you asked beforehand is if I have any advice for the students, and I think it would be they’re spending so much time understanding how to give the patients what they need.  But it’s a unique opportunity in school to find out and learn how the psychology of patients and how to understand what they want, ask for it and then deliver it.  Then beyond that, because everyone can have these grand ideas of here’s how we do things, we’re doing it better for the customer ra, ra, what do you guys want, but you’ve got to know after the fact is there positive or negative feedback.  When you get that positive or negative feedback, how do you adapt? o the way we go about things is a closed loop system, right.  Where the outputs of the system adjust the inputs of the system, so if we’re getting negative feedback, our systems going to notify the practice.  We’re going to identify trends in the feedback that we get, and this isn’t something the practitioner has to read each line, we’re crunching that data on the back end and if we notice patterns, a pattern you need to change, sometimes a one-off experience you just need to make sure the customer knows their value.  But when you adjust the inputs, you change the way you run your business based on the feedback these patients are giving, that’s when you see the results.  The best feedback we’ve gotten, hands down, has been from patients who had a bad experience to begin with, gave the feedback and something was adjusted internally in the practice and then the patient was let know that there was an adjustment and that their opinion was valued, and they come back, when they do come back to the practice and say, this was a much different experience and the fact that you guys listened, and more than listened, adjusted, changes the way that I look at this business as whole.  Then that’s why other practices that have used our platform, their Net Promoter Score goes through the roof, nine percent of the production increases.  I mean, one hundred and forty seven percent increase in the Invisalign team, referrals up fifteen percent, the numbers are staggering, when you stop and you look at, okay, this is a need driven business, but we need to understand the consumer and the want.  When we understand the consumer and the want, and we give it to them, it changes how these practices survive and thrive.

Howard:  Well, and there’s so much room to scale, I mean, if you just look at the insurance data just on a cavity, I mean, I’m not, it’s optional, if you need bleaching, bonding, veneers, all this kind of stuff.  Just on you have a cavity, a hundred-people come in with a cavity, they only drill, fill and bill thirty eight percent, I mean, two out of three don’t even get their cavity filled.  Because the treatment plan presentation is so lame, it’s so horrible, I mean, they’ll tell you, you have an MO on number three, a DO on number four, when you leave tell Agnes that you need a MO on three and a DO on four, you got it.  Then they walk up there, and Agnes is on the phone so they just walk out and leave, I mean, it’s so, and then by the time the average dentist gets to five thousand charts, four thousand have never come back.  So the eighty percent mortality rate on their page, and then you go to the dentist who is in a small town of five thousand, he opened shop when he was twenty five and now he is sixty.  He’s been there forty years in a town of five thousand, and you say, hey, buddy, what do you need, and he says, I need new patients.  How could you need new patients, you’ve been here forty years, you’ve pissed everyone in the county off three times and he has no idea.  So to have a feedback, to go to this loop and to tell him like how many times does an airplane correct its flight path when it takes off from LA to San Fran, I mean, they’re correcting the flight, they’re re-aiming the airplane every tenth of a minute.  To get feedback to sit there and say, well, let’s try not to lose eighty percent of our patients, and I’ll tell you another thing that excites me about this, I have a hard time being a short, fat, bald grandpa telling some woman that she should bleach her teeth.  I mean, I’m afraid if I tell some woman, you should really consider bleaching your teeth, she’d probably say, you should probably consider losing fifty pounds.  I mean, I’m not going to tell, I mean, they already objectify women so bad, I just could never tell a woman she needs to bleach your teeth or get veneers or be a shinier object.  But if some software could key me in to say, hey, she just signed up on match, she just got divorced, or she’s getting married in six months, or she’s going back to her twenty year class reunion then you could ask in a real subtle way like, do you like your smile?

Glenn:  So we even know because that’s a question that you ask a patient, do you like your smile, a lot of them have this anxiety level which we also gauge in the platform, and I’ll send you a picture of what our patient engagement guide looks like which is what the results of that are.  But basically, if they have a high level of anxiety inside of the practice and with the patient, if you ask them if they like their smile, they’re just going to go yeah, they’re not going to give you an honest opinion.  But if they’re outside of the practice, they have the opportunity to tell you what they think of their smile or their overall facial appearance, right.  It stars a lot with the smile, you can use that with the upcoming wedding or whatever it may be to say, hey, I know that you said that you’ve got some anxiety around your smile, you feel like it’s holding you back at work.  It looks like you have some knowledge on teeth whitening, why don’t we take a look at getting you into whatever trays for whitening.  Even so far as the payment plan, it’s not an expensive procedure but if they need a payment plan to get it done, you know that beforehand and so you can take, I mean, what I’ve always done for sales, from a sales perspective is you’re going to get objections and you need to overcome those objections.  But in the environment that these patients are in for you to know the objections before they arrive, we’re able to give you a plan of action for how to address them right.  The why when you’re losing eighty percent of your customers, you need to know the why, and then you need to adjust that why, and most people are asking why but in the wrong way.  They’re asking themselves why don’t I have these customers, why don’t I have these patients, ask the patients, they never came back before they leave.

Howard:  So a lot of them, pretty much eighty five percent of everyone listening right now is commuting to work, so they can, so what I do is they follow me @Howard:farran, so I retweet your last twitter, you’re @getidentify, to my twenty one thousand homies on Twitter, so if you’re driving to work and you want to know who this guy is, just go to Twitter @Howard:farran, I just retweeted him.  Tell me this, here is another interesting concept going on about what you’re talking about, so what do you think the average new car costs in the United States, for like your average new car.  What would you guess?

Glenn:  Twenty five, thirty grand.

Howard:  Okay, twenty five, let’s just say twenty five grand, and what percent of Americans would you think in their lifetime, one time in their lifetime would buy the average new car for twenty five grand?

Glenn:  Fifty, maybe.

Howard:  Fifty?

Glenn:  Yeah.

Howard:  So you look at the two hundred and eleven thousand Americans who have an active license today to practice dentistry, ninety five percent have never sold one treatment plan in their entire life for twenty five thousand, and then five percent of the dentists do it every single month and they’re in the same building.  There’ll be eight dentists in a building, one guy does a twenty-five thousand on rehab every single month, the other seven guys have never done it in a lifetime.  You say to the seven guys, what haven’t you done it, well, you know the economy and the president and the Euro and cheap labour and the Chinese and build a wall.  They got forty million excuses and they never say it’s because the man in the mirror can’t sell ice-cream to someone dying the dessert.  Why do you think five percent of dentists, when you come in, can tell an old man, look, man, we can just totally fix everything up brand new, and here’s what we’re going to do, we’re going to take out all your old stuff, we’re going to fix everything up, the total bill is twenty-five grand and they sell it.  In fact, there’s a guy up the street from me that sells, I think one of the most, I’ve ever seen and he was at lunch the other day and he was telling us the other day, he said, when you’re talking about a full mouth rehab, say you present it to four people and three say, no, God, if one out of every four people says yes, you’re doing a $25,000 rehab every week.  So why do you think ninety five percent of the dentists have never done it once and five percent can do it every week or every month?

Glenn:  I think they’re cut from a different cloth, to some degree, right.  When we interviewed the doctors, we interviewed a lot of doctors to try and understand why they were uncomfortable with what they called selling, right.  It has a lot to do with the fact that they’re engineers of the mouth, dentists and orthodontists, they’re engineers of the mouth and they look at things in a very treatment and orthodox way.  Whereas, the guys who’s selling, the five percent who are selling $25,000 treatment plans, they look at the patient when they come in, they look in their eyes, they feel their energy, they better understand this customer and then they talk directly to the customer rather about, or the patient rather than about, hey, here’s what you need from an engineering point of view.  It’s a very, it’s like an interaction, a human action, interaction point of view rather than an engineering point of view.  And just because you tell someone what they need, it’s a lot about delivery and understanding the person, you can’t just tell someone they need something, they’re not always going to believe you, very rarely will they believe you, actually.  They’re going to be uncomfortable with the price of it, once they leave and they say they don’t know, that’s probably game over, so you’ve got to understand a lot of different components about the patient that I think maybe the five percent have a better way of asking or a better way of connecting.  

Howard:  I love how you say they’re engineers of the mouth because the word dentist, the D stands for doctor of the mouth, the EN stands for engineer and the TIST is artist.  So you’re a doctor of the mouth, you’re an engineer and you’re an artist, I mean, that’s a dentist.

Glenn:  Yeah, exactly, and so I know engineers, some of my buddies are mechanical engineers and they’re the best people that I know.  But they could not sell anyone on anything, they could build me a rocket ship, but they could not sell anyone on anything.  So it’s, I think a different way of how you think about things and you think about the patient or the person.  But if, and this is the big differentiator, too, if they know that it’s something that the patient fits well into, if they’re a good candidate for X, Y, Z procedure, they’re no longer as concerned that they feel salesy, ingenuine, that they’re not doing their job right.  They’re able to say, well, Suzie Q needs or is a good candidate for this, we know she’s ready, she has the budget, she has the reasons to want it, now it’s my job to facilitate that and deliver it to her in a concise manner that she understands as to the why she would do it, right.

Howard:  Mechanical engineers and dentists have a lot in common, I mean, they’re both engineers, they have the same language talk about building bridges and where rates, and structural integrity.  You know what else mechanical engineers and dentists both have in common?  

Glenn:  No?

Howard:  Both of them didn’t have enough personality to become an accountant.  

Glenn:  Yeah, I mean, it’s the truth, I mean, I love myself but I would not make a good mechanical engineer.  I do better when I’m engaging with people, when I’m trying to understand the customer and what they want and meet their needs and then build the technology around it to deliver it to them.  

Howard:  And it’s so sad that dentists think selling is a four letter word, when you look at the consumer and you go to any woman in America and you say, how much money I have to give you to pull your front tooth?  They say they, no amount of money in the world, I mean, you offer them a hundred grand to pull your front tooth, never replace it.  They say no, and I’ll say, how about two hundred grand, and you shave your head, you look like me, I will pull your front two teeth, and the rest of your life you have to be bald, missing your two front teeth, they won’t do that for a million dollars.  Then you look at women who’ve told me, and one woman that made me the saddest is that way back in the day, like thirty years ago she had a whole mouthful of gum disease, pulled her teeth, did a  denture, she couldn’t sleep with it in at night so she couldn’t take it out in front of her husband, so she kicked her husband out of the bedroom, made him sleep and she locked the door.  She got a bolt on the door, made him sleep on the couch because she couldn’t sleep with them in and she wasn’t going to take out her fake teeth in front of her husband, after him sleeping on the couch for a year he left, and she told me that she lost the love of her life because she didn’t fix up her mouth, she didn’t take care of her teeth.  Then other dentists have told me of patients that they had pulled all their teeth and did a denture and noticed that that woman had committed suicide in the following six months, and then we talk about dental health is really primarily to give these women mental health because they can’t have mental health when they’re missing their front teeth, and then the dentist looks at all that and says, I don’t like to sell dentistry.  It’s like, dude, are you disconnected from earth, I mean, these people, these people lose their lovers, some check out of life.  I mean, they won’t pull their front tooth for a million bucks and you say you don’t like to sell dentistry, it’s like, why don’t you go to another profession where you respected enough and energized to sell.  I mean, if you can’t sell dentistry, what can you sell, can you sell a Ford 150 truck, then go work for Ford, I mean, if it’s just RV’s that you’re into then go work for RV’s.  But if you can’t get into dentistry, so to me, when I hear dentists say I don’t like to sell dentistry, my deal is, then shred your license, get out, dentistry doesn’t need you, we’ve got two hundred and eleven thousand dentists, if you don’t like to sell dentistry, dentistry doesn’t like you, get out.  We want people that realize that this shit is serious as a heart attack, but why do you think the majority of them hate to sell dentistry?

Glenn:  I think it’s just a big paradigm difference in how they think about things and look at the world, and feel as if it’s pushy or overbearing to make that recommendation.  Because at the end of the day, I can tell you I have never gone online and spent much time researching my treatment options and what would be good for me and why.  So I’m going to go to the expert just like I do everything else, I’m going to ask them, hey, okay, you’re telling me what’s wrong with my teeth, my smile, my mouth, now what do you recommend because here’s what I’ve got going on in my life.  Those are the questions that people aren’t asking, they’re not correlating, they think that if they tell them what is wrong, it’s inherently known that it should be fixed one way, but if they want it done in a more premium level like Invisalign or any other type of treatment.  They’re going to ask for it, which has never worked in any other successful business, and if you see like the growth in the dental industry, dental and orthodontic industry, it’s not as if your competition’s thinning out, right.  People are getting better at it, corporate dentistry is buying out practices for above price just to have their books.  I mean, it’s a scary world for the practitioner who’s not willing to adapt to the new age customer which demands a tailored experience wherever they go.  

Howard:  So you want to come back on the show when you launch this?

Glenn:  I would love to.

Howard:  Have you mentioned it’s coming on Dentaltown?

Glenn:  No, I will do that and I’ll tell you what, when we do release it we’ll get you set up with it and see what you think, so when we’re back on here we can get some honest feedback.  

Howard:  So did you get investors?

Glenn:  So you know what, we’ve actually turned down investing because the one thing that we don’t want to change or sacrifice is how we go about delivering this to our customer, which is, in the end, the practices that are listening to you right now.  I’ve seen countless people take on investors and it becomes about the money, it becomes about driving certain revenue, and I have left businesses because of that.  How I look at it, if you treat the customer in a certain way they might take a little bit longer to get your revenue where you want it to go.  They could very well go just as fast but it may take longer, but the end result is a lasting customer loyalty, so we’re not compromising the way we go about interacting with our customers.

Howard:  Last question, and it’s politically incorrect, your industry in your region of the country has been under fire lately of not being nice to women, a lot of people say the whole high tech industry is misogynistic, anti-woman, you’ve read these, right, these reports?

Glenn:  Yeah.

Howard:  So I mean, I’m not making this up, you’ve heard all this?

Glenn:  Yeah.

Howard:  It was the what the Uber CEO, some guy at Google wrote a paper, what are your thoughts about women in silicon industry, in Silicon Valley?

Glenn:  Well, let me tell you this, my partner, Trudy Henderson, is one of the most brilliant women that I’ve ever met, we have brilliant people, women or men, right, and the way that we’re able to interact and understand each other, and she doesn’t think like me and I don’t think like her, and that’s a fricken great thing.  Because if there’s two Glenn:’s out there, we’re co-signing each other’s shit and that’s not going to end well.  Right, so we balance each other out well, she’s very intelligent and I think that women are probably more capable than men in a lot of areas, I know that sounds nuts, but I know that they are so driven and so hardworking, and a lot of times when I’d rather slack off she’s right there grinding, honestly.  So I think that people are just crackpots if they think there’s a difference and they are  trying to make stuff up.

Howard:  Do you think it’s a fair assessment of Silicon Valley or do you think it’s a media hype?

Glenn:  Oh, yeah, absolutely.

Howard:  Absolutely what?

Glenn:  There’s a.

Howard:  A gender bias?

Glenn:  Yeah.  I mean, and I don’t know where it comes from, right.

Howard:  Like hell you do, there’s never been a woman president in this country, I mean women, men have been abusing women for two million years.

Glenn:  Yeah, I mean, jobs that I would have, I know like I would get paid more for them, I would never say it back when someone would talk about what they were making if it was a girl, I would quietly say to myself how did that happen.  Why are you worth....

Howard:  I saw that in my family when we lived in Wichita Kansas next to the Arkansas river, my five sisters couldn’t get ten feet off the edge.  I was putting jeans with patches on the outside and didn’t have a curfew, they were putting dresses and had to be on the lawn when the street light came on or they’d be grounded.  I mean, and my uncle might, this is a true story, my dad’s brother, Mike, Parsons Kansas, all he wanted was to date my Aunt Shirley, high school was over, it never happened, he was just horrified about this.  Found out she was going to nursing school, so he signed up for nursing school just so that he could still be in school with my Aunt Shirley, she didn’t marry him until senior year, they finally get out of school, he’s a boy, first boy nurse in Kansas, they go out looking for a job.  Shirley can only get third shift, he was a boy so he was given the Head Nurse, he was offered the Head Nurse at every hospital for twice the wages and Aunt Shirley swears she did all of his homework and tutored him all the way through nursing school, and he was basically a very poor student, so yeah, I’ve seen sexism in my life.  But you know why I’m really jealous of you the most?  It’s because you’re Glenn: Walter Gerlach the third, and I’m Howard: Eugene Farran the second, the reason is my grandfather was Howard: Taft Farran and then when he had my dad, he decided he didn’t like that President Taft for God knows what reason so he named him Howard: Eugene Farran, so I’m Howard: Eugene Farran the second.  I’m jealous of you because you’re the third and I would have been the third if Taft would have been a more pleasing President to my grandfather.  

Glenn:  Yeah, my favourite part about being the third is I get to mess with my dad and call him junior.  Hey, junior.  He loves that.

Howard:  I think it’s so cool calling your dad junior, that is so funny.  Well, and all four of my boys are middle name initial is W because I named them all, their middle name after their mom’s maiden name because I just thought it was so sexist, unfair that she lost her last name and they all took my last name, so I gave all four of my boys her middle name.  So their middle name, all four is Welles and I think it’s kind of a bonding thing, you four boys are the only four boys that are Welles Farrans.  But hey, Glenn:, this is so interesting, artificial intelligence, we’ll release this, get this on Dentaltown and post something about it and then when you launch this thing in 2018, which will be like a blink in three seconds, come back on the show and tell us how what you’re doing because this is certainly Star Wars stuff that no one could have even thought about when I got out of school in 1987, thirty years ago.  My God, if you’d told me that there would have been a cell phone with the internet in there I would have thought you’re on drugs.  I mean, I didn’t see any of this stuff coming but still I’ll end it on this, with all this fancy stuff, in my fifty four years I still think the greatest technological advancement of all time was the automatic garage door opener.  Because whenever we pulled up to the house I was the only boy, so mom kicked me out of the car, that damn door was made out of wood, I almost broke my back every time lifting that thing up and I didn’t think it was fair because I had to do it because I was a boy, and my five sisters would just in the car laughing, so this isn’t quite as great as a garage door opener.  But this might be a revolutionary thing in dentistry and I wish you luck, and keep us updated on Dentaltown.  When you launch, come back on the show maybe bring Trudy with you, and best of luck to you, buddy.

Glenn:  Thank you so much, Howard:, I really appreciate it.  It was a great time today.

Howard:  Alright, have a rocking hot day.

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