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Overcoming challenges in the Relationships with our Work Family

In December 2016, I completed a course with Dr. Paul Homoly about the craft of being a speaker. I have had a dream of being a keynote speaker for more than 20 years, and now, I am finally ready. I already have three speaking engagements booked, and two of the organizations are outside of dentistry. My first keynote speech is …

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Grumpy Dave. Everyone has a story

Our provincial elections are about to occur and my thoughts turn to how fortunate we are to live in a place where social democracy is allowed to flourish and succeed. We have freedom to act and behave reasonably, to dream and find a way to bring that dream to reality, and to have a government that is freely elected, governs …

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Playing the Piano and The Gift of Music

His name was Court Stone. A confirmed bachelor, he lived in an old house, in a beautiful old neighbourhood of Toronto, about a 25-minute walk from my house. He looked after his elderly father, who I always heard stories about but never saw. Apparently he had dementia. Every week, I walked to his house for my one-hour piano lesson. I …

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Finding Balance while trying to start a new Career

In my March 13, 2013, blog, “Trying to Find Balance,” I discussed how a consulting business has turned into a second full-time job for me, making it hard for me to find balance. In the comments section, our colleague Andy Alas asked to learn more about that second career. I hope to expand upon that here. I am also an …

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Ideas for Team Based Spirit Challenges, how I got started

Happy New Year! I don’t want to seem like a downer, but the February doldrums are just around the corner. That means it is time to start planning my office Team Spirit Challenge! Eleven years ago, in the middle of February, our practice was running smoothly and we were taking care of our patients and each other well. But we …

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We need to listen more and talk less

Jim came to me as a new patient some years ago. He noted that he had received regular dental care in the past, so I asked him what the previous dental office had done or not done that lead to his decision to change dental care providers. He told me that every time he went, there was something else that …

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Ensuring a Harmonious Team

In the May 2014 issue of AGD Impact, Dr. Don Deems had a great article about how to take responsibility for employee behavior. It’s a great article and has some really great steps on avoiding the pitfalls of teams falling apart and how, as the leader of your team, you can create an environment that is fulfilling and positive. Of the many …

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Learning from our Mistakes

One of the most common measures for the success of a dental practice is the number of new patients we see. There almost seems to be a competition amongst us to see who can bring in more new patients. I have always had a problem with that; I hear about practices seeing 50, 100 or more new patients in one …

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People over 50, or even 60, may be our best hires

When you hire someone, how long do you hope she or he will work for you? How many years of service would you be happy with? Two years? Five years? Ten years? How many people currently working for you have been with you for more than five years? My friend Doris just lost her job. She is a geophysicist and …

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Life Partner’s and Dating

Our first child was 11 days overdue, and, in the third day of labor, my wife, Tina, finally was dilated enough that delivery could happen. But something stalled in the process, and we learned that our child was in distress and an emergency C-section was required. It all happened so fast, and we were so tired that it still is …