Paralysis by Analysis

dentist indecision
Have you ever sold anything on an online auction? I do it quite a bit, as a “hobby” of sorts that I have is buying and selling guitars. Sometimes I’ll purchase a really cool guitar, play it for a few years, and then sell it for a small profit – like this sweet Gibson Hummingbird I played at The Blue Jay in Jacksonville, FL. (And don’t worry – there is “dental content” on the way…)
Okay – so where are we going with this, and what does it have to do with you and your dental practice? I have noticed a huge pattern when selling something on eBay, Reverb.com (a site for musical instruments), and more.
People who ask a gazillion questions are
NEVER the ones who wind up purchasing the item.
I mean NEVER! I just listed a guitar on Reverb, and three people were hocking me a chinik with questions. Does it have this or that? Can you describe the condition more accurately? (As if my original exhaustive description wasn’t enough!)  Can you take five pictures from three different angles, and then three more? Can you describe the sound? (Pretty subjective, eh?) And on and on and on…..And then, as expected, someone who I never heard from saw this beauty, probably thought to themselves “This is exactly the guitar I’m looking for and the seller has a 100% rating. No need to goof around – I’m buying it NOW!” – and became the new happy owner. I’m serious – the people who ask a lot of questions and waste my time NEVER buy! Why?

Because just like dentists, these people suffer from
“Paralysis by Analysis!” 

Paralysis by Analysis (or PBA as we will call it) is the inability to make a decision due to overthinking an issue, and it runs rampant in dentistry, especially among practice owners or those who are thinking about becoming practice owners. But here are two things to remember about PBA.

1. PBA is caused because you are afraid to make a decision, but by not making a decision you actually ARE making a decision; a decision not to move ahead with something.

2. The first four letters in analysis are “anal.”

I cannot tell you how many times I have spoken to dentists who are afraid to add a hygienist (or even a hygiene day), raise their fees, fire a belligerent staff member, get proper team training, take steps towards practice improvement, and much more, due to a major case of PBA.

This is really noticable when we talk to dentists about coaching. Some dentists know that they could use some help, feel that they are a good fit with The Madow Centerand say let’s do it! Then, a few months later they are getting a positive return on investment, have a happy cohesive team, love going to office more than ever, and are simply earning more money!

But just like the people who contact me about a guitar on eBay, the dentists who have to “talk to their spouse,” “run it by their accountant,” “think about it,” talk to twenty references, get a new office manager first, say “I’ll do it as soon as ___________”, and many more PBA excuses, never wind up doing anything! And then sure as you’re reading this, a year goes by, and then another, and then another, and nothing has changed – or it’s gotten worse. And the irony is,

they are afraid to make a decision, but by not making a decision
they HAVE made a decision – usually the wrong one.
So what do you want to change or accomplish in YOUR practice or life? Whatever it is, you won’t get there if you let Paralysis by Analysis hold you back.
If you are a practice owner and want to have a chat with me about anything – you can get a spot on my calendar by clicking here. It’s time to stop analyzing and start doing!

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