Do You Have ANY of These Thoughts?

If you are constantly thinking, this can be a wonderful thing. But it can be a dangerous thing as well. Do you have ANY of the following thoughts? Because if you do, they could be destroying you as well as your practice. Please be totally honest!
1. I don’t need to learn any new procedures right now, I am doing just fine.
2. I don’t need to put any effort into making my team better.
3. Our communication skills are good enough.
4, The office website seems to be alright. Let’s not update it.
5. There is nothing I can learn from the financial statement my accountant sends to me.
6. There are no good courses out there right now so I’ll sit on the sidelines until something comes along.
7. Just riding my time out until I can retire from this practice.
8. Social Media??? What a waste of time that would be!
9. My lab has been stressing me out but I am sure they’ll get better.
10. I am not making money from some of the insurance plans I participate with but I am afraid to drop them.
11. I wonder why my accounts receivable are so high right now.

WARNING: Doctor, if you have even ONE of these thoughts, it is time for you to sit down and do some type of a re-evaluation. We are here for you 24/7 if you have any questions!

Where is in the world is Chef Chai?

A few weeks ago we were attending a business dinner at a pretty cool seafood restaurant in Pittsburgh.

The menu was extensive and the wait staff was eager to please.

Before we ordered our main courses we decided to order some sushi as an appetizer. Of course with Dave being vegan, he had to specifically ask if the chef could make him up some sushi rolls that did not contain fish.

“No problem,” said Stephanie the waitress. “Chef Chai is wonderful and he will do anything for you.”

And of course Mark, the young new waiter who was shadowing Stephanie nodded his head and agreed.

A short time later the most wonderful sushi ever came out. It all looked and tasted delicious. And sure enough Dave was happy too with his vegan sushi roll!

Chef Chai was a genius!

Next came the drink orders. Rich ordered his drink from the bar but Dave ordered some Nigori (unfiltered) sake.

A few minutes after ordering, Stephanie (and Mark) came back to the table and Stephanie said to Dave “Chef Chai just wanted to let you know that the Nigori sake uses a distilling process that possibly involves an animal membrane so it’s theoretically not considered vegan. Will that be ok?”

Chef Chai really knew his stuff. Again, we were super impressed.

“Is Chef Chai Japanese?” Dave asked Stephanie.

“I know he is Asian but I am not positive exactly where he is from,” answered Stephanie.

We wanted to meet Chef Chai!

When we asked where the sushi bar was, Stephanie was kind of elusive.

“Well, actually you need to go down one flight of stairs and once you get down there it’s kind of like a maze. You’d have to go through a bunch of rooms. I wouldn’t recommend it because you probably won’t be able to find it,” she said.

OK, we understand.

“But could you please tell Chef Chai we really appreciate his attentiveness and expertise?”

“Well of course,” she said.

Sometime during the course of the evening Rich had to use the restroom. When he asked where it was, he was directed down that “flight of stairs.” Upon Rich’s return to the table he told us that he found the sushi bar and there was a man working there, but it was not Chef Chai.

“How do you know?” Dave asked.

“Well, if you have to go use the restroom you will understand.”

So of course Dave had to have a look. He went to the restroom and upon his return he explained to everyone at the table that yes, there is a guy working the sushi bar. But the guy he saw (likely the same guy Rich saw) was a Caucasian guy appearing to be in his late thirties with tattoos covering every available square inch of his body.  And piercings. Definitely not Chef Chai.

Fast forward an hour or so later to the part of the meal where the manager comes over to the table to ask if everything is good.

“Yes, everything has been awesome this evening,” said the brothers.  “And in particular we want to let you know how impressed we have been with Chef Chai. He is such a delight. You are so lucky to have him here at your establishment. He literally made our evening.”

“Really?” said the manager. “How do you know Chef Chai?

“Well we have not gotten to meet him yet but he was very attentive to us this evening. We would say impeccable.”

“Very interesting,” said the manager. Chef Chai has actually been away for the last month. He has gone back to his country for an extended vacation. Some family matters to take care of I think.”


Why did our waitress and waiter they tell us something that was simply not true?

Maybe they felt they could get away with it. Or maybe it started as a little joke and it then escalated to a point where they could not get out of it.

Whatever the reason, these two were busted and we never looked at them the same way for the rest of the evening.

What about you? Do you ever try to get away with telling patients things that are just not the whole truth?

You may say “The lab totally screwed this up.”
But you know it was YOUR fault.

You may say “The insurance company is responsible for this mistake.”
But you know Madge at the front desk totally messed it up.

You may say “We had an emergency.”
But you know you ran late because the doc came back twenty minutes late from lunch.

You may say “No, we can’t do that.”
But you know you CAN do that.

Next time when you are thinking of not being 100% forthright with a patient, please remember Chef Chai. Don’t get busted. Just tell the truth!


This past Saturday we had the honor of being the featured speakers at a fantastic multi-day dental meeting in Canada. Last time we spoke there, it was a “standing room only” crowd in a packed room of around 800 super-cool North-of-the-border dental folks. So much fun!

So on Saturday they once again had us in the largest room in the house. After a great7:30 AM soundcheck, we took a break and came back to room at 8:25 AM, ready to rock the house for our 8:30 AM start time. One minor problem though… there were about 30 people in the room! We waited a few minutes and finally started at 8:40 with 65 attendees in a room set for 700!!

Turns out that Saturday is a notoriously slow day at this particular meeting; so slow that the entire exhibit hall was shut down. To add to the problem, it was an absolutely glorious day outside, and there was a major sporting event that afternoon right next to the convention hall, which many seminar attendees seemed to opt for. Also, there were major delays on the main public transport system that morning!!

It wasn’t just us, because in the room right next to ours was one of the most well-known and popular speakers in Canada, also playing to an empty hall. Sometimes things just don’t turn out the way you had them planned!

So what to do? Should we go in there with a bad attitude and be upset at the poor turnout? Should we cut some material and just try to get the heck out of there as soon as possible? Round up some homeless people to fill the seats? Tell the planning committee they had a lot of nerve to put us on a Saturday and we are never coming back? Cop a bad attitude and be insulted since we usually pack the house at every meeting? None of the above. When you are a pro it doesn’t matter if there are 3000 people in the crowd or 30 – you always give it your best shot.

So yes, the crowd was small, but the meeting turned out to be fantastic! It was actually cool to present to an intimate crowd. Everyone seemed to love it, and we met some fantastic people!! Despite some challenges, the meeting was a major success!! We dooze what we dooze!!

So how about in your practice?

It’s easy to be at your best when you have a patient who can stay open for five hours straight, has no gag reflex, gets numb just by being in close proximity to anesthetic, wants to get “everything done in one visit,” and pays up front in cash!

It’s a breeze to be nice to a patient who always shows up on time in a great mood and is in the “referral of the week” club.

But how about the patient whose lip is so numb you could ram a serrated Cutco right through it yet they scream in pain when a bur is an inch away from their tooth?

How about that patient who asks a million questions yet doesn’t understand anything?

The one who doesn’t need an estimate because their insurance “covers everything?”

The one whose mouth produces so much saliva and mucous you could sell it on the open market?

The one whose keeps saying their crown is “too high” until you grind it into an ugly stump?

Yeah – they are all out there, and it’s not always so easy to be on your “A Game” around certain types of people. But remember, as a dentist or dental team member it is your responsibility to give everyone your best.

Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes you have to bite your tongue and suck it up. And sometimes you have to say to yourself, “If I murder this patient I could wind up in the big house for a long, long time!”

But if you work in a dental practice, you gotta be a pro – and not just sometimes – all the time! Every patient needs to be treated with respect and get your absolute best effort every time. And don’t forget, many times the crankiest people just need the most loving! So be a pro!! Each day, every day.

The Ultimate Goals Worksheet Is Here!

This is an important one today so thanks for joining us.

By now you probably know that both of us are firm believers in utilizing goals to live a dream life.  We have not only used goals in our own lives – we have been teaching others about their power as well. Now here is the very cool thing – by simply writing your goals down and reading them every single day you can change your life!

We get asked often if we can give more details and perhaps share exactly how we do it. Due to your numerous requests, we have recently designed a goals worksheet that should help you from start to finish! If you follow the instructions and take it seriously, we honestly believe that you will be able to live the life of your dreams. You may get your copy by CLICKING HERE. It’s totally free. We suggest printing it out, working through it, and carrying it with you wherever you go.

You can be sure that this is a life changer. But you must believe and you must follow all of the instructions. We suggest that you try it! Then how about if we get back with you at a later date to see how you are doing? Please let us know if you have any questions in the meantime.

Your name rhymes with __________________.

It has been said that the sound of someone’s name is the sweetest sound they ever hear. It’s also true that mispronouncing someone’s name is the most annoying.

So what if on this afternoon’s schedule you had these three patients coming in?

The schedule would look something like this:

2:00 PM         Koch, Ed (former NYC Mayor)
3:00 PM         Koch, Jacob (orthodontist in Lawrenceville, GA)
3:30 PM         Koch, Sam (punter for the Baltimore Ravens)

That would be a hell of a schedule! But how would you pronounce their last names? “Kotch?” “Coke?” “Cook?” Turns out you would be correct if you did it in that order. But the odds are slim! Many times they will not correct you – and mispronouncing someone’s name is a horrible way to start an appointment.

We suggest spelling out each patient’s name on their record phonetically. It doesn’t have to be actual phonetics – just something simple that everyone will get correct.

For example – if your patient happens to be the one and only Dr. Louis Malcmacher, right next to the actual spelling of his name you could write “Maltz-mocker.” Or you can always do the old “rhymes with” trick if necessary.

When we are introduced before speaking at seminars, we provide the host with an introduction that clearly says at the top:

MADOW (rhymes with SHADOW)

A few months ago someone introducing us actually thought that was part of the spoken introduction and read it out loud!!

“We are excited to have with us today The Madow rhymes with shadow Brothers!”

The point is – mispronouncing a patient’s name is a no-no and should absolutely never happen. It’s easy to eliminate the situation by placing these little pronunciation hints right on the chart!

Does Your Practice Pass The Bagel Test?

We were standing in line at the local deli a few days ago and overheard a pretty amazing conversation.

“What kind of bagels do you have here?”

“We have plain, sesame, poppy seed, garlic and everything.”

“You don’t have wheat bagels?”

“No. A lot of people ask for them, but we don’t have them.”

Well duh!! If a lot of people ask for them, why don’t you have them? Surely the same people who deliver the other bagels could hook you up with some wheat.

How many people will go somewhere else, or at the very least not be 100% satisfied with their experience because you refuse to carry an item that your customers are telling you they want?

So how about you? Is it possible that your patients are telling you they want something that you don’t provide?

Maybe it’s Saturday hours. Or the chance to get orthodontics in your practice without being referred. How about offering better financial options through Care Credit? Maybe tons of patients have asked if you take a particular insurance plan but you refuse to look into it due to a pre-conceived notion.

Whatever the case – in so many instances our patients tell us ways to improve our practices. So don’t fail the bagel test! Listen to your patients, give them what they want, and watch your practice grow!!

Check engine!

One of us was driving down the road recently when we noticed the little “check engine” light had suddenly illuminated on the dashboard.

Don’t you just hate that?

Do you know what it means when that light goes on?

Neither did we.

A call to the dealership did not seem to help much either. There must have been a new employee answering the phone. Because it wasn’t an extremely difficult question that we asked.

The convo went something like this:

Brother: Hello, this is one of The Madow Brothers calling. I noticed that my check engine light just came on. I have a really busy schedule and I am not sure what to do. Do you have any idea what it means? Is it safe to drive my car?

Car person: No way to tell. It could mean that something just needs to be looked at or it could mean that something is really f*cked up. Can you bring it in? (Yes, he really used the ‘F’ word)

Brother: I don’t know when I can get it in. I am leaving in the morning to speak to a group of dentists. I won’t be back until Sunday. What do you think is going to happen?

Car person: Like I said, no way to tell. You got to bring your car over here.

Let’s talk about this one. First of all, it sure doesn’t sound like that the person who answered the phone was a graduate of the esteemed “Appointment College.” He was of no help. Now we’re not car experts or anything, but don’t you think he could have mentioned that we could drop the car off and use the night time drop box? All car places have them!

But more importantly, there was absolutely no warning leading up to the “check engine” light illuminating. Wouldn’t it be really cool if there was a light or a warning system that let us know we were getting close to a “check engine emergency?”

But there was nothing.  No warning. It just happened.

Then we started thinking. (Because our minds always wander!)

There is no “check engine” light in dental practices either. No warning light.


What does this mean? It means that things could be getting really messed up and you have no idea. You get no warning when the “engine” of your practice is overheating!   Well, maybe your warning is that you can no longer pay bills or meet payroll. But it’s too late at that point, right?

But believe it or not, you do have something that is similar to a check engine light in your practice. It’s called a profit and loss statement. And if you have a good accountant, you should receive a detailed one every quarter.

Do you ever look at it? Our guess is you have taken a quick glance every now and then.

Our advice for the day is to totally understand your profit and loss statement. There is actually a TON of useful information there that will let you know how your practice is doing. Once you understand what all the geeky accounting stuff means, you are very likely to avert a disaster from ever occurring.

So get together with your accountant. Don’t do it now… wait until tax season is over. He or she is crazy busy right now. But sometime after April 18 (yes, we get three free days this year), set up a meeting and ask your CPA to explain everything. You will actually be amazed at what information can be gleaned from this quarterly report!

Remember – there is no “check engine” light that illuminates when things start getting whacked out in your practice. Maybe one day but no one has invented that yet.

So in the meantime perhaps the profit and loss statement is the next best thing. Take advantage of this piece of equipment! It really could save your practice and perhaps your life!

Why You Should Find A Great New Team Member Now – And How To Do It!!

The Madow Brothers Stacked Logo

Three Free Ways To Increase Your Visibility!

Does Everyone Know You Are A Dentist?

Ask the expert marketers what the best return on investment is when it comes to increasing the visibility of your practice and grabbing more new patients. Many will say it is a well lit sign in front of your office, visible from the road and as large as legally possible. Great advice for sure, and the sign will be worth every penny.

Why? The answer is easy – visibility. Everyone who drives by will soon know there is a dentist there.

But there are some other things you should be doing that may increase your visibility even more and are completely FREE!!

Simply stated, every single person you come in contact with on a day to day basis needs to know that you are a dentist. Now that does NOT mean every single person that you see face to face, although that is important too. This is actually about circles much larger than that.

Think about this. How many emails do you send and receive all day? How many are “group” emails that are seen by many people? Probably hundreds. Do all of those people know you are a dentist? They should. It’s so easy. Simply make all of your emails have an automatic “signature.” You can set this up in whatever email program you are using in just a matter of minutes. The “Signature” is the line or lines that are automatically generated at the end of every email – and if yours doesn’t have your name (with degree or “Dr.”), office phone number, tag line (such as “Creating Smiles In Eastern Wisconsin Since 1984” or “General, Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry”) and website – you are simply missing thousands of opportunities each year.

Along the same lines, even though in this electronic age the printed word seems to be vanishing, there are still chances to let those in your community know that you are a dentist for free using good old paper and ink. Here’s an example. Let’s say that you have volunteered to be coach of the 8th Grade girl’s soccer team, and at the first practice all of the parents are given printouts with the names and phone numbers of the team members.

Do it on your office stationary! It’s a simple little thing, but now everyone on the team knows that Jenny’s Mom or Dad is a dentist!  So what will they do at the next practice when they have a little dental question? They’ll give you a chance to say “You really should call the office so I can have a look!” Or they will know someone they trust and respect when the need for a new dentist arises.

Okay – one more simple one. Carry your business card everywhere and give it to everyone!! Make sure that every restaurant owner, dry cleaner, bank teller, gas station owner – every single person in your community who you do business with – knows that you are a dentist! After all, you are giving them business – the code of good will says that they will do the same for you! It’s so simple to do. And, as with the rest of these, it’s free!!

So sit back, relax, and get ready for your phone to ring. Oh – by the way – when your phone rings, it’s crucial to have the skills to convert that caller into a patient!! If you don’t, nothing else matters! So to be sure, check this out:

Does Nancy work in your practice?

Does Nancy work in your practice? If not, she should.

So just who is Nancy?

She is that unusual person who always manages to do everything right. She puts her own feelings aside for the benefit of the patient and team. Her judgment is impeccable. Her attitude is incredible. She has not once brought a personal problem to the office. She has constantly sacrificed for the good of the patient. She manages to keep her eye on the bottom line and has great financial responsibility.

Nancy works at the front desk. She is a dentist, a dental assistant, and a dental hygienist. She even can be the janitor, because we all know Nancy would never glance into a treatment room, see a cotton roll on the floor and walk by without picking it back up. She would never inconvenience a patient by not replacing a toilet paper roll that has two sheets left. And she certainly would never send an impression to the lab if she didn’t think a fantastic restoration could be made from it.

Everyone loves Nancy, but she’s so cool about it she doesn’t even realize how perfect she is. She’s not judgmental or vindictive – she’s just Nancy! And of course – she doesn’t exist.

Here ‘s the thing. We all make hundreds of choices every single day in the dental office. Some are huge decisions and some don’t seem to be of much consequence. But many times we have the tendency to take the easy way out or settle for less than we should. Nancy would never do that.

The crazy thing is, we always know what the right thing to do is. We always know what the best solution is. We can always give a little extra effort to be better. But many times we don’t.

So the next time you’re not sure what to do, or you are tempted to cut a corner, remember – Nancy wouldn’t do it that way, and you shouldn’t either!

“We’re Nancy!”