The Monday Morning Quote

“To live is to change and to be perfect is to have changed often”

John Henry Newman

New York fashion week: “It’s all about gappy teeth”

Orthodontists – stop space closure and get on with separating those centrals.

New York fashion week: “It’s all about gappy teeth”
A report from the Guardian claims gap teeth are “the must-have orthodontic trait du jour” at New York’s fashion week as designers are calling for models with a diastema (a gap between two teeth). According to the article, in medieval times such gaps were associated with promiscuity, while in Africa especially where a gap is considered a great sign of beauty, dental treatments are available to enlarge the space in between teeth.

So that was Dana’s secret…

Moved by the events of the day.

Sometimes this blog gets personal, no apologies. It has been an emotional day, hopefully this will serve as a reminder of the passing of a lovely man.

If I had heard John Rutter’s hymn”For the Beauty of the Earth” before I was not aware of it. I will always associate it with Llandaff Cathedral and good memories.

That’s the way to write an advert for a Practice Manager.

I came across this via Google this morning, I have no idea whose practice this is, but I will.

Advertised on an online site FREEINDEX which is new to me, but worth a look also.

What a great example of an advert that takes its subject seriously. Compare it with the last recruitment advert that you placed,what can you learn? It certainly discourages time wasters and tyre kickers.

Dental Practice Business and Development Manager for Private Dental Practice in Bury, N. Manchester Job Vacancy in Bury.

Job Overview

Business and Development Manager to take over many of the administrative and financial tasks associated with running a Private Dental Practice.
No prior experience of dentistry is required. Graduates welcome and an attractive remuneration will be negotiated.
The person suitable for this position must have a great deal of flexibility and realise that the job description is an outline of a position which is new and evolving and will make the job description a work in progress, until fine tuned. The outline of the job will change as the practice develops. You must make this job yours.
Please email your CVs with a covering letter outlining your desire for the job.

Duties and Responsibilities

General Management.
Health and Safety Management.
IT and Technology Management.
Human Resource Management.
Financial Management.
Physical Resource Management.
Marketing Services and Sales Management.
Strategic Planning.
The duties of the Business Manager will include:-
Practice Finance, including day-to-day accounting and wages.
Financial Planning and reporting.
Prepare monthly spreadsheets and financial information, including Key Performance Indicators, and present to Practice owner monthly.
Liaising with Accountant, Bank, Insurers and Solicitors.
Supervising the Business Development of the practice.
Practice Organisation.
90 day reviews of planning and achieving Review and develop current brand standards.
Produce and maintain the Practice Operating Manual.
Estate Management – including maintenance, security and upgrading.
Human Resources – “Hiring and Firing”, appraisal interviews.
Organise and chair staff meetings.
Planning and organisation of staff training days and outings.
Compliance with Health and Safety, Employment, and other regulations.
Marketing – external and internal – and strategic planning.
Prepare marketing material – welcome pack, business cards, thank you cards, end of treatment letters, newsletters.
IT and Technology management.
Other duties as required including an initial period of reception duties.

Skills / Qualifications / Experience Required

Communication Skills.
Organisational Skills.
Leadership Skills.
Sales and Marketing Experience and Skills.
Numeracy Skills.
Presentation Skills.
Team Player and Team Building Skills.
Good general education.
Management experience.
Accounting/book keeping experience or qualification.
Articulate and effective communicator.
Business Qualification.
IT skills – Work/Excel/E Mail.
Sales and Marketing skills/ideas.
Smart and professional appearance.
Proactive approach to patient, team and dentist needs.
Goal orientated.
Proactive regarding self-development.
Ability to deal with stress.
Confident and Professional at all times.
Has the Drive to achieve high goals.
Low levels of sickness.
Ability to deal with difficult customers appropriately (internal and external).
Proactive approach to patient, team and dentist needs.
Ability to be flexible.

The Monday Morning Quote

“Ability is what you’re capable of doing.

Motivation determines what you actually do.

Attitude determines how well you do it… “

Raymond Chandler

Viren Patel – R.I.P.

I was saddened to receive this today, Viren was a lovely man and will be missed by everyone who knew him.

My sympathies go to his family.

Dear BOS member
It was with sadness, surprise and shock that we learned of the death of Viren Patel last Thursday.
Viren was such a bouyant, outgoing and engaging person and, although the past few years had not been easy for him, his sudden death is difficult to absorb.
I have spoken to his wife, Clare, and passed on the Society’s heartfelt condolences at this traumatic time.  If you knew Viren at all, I would urge you to contact Clare to help her and their four children through this difficult time.
The funeral will be on Wednesday 22 September starting with a Service at Llandaff Cathedral in Cardiff at 12.00 noon.
Viren will then be cremated at 1.45 at Coychurch Crematorium in Bridgend.
All those who knew Viren are invited to attend both the Memorial Service and the cremation.

The Monday Morning Quote

“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”.

Hamlet (Act II, Scene II)

(With thanks to John Seymour)

Kolbe Wisdom™ and Leadership

This is the most recent article for Apex.  I have borrowed and quoted heavily from Kathy Kolbe’s book “Pure Instinct” which is available from Kolbe Corporation through their website It is possible that some of the concepts I discuss will not be clear to the reader who has not read the earlier articles, I am more than happy to let you have copies of the pieces if you email me.

The definition of leadership that I shall use comes from the 1935 book “the art of leadership” by Ordway Tead. He says that: “leadership is the activity of influencing people to cooperate toward some goal which they come to find desirable.”

Leadership is an activity. That means it is neither a skill, nor an attitude, but conative.  A leader’s actions are directly tied to identifying team members’ instinctive capabilities and finding ways of putting them to productive use.   A leader is both an influencer and an enabler, and such qualities were rare in 1935 and remain rare today.

Depending upon their MO, every leader will have a different way of working. Every conative method can be used to influence others, but the most effective approach is when the leader is true to their own instincts. Trust develops between leader and team members when neither with holes the instinctive self. When leaders use their own instinct is to gain the commitment of other people’s instincts, goals become more attainable.

Leaders act as a catalyst for freely given cognitive commitments and give direction the variety of problem solving methods that a conatively synergistic group will suggest. And they managed to do this without inhibiting anyone’s participation. They bring out the best in people, drawing forth and focusing instinctive energy toward cooperative efforts.

The difference between a leader and a star is that the leader strives to increase others’ performances toward group goals, and the star strives towards individual achievement. We are all capable of being stars. It only takes a situation where one’s conative talents are most necessary for the star to initiate activity. A leader on the other hand uses all three zones of instinctive energy to help group succeed.

Perseverance is an essential characteristic of leadership. It takes backbone, great, and strength of mind to influence the goal setting process and to gain the cooperation of others. A common trait among leaders is their decisiveness. Their tenacity singles them out.

I tend to see two extremes in my work with dental practices. There is a lack of leadership either:

1) Because of an abdication by the practice owner or owners who are seeking to have equality within their practice and fail to take responsibility.

2) No regard is given to the team members’ instincts and therefore they are forced into roles where they are the least productive.

In neither case does the practice get the best out of their teams. Frustration ensues resulting in high turnover of staff, low productivity, and poor service being given to patients with a resulting drop in business profitability.

As an aside, I see a great many dentists who initiate in Implementor, presume that their staff know their jobs, like to believe that because someone has the title “practice manager” they know what they’re doing and therefore ignore what is going on around. On the other hand I also frequently encounter insistent Fact Finder who will not allow anybody any space and persist in micro-management. Both these scenarios produce unhappy practices.

Leadership is a responsibility, not a prize. It ought not to be given as a reward to individual achievement unless the person expresses a determination to fight for the will of the group. If leadership were merely a matter of making demands, of telling people what to do and rewarding them when they did it, then oppressors would rule, and ultimately fail.

Leaders in the workplace who nurture employees’ instinctive strengths are awarded with high employee job satisfaction and high productivity. Team members are pleased when leadership intervenes in, conatively stressful situations, whether they be conflicts, cloning, unrealistic self-expectations or misguided requirements.

It is important to select and train people for most suited roles on a team that is balanced to achieve conative synergy. However, every team needs a leader to take responsibility for influencing its members to strive towards achieving common goals. Every team needs a person or people who are willing to contribute instinctive energy toward leadership efforts, often forsaking the opportunity to use their personal resources in ways that are more likely to make them star performers. That’s the sacrifice of leadership. The benefit of leadership is in helping a team reach its greatest potential.

The Monday Morning Quote

“As our circle of knowledge expands,

so does the circumference of darkness surrounding it.”

Albert Einstein


I was asked to contribute 150 words for an article on Key Performance Indicators in Dentistry, as I was addressed (probably tongue in cheek) as a “thought leader in dentistry” I wrote this opinion piece only to have it “spiked” as the editor wanted my “top” 3-6 KPIs – that will follow. I was happy enough with what I had written so I thought I would share it here.

The acronym KPIs has only drifted into view for many dentists with the recent imposition of the “PDS plus” contracts under the watchful eye of Dr Mike Warburton who is seeking to bring the same harmony to GDPs that he has to their medical colleagues.

A part of Peter Drucker’s philosophy of management by objectives, KPIs arrived along with the mantra “no management without measurement”. I firmly believe that there are certain basic parameters that must be measured and monitored in order that the performance of the business can be assured.

However, I know that measuring everything without regard for quality, the individuals involved and their understanding of the systems in which they work can lead to a target driven environment. This can rob the organisation of leadership, remove its flexibility and its ability to adapt to a changing environment.

So KPIs are important as a tool and a means to an end but not an end in themselves.

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