In case you missed – TGBSL #29….Dentistry courses dominated by women in Scotland.

TGBSL explained: In the second book of the semi-autobiographical series describing the progress of an Edinburgh medical graduate, Colin Douglas describes his hero, David Campbell’s, involvement with medical research. The book’s title is “The Greatest Breakthrough Since Lunchtime“ and the cynic in me always remembers it when I read headlines like these. I insist that I have a huge regard for our researchers, having watched my brother persevere with his work for years and now my son wrestle with a PhD I know that it is something to which I am not suited at all.

1) New discovery could reduce the dental implant failure rate

Scientists have developed a new nanocoating that’s designed to reduce the risk of dental implant failure.

Dental implants are a common and effective tooth replacement option, which is why it’s no surprise that about 3 million Americans have dental implants. That number is rising by 500,000 people each year, according to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry.

While dental implants are a great option for many patients, a major issue is the implant failure rate. According to a 2015 study, almost 8 percent of patients with dental implants experienced the loss of at least one implant over a 9-year period.

To combat the dental implant failure rate, scientists from the School of Biological Sciences, Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry and the School of Engineering at the University of Plymouth have developed a new nanocoating for dental implants that’s designed to reduce the risk of peri-implantitis. Peri-implantitis is a localized lesion involving bone loss around an osseointegrated implant. It has been identified as the main reason for dental implant failure.

Continues HERE

2) Those with dental phobia more likely to have cavities or missing teeth, study confirms

I’m afraid this falls into the category of, “specialist subject – the bleedin’ obvious”.

When I tried this on a few people in the pub the overwhelming response was, “1) Frightened to go, 2) allow problems to get worse until 3) you have to go, 4) get in, 5) get it over with, 6) get out, 7) fear remains. Return to 1).

People with dental phobia are more likely to have active caries or missing teeth, a new study from King’s College London has confirmed.

The latest study, published in the British Dental Journal, aimed to explore the social and demographic correlates of oral health and oral health related quality of life of people with dental phobia compared to those without dental phobia. The findings showed that people with dental phobia are more likely to have one or more decayed teeth, and missing teeth as well. In addition, the study showed that those with dental phobias’ reported that their oral health related quality of life is poor.

Full paper HERE

 

3) Medicine, dentistry and law courses dominated by women in Scotland

via BDA

Full Report HERE

GIRLS are continuing to dominate leading professions such as medicine, dentistry and the law, according to new analysis.

Figures collated by academics from Edinburgh University show more than 56 per cent of students studying medicine and dentistry in Scotland are women while the same is true of 63 per cent of those studying law….continues

She said: “Recent decades have seen a shift in the policy discussion of gender and education away from a focus on female disadvantage towards a concern with male underachievement. To a certain extent this is because of a culture of laddishness which means boys are more likely to act up, more likely to be the subject of punitive disciplinary measures and are therefore more likely to be disengaged. In contrast there is still a sense girls are more likely to be better behaved, to spend more time reading for pleasure and doing homework.” REALLY?

 

The Weekend Read – Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig

A great work of the genre known as “popular philosophy” I believe. I read this many years ago and it left its mark on me, if only for a desire to ride a motorcycle through Montana. The author died this week at the age of 88, coincidentally I had been searching without success for my copy of the book last weekend.

The lasting impression was the author’s pursuit of the meaning of “quality”. Bought during my impressionable “hippy” days in the mid 70s, I thoroughly enjoyed the tale of  the author and his son who together with a couple of friends make a 17 day motorcycle journey from Minnesota to Northern California. There is a great contrast between the author’s approach to motorcycles and that of his friend John. The author drives an old bike and maintains it himself whilst John has a newer cycle and doesn’t want to learn how to look after itself instead he relies on paying mechanics to keep it going.

It took me until I was an experienced dentist and practice owner to better understand the differences between the classical and romantic approaches to life as explored and explained by Pirsig.

Worth a read, unfortunately I wasn’t able to get along with his next book Lila – I’ll try again.

Available from The Book Depository HERE.

Someone has to lead, someone has to move the conversation forward..

Lefsetz is talking about BMW and using automobiles as an analogy for Twitter..

“Someone has to lead someone has to move the conversation forward…”

“…..our nation has gone topsy-turvy, it’s all about the money. It’s ruined the arts and it’s ruining business. If you’re not making a ton of dough and increasing the number every quarter you’re falling behind, out of the conversation. And yes, an entity needs cash flow to survive, but how much? And isn’t impact more important than money, especially when it comes to changing the conversation?”

He could be talking about a host of things but he’s choosing to make it about Twitter.

Worth a read HERE

The Monday Morning Quote #416

The four most expensive words in the English language:

“This Time It’s Different”.

Sir John Templeton

 

You have to build for the reality we live in, not the one we hope to create.

I have been travelling and choosing to ignore Facebook for a few days, I am starting (probably too late) to actively resent its insidious ubiquity. For someone who is known as, a “hail fellow well met, first to the bar, last to leave, loves a party” person I enjoy my own company, my books, silence & contemplation and try to choose with whom I spend my time. So when read this piece via Dave Pell’s Newsletter  I thought it had enough in it to be worth sharing.

“The problem with connecting everyone on the planet is that a lot of people are assholes. The issue with giving just anyone the ability to live broadcast to a billion people is that someone will use it to shoot up a school. You have to plan for these things. You have to build for the reality we live in, not the one we hope to create.”

Climbing Out Of Facebook’s Reality Hole

With its new camera platform, Facebook is busy augmenting reality. Perhaps it should pay a bit more attention to the hard truths of the world in which we currently live.

Full article HERE

 

Playing the “What If” game.

I delivered my presentation, “Is Dentistry Making You Sick?” in Gloucestershire a couple of days ago and introduced a game that I suggest participants play with their teams and partners. It’s called “What If” and the rules are simple in the extreme, you come up with the most unlikely thing that you can imagine and make plans on how you will deal with it on a personal and business level. Then move on to the second most unlikely and so on – I think you get the drift.

Visualise scenarios, research, plan and rehearse.

The example I used was of the owner of a 95% NHS dental practice who had been planning for the new NHS contract to replace the shameful 2006 edition, it has been promised over and over by successive governments. The contract will emphasise prevention and have a level of capitation payments. It will have been trialled and tested and approved by the BDA.

The What If game when played on Monday at 9am would have had them wake up one day and discover that the government had called a general election in order to concentrate on Brexit. The side effects of the likely victory would be to railroad their austerity programme through until 2022 and also enable them to kick any positive change in the dental contract into the the longest of long grass until who knows when.

Now what would you do if that happened – apart from ringing Lily Head?

What If – what’s next?

“Jeff, what does Day 2 look like?”

Another post via the essential Benedict Evans’ Newsletter. This is from Jeff Bezos‘ (Amazon founder & CEO) annual shareholder letter: “managing Amazon and change in a large company”. Well worth a read.

“Jeff, what does Day 2 look like?”

That’s a question I just got at our most recent all-hands meeting. I’ve been reminding people that it’s Day 1 for a couple of decades. I work in an Amazon building named Day 1, and when I moved buildings, I took the name with me. I spend time thinking about this topic.

“Day 2 is stasis. Followed by irrelevance. Followed by excruciating, painful decline. Followed by death. And that is why it is always Day 1.”

To be sure, this kind of decline would happen in extreme slow motion. An established company might harvest Day 2 for decades, but the final result would still come.

I’m interested in the question, how do you fend off Day 2? What are the techniques and tactics? How do you keep the vitality of Day 1, even inside a large organization?

Such a question can’t have a simple answer. There will be many elements, multiple paths, and many traps. I don’t know the whole answer, but I may know bits of it. Here’s a starter pack of essentials for Day 1 defense: customer obsession, a skeptical view of proxies, the eager adoption of external trends, and high-velocity decision making.

True Customer Obsession

There are many ways to center a business. You can be competitor focused, you can be product focused, you can be technology focused, you can be business model focused, and there are more. But in my view, obsessive customer focus is by far the most protective of Day 1 vitality.

Why? There are many advantages to a customer-centric approach, but here’s the big one: customers are always beautifully, wonderfully dissatisfied, even when they report being happy and business is great. Even when they don’t yet know it, customers want something better, and your desire to delight customers will drive you to invent on their behalf. No customer ever asked Amazon to create the Prime membership program, but it sure turns out they wanted it, and I could give you many such examples.

Staying in Day 1 requires you to experiment patiently, accept failures, plant seeds, protect saplings, and double down when you see customer delight. A customer-obsessed culture best creates the conditions where all of that can happen.

Resist Proxies

As companies get larger and more complex, there’s a tendency to manage to proxies. This comes in many shapes and sizes, and it’s dangerous, subtle, and very Day 2.

A common example is process as proxy. Good process serves you so you can serve customers. But if you’re not watchful, the process can become the thing. This can happen very easily in large organizations. The process becomes the proxy for the result you want. You stop looking at outcomes and just make sure you’re doing the process right. Gulp. It’s not that rare to hear a junior leader defend a bad outcome with something like, “Well, we followed the process.” A more experienced leader will use it as an opportunity to investigate and improve the process. The process is not the thing. It’s always worth asking, do we own the process or does the process own us? In a Day 2 company, you might find it’s the second.

Another example: market research and customer surveys can become proxies for customers – something that’s especially dangerous when you’re inventing and designing products. “Fifty-five percent of beta testers report being satisfied with this feature. That is up from 47% in the first survey.” That’s hard to interpret and could unintentionally mislead…….

……..Good inventors and designers deeply understand their customer. They spend tremendous energy developing that intuition. They study and understand many anecdotes rather than only the averages you’ll find on surveys. They live with the design.

I’m not against beta testing or surveys. But you, the product or service owner, must understand the customer, have a vision, and love the offering. Then, beta testing and research can help you find your blind spots. A remarkable customer experience starts with heart, intuition, curiosity, play, guts, taste. You won’t find any of it in a survey.

In full HERE take the time and read the 1997 letter which follows it – makes interesting reading.

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