Dentists Who Invest

Podcast Episode

Full Transcript

Dr James: 

What is up everybody? Welcome back to the Dentists Who Invest podcast, the first podcast of 2024, and followers of the Dentists Who Invest podcast will. Well, maybe they have noticed, maybe they won’t notice, who knows, but you may have noticed that actually it’s been a little bit of hiatus in the Dentists Who Invest podcast of late, and the primary reason for that is that it’s been Christmas, really, and I’ve used this time to focus on other things, building a lot of stuff on the back end. There’s a lot of cool stuff that’s going to come to the group over the coming days, weeks, months, so stay tuned for that one. We’ll all be revealed in due course A lot of things that I’ve been creating and building, so I’m extremely excited about it. So I’ve used that time productively in that sense Really really struggled to take time off on a personal note, but, having said that, I actually enjoy building and creating things. So to me, everybody in life should do the thing that they find fun, and it just so happens that the thing that I find fun is building and creating Dentists Who Invest, which for a lot of people they would define as work. But for me to hold myself back from having that fun is actually really, really, really difficult for me, just in the same fashion, it is for everybody else to hold back from doing the thing that they find fun. So that’s just an interest and lens through which to regard things. My philosophy is definitely do the fun stuff, and your fun stuff happens to be something that resembles work for other people. That’s also fine as well. You do you, that’s cool and that’s definitely how I feel. But anyway, we digress. This whole podcast is about goal setting. Goal setting with regards to the objectives that we can set for 2024 and reflecting on my objectives from 2023. Whenever I look back over my old goals that I wrote down way back when January 2023. And you know what? This is very much inspired, as I say, because I was looking at my old goals in 2023. And there were some takeaways in there. Some takeaways I didn’t expect to find and you know everybody’s heard the trite thrown around obvious reflections of why it’s good to set goals. But this podcast isn’t going to be that. There’ll be some obvious stuff in there, but I’m going to add in some other things that I didn’t really expect to find, some things that I observed in myself, because I hope they’re going to be of value to others, and this will be for people who either have written down goals or people who are out there who maybe haven’t written down goals yet and, like I say, the purposes of this podcast is inspire those that haven’t written them down to write them down, and for those that have written them wrote them down already to give you a new angle on it. Basically. So, like I say, these goals happen to be financially oriented goals and the reason for that is this the Dentists Who Invest podcast. We’re going to talk about finance on this podcast. These are my financial. These are reflection of my, my, my, my, my financial goals primarily, and success on that front, really. So here’s the thing when I was looking back on my goals over 2023, it was really really, really interesting because that was 2023 version of James who wrote those goals and 2024, look, james looked back at some of them and thought, really, I actually wanted that. Like now, I would actively not want that thing, whatever it is, because I know that there’s a much better way of doing it. So one of the biggest things that struck me was just how much I changed in terms of my thinking over that time, because that’s extremely hard to log, like that’s extremely hard to record. You don’t even realize how you’re different. You don’t even realize how you become a different person. You don’t realize how much you’ve grown. And for me that was nuts and I was like, wow, there actually has been some progress made, because that version of me who would say that specific thing Well, that was that seemed like decades ago, never mind a year ago. That’s absolutely bananas, right, and it shows how much I’ve changed and made me look back and think, wow, actually some cool things have happened. Some cool things have happened to me that have made me think differently, which is wonderful, because that, to me, was a huge encouraging factor. There was a huge encouraging thing that I could look at that and be like whoa, that’s actually really, really, really awesome, that actually I wouldn’t be measuring success, but that unit. I’ve been measuring success by about 10 times that unit from from from now going forward. You know, whatever that might be, and that applies to virtually anything that you can use units to measure in, whether that’s money, whether it’s other things who the heck knows. My point is that it makes you realize how much you’ve changed. It makes you realize how much you’ve grown, and that was the thing that struck me the most, and I never would have known that unless I wrote them down, because, effectively, it’s a snapshot of how you are thinking right now versus how you were thinking right then. Amazing, and do you know what? My posit would be that, actually, if you don’t look back at some of your goals and think, whoa, that was crazy, that was such an easy thing to do and I didn’t even realize it at the time. My posit would be that actually, that’s more of a cause for reflection or more of a cause for concern, because what it means is you haven’t grown and changed that much. So I was pleased to see that some of them were like that. Obviously, there were some that I look back now and think that was ridiculous to think that I ever could have achieved that one specific thing, because that was way, way, way too far ahead. I still have yet to reach that goal. I still have yet to reach that goal. So, yeah, it really made me appreciate how much my thinking had developed, and that was a good thing. That was definitely something that was encouraging. I thought that was cool, all right cool. Also, as well as that, there’s going to be a glaringly obvious reflection on goal setting alert, and that is worth saying again, and that is it’s so incredibly valuable to see your progress on the goals front, to see that you’ve got closer and closer, to see that you actually have achieved those goals, because it’s immensely satisfying being able to strike them off and it also pushes you a little bit more to strive to achieve that specific thing which is flipping cool, which is flipping really, really, really cool. So you actually get that little 10, 20% extra out of the engine, in my opinion, to get you closer and closer towards that goal, which I really really like as well. So that’s kind of an obvious one, but it’s worth saying again for anybody out there hasn’t written down a goal, hasn’t observed that effect in themselves. Because here’s the thing if you think to yourself, actually we’re halfway through the year and we’re only 20% closer towards that goal, then you need to think to yourself okay, I need to mix this up and you change something different. You need to change your strategy, and I encourage you to keep changing things and innovating things and reflecting on what you’ve done, because you have a milestone, because you have a yardstick through which to measure your success. So kind of an obvious one, that, but worth saying again. Love this saying, love this quote you master what you measure, and what that means is that you can never really actually gain a full understanding of just how much progress you’re making until you measure something, or how effective a system is, until you measure the success of each point in the system. So let’s say, for example, you have a patient journey in your practice. Now, a lot of people what a lot of people do is they’ll measure how much money is coming in every month and that, for them, might be the success of the patient journey. But actually that is just one metric and how do we know how much we could have had if that is a metric we’re going to use to describe success? How do we know how much we could have had unless we measure every single point of the patient journey, from the receptionist to what they’re saying, to the TCO, to the dentist, treatment plan, acceptance, treatment plan, completion rate, all of those things? How do we know where the leak in the bucket is until we actually specifically measure that? And you know what story of my life this year I’ve become so much more enthralled in measuring things and protocols and embed and recording every single little bit of data, because a number of times I’ve went out of my way to measure something, even though, yes, let’s be honest with each other it can be a little tedious. It used to be tedious for me at the start. I used to really not see the value in it. But I think tedious something being tedious comes from the fact that you don’t see how it’s valuable to you and how it’s going to help you. So you kind of have to just push through that a little bit at the start. Now I actively love doing that and 2023 me would have never said that In January it wasn’t even something that was on my radar. So again, big progress that had been made on that front. You master what you measure, and that was a big realization for me this year. I think story of my life was understanding the value of measuring the effectiveness of each stage in a system and tweaking things so that you know that you can make that more and more effective. Okay, so let’s make that real. So the patient journey for principles that’s an incredibly real one and you know it’s another really, really, really real one for you. It’s a really, really real one for associates that you can use and is immensely valuable. Measure the treatments that you’re doing week in, week out, measure how much you’re doing in a particular treatment and then also measure your gross day in, day out, and you’ll be able to see what treatments are bringing in decent gross, what treatments maybe aren’t, and that you can delegate or do other things, and then also, as well as that, which areas you can focus on more to provide more value to your patient and potentially make more remuneration. Should that be a goal or objective? Trust me, write it down in an Excel sheet. You will be rewarded. You’ll literally see the answers staring right back at you. Food for thought on that one. Okay cool, so anyway, thank you. We touched upon this already, but I definitely think that having some sort of yardstick through which to measure success will make you refocus and recalibrate whether you are making enough progress over time to that, to that ultimate destination, which is just alluding to what I was saying earlier, in that if you are 20% of the way through the year or, sorry, if you’re 50% of the way through the year and you’ve only made 20% of your objective, well, obviously that means that you have to change strategy a little bit, whereas if you never actually had some way to measure how successful you’re being. If you were just like, hey, you know what head and hope, let’s just see what happens, then you’d be fully happy with that result, even though you know that it’s not the best that you could get. So definitely something to think about Also. I just want to remember, I just want to let everybody know about something that I find immensely satisfying. Do you know, when you go right up to those goals, you get a big red pen and you put a strike through it. Oh my God, it’s so satisfying that dopamine rush is like one of the biggest hits that you can get, at least for me. So you can hack that. You can hack your own biology to achieve things in life, because you know that that moment’s coming and for me it feels damn good, especially when I know that that goal is a really sought after one or one. That wasn’t easy. That sounds so minor, but oh my goodness, when you do that, wow, it actually is a massive motivator in itself. And yeah, it’s a bit silly and yeah, it’s definitely some sort of manifestation of our biology. But yeah, you know what? If you know, if you’re conscious, mind knows how your subconscious works, why not hack the subconscious to achieve great things. Sure, of course, your measurement of success be all of these things that I’m talking about it may be or it may not be, either is fine, but for those of you out there who think in similar terms or want to be able to leverage this to achieve success in specific areas of your life, then definitely that is worth doing. Also, as well as that, personally, if you ask me, I think that if you achieve 100% of your goals at the start of the year that you wrote down, I actually think something’s wrong. At that point. I think you should achieve 60% to 70%, 60% to 70%. I actually think there should be that 30% in there. That either A you wrote at the start of the year and then, as the year progressed, you realized we’re not actually that useful or relevant, which shows that you’re thinking developed and enhanced throughout the course of the year or, b they were so far ahead of what you could actually get in reality that they made you push and push and push and they made you give that extra 30% than what you would have given otherwise. Therefore, it meant that you made more progress, even though you didn’t actually necessarily achieve your goal, whereas a more modest goal might have meant that you would have reached there, ticked it off and then say jobs are good, whereas overall you actually made more progress because you strived and pushed yourself further and harder, because you actually had a little bit more of a pie in the sky goal, because your goal was a little further ahead of where you could actually get. So to me, I really think that it’s worth bearing that in mind and not to overthink your goals and to remember there’s that little 30% in there that is going to push you, that’s designed to push you, that’s designed to make you hit the next level. Like I say, for me it’s a bigger problem if you hit 100% of your goals. That tells me that they were too modest, if anything. Now Elon Musk said a great thing on specifically this. Elon Musk says if you can take your five-year goals and try to write them down and try to achieve them in six months and really give them your all and work as hard as you can well guess what you will get very, very far in those six months. You’ll probably sacrifice a lot in the meantime, but of course that’s a little bit of an insight into Elon’s must-mindset. He’s totally happy to do that. Maybe some people out there aren’t happy to do that, and that’s fine as well, but anyway, from Elon’s perspective, he says take your five-year goals, try to achieve them in six months. Amazing, right, because what will happen is that, whilst you won’t make five years of progress, in six months you might make two, or you might make three, which is still unbelievable. That’s amazing. You’re way closer than what you would have been otherwise. But of course, that works on the premise that you think and operate like Elon Musk, who literally gives his all every single day, to the point that he is running around like an actually frantic madman with the only priority in his life being his companies and his businesses. Hence why he’s got four of them that are worth over one billion. Now you might say let’s not go fool Elon Musk on this one, and that’s fine. A lot of people would probably agree with you. A lot of people would probably say never go fool Elon Musk. I’m not even sure what I think on that one personally, but all I am saying is food for thought on goal setting, and I really, really, really would encourage anybody out there to write down your goals for 2024. And that was the perfect time to do this. We are speaking to each other on the 4th of January 2024. The year is still young. There’s still loads of time. You’ve got a weekend in front of you to write these things down. I promise you sit in the garden, sit inside, sit wherever the heck you want. Write the goals down. Take 30 minutes and do it. You’ll be rewarded.