Management Theraputics

Old Masters

I was speaking with a dentist a few years ago (not as many as you might imagine) who was telling me about the insane levels of precision he was learning in a gold study club. There were very precise measurements of powder and liquid, temperatures were carefully controlled to create just the exact amount of shrinkage for die stones, investments and all the rest. The dentists and technicians had devoted a lifetime to becoming masters of this process and were understandably very proud of what they had accomplished.

Here is the part that is hard to take. Once you graduate to a digital impression system, like the CS 3600 all that skill knowledge and mastery becomes obsolete. It is like being a master typewriter maker in a world of word processors. Nobody needs what you have spent so much time and effort learning to master.

We see this concern often when new technology is introduced. Staff people fear that what they have learned in the past, how they provide value to the doctor the patients and the practice will no longer have value. They fear losing status.

There is no easy way to tell someone they are obsolete. “Hey, the world changed, get over it,” doesn’t really help. What can help is to set new goals, accept that the new way is just as good (in fact usually better) and that by learning the new way the person will be even more valuable, have even more status and it will be an exciting and rewarding journey getting there.

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