Cliff notes from Wednesday.
I love Frank Spears. He makes tough dentistry look easy.
I had a case that I worked up. Face bow, CR record, mounted models. Then my dad and I were stumped on how to proceed.
I thought I have spend over (between my father and I) $20,000 on hearing his lectures, I will bend he ear the next time I see him, which I knew would be in a couple of weeks.
I brought my articulator carring case with the chart to the lecture. I know, I looked real cool.
Now if you have ever seen Dr. Spear it is like a concert. At least in Orlando, there is a stage and a backstage. It is not like before the lecture he is hanging out with the little people. He is hanging out in the "green room". When it is time to start he comes from behind the curtain and he welcomes us and tells us where he ate his steak the night before.
Because he is not available before his lecture I felt like for sure I could catch him at lunch.
Now it is $1400 to see his lecture. Always in Orlando it is a packed house, about 300 people.
Do the quick math.
Included is muffins and coffee in the morning and a pretty nice lunch, both days.
Carry the one, about $300,000 a weekend for Dr. Spear. Not a bad gig.
Lets say I am uninformed, and don't realize the overhead, and he somehow ONLY pulls in $150,000. Still a pretty good weekend.
At the beginning of his lectures he tells us that there is not really time for questions and answers because of time. Now, I totally get this, you can have people totally monopolizing a lecture because they don't understand a point. Then this question opens the floor and everyone has a question. 45 minutes later you have answered everyones questions. So how he handles this is, at the break, he tells you to write you question on a sheet of paper and put them on the stage. Then he will address all the questions when we all return from a break (and or lunch).
So because he was so elusive I put a note on the pile. It says, "I am having some trouble formalating a treatment plan for a patient of mine. I brought all the xrays and study models. Do you think you could please help me. I promise not to keep you long."
So I thought he might say during his answer session, but he didn't mention it. He has some staff that usually hangs out outside the lecture hall. I told them what I did and they said, "No, he won't see you." Okay, no problem. I said, "Do you think I could email him and send him some pictures and we could just exchange some emails?" "No, they said. He doesn't take emails from dentists that he doesn't know."
I asked is there anyway I could get someone to help me with a question I was having.
They said you can try his associate.
That sounded okay with me.
I emailed his associate. Nothing in return.
Now don't get me wrong, I think the guy is a great dentist and I don't know what it is like to be him.
He has put a second to none lecture series together and I would still pay to go see it.
He is probably rich beyond his normal audience. In one of his lectures he speaks about all his cars. He has an exotic car collection, but another thing he collects is ex-wives (3 I think. I know low blow). But how can you not come done to the level of your audience? The people that afford you to have your exotic cars and ex-wives. It is like pro atheletes. If you make $250,000 a game, I would think they would be greeting people at the door signing autographs.
One time I was at his lecture and he says he is practicing 4 days a month. Now how can he not have 5 minutes to talk to me?
I once went to a lecture for lecturers and they said the first rule is make yourself available at breaks, lunch and after. Don't make your flight such that you can't make yourself available to your audience.
"I made $150,000 this weekend, I have got to go."
Last thing, he said in one of his lectures that he had this patient from Texas (he practices in Seattle). He gave this guy his treatment plan, it was $80,000. The guys says I know you are good great dentist but do you think I could get the veneers done by my regular dentist and then you can do the other stuff?
Frank says, NO.
So the guy thinks about it for a month or two and calls Dr. Spear and says, "Okay, I will do all of it with you."
Frank tells him, "No,thank you. You had your chance, now I won't treat you."
EIGHTY THOUSAND DOLLARS.
Like I said, I don't know what it is like to be Frank Spears but I am starting to think I don't want to. I love the guy as a dentist. I am not so sure I like the guy as a person anymore.
End of blog.
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Don't forget to register for the AGD in Orlando. My stomping grounds. We can do lunch.