successFor a great illustration of how real success starts with purity of purpose, consider the iPod.

In creating a one of the most successful products ever unleashed on the public, the innovators at Apple followed a protocol that has been called product design from the outside in – which means they started with a clear vision of what the iPod would look like and how it would perform. They envisioned the perfect user experience and made that their guiding standard for success. After that, everything they did—from design, to manufacturing, to marketing and packaging was measured against that standard. By taking this no compromises approach, they created a culture of passionately committed customers—and reaped incredible rewards.

Similarly, I have found that the dentists with the greatest success are the ones whose motivation starts and ends with providing the right level of care for their patients. That's not to say that they don't care about their economics, but they realize that the highest level of financial success occurs when the patient says yes to the highest level of care. Do it right, and the money will follow.

Success Comes from Putting the Patient First

These top dentists are not only passionate about developing their clinical skills, and obsessively scrupulous in their attention to precise details; they are just as passionate about creating value in a way that gets patients to share their excitement about the possibilities, and gets them wanting—and asking for—comprehensive ideal care.

Ask yourself: When patients say no, do you chalk it up to insurance restrictions, the economy, their lack of motivation? Or do you accept it as your responsibility to bridge the gaps in their knowledge and value perception?

This is what it means to truly put patient needs first. Practically all dentists genuinely care about their patients.But do you hold yourself and your patients accountable to a vision of an ideal baseline—defined by exacting standards of esthetics and functionality, and maintained by the most current techniques and materials? It's no coincidence, after all, that the dentists who do—the ones who are driven by an uncompromising vision of ideal care—also tend to be the ones occupying the top tier of dentistry.

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