A note from our editor

June 1, 2005
I was recently given the opportunity to attend the Harvard School of Dental Medicine’s Leadership Forum.

I was recently given the opportunity to attend the Harvard School of Dental Medicine’s Leadership Forum. For the third consecutive year, executives from the dental industry gathered in suburban Boston to focus on how they can make their companies better (which will consequently make their products better and benefit you and your patients). I would like to thank our friends at Heraeus Kulzer and Lanmark Group for the invitation to this amazing collaboration of brainpower.

On the last day of the meeting, I heard a very interesting story. It seems that, in olden times, there was a village where the pigs were kept inside the houses in the same way that we keep dogs and cats for pets today. One night, there was a horrible fire in one of the houses. The family managed to escape, but, alas, the pig did not. As the townspeople sifted through the charred rubble the next day, they caught a wonderful scent - cooked pork. This wasn’t something the townspeople had smelled before, as they had always eaten their food uncooked. And when some of the people dared to actually taste the cooked pork, they were amazed how good it was. Yes, the pig was quickly devoured.

Later that night, a strange rash of house fires began. In each case, the family managed to escape, but the pig did not. In each case, the townspeople quickly sifted through the rubble to find the cooked pig and eat it. These people didn’t care that their houses were being burned to the ground, they only cared that they could feast on the new delicacy of cooked pork.

So what’s the moral of the story? As the Harvard business professor stated to the group, “If you don’t know what cooks the pig, you’re going to waste a lot of houses.” I know I get focused on one thing, and suddenly everything else melts away other than getting that one goal accomplished (after all, I think I’ve procrastinated for at least three weeks writing this Editor’s Note while I traveled to Cologne, Germany, for the IDS meeting and then to Nashville for the AACD’s annual gathering). Is that the way things are in your office? Do you focus so much on promoting one aspect of your practice that the others suffer? Do you spend so much time trying to get new patients that your current patients don’t feel important anymore? Don’t burn the house just to cook the pig.

  • Speaking of the IDS meeting, it was yet another amazing show in Cologne. Once again, IDS lived up to the hype, with 75,000 people attending the five-day event. That’s right - 75,000 people. And those 75,000 people came from 141 different countries. And those 75,000 people from 141 different countries wandered through 107,000 square meters of exhibit space. The numbers are truly mind-boggling, and so is the experience of being a part of IDS.

If you’ve never been to the IDS show, here are some dates for you to remember - March 20-24, 2007. That’s the next time the world will gather in Cologne.

What makes IDS so amazing? If you want a sneak peek of some of the products that will be debuting in the United States over the next six to 12 months, IDS is the place to do it. If you have the chance, make your way to Cologne in 2007. Just make sure you do what you can to battle the jetlag, prepare to eat plenty of pork products (the PennWell crew fell in love with the pork knuckle, and perhaps that’s the reason for the pork-themed Editor’s Note in this issue), and bring along a multilingual dictionary. I am already looking forward to heading back to Germany.

  • Good news! PennWell is pleased to announce a series of Webcasts dedicated to the educational growth of its readers, a one-hour interactive presentation. Find out why Invisalign Certifications across the country are selling out. You will learn from the actual content creator of the Invisalign Certification, and Vice President of Strategic Clinical Relations at Align Technology, Dr. Lou Shuman. There is no charge for this educational session. After successful completion, participants receive one continuing education credit. The Webcast launched on May 20 and will be available on the Dental Economics (www.dentaleconomics.com) Web site for one year from the introduction date and open to all dentists, dental hygienists, and dental assistants.

Read on, this is your magazine...

Kevin Henry, Editor
[email protected]