The Dick Barnes Way

Jul 01, 2009 No Comments by

Very early one Friday morning in the late eighties, I was driving from Hamburg to Frankfurt on the German autobahn for my first seminar with Dr. Dick Barnes. The connection had been established through a set of audio cassettes purchased from an ad in the Danish Dental Journal. Dr. Dick Barnes promised a rise in production on the first working day after hearing the cassettes—and so they did! Therefore, it was important for me to be present for the first possible chance of seeing this California dentist live.

The course turned out to be a mind-blowing experience: This handsome individual gave an amazing performance.  He systematically listed my most difficult and stressful situations in the office. He stated that these problems were universal and he offered proven solutions to them. After the seminar I was so sorry that it was Sunday—Dr. Dick Barnes had really fired me up and getting back to work in the practise could not happen fast enough.

Mentoring

Later, I listened to a few of Dr. Barnes’ mentors—Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, and Steven Covey—and could easily see that he had chosen the very best in their respective fields to learn from.

Having Dr. Barnes as our mentor, my associate Dr. Frank Hoffmann, from Hamburg, and I often asked ourselves, “What would Dr. Barnes do in this difficult situation?” He always seemed to have a simple answer to any complicated problem that we would present to him.  Legendary quotes used by Dr. Barnes like, “Firm in principle—flexible in procedures,” and “Don’t be a ‘Yes, but—er’” are known by most people using Arrowhead Dental Lab.

One typical yet fantastic characteristic of The Dr. Dick Barnes Group is the constant strive for better, faster, easier, and more gentle procedures in dentistry. Not moving with the future was always considered a step back.

A few weeks ago I was talking to a good friend of mine Dr. Benny Møller (nicknamed Benny Barnes), a Danish dentist now working in Basal, Switzerland. Benny, an extremely high producing dentist, stated that all seminars offered by Arrowhead gave simple, down-to-earth tips for the general practitioner. Benny is one of the most “Barnesified” dentists I have ever known. He follows the Dick Barnes philosophy very close. Amazing is his and other top producers ability to change fast and they don’t try to “reinvent the wheel” but take advice from more experienced/specialised individuals. Accepting the need for change is a very important message in Dr. Barnes’ lectures.

Dr. Dick Barnes promised a rise in production on the first working day after hearing the cassettes – and so it did!


Ralph Marston says this in a few words: “There are plenty of difficult obstacles in your path. Don’t allow yourself to become one of them.” Often we are avoiding changes to stay in our comfort zone!

Also Maya Angelou clearly expresses the importance of change in a quote that could have been from Dr. Barnes: “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.” Dr. Barnes says, “People who don’t change get trapped in their environment.”

Visiting with all the members of The Dr. Dick Barnes Group has been a truly great experience.  Having very different personalities, they each possess extreme skills and professionalism in their respective fields together with a warmth and kindness that you feel deep in your heart even long after meeting them.

Most important message

This makes me think of one of Dr. Barnes’ most important messages: “Do your patient counseling from your heart.” He will certainly feel this and accept the recommended treatment. Ultimate success inevitably follows!

As a mentor, Dr. Barnes has not only taught me about creating beautiful teeth and running a sky-high producing dental office, but he has given me a tool to make myself happier as a person (positive mental attitude). His human motivator skills are just phenomenal. This ability is the main reason why dentists from the Scandinavian countries and Germany strive to hear his seminars over and over again. Two of the highest producing dentists here in Denmark are the ones who have attended Arrowheads courses the most!

I have heard Dr. Barnes speak over 15 times over the years, and still enjoy, learn, and get motivated from the lectures. I never miss the opportunity to be present when he speaks—don’t you miss him either – especially if you have never listened to him before. It will cost you not to!

Making the very best dentistry will give the patients what they truly want.


Occasionally people totally misunderstand when Dr. Barnes speaks – they claim, “It’s all about money!” This could not be more wrong. The true message is: Making your very best dentistry will give the patients what they truly want – the fee is just something that automatically follows and should never be your target! Learn to set your goals, keep focusing on them and work hard – eventually success will come along.

The importance of delegating tasks in the office is also crucial—and the only way to really high production. Having more responsibility makes working in a dental office so much more fun for everyone.

Looking back I feel extremely lucky to have met Dick Barnes so early in my career. Sometimes I wonder where destiny would have taken me without these 20 years of fantastic support!

Today, The Dr. Dick Barnes Group along with Arrowhead Dental Lab offers the very best in total consulting and excellent lab-work, and life would be a lot harder without them around.

Last but not least, I would like to say thank you to Dr. Barnes – for giving me the possibility to be around the best in the game and for helping me and so many others reaching their goals and dreams.

Editor's Commentary, Summer 2009

About the author

Henrik R. Sorensen D.D.S. practices dentistry in Hamburg, Gerrmany and Farum, Denmark.
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