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Side Gigs For Income Diversity and Doing What You Love

by Stephen K. Parker

In this issue of The Profitable Dentist, editor Steve Parker speaks with Dr. Bill Williams, director of the 5M Mastermind, author of #1 Amazon best seller, The 10K a Day Dentist, and a highly successful practicing dentist for 44 years in Atlanta, Georgia.

Steve Parker: Hello, Bill. What’s the wise word for the day?

Bill Williams: Hi Steve, glad to be part of The Profitable Dentist family. Dentists continually look for ways to build their income, and once built, protect that income. Today’s wise word is MSI and that means Multiple Sources of Income. It is wise for dentists to diversify their income streams, just as it is good practice to diversify their investment portfolio. Especially as they near retirement age, dentists need protection from the potential loss of their chief source of income, their dental practice income.

Steve Parker: I, too, believe in MSIs, Bill. It’s a good word for the day. What do you mean by “start well?” Is that referring to starting up a dental practice or starting up a retirement portfolio?

Bill Williams: Actually, Steve, both would be applicable. But my focus is in the setup for a good finish and that means focusing on events closer to your transition time as opposed to starting a practice. Having multiple sources of income, for most dentists, means their active practice income and their retirement plan that they start early and contribute to yearly. Potentially, there are many additional veins of gold that can be successfully mined. That’s the idea of having MSIs.

Steve Parker: What are some examples of MSIs that make sense for dentists?

Bill Williams: I can use myself as an example, Steve. I have several income streams going on right now. All of them center around what I love to do: write, create, and teach. For most of my career, I focused on creating multiple sources of income within my practice, which is the basis of what I teach in my courses. A dentist can earn two to three times more this way than by following the old ways of running a dental practice. My current MSIs include active income from practicing as an associate two days a week, earning residual income from my three books on dental business, passive income from pension plans, 401K, IRA and other stock market investments, rental income as well as asset appreciation from real estate, consulting for private equity groups on dental topics, sponsorships from various dental companies when I lecture, in-office dental consulting by my team, profits from our Solstice Dental Advisors’ programs, the on-line 5M Masters Academy and the 5M Mastermind at our home in Suwanee, and finally, my latest MSI, residual income from teaching dentists and others about the recent scientific wellness breakthrough from ASEA, Redox Signaling Molecules. Steve, it seems that the older I get, the younger I think. I’m moving more into “rewirement” than into retirement.

Steve Parker: You sound like a busy guy, but I know you love to spend time with your family and travel a lot, too. As I follow you on Facebook, I see you have just returned from London where your grandkids live.

Bill Williams: Absolutely, I am, and I do. I teach balance in my mastermind classes, how to be successful, to do dentistry well, so you can do life well. Being effective and efficient are both necessary to finish well. One of my joys is being with my grandkids so I’ve created an MSI that allows me to teach in the UK, to have a business that lets me go anywhere in the world and pay for it with pre-tax dollars.

Let’s dig into what a dentist should perhaps consider in creating their own MSIs.

I believe MSIs should be diversified, strong on using OPM and OPT: other people’s money or other people’s time to create a much larger nest egg than one could using only their own resources. The ideal MSI creates residual passive income. If you could develop a strategy to do that, wouldn’t that be a good complement to earning a living as a practicing dentist?

Side gigs are all the rage in our lexicon right now and they should have a few key attributes: low cost of entry and be flexible to operate initially. Everyone knows that the cost of getting into dentistry, opening, and running a practice is almost insurmountable. Dentists don’t need another heavy weight in time or money to bear upon their shoulders. A worthwhile MSI should be scalable with the potential for high yield and growth from a little effort based on the principles of multiplication and replication. Sustainability should be a feature, so cash is generated even when you are not working at it or on it. The ideal MSI functions without your day-to-day involvement.

Because we want this side gig to work, we must choose something that is both enjoyable and that we have a passion about. It makes no sense to create something to do in our spare time that we end up hating to do. I believe that’s the primary reason I’ve always been drawn to teaching, writing, consulting and coaching in the dental, health and wellness arena. I love being a dentist and doing what dentists do. There are few professions that get to serve as well as ours, to relieve pain and suffering yet also create beauty and joy. To be able to make a living helping people, creating individual masterpieces that help my patients look good, feel good and have it last a long time is the definition of success to me.

Steve Parker: Bill, after paying off school loans and practice startup costs, if funding the retirement plan that includes a stock portfolio, real estate, and other diversified assets is the most important aspect of creating a set of fully functional MSIs over a career, what are the best ways to do that?

Bill Williams: I believe that would be focusing on “seed money”. For a dentist, all retirement passive income is generated initially from your dental practice. So, the number one goal is to create a profitable, cash cow practice, one that throws off investable income above and beyond the operating costs and your day-to-day living expenses. Remember, to finish well, it helps to also start smart.

As Dr. David Phelps of Freedom Founders teaches, it’s predictable income at retirement that allows you to claim your Freedom Day, that point when your passive income equals your active dental income. In order to amass a virtual fortune in passive income generating assets, we need to create that massive cash flow as early in our career as possible. I applied those principles and they worked for me. That’s why I emphasize the importance of mindset in our 5M Mastermind. My clients have implemented our systems and they have worked spectacularly. When the mind firmly believes in a concept, it can achieve that result. We strive to shift dentists’ thinking from scarcity to abundance when we meet with the common purpose of mutually assisted practice growth.

Steve Parker: I’ve been intrigued by your approach to getting inside the mind of dentists. You seem to focus on the numbers a lot: Marketing the Million Dollar Practice your first book, the 5M Mastermind which means, in case some don’t know, how to build the 5 million dollar practice, the 10K a Day Dentist, your second book that details how to create the perfect dental day, and finally RedoxDentistry.

Bill Williams: Steve it’s true, I focus on delivering a striking or bold headline or title because it does just what I want it to do, catch a dentist’s attention and create curiosity. Not everyone wants a 5M practice. Our goal in the mastermind is to help doctors achieve their dream whether it’s 1M or 8M. Nothing will be gained if you have a great program with a boring title. In that case, no one may enroll. Here’s what I learned from people like Jay Conrad Levinson of Guerrilla Marketing, Bill Glazer of Outrageous Advertising, Dan Kennedy of No BS Marketing, Rene Mauborgne of The Blue Ocean Strategy: learn to go against traditional thinking, against the current, and the opposite direction as the crowd. Be an early adopter, catching waves as they form on the horizon, not just before they crash onto shore. Enjoy the longest, safest ride. If anyone says it cannot be done, figure out how to do it, or align with someone who has actually done what was deemed impossible. Dr. Omer Reed taught me this, “If it’s been done, it’s probably possible.” The key is to never waver from that potential for the impossible to become possible. Just look for successful people and follow closely, observing what they did to gain their success level.

Steve Parker: One thing I’ve heard is that dentists have a hard time, at least some dentists do, believing that you have averaged over $10,000 a day personally in your practice for the past 15 years. Why is there so much skepticism about any dentist being able to do the same thing as you’ve demonstrated in your practice? They say my patients won’t…or my location won’t allow that.

Bill Williams: If they believe they can or they believe they can’t, then they are probably correct. I find that the mindset of the dentist and then the mindset of the team are the limiting factors for most. When we are in our 5M Mastermind or in our 5M Online Masters Academy, we focus on the 50 ways to have a $10,000 day. We plan to be successful every day with a series of formulas, techniques and systems that tends to always fill in the gaps in our schedules, attracting quality, financially capable patients who need and want high-value dentistry. Much of what can be done to be ultra-successful is done face to face in communication with the patient. But of course, we need a steady supply of interested parties entering our marketing funnel to keep it full. That’s where the blend of Web-Centric and Guerrilla Marketing comes into play. Consistent productivity is the result of having good systems, not magic, not luck, and certainly not superpowers!

Steve Parker: If a dentist comes to your mastermind, what is the weekend like? I know you meet in your home around the dining room table and on the patio around the pool. Is the teaching and mentoring team basically your family and your dental team members?

Bill Williams: Yes, Steve, we meet at our home in Suwanee, GA, a nice suburb of Atlanta. The place is a perfect get-away: peaceful, secluded, just perfect for reflection when not actually at the Big Table. I work with 8-10 dentists at a time and we meet for two days, typically gathering every 100 days or so for a year. I have lectures and workshops. The most important aspect of the mastermind for each dentist is the “hot seat” where they describe the situation, conditions and aspects of their practice before diving into the challenges, obstacles and opportunities they face. After about 35-40 minutes of focus on those ideas we, as a group, come together with a plan, what we call The Prescription, for the next 100 days. We have a system of implementation that moves each practice forward right from the first day they return home.

Look at this example of the effect a weekend can have on a team’s mindset. On a Monday evening after having this Texas dentist in for the 5M Summit Mastermind on Friday and Saturday, this is the text I got:

“Hi Dr. Williams we did it today, $14,770 production and $10,300 collection. Mindset is everything…and not putting things on a “watch” like I always do. I’m saying “Yes!” when patients want to get treatments done :). You would think it’s so simple, yet I made it so hard thus far.”

And, yes, as far as the mentors in the group, my team, they are both family and practice team members. We have a combined 190 years of experience in dentistry between us all. Guest speakers include expert CPAs plus alumni of the Solstice Group and 5M Mastermind. Tyler Williams, one of our top mentors, speaks to groups around the country and leads workshops for dental teams to master communication and leadership skills.

Steve Parker: So you say that it’s the norm, not the exception that doctors can generate far more per day on a consistent basis than they ever believed they could? That’s true for any town in North America basically? Does it matter what treatment mix the doctors can provide?

Bill Williams: I say any dentist who implements the system will do as well as we expect. Even those who implement half of the systems will still get great results. But, the real key is how driven a person is to succeed and follow proven systems. I believe all patients want the same thing and the only difference in them is their ability to afford what we, as dentists, can deliver. Having a system for doing phased dentistry is one of the best methods of consistently maintaining the high production numbers.

It’s easier to be a 10K a Day Dentist if a dentist can perform all 10 aspects of dental services, not just the basics. 10K a day can be done in basic restorative, but there are then lots of referrals going out the door that could be done right there in the practice. Should a dentist not offer endo, perio, implants, extractions, sedation, ortho, TMJ, laser, or CAD-CAM, they are missing out on numerous income opportunities. One truth is this: it only takes half the patients to do twice the dentistry if one can provide all that they need. That’s why I only need about 10-15 new patients a month to do 100-150K of production now. Sure, I have a lot of patients in my “tooth bank” from previous years doing their comprehensive plan in stages, but the main source of production, if you do treatment plan comprehensively, will be on new patients in their first and second years in your practice.

Steve Parker: That sounds like a wrap! I hope our readers get a lot of new ideas and are highly motivated to make some necessary changes in their practices to overcome those bottlenecks that keep them from achieving consistent 10K days, Dr. Williams. Keep up the good work training dentists and their teams, leading the way with the 5M Mastermind and RedoxDentistry. We didn’t get to do it today, so let’s dig more into RedoxDentistry soon.

Stephen K. Parker

Stephen K Parker is the Editor-In-Chief of The Profitable Dentist Magazine, President/CEO of Excellence In Dentistry, Founder of Dentiva Coaching & Consulting, and Founder/President/CEO of WhiteRock Dental. He has spent the past decade investing in, and shaping emerging trends, technologies, and organizations in the dental industry. Mr. Parker coaches and consults with dentists and dental groups on leadership, strategy and business development. He speaks nationally and contributes articles to industry journals on topics ranging from leadership and strategy to practice management systems and starting a group practice. He can be reached at steve@stephenparker.com

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