In episode 86, Prav and Payman discovered how young dentist Rupert Monkhouse is making dentures sexy again.

Rupert returns the invitation this week, hosting Payman on the first edition of his ImpressionClub Xtra podcast.

The line between interviewer and interviewee blurs as the seasoned podcasters take on entrepreneurialism and the art of the hustle.

Payman also gives the lowdown on Evo4—the latest evolution of Enlighten whitening, the trials and tribulations of starting a laboratory and explains why the next generation of Enlighten will be the quietest ever.



In This Episode

01.02 – The Enlighten story

11.34 – Mini Smile Makeover

23.33 – Evo4

38.58 – The future

41.50 – Podcasting and content marketing 

51.07 – The economic landscape

56.40 – MClinDent

01.05.17 – Teaching

01.14.14 – Dream outcomes

01.20.28 – Entrepreneurialism


About Rupert Monkhouse

Rupert Monkhouse qualified from King’s College and has since established a reputation online as ‘The Denture Guy’. He is the host of the ImpressionClub podcast. 


But I thought we’d talk a little bit about side hustles in dentistry. Obviously being on this podcast right now, that’s one of my side hustles. It’s not that useful because it doesn’t do that much for me, but I enjoy it. But for anyone that lives under a rock, who are you?

Pay Oh, are we really going to do that?

Oh yeah, we’re really going to do that.

So I’m Payman. I’m a clinical director. Enlighten. I’m a course coordinator at Mini Smile Makeover, which is the composite hands on course I do with Dipesh Palmer, and I’m the co-host of the Dental Leaders podcast.

Lots of Side.

Hustle. Solanki Solanki. Ki ki ki.

This is Dental Leaders the podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders in dentistry. Your hosts. Payman, Langroudi and Prav Solanki.

So lots of side hustles there. Obviously started off as a dentist. Yeah. Where did this? And Enlightened was the first of these non-clinical things that you did. Yeah. So what was the driving force for that? Because a lot of people now are looking at doing non-clinical things as part of their dentistry portfolio career portfolio, whether that’s right or wrong. So what was the driving force for you to start that? Was it a side project? Was it an interest? When did it end or was it I don’t want to do dentistry.

No, no, no. That wasn’t the the initial thought. Initially we were going to open a practice and we thought a teeth whitening centre and then there was four of us. So my, my two partners, my wife now and we said we’re going to open a teeth whitening centre. And you know what it was? It was childish really. We were, we were doing a lot of buying and selling shares at the time, dot com boom. And we said, Joke about this in dental school. We say, Yeah, yeah. We’ll be sitting there looking at our stock portfolio while these nurses go around, you know, just checking on the patients that, you know, do one thing very well. And I remember, you know, the entourage at the steak place. And so we used to go to we used to go skiing in Switzerland, and we used to, on purpose, fly to Geneva, as I was when I was a kid, only to go to Entourage in Geneva to have a steak and then go to Val D’isere or Verbier or wherever we were going. And the notion that they just did one thing on the menu and they did it really, really well, that that was the initial thought. I also had a boss in Vet who’d managed to get the press really interested in his thing that he was doing. So the idea of the press was quite interesting to me and I thought, I just thought we want to do something different. So do it. Do a practice that’s different.

And what year are we talking here? 2001. So, so whitening. Whitening landscape was very, very different in the UK at that time to what.

Just about started, you know what happened? I had a patient who in vet who came in and said I want veneers on my teeth NHS exempt patient and three Yeah, that didn’t exist at the time, but you could back then you could ask for prior approval, you could ask for, you send off the case and they would either approve it or not. And you know, it was a young, young girl. And my boss, Nick, he said, look, you’re not going to cut her teeth up. And he’d seen something. He’d he’d seen the Occident lecture or something. He said, There’s this company up to them. They do this thing bleaching. Let’s just buy one of their kits and see, see what happens there. And I treated her and it was such a magical experience for me. The idea of you could just change someone’s tooth colour. And you know, when we’re in it for a long time, we forget that the colour of teeth for patients is right up there. It’s right up there near number one most important thing for a patient. And so back then I was just a vet, so that was very clear in my head that, you know, tooth colour was a big deal. And I was thinking, I want to be involved in this whitening thing in one way or the other.

At the time we were thinking of practice, but then when we went to find the, you know, the technique, the machine, the product, the people we met, they said, Look, we don’t have distributors in Europe so we can’t sell you the machine. So then we went back and said, Oh, maybe we can be the distributor. And this idea of not owning a practice and selling things to practices, it started at at that point. But you’re right in so much of saying, you know, a side hustle because we lost hundreds of thousands of pounds in the first four years and crowns and fillings paid for that, not always my crowns and fillings because it was four of us. So I stopped completely for the first five years being a dentist. And in my head I thought, look, you can you can come at women have kids, they stop for five years and they come back. So I was giving myself five years. The others continued being dentists funded this whole project. And, you know, dentistry is very good in that respect, isn’t it? You you can you can choose to take any few days off you want and do a variety of things. It could be teaching. It could be something totally different, right? Some people go into property developing or whatever it is.

And perhaps that’s why it’s such a common thing to have these sort of side hustles, whether it’s following a passion or sounds like there was a sort of a gap in the market kind of thing and you wanted to get involved with more of this kind of stuff. And it does facilitate you doing that. And at what point then after that, five years out? Did you decide that this is solely what I want to be doing now and not going back to the crowns and fillings?

Well, we were just in so deep.

So it was never the plan? No, the plan was always to go back in five years.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. You know, you define yourself as a dentist. You think I still do? Someone asked me. What do you do? First thing I’d say is I’m a dentist. Maybe because it sounds a bit more impressive than saying I supply dentists. I supply syringes. People don’t understand what you mean when you say questionable. Yeah. Yeah. Um, but yeah, we were very we got in deep in debt, and so there was no choice. We couldn’t get out of this. We could go bankrupt, of course, but I didn’t want to do that and got very close a few times. But then, you know, then we got busy. We got busy. And, you know, someone had to head the thing.

And what was the what was the turning point for that? About is that having more on the line, more skin in the game or. Yeah.

Yeah. But the.

Environment change.

At the beginning I was working from my kids bedroom. I became later my kids bedroom and.

Then later your podcast studio.

Yeah, this was a whole different, whole different house. But. But my kids, my kids bedroom and you know, it was one room. Enlighten was one room. And we used to we used to sell machines, these gigantic teeth whitening machines much bigger than a Zoom machine. And they used to ship from the US sort of 12 at a time. And basically the whole of my flat would get filled with these machines. And Sanj, my partner now, who also doesn’t practice, he he used to come in one day a week and do the books and, you know, the payments, the financial side, he was, he was quite strong on that side. And I’d be on the road going visiting dentists and you know, you didn’t know how to do it at the time. A dentist would phone up from any town name the town. I remember the first one was Lincoln. Send your rep and you know everyone else is sending reps. I’d have to get in the car. There was no satnav. There was no Internet really, to speak of. I mean, there was there was a crappy Internet print off the maps. I remember Lincoln.

Pages of Directions.

Yeah. Lincoln. I actually went to the town, went to a petrol station, bought a Lincoln Z, found the place. And I just remember thinking, is this how it’s done? You’re making it up on the spot, aren’t you? Yeah, but side hustles as a as a general thing. It’s become very fashionable thing to do. And I think the really nice thing about it is people can do one job to pay the bills and then follow their passion with their side hustle. And your passion could be something related to dentistry or education or whatever, but it could be something totally different. And in today’s world, what’s beautiful about today’s world is that if you’re good at anything, you could be good at flute, you could be good at country music, you could be good at drawing. If you’re really good at something, you can get that in front of people’s eyes. Definitely wasn’t the case before. Yeah, it really wasn’t. That’s what democratisation of talent. You know, it means there’s a lot more competition.

Yeah, but more opportunity as well.

If you’re good at something. Much more opportunity to get good at something.

And you mentioned education there. Second one, you said MSM. What was the story behind that? Obviously you’ve met De Peche and is that facilitating something or how did that.

Excuse me? Yeah. So what it was we we were doing light activated whitening right at the beginning and you know, the Flowable Dam composite that people used to use, we couldn’t find good Flowable dam. So some of them, as they cured, they get very hot and they’d hurt the patient. Some of them would leak all the time. And the product we were using at the time was this sort of very runny liquid and the very runny liquid would just get under the the dam and the protective dam and it would would burn the patient. And so I used to go to the midwinter in Chicago and to because now I was a Dental supplier. Right. So inverted commas. And on one of those trips I met the people from Cosmo Dent in only to buy their their Flowable Dam. They had a thing called Ginger Guard, which was the best flowable dam I’d come across. So I bought a bunch of that and then we became the world’s biggest buyer of that product because it wasn’t exactly a big product, but we were buying it for every single kit. We were putting one of those in, and that’s how I got introduced to Cosmo Dental body Mopper and their line of composites, which is the enamel range. And so then later on, maybe 2008, 2009, we they had a distributor in the UK already myosin, who you all know because of the denture teeth and they weren’t really pushing it hard at all. And we said to them, Look, we’re doing well with education, online education with Enlighten. We’ll do a similar thing and we’ll push enamel. And they’ve got loads of products. I mean, it’s not just composites, but we will push those products with some form of education. And I’d been on a hands on course in New Orleans at RCD, where I produced my first beautiful composite that I’d ever produced with Enamel. It’s just a really easy material to get right. You know, the optical properties are good, the Polish ability is very easy to get it right. Even even I could do it.

And Matisse told me all about the different types of composite on has he has he via Facebook?

Yeah so so you know I suddenly I remember Sanjay and I were on that on this hands on course in Aacd and I turned around to Sandra, showed him the tooth. I said, Dude, I did that, you know, and, and I just couldn’t. Once I’d seen that, I couldn’t unsee. I just, you know, I wanted to have something to do with that product. So we hassle them and hassle them, made them, made promises we should, we shouldn’t have made, made a gigantic order until it got to the point where they decided to switch distributor. So now we were distributing this, this composite. And one thing about Renamo, all of the different distributors all over the world obviously are in touch with a lot of them now. Everyone does it slightly differently, but education is part of everyone’s process. Different types of some do it online, some do big classes, some do small classes, some do two days, some do one week, some do one hour type polishing exercises. But education is definitely part of it. So we started out by getting the Americans to come over here and do the training. And then I met Jason Smithson. He was the head of the Cornwall Group, one of the best groups, private practitioners groups.

And he he’d been on, I think he’d been seated here or something like he was a very talented young dentist, but he was a young dentist, like I, a young dentist. He was, he was kind of new in composite. And he you could tell this guy had something special. So, you know, we gave him some of the materials and we started with courses with Jason. Um, but then Jason ended up becoming a global superstar. Yeah. Sort of. Sort of outgrew us. And, you know, he’s. I think he’s probably one of the best exports UK Dentistry’s ever produced. You know, there aren’t many UK guys teaching in Speir or constantly on the plane. I mean, if you, if you follow his, his, his progress, what he’s doing every week, he has to come from Cornwall. It’s ridiculous. But, but you know, he’s he is extraordinary insomuch as, you know, he’s like one of the Brazilians or the or the Italians. You know, he’s globally respected teacher in that area. Um, so then I did bump into Depeche at an awards ceremony and he was picking up the prize for Best composite.

Seemed like a good fit then.

Yeah, but he was, he was a vet, just finished his vet and all the other finalists were like famous dentists. And then there was this Depeche Palmer, and it was like, The winner is Depeche Palmer. And I was like, Who’s who the hell is that? And this little child stood up and came and I remember the thing I remember the most is, you know, how they project the case on the on the projector. I looked up to the case and I thought, wow, how did that child do that? Just I him during the party bit. I said to him, did you do that in vet? He was like, Yeah. And I remembered the crap I was putting out in vet and I just thought, there’s something going on here. So I gave him a bunch of materials and six months later he came back with this amazing presentation. He’d used the materials on a bunch of stuff, and about a year after that he said, I want to teach. And it was a bit challenging because he was maybe three, four years out of university and people didn’t want to be taught by someone that young. And I get it. I get it now. It’s funny now if a kid one year out of university tries, you know, does something, even Depeche himself will be like, What does this guy know? He’s one year out of university, you know, But but, you know, he was exceptional.

Really, really exceptional. Dentist. Um, and then, you know, I remember the first case he sent me. I sent straight to Cosmo Dental, and I said, you know, like that sort of idea of, you know, like the Ramachandran, the genius mathematician from India. Like some something, some, some story like that. I just thought, this guy’s a genius. Because the contralateral, the angulations, everything was just exactly copied. Um, later on, I found out he’s got a technique for that. You know that his own technique, his own idea, where he takes a photo of the two, the crops, the image, the contralateral crops, the image flips the image, turns it upside down. And so that then puts it on the screen nice and big. And so he’s directly copying what’s on the screen. He doesn’t have to mentally have to flip it or turn it upside down. And that’s what he’s done. That’s why he you know, and obviously he teaches that. But exceptional, really exceptional with teeth. It really is. And so I thought we got the best composite, the best teacher got a got a really go for it on every every other aspect, you know.

And you’re bringing in with that there’s elements of what you do well with Enlightened in sort of the marketing side of things. And so they’re still sort of fairly separate entities, but there’s there’s a lot of overlap in those. So was it was it sort of you saw that as an opportunity to utilise skills that you had to then facilitate someone like Jason first and then and then Depeche Yeah.

And look, the goal I’m not I can’t pretend the goal wasn’t to sell materials. The goal was to sell materials. That was definitely what we were doing it for, you know, because we’d made these massive, massive promises that we were trying to to fulfil. But the way it’s turned out is that the we really, really enjoy doing the courses once a month. Certainly Renamo sales have gone through the roof, I mean compared to from a very small base, right. So it still doesn’t form a massive part of our business. The overall I think it’s 15% of our business. But the nice thing is, as you say, there’s synergy in so much as we’re kind of in that little parking space that is minimally invasive dentistry. I’ve I’ve resisted bringing Aligners on. And even though it’s become much easier to do that, you know, I know how to I could bring out enlighten aligners. Not not the day after tomorrow, but I could bring out enlighten Aligners. I’m in touch with the labs I’m in touch with. The software could look good. All of that stuff could be right. But the reason I’ve resisted doing it is because I don’t like putting stuff out. That’s me too. Um, and not, not from any pride perspective, but because I always think we’re not big enough.

To do me to. If you’re dense, you can do me too. You can. I’m not saying they only do me too, but. But they can. Yeah. You know, and by the way, talking about Aligners, every massive player has put out an aligner system. I mean, we were counting every single big name is now going to do some sort of aligner including Philips now is doing one. So dense splice got their Suresmile Aramco’s got Sparc and many others. Right. The reason is that Invisalign valuation is just so gigantic that people are thinking, if I can get 1/20 of that valuation, I’m doing all right. Doing all right. Now, we’ve resisted. If I see something or if I come up with an idea for is better than what’s currently there. But to tell you truth, it’s difficult. I find that difficult because, you know, if Invisalign doesn’t manage it, how the hell am I? You know, there’s things like you can put your old aligner into this machine and it can spit out your new aligner and not not have so much plastic waste and all that. I don’t think dentists will go for it only because of the plastic argument. I think there needs to be a step forward for a dentist to choose, enlighten aligners over someone else’s aligners.

But then you’ll have the perfect course, won’t you?

Yeah. So then the thing about teaching is we’re becoming more agnostic in the teaching because, you know, the person who comes on the course needs to be able to use some of the stuff on their in their surgery and not be forced to buy the composite from me and so on. Although there isn’t a comparable conversation. People will people might argue about that, but there isn’t one that so many people can use so well so easily.

Yeah, I think that’s and that’s part of teaching as well. I mean, that’s what we’re doing with our primary impressions course, is that you can use compound, you can use putty, we can teach you how to use both. Actually, it doesn’t really matter. The main thing is, you know, the principle of why you’re using a certain thing in a certain way. The property of it doesn’t matter if it’s this brand, this brand or this material, this material. They’ve both got a similar property, therefore you can use it. And I think that is more valuable as an education perspective. Maybe not if you’re the sole supplier of enamel, but you know, from a from a delegates perspective, it is you don’t want to necessarily be locked into a system because then there’s all sorts of practice politics and corporates and suppliers and all that kind of stuff. So there is a, a degree of using different, using different things, teaching different methods. Absolutely.

Well, you’ll find if once your teaching career kicks off a bit more, you’ll find that there will be a major sponsor. And then not not only because the major sponsor is paying you, it’s not only that, it’s the access that that sponsor gives you to what they’re doing when they’re doing it. Early access to stuff will mean that you’ll get inspired by that just for the sake of the argument. If Ivoclar are giving you early access to that printed denture thing, you will then start making techniques, teaching techniques that are that are specific to that and then you end up funnelling into if if the sponsor is smart enough or recognises you as a good enough teacher, you end up funnelling into that. And I see that with, you know, all the other composite courses, you know, some of the other manufacturers are very good at that and they’ve got, you know, the other the other composite teachers are using them. And I don’t think they they, you know, are doing it only because they’re being paid. I think what happens is you end up learning the system that you’re learning and doing good things with that.

And once you’re not necessarily like ownership of it, but being able to drive that forwards, as you say, like getting involved. And I do like that idea and I’ve started like what we’re doing at the BCD with the digital stuff and beautiful wheels. The wheels have been turning. Thank you, man. The wheels have been turning on that. And how can we how can we do it for partials? How can we do sort of, you know, innovative additions with this? How can we facilitate this this more? And I think that is an exciting bit. I mean, speaking of developments, you’ve already talked there about looking at other products, and that’s clearly just your mind sort of ticking over on whether it’s looking at other holes in the market or facilitating bits. I mean, obviously we plan this for a while and we’ve been struggling to get a date because you’ve been a busy man doing a world tour, even.

Though we live five minutes away from each other.

Even though you’ve ambled down the road.

Today I actually took a lime bike. There was one right outside my door. I just thought it must be it must be fate. Too easy.

But, you know, we struggled that because you’ve been on your world tour talking all things Evo four and it’s been a long time, a long time coming. We know because that lovely video that you got of me and Tilly has been finally shared. You’re beautiful, you’re beautiful. It’s finally been shared after that. So. Talk us through Evo four. What’s the driving force with that? What? Why? Why the changes? Well, firstly, what are the changes for people that maybe haven’t seen it yet?

Okay, so Evo three was two weeks of homework. It was taken impression start the toothpaste, the hydroxy appetite toothpaste, two weeks of home whitening and then 40 minutes in the chair and then the whitening toothpaste. So that’s what Evo three was. Evo four is three weeks of home whitening, so no in-office part. And the concentration of the first two weeks is the same as before. But the third week is daytime whitening instead of Night-Time whitening. And there’s also attachments on the trays on the sixes, like just like Invisalign, which we can go into. And then the final piece is the, you know, we’ve always been focussed on the freshness of the gel, not always. Since Evo two, we’ve been focussed on the freshness of the gel. How long ago was it made? Where was it made? You know, what was it? What was the formula? And then how long ago was it made? How was it stored? How was it shipped? How long was it kept by the dentist before it got into the patient’s mouth because of the gel breakdown becomes as it breaks down, the concentration goes down and the PH goes down. So it becomes acidic and weaker at the same time. So with Evo four, there was a few of these things that needed to be addressed.

There’s a lot of factors that the general dentists in the street won’t necessarily be thinking about. Yeah, and obviously all of those things are going to affect the result. Yeah. Which is part of the marketing of what you hang your hang your hat on as well as the result that you’re going to get. So was this driven to improve that guarantee? Essentially, yeah.

So look, the evolution system’s always been about results and people get it wrong. Sometimes they because they don’t know that or they haven’t tried it, they think it’s to do with the packaging and we try hard on packaging. We do.

I do love the new tray, the new tray case or beautiful.

If you only knew what I’ve been through to get there, you’d be amazed How many.

Drawings of that have you got?

Amazed. What a nightmare. So. So at one point I spoke to Simon’s wife, Megan, and Simon Chard’s wife, Megan. And she was. She was telling me that every time she throws a bit of plastic in the bin, she she gets palpitations for her, for her kids. And that’s just something in my head clicked that, okay. Oh, right. But I really didn’t think that it was that that visceral for for for those guys. So I thought it’s a business thing. Green is kind of cool these days, so they’re going with that. But. But when when she said that, it’s something, something clicked in my head. And so we we were determined by the way, we were getting quite a lot of dentists contacting us saying, why is there so much plastic in your kit? And they were made of plastic, right? Even the outside. Yeah. So then something clicked in my head that said every element that is possible to to swap switch needs to be switched. And so, I mean, we’ll find out if there’s such a thing as a metal or a wooden syringe or something, but haven’t been able to find an alternative for the syringe. Yeah, we still use toothpaste tubes. We still use toothpaste tubes. And I’ll explain the reason for that.

No collab with Parler coming soon?

No. Um, I’ll explain the reason for that in a moment. So we do still use those and then some of the thermally stable elements so that the envelope that everything goes in need to be plastic too. And. And. And we’re removing twice as much plastic from the environment as we’re putting in. So we can call the thing plastic negative. But everything else we change to either paper or card. Then we come to the tray case and the tray case. There are manufacturers in the world who make trade cases. That’s all they do. And we looked at all of them and no one was doing a metal one. And so it came to actually, you know, making our own. And I’ve learned this lesson when you make your own, it’s always much, much more painful than you think it’s going to be. And to someone who doesn’t, who’s never done this before, the idea that it’s painful making a little tin, you know, it seems ridiculous, but it is, you know, like the two sides of the tin, you know, should it be a hinge because dentists want to flip the thing open. Dramatic reveal. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, why should it why should you need two hands? Right.

So it’s too much effort. Yeah. But a hinge on metal, it’s it makes things much more complicated. Much, much more complicated. Um, then, you know, it’s a two part thing. Just making this ridiculous noise. It still is. Actually, the next version is going to make less noise. Um, the, the imprinting, the logo into the metal so that it’s correct. You understand so many different iterations we’ve been and cost we’ve been through just to make that one thing metal. Yeah. So that’s, that’s the story of that. But yeah, it’s about it is about predictability. And what we wanted is to have the maximum number of patients get to delighted within the simple three week treatment. And because bruxism and para function for me is definitely the biggest issue. The attachments help a lot with that, so they keep the tray much more stable. It’s the back that tends to move. So, you know, keeping the back in the same place, the daytime element is again about that. So because bruxas obviously don’t grind as much when they’re awake. Um, doesn’t mean there isn’t going to be any cases that are longer, but we’re trying to minimise the number of cases that take longer.

Mhm. Mhm. Mhm. Mhm.

That’s and you mentioned about the packaging and what’s being sent and things like that now. Is that has there been a shift in that as well, that it’s purely you know, your order comes in and you get a single pack straight through rather than a big batch of stuff turning up.

So what we found was dentists. We were always measuring the time from factory to dentist. We’d be measuring that since to the maximum time. So obviously sometimes it’s very quick, isn’t it? If you’re lucky and the thing arrives, the syringes arrive from the factory yesterday. You order today and your patients the day after tomorrow. You could be super lucky and have it very quickly. And by the way, the reason we’re doing all this is because those treatments are so beautiful, so low sensitivity. The ones that are fresh, fresh, fresh. Yeah. But the longest time is you’re getting the last syringe in the batch. You buy it, you then keep it. And the last one of the ones that you use in your practice, some guys buy 24 kits or whatever and they want them all. So the 24th kit has been sitting in the fridge for a long time. It could be six, eight months sometimes. Yeah. Sometimes it’s been sitting enlightened for, for well it doesn’t anymore. But back then sitting in an enlightened for, for a few months. And so it’s broken down. It’s broken down. So now what we do is if you buy three kits from us, we don’t send you the kits at all. We just send you everything you need for the first visit, which is impression materials and the hydroxy appetite toothpaste.

You send us the impression or sends the scan and then the lab work and the kits all come back together. So at least we’ve got total control over the freshness of the gel that goes into the patient’s mouth. So it’s only in the practice for 2 or 3 days before the patient takes it. And then what we’ve said is we’re going to work to a much shorter shelf life than the manufacturer is saying. So I’m saying that now the goal we’re aiming for is one month, the oldest syringe, so one month from factory to mouth. But we’re not there right now. It’s two months from factory to mouth, the oldest syringe. And unfortunately, what that means is we do end up sometimes we happen in Covid where we run out of gel or we end up having to throw gel away. And, you know, we’re measuring every bit of plastic now that we throw away. And so it’s a difficulty. But I’d rather throw gel away than than not have the best result because, you know, at the end of the day, we have nothing if we don’t have brilliant results. It’s a results. It’s all about results. Yeah.

And you said about the change in tray design and things like that. Obviously the Enlightened only lab has come up in that time as well. Was that in the transition from 3 to 4 or earlier?

Did it just before Covid? Just before Covid, the real the real push for that was because of digital. So the lab that we were using wasn’t able to do digital. They were outsourcing it to another lab themselves. And within that the Chinese whispers the cost and the quality both. It was high cost, low quality, even though these were some of the most famous labs in the country. You know, it’s just it was just they weren’t invested in it or whatever. Know. It turns out, though, that making trays on printed models is much harder than making trays on stone models. And so because there were two other labs involved trying to tweak what’s going on in these two other labs when all they want to do and I get it, all they want to do is get on get on with the job was proving too difficult where we it was a very sort of difficult decision because running a lab is totally different to running a, you know, syringe business.

But the whole new experience.

Whole the whole new experience hiring people and then, you know, 3D printers, you know the area, you’re more involved. We’re on our third type of 3D printer now. The resins, I don’t think I still don’t think we’re there. I mean, if you compared an impression and a scan of the same patient and we’ve done this all the time, right? We we do it for our team. So take a scan, take an impression, make trays, two sets of trays. You do it with your denture thing, two sets of trays, and then put them into 4 or 5 of our staff, including myself, to feel what’s the difference? The impressions produce tighter fitting trays so that, you know, even though it’s very improved, I still don’t think we’re there.

But for the dentures, the opposite. They prefer the digitally manufactured but that’s that’s a.

Patients do.

But that’s a manufactured thing rather than a sort of production thing. So I mean with that and that’s clearly having that lab there. I mean that’s one of the things I like to say to patients when I’m discussing, sorry, various windings that we offer is that it’s all controlled in house and patients really actually appreciate that they really like that. That angle is it’s really interesting.

Having different dentists say to their patients is really interesting because you know, you’re kind of a technical person, so that resonates for you and you’re the way it works out. Is when you’ve been somewhere for a certain number of years, you attract the kind of patient that likes the kind of dentist that you are. You know the word of mouth piece, right? And so let’s just for the sake of let’s say your patients are more technically aware minded than the average, and because you’re more technically minded than the average, then when you come to discuss the difference between enlightened and boutique, you talk about it in a technical way. And for you, this in-house control thing is what’s resonating and working. But I bet you if we sat down with ten enlightened users, you’d be the only one who was saying that. Yeah. And then I get this call all the time, right? All the time. Sometimes my biggest users call me up. When we went to 3 to 4, I had 3 or 4 very, very difficult conversations with some of our biggest users in the country. So you’re making a gigantic mistake because the way I sell it is I sell the in-office part, and patients love that. And that’s what And you don’t know because I’m seeing patients. You’re not. Yeah. Lucky for us, this is Evo four. And so we’ve been through this three times before. And, you know, sometimes I want to try to explain to the guy, listen, you joined the Evo three here. If you if you joined the Evo two, you would have found Evo three. A big change because Enlightened used to be the first version used to be to in-office treatments with three weeks of home in between and painkillers throughout the whole thing because it was so much sensitivity. None of the toothpastes, none of the Desensitises Then it became, you know, home followed by office, then home followed by office with the desensitises and now finally home on its own. The the nice thing is lots and lots and lots of people weren’t using Enlightened because of the office part. So maybe we’ve opened that.

You gained more than you’ve annoyed. He will still probably stick with it anyway. I mean with that third week that’s hydrogen peroxide now.

Yeah. One hour a day.

So because what’s been the what’s allowed that to happen? Because my thinking was that it had to be all carbamide these days and patients can’t take that home with them, is it? No, no.

The reason we hadn’t done it up to now is because hydrogen peroxide is much more unstable. So much harder to keep that PH neutral. But because we’re instituting this much quicker from factory to patient, it’s possible to do that now with hydrogen peroxide.

So actually the products.

It’s legal.

But it’s not it’s not drastically different to what it could have been before. It’s just purely the the systems you’ve put in place allowing that to be more.

Well, it’s a different hydrogen peroxide to the hydrogen peroxide. That’s different that from a totally different manufacturer. It’s a different, totally different formula. But we tried lots of them and this is the best one that we tried. So we try it and split arch. And the big problem with hydrogen peroxide gels is they tend to cause a lot more white spots than carbamide peroxide gels. And it’s a bit of a worry because we’ve treated maybe a thousand patients with.


Before putting it on the market. And I think we’ve ironed out the problems and all that. But in the first week of Evo4 we treated more than 1000 patients and you don’t really know until you know. So, you know, in fact the treatments haven’t yet come through yet because it takes three weeks for the treatment to two weeks for the trays, three weeks for the treatment. And we only launched it about six weeks ago. So we’ll see soon. We’ll find out.

We’ll find out with the icon sales going through the roof. But so is it is it purely the only kit you can take home? Peroxide, Hydrogen peroxide? Sorry. Is it the only kit that lets you take away hydrogen peroxide? No, no.

I think de white is hydrogen peroxide. Polar de is hydrogen peroxide. So, no, it’s fine. You can take it. One thing we tried to stay away from now, though, is the chemical names. Particularly for the patient. Yeah. Patient doesn’t need to know. Carbamide hydrogen. One, two, three. None of that. None of that. And we’ve got as as an industry, we’ve got so addicted to these things. But you don’t tell your patient any other thing that you put in their mouth what the composition is. Yeah, right. The other part of it is I feel like from a from a communication perspective, it does commoditize it somewhat because as soon as you say 10% carbamide peroxide, yeah, people think, well, that’s ten.

Different systems that.

Do that. That’s all there is. It’s 10% carbamide peroxide. There’s no appreciation of the difference between different 10% carbamide peroxide. So for that reason too.

And what’s obviously, as you said, we’re six weeks in.


Aside from the enlightened aligner system, which I’m very excited for, what’s the where do you see this progressing to for yourself as it’s, it’s no longer the side hustle, it’s the majority thing that you’re doing. Yeah. What’s the is there still the same passion for developing this new product and improving this system? What?


What’s that future looking like?

I think. I think you change as a person as you get older. Right. So how old are you?



Yeah, I was. I was 28 when we started.

Enlightened. Yeah.

And at your age, there’s an excitement and an energy.


You can happily think about a problem for a week. And because you’re so excited by it, you know, you can really do that. As you get to my age, your brain slows down a little bit, and what ends up happening is experience makes up for that, but your brain hasn’t got quite the sort of immediacy to it. But, but nonetheless, you know, enlightened is all about how good it is, right? So that’s that’s what we that’s the only thing we’re good at. So, so that’s what we have to be really strong on. And where do I see it going? We’ve still got a tiny percentage of the market. I mean, you know, the nice thing when you talk to these corporate finance people, they get quite excited until they say how many dentists are using it. It’s a tiny percentage. I mean, we could triple, quadruple, enlightened easily because there aren’t that many dentists using it. The ones who are using it are using it quite a lot. The reorder rates. Brilliant that people don’t leave us very often. The ones who leave us tend to come back to us. Those metrics that the bankers like a lot. But so for now would be about growing it through through Evo4. I am very focussed on over-the-counter as well. Okay. Because number one, I don’t think crest strips are as good as.

In some enlightened strips are we?

I don’t think strips are the right way. But, but, but I don’t think crest strips are as good as they could be as far as making teeth white. And they’re definitely not as good as they could be from the marketing perspective. And there’s others that high smiles and people who are much stronger from a marketing perspective. Not not that I think I can do much better than them financially, but I think there’s some unfinished business. For instance, I think that over the counter there’s much more potential for improvement than in professional.

And it’s widening the net. It’s an entry level.

Difficult, though. Difficult business. That’s not the business we’re in. It’s a very cash intensive business. A lot of it is Ecom based and e-commerce become much more expensive since Apple’s giving people the option of not having ads specific to them. Do you know about that?

I’ve I’ve heard yeah that’s that was one of the things with your other other other hustle what you do with Prav with the with the Dental Leaders and that that was part of was that the ambition for that was sort of having, getting some data. Was it a passion project? Where did that side of it?

I’d be lying. I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was to do with content and marketing to start with. Yeah, it definitely was. And we decided about seven.


Seven years ago to go down a content marketing approach as opposed to just ads. So I was very into podcasts and I thought, I want to do a podcast, perhaps that he wants to do a podcast with good friends. I said, Let’s do one together, simple as that. But now I see it much more as a hobby. It’s the closest thing I’ve got to a hobby. I mean, I know lots of people have got lots of hobbies, right? People play golf and scuba dive and, you know, people do a lot of fun things in their lives. Yeah, but what is a hobby? Like if you class a hobby as something you enjoy doing and also something you’re trying to be better at, you know, whether it’s golf or whatever, it’s it’s it’s almost the closest thing I’ve got to a hobby.

Well, we know because you’ve gone through my microphone settings very well for me today, but I think it’s.

Do you enjoy it.

I do. I’m I’m waning a little and I’m going to take a little break from from the lives.


And the lives from the lives. From the.

Lives. Yeah.

So you’re going to do more of these?


Yeah, a little bit more of this. I’ve got a few people lined up. Those months have been warmer. Celine, Rhona, Simon, just. Just pop in. I wanted to be more. More behind the scenes thing a little bit less or cover a bit more about social media pitfalls of that because I think it’s very prominent and partly with the lives very well. It’s going to be episode 100 in 2 weeks time, so it feels like a nice time to take a little hiatus there, but just a little. I’m a just a little bit sort of fatigued and and burnt with it a little bit. And whether that’s partly Instagram and algorithms and Google and Apple and all that. That’s I enjoy I still enjoy doing it. But it’s the it’s the getting behind of sorting out all the guests and organising it all that I’m just a little bit burnt with when I’m actually on the on the session or sat here now I love it. It’s great. And it’s it’s helped me a lot. It’s helped me meet a lot of great people. It’s gonna be.

That hard getting guests, though. Can it?

No, it’s not hard getting guests. It’s just finding the time to sit there and message people. Oh, everyone. Everyone loves to do it. Everyone wants to do it. It’s. Yeah, it’s just that side of it. I’ve got a bit.

I mean, yours is a bit different to, to mine because yours each, each episode is about a subject. Yeah. Whereas ours is, there’s no subject. The subject is the person. Yeah. So you don’t have to think about anything before actually doing the podcast. I do try and do a bit of research about the person because I find it makes for a better podcast, but at the same time, sometimes I like going in completely cold and finding out live and delving deep. Yeah, yeah. But I hear what you’re saying about the hassle. I don’t know. Is it that you haven’t got enough people working for you to, to zero. Yeah. Yeah. But is that it. Is that, is there, is there an editing thing and uploading piece. Is that the problem. Because. Because I don’t do any of that. So if I had to do that, I mean I just have to post on social once a week and I’ve chosen to do I don’t have to do that. I’ve chosen to do that. And even that I find quite hassle. Yeah.

I mean, they’re.

Two separate entities, you know, it’s like the live, the live itself that lives on Instagram. Yeah, yeah. I’m a, I’m a year behind in turning that into an actual podcast and that’s relatively heavy because I’ve got to, you know, download the video. Yeah, move it over onto there, strip off the audio, enhance the audio, move it into.

Do you just go straight into YouTube?

Because it’s fun. Youtube does nothing. I put them all on. Admittedly, I don’t know enough about YouTube as a platform to like do it, but you know, I’ll stick them on it. I’ll do bugger all so I can’t be asked to do that. It takes too long and it’s not doing anything. So I’m like, and that’s it. It’s like, I don’t. The bit that I enjoy is the bit of the conversation and the live element of it and chatting. And I love I love that people enjoy it and they want it to be a podcast and stuff. And that’s what I’ve tried to get on with it and that’s great. Um, but yeah, it’s all that other side of it I don’t enjoy because they’re not the hobby. It’s a, it’s a job that doesn’t actually do do that much for me from a job perspective, from a Yeah, from a meeting loads of people. And obviously because it’s very clinical, mostly getting stuck in and learning from some of the best people now around the world. I’ve got international guests on it and getting to deep dive with them on their chosen topic is great for me from a clinical perspective as well. Yeah, so that side of it I enjoy. It’s the other, the other bits around it that aren’t so fun. So something like this where I can just do it and put it on is, is good. But yeah, I want to say I want to cover the other side of. So the social media side of it and that’s where, you know, the plan was to do the first one of these with Celine. But we we missed each other at the end of work.

Because they cover the social media side. You want to talk about the social media side? Yeah.

Or talk more about the mental health side of everything. Yeah, because BCD, as always, lots of good chat happens at two in the morning at the BCD. Yeah, but I was talking with with an Instagram friend who were talking about mental health and the struggles I was having in my early, early days in, in my practice in the NHS practices. And, and he sort of turned around and went, Well, how you present yourself, I never would assume that you were having such a tough time and I needed quit dentistry after a year and that kind of stuff. And he’s. Because it’s you know, social media is the it’s the swan right on the top. It’s all blissful and lovely and serene, and then underneath the legs are going like nuts and things like that and. And I think everyone needs to appreciate that everyone’s like that and everyone has those issues. And I think I think that would be a really valuable thing to to put out there because that’s part of I want to do is with this is give value. But also, you know, with the clinical clinical stuff, it’s facilitating other people. And so what the newsletters meant to be about I’ve got newsletters.


Gigantic pieces of work, but you could turn those newsletters into a book. You really could.

Maybe that’s a lot.

Of work goes into that. I remember contacting you once and saying, Dude, you’re doing this all yourself, or Yeah, because they’re so big and.

New one coming out tomorrow, guys. Actually, by the time we’ve released this, it’ll be out. Um, but yeah, even, even that, you know, that started off as I want to. Yeah. I’ve been given this sort of little bit of a platform on, on social media and I want to facilitate other, you know, great clinicians that want to or not other great. I want to facilitate great clinicians and not put myself in that bracket, but I want to facilitate great people that want to put their stuff out there but you know, and utilise this platform, the impression club platform or whatever. And that’s what, that’s what it started like. And yeah, as, as with, you know, as you say with the podcast, yes, there’s a degree of, there’s a mail list involved, so there’s a little bit of benefit there somewhere potentially if you want to leverage on that. But it was I enjoyed putting it together. But it is it is a lot of work. But now that I’ve stopped chasing people for it and I don’t get much stuff, it’s easier than when it’s 60 pages or something like some of them are. Um, but yeah, it’s, yeah, it’s a lot of, it’s a lot of work.

How many days a.

Week do you drill for?

Yeah. So, I mean, you know, one thing I noticed was during lockdown, the amount of new content that came out of dentistry, if you remember. Oh, it’s Monique Clive with Christian Coachman, and you realise that, you know, dentists are busy being dentists and to pull off. Both content and dentistry is quite a lot of work. And now you’re doing this content thing.

Well, that’s it. When does.

That start? September.


Yeah. So that’s it. So the minute we’re on the Thursday right now because that’s my, my admin day. Yeah. But yeah. From September it’s going to be, I’m going to be back to five days it’s going to be and, and I think that’s maybe partly why I’ve got this little bit of a block with it at the minute is that I’ve got in the back of my mind going, I can’t do four lives a week from September.

I need. Are you doing four a week?

So for four I’m doing one a week or one a week.

For a month. For a month, Yeah.

I’m not going to be able to do that from September, so maybe I need to trim it back a little bit. Yeah. And then I’ve sort of going, What am I doing to then I can’t really be that, you know, it’s not that pressing to be like, I need to find 4 or 5 people in a month to do so. I think, I think that is part of it, that I’m sort of almost weaning myself off it before I get forced to. Yeah, yeah. But I still want to do it because I, I enjoy, I enjoy doing it and it’s, it’s allowed me a lot of, a lot of things. Um, but yeah, it’s going to be a different change of pace in September for sure. But yeah, a new challenge, an interesting challenge.

And you’re going to be working as a dentist as.

Well. Yeah.

So it’s three days at uni, two days in practice at Nick. Yeah, yeah.

So tell me this. Now that we’re in the, you know, this year we were very worried about this year, about recessionary type pressures, cost of living, all of that, which by the way, I mean people are suffering, there’s no doubt about that. But from the patient perspective and I guess Nick Fahey’s practice is higher end, right? It’s a well-to-do kind of patient group. But with your patients, have you noticed people not going for bigger treatment plans? Because I’m hearing that from some of the very cosmetic dentists.

Yeah, I think.

You’re not a very cosmetic dentist. I’m not.

A very cosmetic.

Dentist. Have you felt it or not? Have you felt people have you felt your conversion rate going down?

I think a little bit, but not as not as much as it could have been. I think I think our our overall, you know, in Berkshire, it’s a relatively sort of recession proof area. Um, but yeah, I think.

From from the.

More cosmetic dentists that are in there, They I think they are seeing that when it’s a purely cosmetic thing, that there is a little bit of pushback, there’s a little bit of waiting and maybe six months time and that kind of stuff. The majority of what I do is just, you know, needs must restorative kind of thing. So I don’t think that side of it is has been affected too much. But I can imagine I mean, what what are your numbers?

We’re down about.

10% from this time last year. Enlightened wise. Yeah. But that said, this time last year was a bonanza.

Okay. End of the zoom boom stuff.

Yeah. Yeah.

But I’ve never been down before, and that hurts. You know, it’s a horrible feeling. Know not not only for me, but for the team. We incentivise our team on growth. And so, you know, our team didn’t receive a bonus, which hurts them, you know, and then that the knock on effect that has on us and you know the worry. Right The worry to tell you the truth, if I’m being very honest with you, I’m pleasantly surprised that it’s only 10% because I was expecting a proper I mean, how old were you in 2008? Gcses.

15? Yeah.

2008. When Lehman went down, it was it would be the equivalent of someone saying to you, Amazon’s gone down. Yeah or no, Google’s gone down. Because Lehman It wasn’t just any old bank. It was it was like one of the banks. People used to boast about banking with Lehman’s or working at Lehman’s or whatever. When that Lehman’s went down, it was such a big shock that the phone didn’t ring for three days at a lighter. I remember on day two thinking it’s all over the whole thing that all the work we’ve done, it’s all over, you know, because you didn’t know when the phone was going to ring here. Yeah. And I don’t think we really came out of it until 2017, 18, really, in sentiment wise. Yeah.

Well, I mean, there wasn’t sitting there in the back of the mind like this could all be over tomorrow kind of thing. No, no.

But just sentiment like. Like people wanting to buy things.


Easily. Yeah. By the way, it gives rise to a bunch of new businesses like Aldi and, you know, discounters, Prem, that kind of thing that, you know, discounters suddenly become the businesses. Right? The businesses at the moment. So there’s opportunity in it. Of course there’s always opportunity in any sort of big movement. Right. But what my point is, it was such a massive shock that I thought we’d be in that again. And by the way, we could be right. We don’t know which bank is going to go down the day after tomorrow. We don’t know.


But if it doesn’t, I mean, I wasn’t expecting to get to May. Things are only down 10% for Enlightened. I think if Air Force had something to do with it, you know the razzmatazz of Evo four and and people, you know, the excitement of it and all of that, maybe that’s part of it. I would have been seeing a much bigger drop. Yeah. But still, that’s that’s that’s right. But talking to people, I had dinner with Matty in Liverpool.

Nice little tie. Yeah. Well, he was saying.

He was saying he was six months booked ahead before. Yeah. Now he’s four months booked ahead.

Oh, poor guy. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Yeah, But you know what? The thing that it sort of made me think in my head was if Matty has gone from six months to four months, he’s 30% down. Someone else has gone from six weeks to four weeks. Someone else has gone from six days to four days. Yeah. And there’s plenty of people. I was one of them as a very private dentist and a very expensive practice in central London. I was booked six days ahead. You know, no more than that.

Yeah, we definitely had an initial, I don’t know, maybe two months ago, an initial bit where things suddenly looked a bit gappy. Yeah, but it’s been. But then as soon as we saw that it went right. What are we doing about the, you know, how on it are we with the recalls and that kind of stuff. And then as soon as we went, oh, we’ve been a bit lazy on that actually. And we started up, started up the, you know, the wheels of everything, everyone getting the message and then it fell back up again. So yeah, it wasn’t, it was once they were nudged about it, patients like, oh yeah, no I need to go and book my check up. Yeah. But when they weren’t being nudged about it, it was, it wasn’t a priority. And then, but then as soon as it was they’re like, oh yeah, no that’s, that’s what, that’s what I do every six months and hygienist and did it. I need to get back into it. So once they were nudged about it they, they did come back to it and but yeah, maybe the maybe the more cosmetic side is going to be different.

Yeah, maybe. Now, tell me this. Your course, you’re doing so fixed and removable props. 18 grand a.

Year for three years. For now, four.


Four years, four.

Years. And it can go up every year.

It’s very interesting, man, because, I mean, you must have had the thought that I could take that 18 grand and do. Let’s just stick to education. You could just spend it on education. Every year, you know, you could do choice one year, spear the other year, panky the other year if you could, if you wanted to do that, or let’s not stick to education, you could take that 18 grand and hire a I don’t know.

Some somebody said you could.

But you know what I mean. Yeah. You could have deployed it in so many different ways. What was the thing that in the end that the final sort of key thing that said, all right, now I’m going to I am going to do this and then.

Honestly, the bit that really switched it around for me was when Honey said, Oh, you realise if you do it this year. We’ll finish it exactly the same time because she’s got two years. She’ll have two years left in September of a ortho and two years of consultant. After that, four years will both be done. But that’s a good sign.

But why is that? Why is that? Wasn’t there. Wasn’t there an element of while she’s busy not making much money, you should be busy making money and.

Yeah, but if it’s. Well, I was on the flip. I was like, if it’s a bit naff that she’s not making money, it may as well be NAFTA. Neither of us are making money, and then we’re both good rather than elongating that time with one of us isn’t and one of us is. So that was I was I was really toing and froing with it until and I was leaning on looking at doing it for sure because Nick was very supportive of it for a start as well.

But Nick thought it was a really good idea. Yeah.

Yeah. Yeah.


I think for him it was it was such a game changer for him.

Oh, he’s done it.

Yeah. Yeah, he did it in 2020, 25 years ago.

Eastman Because before, before off air, I was saying to you, you might as well just sit for four years and watch. Nick. Yeah. And that would be more of an education than I.

Mean, that was.

That was part of my thing. Yeah, because. Because realistically, that I’m still waiting on the episode of Nick and Sarah, by the way, and Dental Leaders. Yeah.

Prav look.



Think they might need to do separate ones, but there’ll be two part to it as there will be. But I was, I was looking at that going, my, I don’t have an ambition to be at any of the practice to work anywhere else you know that that practice there it’s phenomenal And there I’ve got two fantastic mentors there and sort of, you know, owe a lot to that. But I just sit there and go, Well, once I’ve finished, I want to go and restore a lot of Nicks surgery that he doesn’t necessarily want to be restoring much anymore. He wants to be surgery inking. So I said that I was like, That’s what I want to do. So I was like, Well, actually, if why, why don’t I drop a day a week for a year and you teach me everything and then get on with it rather than. Yeah. And, and I yeah, there’s, but there’s more to it than I think the balance with doing the course is that you’ve then got lots of mentors whether, whether Nick is my main mentor and I hope he will be throughout that process. There’s, there’s lots of other people to then learn from rather than just being indoctrinated is the wrong word. But, you know, having that one perspective all the time, even if it’s of a phenomenal clinician, it’s still, I think, good to have those that different, different sort of outlook, different skill set as well. And I love the subject as well. And I’m really looking forward to going back and actually learning some stuff in a conventional way. Yeah, I’ve thought about doing the sort of distance one that doesn’t really get you on the specialist list but have an indent, and I’d still learn from that, but I’m no good at doing distance learning. I need to be sat down and made to work.

Yeah, I’m the same.

I’m the same. I think you’re right to highlight the human contact piece. Yeah, because, you know, I’ve got a friend about to jump into an MBA, and I said to him, Look, the education, surely you can get it all online, right? But the contacts, you know, having people on the end of a phone. Yeah. High level people on the end of a phone that you you probably will have by the end of this process. That’s probably the biggest part of it. But I go back to the 18 grand a year just if we’re just talking finance. Yeah. Because you know, you’ll still end up being poorer by spending the money my way. Yeah, but if you had.

Not taken the financial hit of not working three days a week.

Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Yeah. But it’s a double whammy.

But so let’s just, for the sake of the argument, say, okay, yeah. You spent the first year in spear finishing the whole of spear. Is that about 18 grand? Probably, yeah. Yeah. And then the second year you went and did the whole. Of course, for the sake of the argument, you’d be stupid to do both. Right? But let’s imagine. Yeah. You’d get a bunch of like mentors out of those two processes to um, I think there is, there’s something about, you know, the letters after your name kind of thing. There’s, there’s no doubt about that. There’s something about being on the specialist list and. Kind of diminishing, kind of diminishing, I think. But as a as a thing that, you know, I think ten years ago maybe that, you know, that made more sense than it does now. Because, you know, when you look at the people you look up to. The fact that Jason isn’t on a specialist list doesn’t make me think he can’t do the work or anything like that.

Yeah, and.

I think that’s very much a. It was waiting around to the social media side of things again, isn’t it? Yeah, there’s lots of, you know, Emmy. Yeah. Fantastic GDP that’s doing this incredible high level stuff. Or, you know, there’s what you had Millie on the podcast last week. Yeah. And it was, funnily enough, we were at the dinner and yeah, honey just started author and whatever, and she’s going, Oh, I really think I might go back and, and do try and do national recruitment and do ortho. And that’s why you’re doing you’re doing it at such a high level already, like and I sort of defeating my own argument about why I’m going to go and do really. But it was it was interesting, but when it was someone else, I was like, but why would you want to do that? But when I look at it and go, Well, say, well, it would be good to go and learn it properly, you’re right.

Look, I think even if, let’s say Millie went into them mouth, she would bring to their mouth everything that she’s got now. Yeah. And then would use them all to make her new version of her. Yes. So. So it’s not black and white, but I’m just interested in your thought process, is it that is it that you want to keep up with, Honey? Is that part of it?

No, not at all. Not at all. She can do.

That. That’s fine. Um. No.

Does she listen to these?

She doesn’t know she wants this. She won’t listen to this.

My wife doesn’t listen to Dental Leaders either.

She. She.

She checks in when, like, her consultant was on the other week.

And she she had to be.

There intently for that one. Um, no, I think a bit like what you said there for, for Millie like. I feel I can get maybe more out of the course by being in the environment that I’m in, because I can.

Take it back.

In the practice where I can already be practising it. I’m not in my previous practice or whatever it is where you’re learning all this stuff and you can’t really put it into practice because you’ve got 6000 days to do or whatever. So I think that’s a big a big part of it too, is I look at it as a really good opportunity. To to do this, but also get so much from it because I’ve got this sort of privileged position in this practice rather than using it as a way of escaping another practice or a level or anything like that. Um, but yeah, I’m looking forward to it. But there’s a lot of yeah. Extra work to do, so yeah.

So have you looked.

At it at King’s, What is the, you know, the process, what are you going to be doing every day? Are you going to be doing lab work and stuff?

Oh yeah.

There’s some lab work going on, which is good. It’s going to be interesting not being able to send your lab work off to the best people in the country. Yeah, because that’s, that’s. That’s the. That’s the only secret, guys, is just pay someone who’s good at their job to do what.

They’re good at.

That’s, that’s, that’s that’s all I do. It’s not that. It’s not that it’s not that deep, but it’s, it’s going to be I think that’s an interesting side of it as well, because that’s what we end up talking about or, you know, teaching on the on our first course we actually had.

Did you enjoy the course?

I think so.

I think so. Well, you mean the impression cause. Oh, yeah. Loved it. Loved it. We got the next one next weekend. How many.


18. 18 per course.

How many teachers? Two.

Two. So it’s. That’s a.

Good ratio.

It was great. It was great. It was really. It’s really, really hands on. It’s really intensive. But I just love. I love teaching. I love teaching. And, um, luckily, I’m slightly older than Dipesh was when he started, so he can’t shout at me. But I’ve always I’ve always enjoyed it from a, you know, we talked on Leaders about the swim coaching and all of that. Of course, it’s always been a big sort of element of what I enjoy doing and that’s where the sort of social media stuff came from. Eventually I was like, Oh, I’ve got a little something to share and I enjoy doing that. But I’m loving, loving the the course and I want to, you know, facilitate other, other avenues. You know, we sort of joked at the start of the course being like, welcome to, you know, course one of the seven part removable diploma and everyone went well that’d be really good actually when secondary impressions then we’re like we were thinking about doing like digitals and immediates and implant dentures but hadn’t thought about secondaries. And they’re like, Yeah, that’d be really good. And you, your daughter. And I was like, Oh, geez, we’ve accidentally, like, created a monster here. Um, but I’m enjoying it. I want to see where that, where that goes alongside. It’s going to be a bit, a bit interesting going on a going on a course like the end and being like, Oh, I’m off teaching this weekend. I’m not sure how that will fly, but yeah, that could be quite interesting.

Yeah, I think that’d be good.

I think the two things go well together. Yeah. Um, but you know, your progress has been rapid. You know, I told you that at BCD. The funny part about that is, what do you think it was about you that made them want you to teach? Abcd. And you made denture sexy. Was your original the original? I think there was this one video where there was a suction. Yeah, like a pop thing. But I’d go as far as to venture the lives.

Yeah. Yeah.

So. So. So this thing about, you know, stopping the lives, maybe they were what got you here?

100%. 100%. You know, there’s people.

That’s I think part of it is seeing. How I or you can sort of see my thought process as I’m asking questions. You can see how I’m going to communicate anyway. I think. I think there is a big a big part of it absolutely is, is because of the whole nature of the sort of platform that we’re putting together. I mean, the other thing with it, as you say, with making dentures sexy, etcetera, is that it’s relatively unique topic as well. You know, the course itself, hands on, hands on primary impressions for a whole day sounds insane. But actually, you know, we were running out of time kind of thing. There’s so much stuff that you can pack in in just that one little bit, you know? And there’s nothing, as far as I can see like that out there as well. So I think.

And who are the delegates? What was the sort of the age and, you know, what were they up to? Who were they?

We had we.

Had two clinical technicians, which is very cool because we could sort of bounce off each other in that way. We had, um, some. Most were.

Young dentists.

Yeah, sort of first five years. So my sort of age, really. And then we had a few older guys as well, which were actually, you know, there’s one chap per Bryn who probably will be listening to this because he’s a, he’s a keen bean. But you know, he came on and he’s don’t want to get it wrong, but know 20 odd years graduate or something like that. And he actually came from a family of Prosthodontists. His dad was you know, he found his dad’s old gold. Gold leaf kit and whatever up in his up in the loft and things like that. And he came out with being like, I’ve been in such a slump for ten years. And something so simple as this has just completely reinvigorated all aspects of my practice and just got me excited again. And that’s like, that’s mega to be able to like have that sort of opportunity to be able to do that for someone. So it’s a real range. And the next course is. Similar, but I think it’s more sort of first ten years practitioners mostly, and the core ones, we’ve got a couple of associates and principals coming and things like that. But I’d like to keep up the having some technicians there as well. I mean, it worked out great for for one, she’s picked up five new clients who all your needs are after the course, which is quite good.

And I think technicians, we’ve ignored technicians a bit in education and I know your your audience is a large part of it is technicians. Yeah. I even think Dipesh is teaching a lot of the time he’s referring to hit.

Yeah, yeah.

He’s talking about this is what the this is the way the technicians lay a porcelain so and so he translates that into composite and, and they’re the experts, let’s face it. Right. As far as shape and colour and primary and secondary anatomy, you know, they’ve known things for years that we’re only just now learning. Yeah. But the integration of technicians in education, I think I think in guys they’re on to that, right? That’s in. King So, so so you know doing your own lab work and all that is part of that.

It’s appreciating it, isn’t it? Yeah. I mean, that’s that’s an element that I’m really keen to be pushing more. I mean, we’re just well. Mike So on the Impressions course, Mike is a dentist now, but he started as a technician, so he has got both both sides of it, which is amazing.

All the top, all the top dentists, all the top, but a lot of the top dentists have come down that route.

Yeah. And you know, it’s that.


I think of.


And so it’s a really good way of doing it. And you know, some of the other ones that we’re talking, we’re talking BCD in the digital one that’s, you know, that’s almost there already as a course to launch because we essentially did a half day course. And I know what two exercises we can do to make it a full day course in the afternoon and that doing that with my technician Ricardo, side by side bouncing off each other is, I think over half the battle is just how you talk to that person on the other end of the parcel that gets sent halfway across the country or whatever it is. That’s half the battle in terms of actually getting the results. So I think teaching from that perspective is is really useful.

I think I don’t mean to bang on about it here, but you’re in a way you’re missing a trick. If I have no doubt that you can produce great courses, I think you have no doubt that you can produce great courses. Even today. I’m sure after the next three years you’ll be even better courses. But.

It. You know, the.

The thing that is important is that if we’re talking courses, people turn up.

The courses.

Yeah. Yeah. Or, you know, Jazzy. He does the long distance, you know the E courses. Yeah. People have to want to, to consume your content. Yeah. Yeah. And I think that that piece for you is, it’s almost like you’re throwing something that most people would love to have. Down the down the drain. And. I’d be careful of that. I’d be careful in terms.

Of what’s stopping the.

Content. Yeah, the content side, you know that most people would love to have some sort of engaged audience.

It’s taken it’s taken a breather and not stopping it. Just taking a breather.

Taking a breather. But be careful. Be careful.

Be careful. I don’t know if you listen to podcasts and you know those podcasts where they say season one. Season two. And then there’s a big break.

Yeah. Yeah.

They basically drop off your radar. Yeah. And so maybe you’re lucky and then it comes back. Yeah, but the ones that take a break often never come back. Number one. And number two, you know the rhythm. If you’re listening every Tuesday afternoon or whatever it is, suddenly that rhythm is broken. Now you’ve got to listen to something else on Tuesday afternoon. And, you know, those eyes and ears are away. I’m just saying.

Caution, caution. I mean, that was.

It was one of my worries with doing the course as well, because by doing the dynamic from that, because that was it, I was looking at going, oh, well, I’m enjoying the lecturing. I’m enjoying. It’s exciting. We’ve sold out these first two courses, all of that, and and that’s been facilitated by doing those. So if I go, oh, if I haven’t got time to do that. And you know, I looked at it and went in four years time, forget the, you know, spending the money on course or whatever, it’s in four years time. Where is the what’s the trajectory of, of the education side of impression club. Yeah. And where is it going to be if I’m not able to keep doing the amount that I am right now? Is it worth that? If that’s what I want to do in the.

Let’s get let’s.

Get down to this then. Dream a dream in four years time when both you and Haniya have finished your education. Yeah. Just for the sake of the argument, what would be your dream outcome of your life in six years time? Professionally?

I’d want to be. I want to be clinical.

Three days.

Rest. The time spent inside for the practice.


You don’t need you two are going to open a practice or with your friends. No, it’s not. You decided against that, is she? Is she going into hospital? She decided that.

She’s coming around to a bit of practice. Coming around to a bit of practice.

Okay. So three days.

Clinical and the rest.

Teaching the rest. Yeah.

Free to be doing teaching and and well. And family and stuff. But yeah, that’s, that would be the sort of pattern that I’d want to be looking at. So that’s where I’d say, am I going to be able to keep growing everything else to be able to facilitate that whilst doing this other side of it as well. And that’s the that’s the challenge, I think.

I think you will I.

Think you’ll be okay. But, but you know, my my previous point is that keep that audience engaged people like you and you’ve put out a lot already. You don’t realise you’ve made a massive step in that or call it sacrifice. I sacrifice is the wrong word because you enjoy it, right?

But has its moments. Yeah.

You’ve made a massive sacrifice already in that in that direction. And you know, I wish you well regarding that. So. Okay let’s let’s project forward. I don’t know. Ten.

You’re on your.

Deathbed. What’s.

I haven’t.

Prepared. Those ones Pay.

No, no, no.

Like you say, three days. Clinical. Yeah. Why should it be three days clinical? Like, why can’t you be Crystal?

What was he doing these days? Oh, is that one day clinical?

Clinical? Too much.

It’s more than teaching.


No, I love teaching. I love teaching. I don’t think I don’t think there’s scope for me to be teaching four days a week. We’re not doing totally dentures, man. I can’t be doing.

No, it doesn’t have to be. But look, dude, you.

Can turn impressions of dentures into impressions of fixed products and then that can turn into the whole digital workflow. In four years time, dentistry will look very different to what it looks like today. Imagine, dude, the eye thing comes into play. Some player will be the eye vertical on dentistry, you know, like, I don’t know, who knows? I haven’t even thought about it properly yet. But you know, like you’ll take the scan, The eye will say, this patient is suitable for that treatment in your hands. And it would come back loop back to reception, call him or something. Yeah, something like that. Um, then she would look very different in four years time. It always does anyway. It always does. I don’t think the snapshot that you’ve got today is going to be.

Yeah, yeah.

No, I think, I think I enjoyed the clinical too much to do, too little of it. As you said, things priorities might change and things like that. But I think as well, if you are into the education side of it, then you’ve got to be keeping.

Some clinical, you’ve.

Got to be keeping yourself up to date as well. Yeah. And keeping stuff. Yeah. Fresh.

Fresh as well.

I agree with that.

That’s my side Hustles developing though isn’t it?


It’s funny. I’ve done two days a week clinical and I’ve done three days. I’ve done all of them. But talking about two days and three days. Three days feels like a job. It feels like a proper job. Like that’s your main thing? Yeah. So this is what I mean by deciding which is the side hustle and which is the which is the main job. If we’re talking five days a week and it’s three of one and two of the other two days, dentistry feels more like a hobby. And then your main thing is you’re a teacher or researcher or whatever else it is. You are like me.


I’m going to get a four year trial of it during the course.


Can I do two days a week?

That’s true.

That’s true. I’ll find.

Out. I might just carry on.

Yeah. I’ll find out if that’s enough work and enough. Uh, yeah, enough sort of attention on that side of it. So, yeah, maybe. Maybe that’s. I’ve got to look at it. It’s a forced. A forced trial period of doing that. Yeah. Yeah, it’s it’s going to be very interesting. But yeah, I hope I’m able to keep everything up because I do enjoy it. Um, but it’s just when there’s all that else on the line, you’ve got to prioritise that, right? That’s the, that’s the thing when you’re putting it out there. I’m sure it’s no different to maybe that’s why you’re, you know, you’re five years of just focusing on Enlighten. That’s what, that’s what you felt you had to do to. Yeah. While the others were balancing it. You and I’m going to. I’m going to commit to this deep dive and. Have that have that expression on it.

But that really wasn’t planned out in the same way. It was just like had to do it, you know? Had to. There was no other choice. We were just so in trouble. Yeah. And now that you’ve got the opportunity, I mean, you’re a bit more stable than I was back then. Yeah. We almost ran out of money on day one. It was almost like that. So just scraping. Scraping by.

So it was.

This full page newspaper ads on.

That? Yeah. Yeah, we did.

We did double page ads and all the. All the mags, all the magazines and spent it all.


I know. I do. You know. No idea. On, on on anything like that. I remember having conversations with other Dental sales people and not even understanding a word of what they were talking about because, you know, like a professional salesman, you know, who’s responsible for this bit of the country. And I was just a dentist.

Right. You’ve got.

Your. Your side hustle has gone very like mini smile. Makeover makes almost more sense. Even though it’s a dental product, it makes more sense than going into being a distributor as they didn’t even know what that was because it’s a very different, you know. Would you consider yourself overly sort of business minded, entrepreneurial like? No, it just sort of it it started from that more familiar thing of running a practice and then just sort of morphed.

There was.

I’ll tell you something, there was an element in school, my best friends, their dads. Big conglomerate businesses like manufacturing businesses. And so there was an element of watching that that made me think, oh, business. Yeah, but just as an idea, not not any sort of, you know, by, by the pen and sell it to my best friend. Like I’m definitely not good at any of that sort of thing. Just that basic idea of there’s another way, because my dad was a professional, you know, an accountant and knew professionals. My brother became a medical student. I was going to Dental going down that sort of professional route. But my influences at school, my my two best friends. Three best friends, they the conversations they were having was a whole other thing about factories and production lines and and employees and all of that. And I it must have had an effect on me. It must have.

Yeah. Because that’s even from a I don’t think the majority of dentists are particularly business minded just maybe naturally how.

A lot.

Of those multiple practice type business minded right Yeah I remember Julian Perry do you know have you come across him So he’s now probably clinical director at one of the corporates but he did he he did a intraoral camera. I went for an interview at his practice for associate or something and he said, Yeah, I’m manufacturing these intraoral cameras. I said, What? And he said, Yeah, yeah. He showed me. And Intraoral camera itself was an unknown thing, but the fact he was making them and selling them, you know, blew me away. And then I said, How, how did this happen? And he said, Oh yeah, I did an MBA straight after, you know, whatever, something like that. And I remember being very impressed with that man.

You said your.

Friends do it. Yeah. Is that not something you’ve considered?

My friends would, you know, they were selling auto parts.

You, your friend. You said you had a friend. Now, who’s doing them doing MBA?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Is that not.

Something you’ve thought of? No.

I thought.

About it. I thought about it. When you. When you fully understand what an MBA is, then you want to do it less in my in my world. So the people who do MBAs, they they tend to go join massive corporates. And that’s kind of what it prepares you for that or maybe sometimes. Start-up But mainly massive corporates. It’s just, you know, the skills you need to run a business that I’m sure there are courses on it. But this idea that we need to go on a course to learn everything, yeah, it’s very Dental mindset.

It’s good if you’ve run courses.

Yeah, yeah, it’s true. Yeah.

Perfect, man, I think.

The side hustles.

Let’s see. Let’s see if they keep up.

But both of them. Both of us.

Mine and yours. I’m hoping yours do. Because they’re not they’re not side hustles, but great to pop on down, man. Thank you so much. And I’ll see you soon at some glamorous event, no doubt.

Yeah. Yeah. Thank you so.

Much, man. Really enjoyed it.

This is Dental Leaders, the podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders in dentistry. Your hosts. Payman, Langroudi and Prav. Solanki.

Thanks for listening, guys. Hope you enjoyed today’s episode. Make sure you tune in for future episodes. Hit subscribe in iTunes or Google Play or whatever platform it is. And you know, we really, really appreciate it. If you would give us a.

Six star rating.

Six star rating. That’s what always leave my Uber driver.

Thanks a lot, guys. Bye.

Comments have been closed.
Website by The Fresh UK | © Dental Leader Podcast 2019