Expanding your business empire by three times is no mean feat. But, that’s just what this week’s guests did – and then some.
We’re happy to welcome Dr Kish Patel and Dr Jin Vaghela as they share their valuable insight on successfully going into business as best friends and running not one, not two, but 12 practices.
Kish and Jin discuss their achievements in dentistry as well as their passion for growth. The Londoners also tell us about their journey from university parties to creating a harmonious work/life balance.
“The thing is, with a lot of young dentists, they sometimes want to get on the practice ladder just to have that practice underneath their belt and say, I own practice. We’re trying to try to help spread the knowledge and say, look, guys, your why has to be really, really on point when you’re buying a practice. You have to do it for the right reasons.” – Kish Patel
In This Episode
01.03 – DJing and free rides
02:15 – Choosing dentistry
05.04 – The game plan
05.56 – Results day
08:27 – Parental Advice
10:23 – Mentors
11:39 – We keep growing
13:53 – Buying a practice
17:20 – Approaching business together
18:31 – Strengths & skillsets
24:07 – Caring for your team
26:09 – Expanding
28:33 – Opportunities in a pandemic
32:49 – Stress management
35:33 – Recharging
37:52 – A day in the life
44:00 – Networks
49:30 – Educating dentists
51:28 – Marketing
55:26 – Symposiums
58:52 – Having confidence
01:01:57 – Forging relationships
01:09:00 – Three pieces of wisdom
01:10:33 – Legacy & last days on Earth
About Kish Patel and Jin Vaghela
Kish and Jin both qualified from Guys Kings, London in 2007. The pair met on their first day of university and went into business together from an early point in their careers. Together, the pair now own Smile Clinic Group which currently boasts 12 practices.
Kish is a member of the Faculty of Dental Surgeons at the Royal College of Surgeons of England and works in General Practice.
Jin holds a fellowship of the Higher Education Authority, membership of the Dental Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh as well as membership of the Joint Dental Faculties of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons England.
[00:00:00] The thing is, with a lot of these a lot of young dentists, they sort of sometimes want to get on the practise ladder just to have that sort of practise underneath the belt and just say, I own a practise and we’re trying to try to help spread the knowledge and say, look, guys, it’s about you have to your wife has to be really, really on point when you’re buying a practise. You have to do it for the right reasons. And, you know, I’ve I’ve had a lot of friends who bought practises and paid a lot of money for practises and are sort of in those practises six days a week, eight to eight, you know, and struggling. So one thing we say is, look, we’re here will help mentor you. Be that just for advice or if you want to come on board, come on board. Because we like doing things with the people together. We will go on a journey. Everyone grows at the same time.
[00:00:46] This is Dental Leaders podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders and dentistry. Your heist’s Payman Langroudi, I’m Prav Solanki,
[00:01:03] It gives me great pleasure to introduce the founders of the Smile Dental Academy on the small clinic group Djenne Encash. We originally thought you two were brothers, but just correctors. Who’s involved in this group? How did this relationship start? Mioshi BackStory. Fantastic. Thank you. To pay Prav for the invitation. This is something which have been planning for over a year now and it’s kind of nice to get together, even though it’s virtual to catch up. And again, the whole small group of small Academi side near the university where I met K’iche So you might as well be my brother. The amount of time you spent at my house in Camden and the three of us and most of myself and my real brother, three of us involved in the whole group itself.
[00:01:45] Yeah, that’s right. So myself and Jin met on the very first day of university back at King’s College, London, nearly 18 years ago, and he was pretty much the first person I met within a minute. You know, Jin Jin can talk, he can talk a lot. And within a minute he told me that he is a DJ and that he does not drink. So I was like, listen, I’m about to embark on my university life. This guy can get me into all the clubs I’ve got guaranteed right home as well. So, you know,
[00:02:15] We kind of hit it off. Right? That’s funny, because I met my partner on the first day of university as well. So thirty years ago, time flies, but so where did you grow up?
[00:02:29] So I grew up in central London, in Camden and spent all my life in London. And K’iche was in northwest London.
[00:02:35] Yeah. So since I have been there my whole life
[00:02:40] And it’s the first time you thought I would be a dentist.
[00:02:45] I actually do. I mean, back when I was applying for university and thinking of what did you career wise, we had a dentist to does love in Camden and every day, every time you drop in a new car and all energy and bouncing around. So I went to work experience with it and absolutely loved general practise and what he was doing. I actually love the fact, you know, the variety of stuff you could do. And that’s that’s where it hit me. Look, I thought let’s combine the whole art side, which I loved the creativity with the science side, which is instil in Asian community. And I went on the journey of let’s apply for dentistry. That’s how it started for me. Was there any parental pressure in there that, you know, going into medicine, dentistry or accountancy mean for my dad? It was you know, it was better. You could be one of three things I got without it. He goes, you could be a dentist, doctor or a failure. And I’m like, all I appreciate that, but let’s pick the right one before he beats me. But again, I mean, look, as we all know, in the age of many parents of pharmacists and there was a lot of, you know, sciences and that kind of pressure when we side up and not education, which which which is sort of help me keep focus growing up in Camden kept me away from any wrong crowd as well. And that was for myself.
[00:04:09] Yeah, but it’s similar to, you know, my parents, pharmacists as well. And I think back then it was the case of, you know, look, you’re going to either go into some sort of medicine, pharmacy or dentistry or you’re going to have an accounting background finance. So I was just going up between the two. And, you know, I remember this very clearly. I had a conversation with my cousin, who’s about four years older than me, going through a similar process. He ended up going to the pharmacy and he goes, look, you’re very good with sciences, you’re good with maths. You’re also very artistic. I think dentistry is the right career for you because, you know, once you qualify as a dentist, there’s a whole world of opportunity, not just being a clinician, but also, you know, going through in terms of business teaching. There’s a whole variety of stuff you can do. And I remember that very, very clearly. So I have him to thank for sort of guiding me through that time
[00:05:04] Was always was always that sort of you just talked about business teaching. All of that was that was that very early on part of your game plan. It wasn’t just something that came about. You knew when you were going into dentistry. I’m going to teach. I’m not my own practise and this is going to be my career. You didn’t just think I’m going to be an NHS dentist.
[00:05:25] Not 100 percent. I think we always like to look at the sort of the the biggest picture possible and try and dream as much as you can to sort of achieve as much as you can. And whilst being a being a clinician is a great achievement in itself, you know, I like to sort of diversify. And again, it’s exactly the same. And that’s why we sort of hit it off so well, because our visions are aligned right from the beginning as to where we saw our careers going.
[00:05:51] When did you decide to do business with each other? Was it literally before qualifying?
[00:05:56] So we looked at was a first car. I mean, I sat next to my two group competed as often as well like you. And we I think our journey started with a whole small clinic group of small Academi when we failed. So a lot of people probably don’t know we actually failed our finals and the story I remember on the final day when the results come out at King’s College, those, you know, New Hampshire house, they used to display all the results on the board and in all you this about over two hundred and twenty of us in our yard kings. And in the morning when you get the results all excited. And then I’m looking for my name on the board and I can see it. I could hear someone down the hall call out, Jingjing, come over here, you name it down here. And I thought maybe I made the distinction. Water owners, little did I know the feeling. And I’m finding that I mean, those you know, me from uni, I did used to party law, you know, four nights a week. So me not getting through finally year was probably expected, even though I did work hard. But Keisha’s name was a shock and he always dragged him down. But seeing his name on the show. So it was one
[00:07:11] Of those things on the vacation, you know, is one of those things, I think, you know, you go through something like that and it was it was a big shock. You know, you kind of always expect to just get through the last hurdle. And, you know, you see a lot of your friends graduating and qualifying and then you don’t. But the fact that something felt together, you know, I think I believe it very, very firm. Believe everything happens for a reason. And I think that’s when we sort of sat down and had to re-evaluate and sort of say, look, how are we going to play this and what can we make of it, considering we were set back by six months,
[00:07:47] Just taken taking us back to that day. You saw your name on the board, both of you together. Did you feel like you had to sort of go back and report back to your folks? What was the. Was that a daunting experience in itself? Just just talk us through what was going through your mind at that time, from the moment you got it? What was the first thing that went through through your head? For me, if I failed an exam and had to go back and tell my dad, I mean, look, if I got 97 percent in my maths test, my dad did say what happened to the other three Prav?
[00:08:18] You cannot afford an exam, so you don’t need to worry about it. Tell us, what did you say to your parents? What was the first thing happen?
[00:08:27] Well, I remember quite vividly just getting on the phone and say I just said to my my parents said, look, it’s not good news. I didn’t I didn’t make it. My my mom and dad were when I say we’re really, really shocked because I’ve never felt a single exam during my whole university life and they said something must have gone wrong. I said, listen, this is this is this I didn’t I didn’t make it. So I’m going to be here for another six months. And to be honest, fair play to my parents and my grandparents at the time. You know, I remember very vividly sitting down with them and all that said, listen, this is just a minor setback. You have your whole life ahead of you in life. You’re going to be there’s going to be failures. Not everything is going to go to plan. It’s how you adapt and change and take on that situation that will help you grow. And I remember my grandma said this to me, and it was it was probably the best bit of advice that someone could hear at that point in time because it automatically just lifted me up, made me feel a lot stronger. And I realised that, you know, that’s not that’s not the be all and end all.
[00:09:33] So you did qualify eventually. What happened next? Did you did you end up getting a house job? That’s what I did. It was like a consolation prise in in Cardiff. I mean,
[00:09:45] I think Keesha job lined up. Yeah. If he actually had passed, if both of us would have passed, I don’t think any of this would have been here in our small clinic group, Small Dental Academy, the whole network in the small dream we’ve created, none of it would have been here because Keisha was about to embark on a house job like you pay. Whereabouts was.
[00:10:06] That was up in Elsberry. It was one of the old DPT schemes, so it was a two year, one year community and then another house job. And, you know, I think we would most of them, June would have been a very different pathways if I had gone to plan.
[00:10:20] So then what did you do first? Did you do that?
[00:10:23] Yes. So we were we ended up on the bonus scheme with a great adviser and some great mentors. And fortunately, myself and Jane were placed in two practises with incredible mentors that helped sort of shape our career going forward, you know, and I’m still I still work at that same practise even to this day
[00:10:44] For you both that practise. No, no. Not one to hold the call about who the mentors. And it was the adviser.
[00:10:54] Yes. So I mentor Samir Khan, who again, without him as a mentor, I wouldn’t be here now and again. Look, if I if I pass first time back then, we had our jobs lined up. We had to send our service to every practise. I get a decent job lined up in London, lost. Then I have to do the speed dating, a way of applying for PhD training and ended up in Somalia as practised in North London. By far. The best thing that ever happened to me ever and to me was my trainer and Davinder pal CUNA was our TPD or advisor and again, great mentors, very good friends, and still to this day, helping us, supporting us through our journey as well.
[00:11:36] What were the key lessons you learnt from him?
[00:11:39] The key lessons I learnt was we continue growing, the main advice I gave me was invest in yourself and invest in yourself as a Ph.D. I wasn’t too fast about doing further exams back then or doing a PDF. And you could invest in yourself because that is something which no one can take away from you. And since then, every including some courses continue growing, whether it’s UK, US is competing courses and building up our education. And I think that’s been a phenomenal thing things to us, especially with kishkes mentor as well.
[00:12:14] Yeah, so my mentor, Niccola, go again right from the outset, she shaped my career. She was like, hey, look, you know, you’re going to be working on the NHS. You’re going to be doing private work. One of the most important things that she taught me very early on was, you know, treat your patients the same, whether the NHS private, give everyone the same amount of time. Because, you know, I think that’s that’s sort of something that’s not done in practise as much as it should be. And, you know, you speak to patients, treat them as people. You’re not just focussing upon the teeth. And again, as you said, similar to, you know, Nicola was great in terms of pushing me, saying invest in yourself, keep growing as a clinician, but also explore other opportunities. And one of the most important things for me is that she’s just got an incredible energy, always smiling no matter what happens in life.
[00:13:07] I know she’s a
[00:13:09] She’s got a great energy and positive person. Very, very positive. And that’s one of the most important things that I picked up from her. Just always remain positive no matter what happens.
[00:13:18] I know that you guys now you guys include a bunch dentists and so on. Do you feel like you’re having that down to them or is that something that’s part of your group? Like to get all the people educated, your own people educated properly?
[00:13:32] One hundred percent. That is the main ethos. And main culture we’re trying to create within our group is continue growing. And that’s not exactly the whole academy for AIDS and how we can growing the small group as well with our clinicians.
[00:13:47] That was the first time you put a practise.
[00:13:53] So during my FDA, I means to me was quite instrumental. Show me, you know, the right path and how to grow. And this to me, I used to own a couple of practises used to teach law, was doing a master’s, and I thought, I like this. It’s a nice mix. I like general practise. So let’s see what we can do. So in my FDA, we start viewing practises. So we see Phoenicia VTE study days on a Friday, Saturday night viewings booked in. And I bought my first practise six months after F.T. training with them at six months off their three year old together. Or was that that was the first one I bought with Sowmya and my partner in crime. Had we both got together, three of us. And I know a lot of people thinking you must have known your staff and know your numbers and finances are. But clearly, the bank manager came to the practise to sign the paperwork. Möbius, you walked in a three sits down and Richard goes to be so Geneina what kind of rate you want, variable or fixed? And I genuinely looked at it. I don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. Where do I sign? And again, it was one of those things I any opportunity that I just grabbed it and I was fortunate. I had the right support from the right mentors and just grew on the job.
[00:15:15] Did you get involved?
[00:15:16] Yes, so similar to Gene, I was looking at practises during my FDA, again, as Jim said, like viewing on Friday evening, Saturday, Sundays, and then I speak to Jim Clancy. I knew that this was going through in the background, that we were just talking and we said, look, we should just buy one together. And then a couple of years later, the right opportunity came along and that was in Harro and we ended up buying that one. But again, it took us a little while, just before the right one came along, because it wasn’t just a case of there were so many practises not for sale and it was just picking the right opportunity at the right time.
[00:15:49] What were you looking for, guys? I think that we were quite clear we didn’t want to practise for the sake of having a practise and Prav an umpire, both of rum practise in Paso, the are running them. You want to make sure it makes sense. Now, that means it fits in with your vision of how you want to grow. We used to view practises, beautiful practises that just didn’t fit in with our model of what we’re planning. Some that were made no financial sense. I mean, I might as well open up a corner shop and do that would have been more money. So we had a clear vision how we wanted to grow the practise side and even then the NHS. I played a big role. I mean, we always just a mission. We wanted to grow that side. So that’s what we’re looking at when we first started. And I still remember calling cash up when the Harrow practise came along and I said, look, I’m going into business with your friend and your best friend is something which I would be cautious with. But those, you know, myself and our personalities are like total opposite. And it’s a bit like a yin and yang where Kishwar along and we saw fit so well together. Touchwood Till this day, it’s been the best decision ever. Working together. Yeah.
[00:17:03] Yeah. I totally agree with I think that we had that we had that conversation. I remember it quite clearly and we said, look, this is we’re going into business, but we’re best mates. We do not want this ever to sort of be an issue going forward. And we have very clear sort of open air talks about it all and said, look, we’re going to do this journey. But the most important thing is not about the money. It never has been. It’s about it’s about the journey. It’s about having fun along the way and just trying to be the best that we can be and trying to grow as much as possible. And I don’t think we were so aligned in our vision. We still are that that has been has been just a blessing and it’s been a great journey so far.
[00:17:40] I get asked quite often, you know, June one, you by the practises yourself, why do you do yourself? I’m like a I wouldn’t be here probably myself. No offence, you boys probably wouldn’t have as much hay on my head.
[00:17:52] But the journey
[00:17:55] Has been fun and it’s been jokes. And the thing is doing the journey with your best man, your brother along the way. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not plain sailing all the way, but doing it in a team is where the support’s been. And we can manage our stress levels because we all know, look, Dental Street is super stressful doing in a team of us. We can actually delegate well and grow even more as three business partners. What are your strengths? So like, let’s say in your unique abilities, whatever case yours is in your brothers, what roles do you play differently? Where you play to your strengths is just good. I mean, my main role is growth. I got the energy and I want to see things grow. So I’m pretty much involved with the growth side of the business acquisitions growth internally within the business where my weaknesses, I am not very good at the detail of the finance side, and that’s where cash comes in, making sure the finance side we are on point and making sure it’s all taken over. And then my brother is the best, making sure the whole operation side is working on a daily basis. So my I’m always thinking three steps ahead, looking too far. And then I’m like, OK, we need someone who’s focussing on what’s going on currently. And this is where in a nice way, all three of us come really well together and support each other. So we never feel like we’re trading on each other’s toes, but we literally are filling in the gaps within each other.
[00:19:20] Yeah, I couldn’t agree more with that. I think, again, it’s a case of we all could have kind of understood what our skill sets were and are and and how we can sort of help grow the group in the academy together. And as Jim said, you know, he’s always thinking three to four steps ahead. His head sometimes is focussing on about a thousand different things to sometimes someone’s got to bring him back down and say, listen, listen, we’ve we’re going to focus on this and do this and do that. And I think that’s where this relationship works really, really well, because when all three of us are together, we’re we’re unstoppable. You know, it’s it’s just it’s a force that we you know, we’re going to keep growing. And it’s just fun as well, because we’re not as Jim said, we’re not treading on each other’s toes. And who’s got an incredible ability to sort of manage to the day to day the finer details is, you know, without him, I think pretty much his whole operation would fall apart.
[00:20:14] So these practises, how many of Dental
[00:20:17] We’re on, ten about to complete our 11th and 12th one now.
[00:20:22] These 12 practises, would you say that they’re all similar to each other?
[00:20:28] No, I would say that it’s a mixed bag. I mean, initially, you know, we were we bought a few NHS heavy practises as the group has grown and we’ve got a mixed bag now. So we’ve got mixed practises, fully private practises, one practise that essentially is similar to a squat practise. So this is a mixture.
[00:20:47] And I think when we first started, our vision was, yeah, let’s make every practise feel the same. Look the same will we soon realised is the culture and each practise is values. And then how it all works is totally different. I mean, one of our practises in Felixstowe will never be the same as a practise in Harrow as opposed to practise in Norwich. So what we’ve done is sort of OK, we know what we want from our teams. We know what kind of stuff we want for our patients in terms of care and high quality of care. But we need to adapt that within each site as well. And then some of our practises, you know, we’ve got one of our sites, over 60 members of staff. Now, again, within that is like a little micro community, which you need to manage so you can never make everything the same. And that was one of the things we’re quite conscious about. And hence this whole small clinic group name how it started. We never wanted to lose the practise his original name. So when we took a practise on one of the large ones will staff a large Dental group. I never wanted to go in and make your case a small clinical practise. I wanted to retain that staff a lodge name, wanted to retain the history behind it so patients don’t lose that connexion with the history and the staff there. So we could name the staff a small clinic and that’s how the whole thing started off. It’s a bit of fresh and a bit of the old as well.
[00:22:10] Yeah, I mean, one thing we never do is we never go in and just sort of wipe the slate clean and practise and put our own stamp on it straight away. I think the most important thing is that sometimes when you buy a business in a practise, it is very tempting to almost treat it as a business right off the bat. But what you said, what you don’t realise is that there is a community there and that community is is is so important and we have to nurture and grow a culture within that community and sort of help it help it grow to where our vision is. And so that’s one of the most important things for us, is to retain each practise has its own identity. Even though it’s part of the group, it’s still got its own identity.
[00:22:53] So I’m interested to find out what’s the sort of I guess you’re looking for practise undervalued, you know, compared to what you think you can get out of it. Right. You’re talking about growth. Yeah. So that’s one one aspect. But I mean, but on the other side, you’re talking about the evolution of it rather than revolution, right? You don’t go in there and start changing everything, which makes a lot of sense, which is supersmart. I completely get that. But what is your sort of degree of involvement? How what’s the structure of the place? You’ve got a practise manager, I guess. And then what is it, one of you, or is there like another person before you guys?
[00:23:35] That’s a good question. I mean, if you asked us a year ago how many of your lordship
[00:23:44] For last year, this time last year for
[00:23:46] So we’ve had tremendous growth in the last year with that. And the beauty is with the whole business side, we work quite closely and we’re good friends. You’ve got large corporates who was advising us of how to deal with it. And the biggest struggle is making sure you’ve got the right team. And I think that’s one of the most important things. So we made sure, you know, we’ve got every such practise manager. We’ve got our obsoleted my brother who looks after it. And then we’ve got two younger dentists who we’ve taken on board who are, you know, without them, again, the support they’ve given us and the growth aspect is supporting us on the operations. None of this would function. So we’ve grown a whole subletter, our team with the marketing finance. So we can also you can earn Smash-Up.
[00:24:31] And I remember I remember speaking to Gin Gin. It was March last year. Right. Just as we picked up as a fourth practise. And I said to listen, we’re going to have to grow the team because myself, there’s no way that if we’re going to buy normal practises that will be able to sustain this. You know, there’s only so many hours in the day and we can only be in so many places at one time between the three of us. So we just took a view that we have to keep growing the team. And one thing that we built within each practise is layers so that there is a sort of a chain of communication all the way right through from reception, all the way through to us. And even though that there’s all those layers that everyone has our number, we’re always we’ve got loads of WhatsApp groups with each practise so that any issues, you know, we’re still seeing it. We have that to help and support the whole team. Even though we went from four to ten practises and everything we kind of put into place was when we had a small number of practises so that we could just then apply that as we grow in size.
[00:25:32] What were the growing pains going from, let’s say, for. To tell, right, most going from one to two, you know, I remember, you know, you look at practise one and you think, well, just go and buy practise, too, and I’ll just do double what I’m doing. Right. Just replicate that formula if you go and then you get the biggest shock of your life when you realise that isn’t the case, and then you go to three and so on and so forth. What were the biggest pains that you guys experience going from, let’s say before that you had in the space of the covid pandemic, almost tripling the size of your business? There must have been some some serious growing pains during that time.
[00:26:09] I think there’s a very, very good question, and I think the hardest thing for us, especially breathing during the covid sort of period, is not being able to go physically to the sites. And I think that we’re very hands on in that respect. And I think generally agree with me when I say this is that one of the practises we bought was a fairly private practise was literally we completed one week before Lockton. And we had plans to go up, but they didn’t materialise because of lockdown and obviously we couldn’t meet the team and we could do whatever we do on Zoom. But back then, everyone was still getting a feel for Zoom. And it’s just not the same feeling as going in and sort of having that team meeting, that practise meeting to introduce ourselves what we’re about. So I think that was probably one of the hardest things, not being able to physically be there initially.
[00:26:59] But I just miss giving everyone hugs.
[00:27:02] No, you see, I mean, we
[00:27:09] Were a bit old school and I like, you know, face to face and people feel that energy and vibe when you were there. And when you’re growing to a certain size, you can’t be at every practise. I mean, you can’t clone yourself and go there and do it. So trying to put in structures and processes in place where everyone knows you are there and approachable, but they don’t feel like, you know, going into the practise, that’s things something know, we struggle with along with time, trying to make time to juggle all this and also balance everything with home life, wife, life, kids, everything as well, which for myself, in case the balance of life is super important, I think trying to keep that all in place,
[00:27:50] I, I don’t I’m not I’m not currently running any Dental practises yet. So the three of you can help me with this year. But this isn’t it better to take your four practises and double the output of those four to eight.
[00:28:05] Yeah, yeah. I think you’re right. One of the things which make a good point and I would say is it’s about focussing on making sure your bottom line or your EBITDA net profit is increasing. And that’s one thing we’re quite conscious with, making sure each practises output is increasing. But on the flipside, if a good opportunity comes along, we’re going to take it. And that’s how is a balance of both.
[00:28:31] And again, I totally agree with you pay. I mean, we and so we had four practises for about eight years. So it was one of those things where we really sort of delve straight into all of those practises and, you know, try to make them as efficient and profitable as Jim said, in terms of the bottom line, as much as possible. And only once you’ve sort of been able to do that, that’s when you then feel like finally you’re ready for the next the next step, which is exactly what we decided to do.
[00:29:00] Did you find the pandemic presented opportunities? Lots of opportunities that will happen.
[00:29:06] Yeah, did make it was a super difficult time for all of us. I think the first three or four months and uncertainty and CDO business, whatever happened. But I think once it all kicked in, a lot of the dentists who were already considering retirement coming out of the whole practise. So they just sort of done, you know, secrecy was one issue. And it’s just another issue now is covered. We’re back in. So we sort of thought, look, this opportunity, if we want to grow and the right practise come along, let’s get in there, view them. And that’s what we did, I think you presented. And it still is preventing a lot of opportunity on the practise side because a lot of practise is still up for sale and people wanted to move and shift within the market because when when covid hit and then a few weeks later, the practise is sure. And you said you completed just before on the practise, on the private practise and then shortly after assuming you shut the doors. Yes, I most of that must have been a shocker. Right. And I remember sitting there talking to my co owners of the practise and thinking, holy crap, what the hell are we going to do? How long are we going to be show? Fear just kicks in. Right. And I use. Are you telling me that actually you look at you you when that happened, you guys sat back and thought, right. What can we do during this time? How can we grow? And you essentially triple your business in that time, right? Well, just tell me just talk me through the little conversations you guys were having at that time, because we without putting too fine a point on it, we were crapping ourselves.
[00:30:44] We were the same. I remember that very, very, very vividly speaking to June twenty third of March last year, and we were shut down and meet him just on the phone while Boris Johnson was announcing it. And we was like, right, what are we going to do? And I think, you know, again, we were very fortunate in terms of that practise. In particular Prav the old owners really, really stepped up. And whilst they had sort of, you know, sold the business, they came to the fore and sort of, you know, kind of took the team on board and said, look, we’re here. And they were very, very helpful in terms of guiding the practise during that time, considering that they sold it. But again, at the same time, I remember speaking to Jim and saying, look, you know, this is a very difficult and challenging time for all, but we’ve got to try and make sure two things. One is that we make sure that we look after our staff, which is the most important thing, and our patients. So whatever decisions we make is with their best interests at heart. And at the same time, we’ve got to look forward. Look, take it as an opportunity to sort of look at our business and see how we can modify it, how we can make it better. And if there is an opportunity to grow, if there are opportunities which came along later on, then we we will take those opportunities, but only once we have fully looked after our staff and our patients first.
[00:32:07] Yeah, that was the biggest stress on being spoken with, like. If we got no income coming in, how are we going to pay our staff and I was just passing reference to the families, I’m thinking of their families, kids, bills and stuff. That’s the main stress we had. So I think we’re quite fortunate the way, you know, the furlough scheme and the NHS, I was dealt with, it helped us out. But that was a stress education. The main thing, their life, they stay healthy, their life. Let’s not get too complacent with this covid. And so, Jane, you mentioned earlier about the both of you the balance of work life, family health is super important to both of you. Just talk me through that and how you how you how you manage that with not just the dozen or so practises you’ve got, but with the whole teaching academy and all the rest of it. How do you make that divide? And sort of for me, the hardest thing is being present, right? Because there’s always something going on. And, you know, my little girls want daddy and they don’t care about what’s going on in the business. Right. And the one hundred percent daddy in the room and being present is probably one of the things that I would say I struggle with the most and I make a conscious effort of doing that right.
[00:33:27] And putting things in place to make sure I am present. Just talk me through how you guys make times without that balance. And if you employ any strategies or anything to to bring that old into line, I think I think with what’s happened within our own lives from a young age, the whole practises and academy money was never part of it. And that’s just one of the key things for myself. Missing my brother is never been about money. Money will come if you do things right. And I think from our upbringing, I mean, my parents worked hard and it’s a very traditional Asian community, probably the same. Would you pay as well where they were thinking one day will retire, will enjoy life. And then at the age of 50, my dad’s kidneys went and the kidney transplant mom ended up donating a kidney to I just watching his life and our parents life. And look, we wouldn’t be here without the sacrifices. I mean, we can’t even compare our lives compared to their lives and what they went through. But seeing how they dealt with what happened, I’m like, look, I’m not going to save my energy and save up for one day when I’m 50, 60 to enjoy it. My thing is keep the balance right now in the present. So that means work hard now, but play harder right now as well.
[00:34:42] And that’s something which we’ve sort of instilled within our practises and within the academy. We make sure we’re sending that message where, you know, work hard, but make sure you join life, make sure you’re playing harder. And at the moment, none of us guys are playing hard. I now is a no going out, but you’ve got to make sure you’re enjoying life and making sure your hobbies, whether it be, you know, musical instruments, music for myself or hitting the gym, make sure you get your timing yourself. So one of the things for myself is for me to give energy off to kids and family. I need to be a bit more selfish first, which means I need to be 100 percent recharge 100 percent. Then I can give my energy to other people like a power bank, because what I find is in my family, you know, the three kids, wife, my parents, a lot of you know of the practise are a lot of people want energy. So I need to be one hundred percent before I can give that out. So that means I need to have systems and processes within my day to make sure I get my and I make sure I get my time out my gym time. And I think she’s is very similar. And even he went through a bigger transformation compared to me as well.
[00:35:53] Yeah, I could not agree more. I think that having that time to yourself is hugely important. And as Jim said, so I was I was bordering on one hundred and two CG about five years ago, and I remember this very vividly. I was taking money out of
[00:36:09] Five dollars that was wasn’t pure mask.
[00:36:12] That was a disqualification. But you.
[00:36:21] But look, I was carrying my six month old daughter up the stairs, and that’s when I go out of breath and I said, I can’t live like this. I’ve got to be around for them. I’ve got to give 100 percent, 200 percent to my family. So I went through a whole sort of physical transformation, a physical process, got my training on putting on my diet on point. But that process allowed me to Solanki gave me more structure to life. They sort of gave me the ability to say, look, I can create time, make time for things that are important. And it just sort of helps not only physically, but helped mentally as well. And I think that was a huge thing and sort of making that time for yourself. Sometimes you have to be a little bit selfish in the sense you’ve got to make time for yourself first so that then you can then give that time one hundred percent to others. And that was a huge part of it. And training is still still a huge part of that work life balance for us.
[00:37:13] What does your week look like? Do you still practise dentistry?
[00:37:18] Yes. One of the things we look we’re passionate clinicians. We’ve done a lot of stuff academically as well. So one of the things you want to make sure is to an extent, we continue the clinical and that way we relate to our workforce. So we both do work one day a week at the moment. Currently, the rest of the week is a mixture of teaching and predominantly a management of the practises going through things. That’s pretty much the whole week.
[00:37:44] Yeah. And again, that’s only been possible, though, because we invested very heavily in ourselves as clinicians over the past 13 years, both myself and done master’s in restorative dentistry, done a lot of postgraduate courses, not only in education, but in sort of aesthetic dentistry as well. And that’s allowed us to sort of maintain a level of income as a clinician, but on a like a reduced time frame during the week, because at the moment, neither of us, we don’t draw any sort of wages from the practises. Everything is reinvested in the practise to help the practises grow. So all of our sort of personal earnings go go on our personal life, kids, family life.
[00:38:26] So we have no says what? 13 years ago you finished university. That was 2007. It’s admirable, man, so thoughtful from the practise side was vision.
[00:38:41] The vision is to grow. Yeah, we’ve got to grow. We want to hit about 40 practises in the next few years. Which we’re going to continue. They always say when you dream big, so we dream big, or at least I do, I think it gets a bit more scary, like you come back to Earth and I know we’re going to go for it. Let’s continue on the stage.
[00:39:05] And that’s the beauty of it. Right. So like we said, 40 practises. But again, at the same time, it’s got to be grown in the right way. We’re not just going to buy practises for the sake of buying practises. We only buy practises where the ethos of the seller fits with our ethos in terms of, you know, patients will always come first and their quality of care has to be to the highest of standards. We’ve actually pulled out deals where, you know, the our ethos hasn’t aligned with the seller. I lost quite a lot of money on it. At the end of the day, you know, we want to make sure that when we take over practises, everything is in a similar sort of fashion as to how we would operate it, because, you know, a lot of the sellers still stay on with us. And I think that’s the most important thing. So whilst we have that vision of, you know, 40 practises in the next four years, it’s going to be grown in the right way with all of our practises. Put that patients first
[00:39:55] And you look looking for particular geography or you think in UK, why do you focus on a certain area at the moment? So currently, I mean, all the practises of Southeast London, Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk, Oxfordshire, now we are expanding, going north as well, looking at Birmingham, Midlands, what’s happened in the last, you know, of the young Dental is approaching us saying, look, guys, we really want to buy a practise. Can you support us? Can we get involved? And so that’s something which we’ve now taken on board. Like, I wouldn’t be here without Simeon helping me on my first practise. So one of the things we’ve done quite important is we are open to taking on partners, on board supporting even if someone wants to buy a practise. We recently did a clubhouse talk with a couple of people and we had over one hundred and fifty people in the room. One of the girls was looking to buy a practise. She goes, Guys, you know, can you mentor me looking to buy a practise? I’ll pay for it. I said, Look, I’ll help you more than happy to help you out the next week on the phone to her. And she’s looking to buy a practise. I think it was it was
[00:40:55] It was a story that was thoroughly
[00:40:57] And will help you out, because we’ve learnt a lot of stuff. We’ve made a lot of mistakes. We’ve lost some money as well. Some money comes and goes. I want to make sure everyone learns of each other and they don’t make the same mistakes we did as well.
[00:41:10] So the thing is, with a lot a lot of young dentists, they of sometimes want to get on the practise ladder just to have that sort of practise underneath the belt and just say, I own a practise and we’re trying to try to help spread the knowledge and say, look, guys, it’s about you have to your wife has to be really, really on point. When you’re buying a practise, you have to do it for the right reasons. And, you know, I’ve I’ve had a lot of friends who’ve bought practises and paid a lot of money for practises and are sort of in those practises six days a week, eight to eight and struggling. So one thing we say is, look, we’re here to help mentor you. Be that just for advice or if you want to come on board, come on board, because we like doing things with the people together. We will go on a journey. Everyone grows at the same time.
[00:41:52] You have coaches with you guys. The collaborative side of it is strong. You know, you don’t even though you’ve got a very strong kind of identity. By the way, is that on purpose? You sort of dress the same as this. If that was a strong identity, you haven’t done the thing where you sort of geek out, like keep yourself separate from from the rest of the community that you really do. You’re very collaborative. And that’s really that’s really a good thing to do. It’s really a good sign. A lot of people don’t do that. A lot of people sort of sense themselves off a little bit. Tell me where that came from. And then the other thing we were talking about mistakes. Let’s talk about mistakes. I like mistakes.
[00:42:39] So the whole thing, the Dental world is small. And I would even say the UK Dental world, the international Dental world now is even smaller. And if you want to grow within the Dental market, whether it’s in the academy site or practises, you need to get to know Dentists’. I mean, you need to get to know each other. So one of the things and I think in university, I mean, being a DJ and throwing parties, the networking site came easily to me. I made sure even as VTS we were quite active with Royal College FDP, we used to go to lectures just to get to know people. And, you know, a lot of people inspired us and we looked up to you so that we can, you know, build upon that. And I think that’s quite important to us. Plus, it’s great to see other people grow that I love supporting other clinicians are the businesses within the industry. If someone’s got an idea, we love to see growth and working together with people. That’s what it’s about, because as we say, that money will come and go. And it’s not about that. It’s about the journey with the right people around you and having fun along it.
[00:43:44] But it was one of those things, I think, again, that goes back to sort of mentors when we were in F.T. again, similar sort of ethos, both similar Niccola, great passion, great energy. And also the networks were huge at the time. And again, we sort of without their networks, we wouldn’t be here today because we used we kind of grew those networks ourselves from from them. And I think that from that perspective, they kind of gave us that sort of vision to say, look, you know, don’t do this by yourself, go out, collaborate with people, help people grow, nurture young dentists and help people. Most importantly,
[00:44:20] That’s to stop mistakes. Now, I want both of you to give me one clinical mistake he made and something you learn from that and then one business mistake you made and what you learn from the different. When do we start
[00:44:37] With the critical mistakes? I mean, I’m just all I can think about is my FDA and we used to go out quite often, used to come in the next day. I don’t drink. So luckily I was intoxicated. But whilst drilling, I did put the bar to the floor of the patient’s mouth, slipped, went for the floor, the patient’s mouth. Yeah, that was quickly learnt the importance of a strong finger. Luckily, look managed to do well and to me was there to save the day. But my FDA was full of mistakes. I think clinical mistakes. I mean, you did too many to go through. And I think that the main thing is, as you’re doing in your younger days, have the right support so people can step in and help you out when you do make the mistake and help you and help you grow as well. I think the Freudenberger from the floor of the mouth that was
[00:45:27] Done now for his clinical setting, you can think about your business mistake,
[00:45:33] I think sort of clinical mistake. It’s not so much clinical, but I think one of the most important things I learnt was very early on was assessing the patient. And I think, you know, we can all do treatment to X amount of standard. I think patients always are aware of what’s going on. But for me, I very vividly remember I just started in a in a private practise squat practise. And I was I was pretty I was pretty much it was in my after year and it was one of the first patients that seen I think I got a bit too excited, you know, charging 200 pounds for a composite and the FDA. And and I didn’t really see the patient side of it as much. And, you know, did the work really quickly. Patient walks out and says, how can you charge 200 pounds for that 40 minute appointment? And he was in my mouth for about 15, 20 minutes of that. And what I didn’t realise is that back then and again, this is something that my mentors taught me, is that you’ve got to treat the patient as a whole. You know, it’s not just about the dentistry, and I love that very, very early on, so now it’s and again, it’s never about the money, but you have to we have to understand that for the patient that you’re offering a service, they are paying for that service. And that was the lesson I learnt very, very early on.
[00:46:42] That’s a good one. Let’s move to business and take
[00:46:49] I you to take, but
[00:46:56] I’ll give you a bit of business mistake. Not so much a mistake. I think circumstances are what they are, but one of our practises we ended up buying in Norfolk and we had a really sad situation where one of the old owners was diagnosed with cancer and one of the major, major providers of the practise. And, you know, the practise sort of went from turning over close to a million pounds to go to half of that within the space of a year because we just couldn’t fulfil the NHS contract side of things. And I think one of the mistakes that we made was probably not having that vision to create contingencies or planning ahead for that sort of situation. And some of it’s out of our hands. We couldn’t obviously you dealt with the cards are dealt with, but I think we probably could have dealt with that better make some contingencies. But again, it’s all about learning from those mistakes. So now one thing that we have got is contingencies across the board to make sure that we are fulfilling the NHS targets, but making sure that patients have that continual access, regardless of whether someone’s there or not. There’s always someone to help fill that, fill the boots.
[00:48:11] Another. I mean, my what I would say is if you’re going to a bank manager’s meeting, there’s about a million quid, they’ll be useful to get the right back manager’s name and the right by name right
[00:48:30] Already there with our financial director. I walked in obviously 15 minutes late, as I usually do. I assumed it was virgin money because I saw the logo outside walking. I go with Richard Branson. I’m here to get his money. Little did I know it was a totally different bank robbing bank. Romney Yeah,
[00:48:52] Because I’ve done a lot of the chat before then.
[00:48:54] So let’s talk about the academy. What’s what’s the what’s the sort of where did it start and where we are now? How many people you’ve got going through your many, many different causes. I see.
[00:49:10] Yes, I mean, look, we’ve got over one hundred and fifty delegates now enrolled in our courses and the majority of our courses are longitudinal diplomas and it all started in twenty. Eighteen. All right.
[00:49:22] Twenty nineteen and twenty eighteen.
[00:49:26] It started around such a long time.
[00:49:30] We had a number of back then. We had about fifty associates used to work for us and they’re all asking us, Genki, you’ve done a lot of course is what you recommend. Would you recommend. And we’ve done some fantastic courses and I still recommend them based education on let’s try and put something together for our dentist because we’ve got the network back that was meant to be predominantly us teaching it. But then I said to them, you know, why don’t we take it one step further? We’ve got a lot of good contacts with big lecturers, international lecturers. Let’s get them involved. The next thing you know, we thought it’d be quite nice to give the delegates some sort of recognition in terms of let us off the name, some sort of accredited diploma. So we went down that path and that’s how it all started and initially was meant to be just our own dentistry sort spiralled out where we are. So many people wanted to get role. And since that, we our first call was March twenty nineteen Fusako of Diploma of Restorative Anaesthetic and we were on our seventh one now with the implant diploma orthodontic one and don’t daunting one. And what I’m proud of and I think these guys don’t get enough credit is our Dental therapist one, our Dental therapists. I mean firstly fantastic to work with, but the clinical skills shocked me. Some amazing unity.
[00:50:53] We find that on the news for me, Cooper. The therapists are better than the dentists. It’s I don’t know. I think it’s self selecting. The kind of therapist who decides to save the money and come and do the course is really, really key. Yeah, maybe that’s the problem. This place where the people coming from, is it is it like, OK, word of mouth and all that. But, you know, advertising, is it to do with your sort of personal brand and people want to be close to you? Don’t just tell me what you think.
[00:51:28] Yes, I think it’s a mixture. So a lot of it is word of mouth. A lot of it is through the brand itself. And social media has been has been great as well in terms of sort of people sort of seeing myself in a lot of that. The lectures are up to and again, sort of our passion for what we do and how we sort of approach dentistry. And it’s just all about being positive. And most important thing for us is having fun while still learning. And I think that’s a key element for us.
[00:51:56] We get asked of did you know, I mean, there’s so many academies and so many university courses and so many programmes, every one of them is fantastic. It just depends what kind of learning style you like, what kind of education you like, and it’s that environment you fit in with. So that’s why I say, look, try to see what other people do in every one of them has got their own styles, how to do it. And ours is slightly different, whereas, you know, play harder. And that’s how we want to get across to everyone making learning fun. That’s the best way of
[00:52:26] Explaining it to me then. I mean, I know it’s got in the way, but explain that to me. How is you? Of course, more fun than the next one.
[00:52:33] I don’t even want to say fun. I mean, look, we try and make it fun as possible. We got music playing. We’ve got a social happening as well. But our lecturing style as well and our energy that we bring in. So those of you know myself, K’iche, Ali, as well, we’ve got our own style of lecturing as well, which, you know, it’s not for everyone. And that’s the thing I remember being doing our masters and some lectures you warm to some you know, you find it quite difficult. We can all relate to teachers at school as well. You know, those do we can relate to. And it’s about finding who are you going to learn the best from? And one thing we always say is don’t do our courses or any course for CPD or for letters after your name do. So you can really apply the skills and knowledge. The next day I get on many small Makov. You learn composite Monday morning, apply it. And that’s the most important thing, stuff that you can apply that’s relevant to your practise. You have to make it. You know, you should apply.
[00:53:28] Yeah, I mean, every, every sort of Monday night we run like a case clinic for all the delegates, for all the diplomas, for the employment diploma, for the orthodontic diploma, the restorative and also for the therapists. And the reason why we do that is because we really, really want to encourage them to implement what they’re learning in practise. And the only way by doing that is by bringing cases that you’re going to treat and helping support them on planning those cases and executing them. And that’s one thing that we’re very passionate about and we are very adamant about that come on the course. But make sure that you’ve got enough cases that you’re going to get this work so that everything that you’re learning, you’re able to implement in the next day.
[00:54:08] Yeah. So put a bullet point
[00:54:11] When you guys buy a practise and you’ve got a whole bunch of new clinicians on board in the group, is the training part of the package, so to speak, in terms of elevating the standing of that practise? So let’s say I was a dentist working at a practise that you just acquired. Do I get to benefit from the diplomas, et cetera, et cetera? Is this some kind of a deal or is it mandatory? What’s the relationship between the two businesses? That’s good. Mean look, we’ve got certain things that are mandatory in terms of we do our symposiums where four or five times a year we’ve got courses going on on the weekend where it’s composite courses could be a rubber dam course, variety of courses running where, you know, any Dental to come along and learn from from the other side. Would you separate the academy side is something which, you know, delegates do want to do for the education. They’ve got the opportunity where some can do at a discounted rate and some if they go on a salary package, they it could be included as well. So we’ve got a variety of options. And that’s sort of in a way helped making sure that the clinical standards within each practise are to the maximum that can possibly be. And plus all our, you know, clinicians are seeing each other on courses and the continuing growing as well.
[00:55:26] Yeah, just just to go back to that point about a symposium for us that was a really, really important part of of the group and the ethos in terms of the clinical standards of dentistry that we want to try and achieve, because that’s free for the fall of our associates. They come on at four or five times a year. But also it’s really important. It’s sort of a networking event for them as well, because, you know, the practise all over the country in Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, London, Hertfordshire, and we know that sometimes dentistry can get isolating. You know, you’re in your practise six days a week. You don’t get to go out, socialise with other dentists as much as you can, especially if you’re not going on other courses. So one thing for us that was really important was to sort of create that culture within the group where everyone’s on board with sort of investing themselves, learning and trying to excel as a clinician, but at the same time also network together have a little bit of a social life to the day and just to get to meet other people and to share experiences. Hence why we decided to do these small tight-Knit group symposiums every every two or three months.
[00:56:29] How did you manage to trademark smile as a word? How does that.
[00:56:35] I think we trademark these. If we trademark smile. A lot of small things out there.
[00:56:42] Basically, it’s one of those it’s a funny one to pick a as a brand name in dentistry. And my hat’s off to you literally. You’ve. You’ve pulled it off for the the code of practise small groups. How many employees do you guys have now? Over three hundred. Three hundred thousand.
[00:57:16] Yeah, it’s great. It’s great.
[00:57:19] That’s a hell of a beast.
[00:57:21] I’m just like the Christmas party was. And Boris really messed it up for us. I’m looking forward to this one.
[00:57:30] Should be good. What we’re looking to do a here. Right.
[00:57:32] You understand if we’re going out to. So business confidence come from guys,
[00:57:39] What does the confidence come from? I think it’s when you feel like you’re doing the right thing and you’ve been on the right path. Learning dentistry is the one thing I would say is that when we started this, I wanted to know dentistry inside out. I make sure I learnt the clinical we know how practises work. We know the NHS, how the system works and how clinicians work, how the patients see it. So we made sure we learnt everything we can within dentistry. And I think once you’ve got the knowledge that helps with the confidence within it as well. I think our education that we’ve spent a lot of time and money on has helped us with the confidence side as well.
[00:58:14] There’s lots of people, lots of Dental education, right, but they haven’t got three hundred employees. I mean, this notion of we’re going to grow, we’re going to keep going, we’re going to keep loads of people think that. Yeah, but actually executing on it and having the option to keep going and wanting to trace it back to you was to be the confident guy, to become a deejay and all of that. Right. But both of you. Can you trace it back to why didn’t you just buy practise until
[00:58:47] You hit it? Well, I think it’s two things. One is having that growth, but you want to do big things and drive, drive, but you also need to execute properly. And that’s where you know, where privacy avoid the drive always had to drive. Even as university. I was talking to my friends I about 16, 16 year, lowest high school and high school, and we were throwing parties for university students. So we used to go flying disco to kings and throwing parties for university students. So that drives always been there. But I think when K’iche came along, it was the execution part and I think both need to be there. Otherwise, one person is you’re dreaming and planning, but nothing ever gets executed. And I think when both came together, I think that’s where it worked for us.
[00:59:33] No, I couldn’t agree more with that. I think the the beauty of it is that we’ve always said, look, we’ve always got to dream big, but we’ve also been able to execute what we’re dreaming about and sort of and it’s all about timing and execution. But not only that, I think part of the confidence comes around from having the right people around you. You know, I think that’s the massive part of the journey and both myself and just been blessed to have the right people around us at every stage, every stage of our career, not only clinically, but also in terms of business. We’ve had great mentors and military people that sort of lean upon for advice when needed. And that’s still the case. And, you know, we always say whenever the finished article, we’re always learning and that will never stop. So both of us look to the embassy some point again now that we’ve sort of got our clinical side to invest lot of clinically, we’re now looking to grow the business side. And to do that, you have to go through the process of education as well.
[01:00:30] Recommend the NBA guys, if you speak to people who have done them and they want to run GlaxoSmithKline when they come out of it. I just want to work with everyone who’s done what has been done with it. Don’t get me wrong, plenty of people have been happy with it. Even it’s it’s actually brilliant, man. And it’s great. It’s obvious you’re enjoying it. Would you enjoy the most and what benefit would you rather. I know it’s obvious. One of you likes one thing, the other likes the other. What’s your favourite bit of itching? The acquiring.
[01:01:12] Yeah, I mean, I like the growth side, so I love, you know, the whole academy teaching side. I mean, I’m teaching this week in Ipswich for Health Education in England, next week for Birmingham College of Medicine, Dentistry, etc. next week as well. But I like seeing people grow and I like working with people. I like the whole site and I love the acquisition site. That’s predominantly where you know, where my head is that in the with a passion and enjoyment comes for myself.
[01:01:37] Yeah, similar to Jen in terms of acquisition and the growth and also sort of forging relationships, I think that’s been a massive part of being able to do and being able to grow, I think forging relationships with not only sort of banks, but also solicitors and people outside of the clinical remit within dentistry. I think it’s been amazing. And that’s the part that’s something that we both are very, very passionate about. And I really love that part of it, because you meet people of all walks of life and the experiences that you can gain from them is immense.
[01:02:09] Casey, you spoke about your transformation earlier, coming down from a hundred and two kilos, you touched upon confidence, right? I certainly know myself if I’m on my game when it comes to training, eating, diet, if that is bangle my entire life, like my performance in life, whether it’s time with my kids, whether it’s in business, whether it’s talking to clients, whether it’s meeting people, it focuses in centres around a couple of things, Wii and Armatrading. Right. And if those two are in line, everything else and I’ll put my success down to that. And it sounds like a crazy thing to do, especially when you’re talking to someone who the idea of Jim is just foreign. Right. And it just just doesn’t enter into that. So you talk to me about you went from a hundred and two kilos to whatever you are now. How did that transform your life in terms of business, family life, confidence? Socially?
[01:03:08] It was it was huge, had a huge, huge impact. And I think I know General has seen that sort of first hand, the confidence it gives you very much the same Prav if my training is on my diet is on point. Everything else just fits into place in life, not just for work, but most importantly for the family. Your head is in a much better space. And that that gave me a huge amount of confidence. You know, it was one of those things that had been in the back of my mind for such a long time, you know, and being at that sort of that sort of weight and not being in shape, it does affect your confidence 100 percent. You know, it’s one of those things. And it just got to that point for me where I had to make a change and making that change, going through that process gave me a different sort of mental toughness because it gave me the sort of approach in life that I can achieve, anything I put my mind to. And no matter how big that dream is, I can achieve it. Hence, you know, if that’s in business and family, whatever it is, that has been sort of a huge impact on my life personally on that.
[01:04:14] And that trigger was just walking up the steps with you, with your baby feeling just some out of breath. How am I going to run around with my kid,
[01:04:23] You know, pizza three times a week and all that sugar was not doing any favours and let you walking up those steps. And I got to the top and it wasn’t it wasn’t like a long flight of stairs. And I just thought, this is just I cannot live like this. You know, I’ve got to be around for a lot longer. I’ve got a lot more to give. And that’s just what I just needed to make a change.
[01:04:43] I was it black and white for from the moment you made that decision, it was like you did turn to switch on a hundred percent. You can’t go in another direction. Or was there a bit of moderation in between? What was going through your head?
[01:04:55] Now, I’m very much if I put my mind to it, I want to get it done. And for me, it was a three month process. You know, we went through I mean, I started losing a little bit of weight initially, and then I got in touch with with a personal trainer through a company. And I just made a decision that I just wanted to achieve the best physical shape I could possibly achieve and in the shortest amount of time possible. So we did it. I think three months start to finish. But it for me was just a switch, just black and white, just wanted to get it done
[01:05:26] And so forth. Practises on what what’s the next stage? Any physical transformation, Mr. Olympia? Do you think we’ll do
[01:05:40] It together, Prav Keisha’s
[01:05:43] Transformation is on his Instagram if anyone’s not seen it, and I think she’s on only fans as well now.
[01:05:51] Always depend on you for the. But, you know, again, you know, putting that that picture up on Instagram was not an easy task by any stretch of the imagination. But again, I wanted to put it out there because it was more to sort of inspire people to sort of if they’re ever struggling with anything, if you can put your mind to it, you can achieve it. And it’s just about telling them, you know, your wife has to be strong enough. And if your wife is strong enough, you can achieve it 100 percent.
[01:06:19] Well done, trust your justice project of yours might end up with an exit, right? I know you’re way too young to be thinking of it, but but, you know, there is that question. Like, if if there was an exit, let’s say let’s say someone came along and gave you money on your dreams to to walk away. Can you do next?
[01:06:47] That’s the question we keep asking ourselves pretty much every day. I mean, the exit is going to come one day and I’m a bit unpredictable at least. And if the fun goes for me, I might be out tomorrow morning because this process for me has to be fun and enjoyable. If I’m not enjoying it, I’m out because we one thing we asked ourselves, why are we doing this? And for me, it’s about enjoying the process. But I want to live long. For me, it’s not about the money. It’s about living long.
[01:07:14] What can you do? What do you do?
[01:07:17] What else would we do? I know you play a lot more golf and improve his game.
[01:07:25] I think I think I think we’ve always got to have an exit strategy. I think whatever you do in life, you’ve got to plan ahead. So I know for both of us, we love we love property. That’s always something that we’ve been talking about for a long time. I know Jim wants to own a nightclub one day because he loves the giant party. So I’m pretty sure that’s on the cards. But who knows? Who knows? And is it the most important thing for us is it’s got to be enjoyable. Whatever the next is, it’s going to be enjoyable. Even this whole process we’re on, we’re having fun. And as Jim said, once the fun stops, then that’ll probably accelerate the exit plan.
[01:08:00] I like them, our guys will put Prav has these questions he asks at the end of each of these podcast
[01:08:10] Guys, you probably know what’s coming next, but I’m going to flip flop between the two of you. I’ve got three questions. So Jim, starting off with his self imagination last day on the planet, but you’re going to live long and have a lot of fun along the way. But let’s say that day comes and you’ve got you’ve got your little ones around you. What three pieces of wisdom would you leave them? For the rest of you, going down from a deep 60 up propertied may not ice, it’s three pieces of wisdom, I would say. Firstly, dream big as big as you want you. Whatever you want to do, you can achieve it. Secondly, enjoy your life, enjoy meaning, enjoy every process, every step of the way. Don’t put too much pressure, but don’t overdo it as well. Education is not everything that makes you do that. And lastly, I would say is the last bit advice for the kids. Difficult one, I would just say support one another, keep the family, keep keep the unit together. I think family is everything and I would say tell them, you know, support each other as you guys. You they’ll be my advice. So I dream big, happy, happy along whatever you want to do and support each other. That’s said. It’s nice and safe for you. Three pieces of wisdom.
[01:09:32] Yeah, so exactly what my grandma told me when I was growing up is that, you know, never, ever, ever chase funny because the more you chase it, the further will run away from you. I think that’s one of the most important things in life. You know, whatever you do, similar to Jim in the sense of family is always going to come first. So make sure you’re supporting each other, not only just but you kids are going to go out and not just yourselves, but the bigger family. One thing I grew up with was a great network, a support network within the family where all of us were very close. And that’s one thing I would always say to them is just try and make sure that you keep those bonds and grow them, make them stronger. And the third thing is just don’t take life too seriously. You know, it’s not all about achieving grades. It’s about being happy and living each moment to the to the max that you can you know, you don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow. So make sure you enjoy each day as much as you possibly can.
[01:10:33] It’s lovely, Jane, back to you and. If you had something written on a tombstone, say, Gene was an. Finished, finished off, what would you would your legacy be? How would you like to begin involved? Dude was jokes that Gene was joking, was jokes, it’s. And Keish.
[01:11:10] It’s a good question.
[01:11:16] Got to get straight.
[01:11:19] I was going to say that I was going to say
[01:11:23] It doesn’t have a single word of
[01:11:27] It, that let’s go with the
[01:11:29] Prav disappeared again. But his final his final final final question. And again, it’s a long way away for you guys, but let’s say you knew you had 30 days left, yet you had your health, but you knew you had 30 days left. How would you spend those 30 days?
[01:11:49] Ok, I’ll go first on that one, I mean, for me, it would be with my kids, my family, the whole lot, and I would just take them away if money wasn’t an issue. I just take them away somewhere where, you know, you could have a different experience every every day or every week. So travel around the world.
[01:12:06] Where’s your favourite place even?
[01:12:08] My favourite place was probably Bali.
[01:12:12] Beautiful, beautiful, sunny. How are you to decide I’m
[01:12:17] Going to fly straight to Vegas, but you want to join me
[01:12:23] For a business in Bogota? I’m on a
[01:12:27] Flight to Vegas. I say Pakistan unstable. That’s where we’re going, 30 nights
[01:12:34] For three nights straight
[01:12:36] Paid for by small ethnic group
[01:12:41] Respec. Could see amazing guys. It’s been lovely having you on
[01:12:47] Now, but thanks so much. I appreciate it.
[01:12:49] I appreciate it. Thanks so much, guys.
[01:12:53] This is Dental Leaders, the podcast where you get to go one on one with emerging leaders, the history. Your house, Payman, Langroudi and Prav Solanki.
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