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The Missing Ingredient in Leadership with Fred Joyal
Episode 3673rd January 2022 • The Best Practices Show • ACT Dental
00:00:00 00:36:07

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The Missing Ingredient in Leadership

Episode #367 with Fred Joyal

It takes boldness to do all the things you need to do in dentistry. And if you want to thrive — not just in dentistry, but in life, being bold is a prerequisite. So, to teach you how to take the first step, Kirk Behrendt brings in Fred Joyal, co-founder of 1-800-DENTIST, to share how he found the secret ingredient for a better, successful life. In his new book, Superbold, he gives you a step-by-step process to help you achieve the level of confidence you need. Boldness can be taught — it’s up to you to want to learn! To make boldness your new superpower, listen to Episode 367 of The Best Practices Show!

Main Takeaways:

Boldness is a superpower.

Hesitation is an opportunity killer.

Learn to reject rejection.

Embrace that people don't care.

All the good stuff happens in your discomfort zone.


“I would see bold people and go, ‘Why are they like this? Why are they doing this? Why aren't they afraid of rejection or embarrassment or anything? They're just speaking up and they're doing all this stuff. They must be born that way.’ And I realized, gradually, that they weren't, because there were times when I made a bold move, and it made all the difference in my life. Starting 1-800-DENTIST was a bold move. It was crazy. You start any business, you've got to be half nuts, to invent a business from scratch. But I couldn't do it consistently, so I worked at it and worked at it.” (6:14—6:52)

“Boldness is a superpower. Everything flows from this. If you master this, if you are confident in action — because confidence is how you feel; boldness is how you act and how you get stuff done.” (6:56—7:12)

“I was shy. Now, what I learned is, my behavior was shy. I wasn't always shy. It wasn’t genetically true. I mean, I am this height. I am not 6’8”. I'm never going to play in the NBA because I am not tall. But I behave shyly — I did behave shyly. I hesitated. These were all actions. These were all behaviors that I decided to change and be uncomfortable.” (8:15—8:49)

“I made the choice to be uncomfortable because I started to learn what was on the other side, because every bold action I took was rewarding, and every time I hesitated was a punishment — I missed out on a girlfriend. I missed out on a job. I missed out on a raise. The list goes on. And the same thing is true for a dentist. You've been beaten down for four years in dental school by these professors, and you're out there, and you're supposed to come out and interact with patients and run a team. This all requires boldness. It takes boldness to ask for a referral from a patient. They go, ‘I don't like to do that.’ Who cares if you don't like it? If you want to build a practice, you have to get comfortable doing it.” (8:50—9:41)

“You've got to do a tremendous amount wrong to fail as a dentist. But to thrive as a dentist, to have a fantastic life and give the patients the treatment they deserve — I mean, if somebody needs $40,000 worth of dentistry to get their optimum health back, you can't present $3,000 worth of dentistry and be afraid to say, ‘That's going to be $40,000.’ That's a bold thing to do, but it’s also your professional responsibility. Now, they may have trouble getting around the cost of that. But that's not the issue. The issue is, are you comfortable telling them that they need $40,000 worth of dentistry, and it’s one of the best investments they're ever going to make in their whole life?” (11:13—11:57)

“You have to learn to reject rejection. Rejection has nothing to do with you. When somebody says no, they mean “not yet,” most of the time — in business. If it’s a guy picking up a girl and she says no, she means no. Right? She doesn't mean “not yet.” But most of the time, rejection, you have no idea what headspace that person is in when they reject you. It could be the worst day of their life. They could've just gotten fired. They could've just divorced. Their blood sugar could be plummeting — any number of things. 99% of the time, rejection has got nothing to do with you. And even if it does, what do you care? Were you actually harmed?” (12:10—12:58)

“We are fearful of the harmless. Bold people let it bounce right off. They have a tiny, tiny list of people whose opinions really matter to them. And the rest of them, it’s not important.” (12:59—13:14)

“Your mindset about rejection is, you're interpreting it as something bad. You're making a choice to make it painful. Bold people go, ‘It’s got nothing to do with me. I'm moving on.’” (13:43—13:56)

“People aren't thinking about you anywhere near as much as you think they are. They're thinking about themselves. So, let it go. And don't fixate on it because all it’s doing is impeding you from chasing your dreams.” (15:04—15:20)

“The last thing I would want anybody to want is on their tombstone to say, ‘I played it as safe as possible the whole way.’ We’re in the game. We don't know how long the coach is going to let us play, if you use the analogy. So, play full-out as long as you can. And that means you've got to get into your discomfort zone. And what happens is, the more you do it, the wider it gets, and the more you find out all the good stuff is over there.” (15:26—16:01)

“[Bold people] are never going to be the ones that tell themselves no. And this is what the rest of the world does. The rest of the world has mastered imagining the worst-case scenario — all of them. All of the bad things that could happen. What we’re all terrible at is calculating what the odds are of that happening. It’s usually one or two percent. We’re making it 90% or 95%. Bold people go, ‘It’s zero percent. Because even if it goes wrong, I'm going to laugh it off.’ So, they are never the ones to stop themselves.” (17:53—18:30)

“Dr. Paul Homoly, my good buddy, says, ‘Never take no from somebody who can't say yes.” (18:36—18:42)

“Why are you stopping you?” (19:43—19:44)

“We used to think the brain was fully developed by 19 or 20. What they found is that you can develop new neural pathways your whole life. And so, when you start behaving in a bold way and doing those things, just as exercise is not concerned about the outcome at all because it doesn't matter, the brain starts to create these neural pathways that say it’s all right because we’ve built in a fight-or-flight thing, because psychological fear and physical danger, we react exactly the same way to. But psychological fear is all a construct in our head, for the most part. There are very few things to actually be afraid of in modern society.” (20:51—21:35)

“It’s not just in dentistry — there are going to be all these times in your life where you're going to get one chance to step up, to act. Now, it may be to defend somebody in a situation, or to step up, or somebody’s being bullied, and you step in, or an old woman is hesitant at the sidewalk and you're the guy that walks right over and holds out your arm. Some people go, ‘Well, I don't know. She may think I'm a rapist or something.’ It’s like, no, you're not. You're just helping an old lady cross the street. And any time you do those things, you create this human connection, and you are uplifting somebody.” (22:20—23:06)

“There's a great expression that says worrying is like paying interest on a debt you probably don't owe.” (26:58—27:04)

“It takes boldness to say, ‘If you like the care that I've given you, I would love it if you tell people about our practice, because we love treating people like you.’ It sounds really easy to say, but to say it takes a certain amount of boldness. You have to be confident that your dentistry is great. But your dentistry is great. You are selling a great thing.” (28:38—29:01)

“All the things that you didn't say, you didn't do, you didn't try, that's what's going to gnaw at you. The things you stumbled at, the things you thought people would laugh at that you’d be embarrassed about, everybody’s forgotten them already, except you, because you wish you had done that. You wish you had said it. And that's what [Superbold] is about, is a systematic way to learn how to do this in any situation in your life.” (29:51—30:16)

“Some people strive their whole lives to be comfortable. Comfortable is like going to bed. It’s where you go to restore yourself. All the good stuff happens in your discomfort zone when you're uncomfortable, when you're pushing your boundaries, when you're trying something new, taking a chance, taking a risk, discovering something. That's what boldness can do. And it’s available for everybody.” (32:11—32:39)


0:00 Introduction.

2:08 Fred’s background.

5:30 Why Fred wrote Superbold.

7:42 Dentistry requires boldness.

9:42 Learn to reject rejection.

13:56 Embrace that people don't care.

16:32 The good side to being bold.

20:17 Boldness creates new neural pathways.

25:27 Worrying is paying interest on a debt you don't owe.

30:40 Last thoughts on boldness.

32:41 Where to buy Fred’s book, Superbold.

Reach Out to Fred:

Fred’s Facebook:

Fred’s social media: @fredjoyal

Books by Fred Joyal:

Everything is Marketing:

Becoming Remarkable:


Fred Joyal Bio:

Fred Joyal is a prominent speaker and author focusing on remarkable customer service. Recently retired, Fred was the co-founder of Futuredontics, the parent company of 1-800-DENTIST, which, over 30 years, generated over $1 billion in revenue. He is the author of two books, Everything is Marketing: The Ultimate Strategy for Dental Practice Growth, published in 2010, and Becoming Remarkable: How to Create a Dental Practice Everyone Talks About, published in 2015.