The DENTSPLY GAC 2015 Orthodontic World Congress
took place this past February 18 – 21 at the beautiful Loews Coronado Bay Resort in San Diego. The seaside gathering was held at a time when much of North America was getting pounded by a historic cold front that stretched from Chicago to Texas and Florida. The event was about challenging conventional thinking, exploring new ways to look at running the practice/ business, and then providing the tools from which attendees could translate both the clinical and business ideas into practical application.
“This was a great opportunity for us to connect with our customers, provide them with a global perspective of the Orthodontic industry, as well as give them a peek at what GAC has in store for the future,” said Brad Clatt, Vice President of Commercial Operations DENTSPLY GAC and Raintree Essix. “When we were developing the agenda for this meeting, we wanted to bring a roster of highly acclaimed speakers that would connect the orthodontist back to their business, their staff, and their patients. We not only challenged the speakers to provide real-world, actionable concepts and strategies across both the clinical and practice management side of the equation, but we also provided attendees with interactive workshops and the resources to support practice implementation of these new ideas upon their return. I think that provided for a very powerful and unique program for our customers.”
Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestselling author Jonah Berger was one of the featured speakers at the event. Both a graduate and professor at University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, Berger is the author of Contagious: Why Things Catch On. His keynote presentation explored the underlying reasons why certain ideas “go viral” and take the world by storm. His presentation concluded by showing how these viral drivers can be repurposed and applied to practice marketing ideas.
Steve Curtin, author of Delight Your Customers: 7 Simple Ways to Raise Your Customer Service from Ordinary to Extraordinary followed Berger, offering the crowd actionable insight on how they all could get to the essence of what their practice is all about. Doing so was a key step in transforming the doctor/patient relationship from transactional to inspirational. The keynote trio was closed out by an inspiring and introspective presentation by Jon Acuff. Also a NY Times bestselling author, Acuff is the author of four books including Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average & Do Work that Matters.
In addition to several breakout sessions, the business portion of the OWC also featured speakers Dr. Lou Shuman and Amy Morgan, both of the Pride Institute, and the always engaging Dr. Ben Burris, who built one of the largest practices in North America in Arkansas.
Attendees who were interested in the clinical side also found plenty to sink their teeth into. The event featured a wide variety of clinically oriented events that included everything from performing lingual treatment to dealing with complex and risky orthodontic movements such as Periodontally Facilitated Orthodontics.
In addition to the scheduled speakers, DENTSPLY Chairman and CEO Bret Wise addressed the company’s ongoing commitment to both orthodontics and the orthodontic community as a whole. Steve Jenson, Vice President of Global Orthodontics and Brad Clatt, Vice President of Commercial Operations DENTSPLY GAC and Raintree Essix, also addressed the crowd with some insight into where DENTSPLY GAC is going in the future.
Of course, no getaway is complete without some quality “away” time and the OWC included just the right amount of social interaction. Sponsored by DENTSPLY GAC, the gathering offered attendees a respite from the brutal arctic cold that was making international news. OWC attendees weren’t shy about sharing their climatic good fortune online at #GAC2015OWC.
Attendees also enjoyed a “Savor the Flavor of San Diego” Welcome Reception that included local culinary treats, craft beers, wines, artwork and music. The meeting wrapped up with a truly wild event, as attendees got to experience an exotic journey through the San Diego Zoo, followed by dinner and dancing at the Safari Club located in the heart of the zoo.
This article was published in OrthoWorld 2015 Spring Issue