The American Dental Association reported at its annual session in October that membership is declining at a rate of 1 percent per year. And the Chicago Dental Society responded.
Chicago-area business coach, speaker and author Steve Fretzin presented a two-part webinar on member recruitment and retention, accessible through the CDS website. CDS president Susan Becker Doroshow said on the CDS Facebook page that the advice Mr. Fretzin offered could easily be applied to patients of a dental office, as well as Branch members, Rotary Club prospects, and others community groups.
Organizations, Mr. Fretzin explained, often work under the guise of a few key myths. Among them, that members will not leave the group as long as the organization continues to provide good services at a fair price. While this might have been true years ago, he said during the Nov. 5 webinar, current members are pulled in many directions and have many more demands on their time and wallets.
To overcome these changes, Mr. Fretzin offered several suggestions for how to successfully retain a member:
- Talk about renewing a membership at a time that is mutually convenient for both parties. Don’t try to wedge a conversation in between patients or as you are sitting down to dinner.
- Ask questions to understand each member’s needs, and explain how your organization meets those needs. If you hear that a colleague trying to grow their patient base, for example, remind them that CDS maintains a referral service for members only and that branch meetings are a great place to meet local colleagues and network with those whose specialty is different from your own.
- Anticipate the objections you’ll hear from skeptical members and be prepared to direct them toward a solution. If the price of joining is an issue, remind your colleague that their dues are an investment in their careers, which can be reclaimed through access to needed continuing education programs, networking opportunities, and political advocacy at the state and national levels.
- Have a plan when you initiate these conversations. Work with colleagues to anticipate objections and become more knowledgeable about the benefits of a CDS membership. Your success will be greater when everyone is working from the same script.
To hear more from Mr. Fretzin, access the two-part webinar on demand at the CDS website.
Register now for the 150th Midwinter Meeting February 26 - 28, 2015, at Chicago's McCormick Place West. It promises to be A Midwinter Celebration.
Build your knowledge with hands-on participation courses and live televised patient demonstrations. Meet with your colleagues from throughout the dental community in person while you learn from the leaders in dental continuing education.
Visit the Exhibit Hall, where you will find more than 600 commercial partners displaying the latest and best in dental products and services.
Stay connected with your colleagues and classmates
You don’t need to live or practice in Chicago to be a member of CDS and receive great membership benefits. For $125, you can be an associate member and receive free registration to the Midwinter Meeting. No matter where you live, you can always reconnect with your friends in Chicago every February.
CDS members honored in 1944 their colleague Marvin Chapin, a 1938 graduate of the Chicago College of Dental Surgery at Loyola University who piloted a P-47 fighter plane on D-Day. His leg was later amputated by the tail of the plane he was forced to abandon via parachute. Dr. Chapin shared his story with his colleagues at home through letters to his associate in practice, Howard Miller.
Dr. Chapin was awarded the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters and a Purple Heart.
Dr. Chapin flew over the Normandy beaches at 4 p.m. in the first flight of the American Fighter Bombers. He logged six flight hours that day.
It was during his 22nd mission June 15 that his plane was shot by a German fighter. He was unable to release the 500 lb. bomb under one of the wings, and thus had to abandon the plane.
“I managed to fly back across the channel to England, where I jumped! In doing so, the tail of my aeroplane amputated my right leg just below the knee. I opened my parachute and put a tourniquet on my leg while enjoying my first parachute ride — it really was a thrill in spite of the slight discomfort.
I was finally taken to a British hospital where I spent two weeks and I can not pay enough compliments to them. They were wonderful to me surgically as well as socially,” Dr. Chapin wrote.
Dr. Chapin was transferred to an American hospital and then to New York and Atlanta for multiple surgeries, rehabilitation and fitting for a prosthesis; he compared surgery to a alveolectomy, albeit on a larger scale. He was quite proud of his accomplishments, and not at all sensitive about the loss of his leg.
Of particular interest was the role his first profession played in his time of service. The cockpit of his plane was inscribed with DDS, rather than his Army rank, and he painted a molar on his plane for each mission.
CDS Regular Members: Want to be able to register for the CDS Midwinter Meeting, starting Monday, Nov. 3?
You must have your dues paid prior to registering, and you can do that NOW! Click here.
Longtime CDS member Theodore Borris has joined the CDS staff.
Dr. Borris will serve as Director of Scientific Programs beginning Jan. 5. Current Director of Scientific Programs Aloysius Kleszynski previously announced plans to retire Jan. 1.
Dr. Borris holds degrees from Loyola University of Chicago, Northeastern Illinois University at the University of Illinois. He also served in the U.S. Air Force, teaching and working as a general dental officer at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas.
Locally, Dr. Borris maintained a private dental practice in Mt. Prospect. He served on the CDS Board of Directors, representing the Northwest Suburban Branch, and held leadership positions with the Illinois State Dental Society and the American Dental Association.
We look forward to seeing more of him around the CDS HQ as he prepares to assume this new role.