The Thriving Dentist Show was supposedly the first ever dental podcast to be released into the airwaves when it was conceived by a man called Gary Takacs.
Whether it was or it wasn’t the first, it certainly is the best! And The Thriving Dentist is listened to in over 150 countries worldwide – that’s so impressive considering the podcast is all in spoken English.
Let me start with a very brief biography on Gary based on what I know from listening to some of his podcasts and from a bit of online research I did for this post…
Gary Takacs is based in Scottsdale, Arizona.
I was actually surprised when doing research to find out that Gary is NOT a dentist himself, I honestly was convinced that he was given how knowledgable he is with regards to all things dentistry. He has been in the dental industry since 1980, which explains his vast knowledge and credibility. He went to college and gained a B.A. (Bachelor of Arts) degree in history at the University of Oregon.
Despite not being directly clinically involved, he has bought a number of dental practices in the States and he actually co-owns a practice in Scottsdale, Arizona called LifeSmiles Dental Care. There is a fully kitted out room within his practice which is where he records all of his podcasts and he uses this practice as a sort of learning and teaching laboratory for Gary to ‘test’ concepts that he can apply in his teaching.
I know he teaches at least one of the dental schools in the US on a regular basis, and is a very successful and busy dental practice consultant as well as running a very popular podcast of course.
As a dental practice consultant, he constantly travels to dental clinics all across the US and is paid to help develop the practice by coaching/training the practice staff, including the dentists!
When he’s not doing dentistry stuff, Gary loves biking – he has a Harley Davidson motorbike and also loves his fitness (like me).
I’m not really a podcast guy – I tried listening to the very popular podcast called Serial, which was great but never really got me that excited to want to listen to more of. I don’t subscribe to many podcasts, but this is definitely going to be one that I listen to regularly.
Fortunately for Gary, and his listeners, he has a really great voice that is easy to listen to. He’s got them smooth dulcet tones, with a hint of gravel and a dash of sex appeal. Fair play Gary, I’m sure those sound waves you produce helped you win your wife’s heart.
Whenever I hear myself speak via recorded audio, I cringe at how I sound! My voice definitely doesn’t have the same appeal as people like Gary, David Attenborough, News Readers (eg. Jon Snow)… That doesn’t bode well for me considering I’ve decided to commit to creating video content for my new DorkyDentalStudent Youtube channel to compliment this blog!
The thriving Dentist is an audio podcast is all about dentistry, and pretty much each week, Gary invites someone who is themselves also involved in the field of dentistry in one way or another (i.e. not all his guests are dentists!)
It airs on Wednesdays.
Based on what I’ve heard from listening myself, he has two main criteria when deciding who to invite as a guest on his show:
- The guest has to be a leading figure on their specific focus within dentistry
- The guest has to be passionate about what they do
I like how simple this is! And it clearly is a good filter based on the few shows I’ve listened to so far, because honestly none of them were boring or uninteresting.
The guests’ (and Gary’s) passion for dentistry is always evident and their knowledge of the topic for a given show is clear. And because he invites leaders in their respective niches within dentistry onto the show, it almost makes it required listening.
Believe it or not I only recently stumbled across him after seeing him in a picture posted on Instagram in November 2016, after he had attended the BACD 2016 Conference in Edinburgh (BACD = British Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry).
I followed a link to his Instagram page, gave him a follow and then saw he hosted a podcast that was all about dentistry! So I decided to check it out and found out that it was not only pretty popular, there were hundreds of published episodes already! That surprised me because I had previously tried to see if there were any decent podcasts related to dentistry that I could listen to when I was commuting across London and didn’t find any good ones.
So I’ve now listened to probably around 20 episodes and I usually listen to them when I’m commuting on the London Underground, when driving my car or on when a long run (I’m training for my next marathon).
There are hundreds of episodes, each varying in length but they are all roughly between 35-60 minutes in duration. I plan to catch up and listen to them all in the next couple of years! Who knows, maybe sometime in the future Gary will contact me and ask me to be a guest on his show. Probably not though, I don’t think I fit his selection criteria fully….YET!
Regardless of what stage in your dental career you’re at currently, you need to listen to his podcast. You definitely need to be a dental geek to some degree in order to want to listen, but I believe that pretty much all of the best dental professionals all are!
Another thing that I’m impressed by is how professional The Thriving Dentist is, compared to all the very amateur podcasts that exist, which don’t quite attract listeners back to hear more content again and again.
And I must admit that Gary’s podcast now serves as a source of inspiration for some of my own blog posts. If I ever get inspired to write a specific post provoked by an episode I’ve listened to I will make it known.
To finish, I will use one of his own sayings:
Thanks for all that you do for our great profession, Gary! 🙂