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The Impact of Authentic Engagement and Effective Communication in Dental Sales

By Planet DDS
May 2, 2024

In this special edition episode of The Dental Economist Show, host Mike Huffaker is live from Waikiki, Hawaii, and is joined by a panel of guests from the Planet DDS sales team. 

Join them as the team discusses: 

  • Their experiences in the industry
  • Where they see dentistry going in the future 
  • Why they enjoy what they do
  • And much more!

Passionate about oral health, Amanda Barr has dedicated 20 years to being a dental hygienist and is now Commercial Senior Account Executive at Planet DDS. 

Kevin Simmons is Enterprise Sales Director at Planet DDS and has held multiple roles within an Ortho SaaS company including product, support, CS, and sales. 

John ‘Johnny’ Adams is also Enterprise Sales Director at Planet DDS and has almost 20 years of dental sales experience. He’s often called the ‘Mayor of Dental’!

Brandon Chavira has almost 30 years of sales experience exclusively in dental and is Director of Sales at Planet DDS. He’s also an ex-professional snowboarder!

Carlos Vallecillo Jr. is a Dental Practice Management Expert and self-professed ‘DSO Enthusiast’. He has over thirty years’ experience in dental. 

Chris Hadziev is Director of Sales at Planet DDS and has 10 years of SaaS sales and leadership experience. 

Episode Highlights:

The Importance of Workplace Culture – Johnny, the elder statesman of the team, highlights the importance of culture in a dental organization. Although Planet DDS has grown rapidly, he says that it still feels like the same company he joined seven years ago. This is because departments still collaborate, and lasting friendships are always being formed. He says that when he’s working, it often feels like he’s just with friends. Amanda notes that this means she doesn’t feel she has to ‘sell’ the company when promoting it, because she has such faith in the culture. 

Why Dental is Different – Chris, who had little dental experience when she joined Planet DDS, discusses the differences between dental and other industries. She says the reason people stay in dental for so long is because it is a “tight-knit community”. Chris says that although you have to prove yourself in order to really enter the industry, “once you do, you’re in it for a long time.” She also emphasizes the rate of innovation and acceleration far exceeds her experience in other sectors. 

Acquisition Synergy – Kevin—who was with an organization that was recently acquired by Planet DDS—says that although he has a “chronic fear of change”, the acquisition and transition “could not have been smoother”. He says that it feels like a “permanent home”, and that the best thing about the move has been that Planet DDS is their new home. Mike believes that the reason Brandon’s organization could be easily folded into the company is because of the synergy between them.

The Value of Conferences – Amanda values dental conferences as a way of making new connections. She says that although the dental industry is big, it feels a lot smaller because of the community aspect that things such as conferences engender. Amanda suggests that conferences are a great way of meeting vendors and connecting with potential clients. Chris says the one thing he would change is the lack of attendee lists before conferences. 

Don’t Forget to Be Grateful! – Mike welcomes the opportunities that have presented themselves over the past year, and stresses the importance of gratitude. He says that even when things go wrong, there’s more to be thankful for than to complain about. Mike believes that what Planet DDS did well in recent times is simply bringing “great people into the company”. Once that is achieved, everything else will follow!

Connect with the team:

Mike Huffaker on LinkedIn:

Amanda Barr on LinkedIn:

Kevin Simmons on LinkedIn:

John Adams on LinkedIn:

Brandon Chavira on LinkedIn:

Carlos Vallecillo Jr. on LinkedIn:

Christina Hadziev on LinkedIn: