The 2018 Henry Schein DSO Education Forum (DSOEF) took place at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas on May 18th and 19th and was definitely an event to remember. The 2018 DSO Education Forum had over 600 attendees, including representatives from over 140 dental groups and DSOs from the United States and Canada. 3,500+ brick and mortar dental practices were represented covering 38 states and provinces.
Group Dentistry Now sat down with Brian Brady, Senior Director of Sales, Henry Schein Special Markets, to talk more about the 2018 event and what to expect in 2019.
GDN: Tell our readers about the history of the Henry Schein DSO Education Forum. Why did you decide to start this event? How many years have you been doing it and what are the differences from last year’s event to this year’s event?
BB: Many years ago, a couple of Team Schein Members, Kathleen Titus & Andrea Hight, launched an annual networking breakfast which we typically did at the AADGP Meeting. We started with 20 attendees, then it grew and grew.
In 2017 we produced an event called the ‘Select Education Forum’ which was a one day event at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas. To our surprise, we had just seven weeks to promote the event, and we sold out the room with 120 attendees. After this event, my team at Henry Schein all agreed we needed to take this to another level.
We have over 800 ‘feet on the street’ sales representatives, and a Special Markets team that canvasses the US and Canada, so we have a unique ‘advertising advantage.’
We set out to make the event a true international DSO event and produce the event at a first class venue, but keep the registration costs affordable. Our goal is not to make a profit off of this educational event, but rather provide a phenomenal learning and networking experience for our customers.
GDN: In your attendees’ opinion, what were the highlights of your event?
BB: The speakers were a definite hit. From our breakout track speakers, who did a great job providing insights and knowledge specific to the audience, to our mainstage keynote speaker, Diana Nyad, who moved the entire audience with her life’s journey. The speakers clearly made the event. Our attendees also complimented our event venue. The Cosmopolitan is a first class Las Vegas venue, and they do a great job hosting meetings. The Marquee Nightclub provided a very trendy and unique setting for our Friday evening networking event. We also received compliments on our networking event that we hosted within the Chandelier Bar.
Check out the video to hear what people have to say about the 2018 DSO Education Forum
GDN: Can you give us a sneak preview of what is in store for 2019’s DSO Education Forum?
BB: We want to emulate a lot of what we did this year, but add to it. We are back in Las Vegas (we will be in Vegas every year) in May, which is a fabulous month for a trip to Las Vegas. You have perfect weather, and it’s the time of year folks want to add a couple of days for some rest and relaxation before or after our meeting.
We are also adding a brand new track, ‘Leadership Development.’ This track will be geared towards leaders within DSOs. These leaders can be a dental director, office/site manager, or a regional manager responsible for multiple sites. Basically, any leader within the organization who manages other people. The speakers within this new track will be doing a deep dive into leadership development, and doing unique group exercises throughout the two days to make these folks even better leaders and assets within their organizations. We are really excited for this track.
Another unique aspect of DSOEF is that our tracks are not planned by one or two people. We have a committee of a dozen individuals, including some of our DSO customers, that spend the summer finding speakers to fill our itinerary. It’s great having a committee do this, as some members of our committee know of great speakers that the entire group has never heard of, and some of these speakers end up getting rave reviews. Having customers on our committee helps us really tailor our event to what our customers are looking for at the current time.
GDN: What does the future of dental group practice and DSOs look like from Henry Schein’s perspective?
BB: Henry Schein is proud to be one of the first distribution companies that took a deep dive into this space two decades ago, and developed a team we called ‘Special Markets.’ Even decades ago, a group practice and DSO required unique value added solutions and we have prided ourselves on being at the forefront of the change within the industry, and always having our finger on the pulse of this change. We expect consolidation will continue, and it’s important we are always listening to our customers as their needs change as the industry changes. The DSOEF is a great venue for this. We received a TON of feedback from our customers before, during, and after this event, and we take this feedback and use it to tailor our services and solutions offering to our group practice and DSO customers.
GDN: When and where can emerging groups, DSOs and vendor partners sign up for next year’s event?
BB: Visit www.dsoeducationforum.com and use promo code: SuperEarly18 on that site for $60 off next year’s registration. This early bird discount is good through September 1, 2018.
View the 2019 DSO Education Forum on Group Dentistry Now’s event calendar HERE.
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