The “First” Principle
I was recently rereading one of Avrom King’s essays and stumbled upon the deeply profound statement: “Fear and love cannot coexist; where there is one, there is the absence of the other.”
I have discussed in the past that the central intention of L.D. Pankey’s interpretation of the phrase “quid pro quo,” was love.
And when I use love here, I am referencing M. Scott Peck’s definition: “The will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth.”
Note, that this definition has a “quid”—the giving of the self, and it has a “quo”—the spiritual development. The “first” (the quid) begets the reward (the quo).
Dr. Pankey famously demonstrated this “first” principle when he elected to not quote a fee at the beginning of his treatment process, and then at the end of it, asked the person to pay him based on their perceived value of what he had done for them. Think about that for a moment, because to act in that fashion requires a tremendous amount of courage and self-confidence.
Do you think that you could ever get to a place in your life where you could act in a similar fashion…to give freely of yourself in the very best ways possible, and then risk the possibility that the receiver of that gift might not appreciate everything you have done for them on an appropriate level?
There is only one reason why Dr. Pankey could do this. He had an attitude of abundance which radiated through everything that he did. And as a result, others believed in him and followed his leadership to discover a better place for themselves. In other words, Dr. Pankey’s love for others led to their spiritual development, which then led to him being appropriately compensated.
I am not suggesting here that you should stop quoting fees to your patients. I think most people need to know fees (or at least fee ranges) to be able to successfully manage their personal budgets, but I am suggesting that you learn how to give generously on the front end of your relationships with people without an expectation beyond appreciation…because if you can’t earn their appreciation, you can’t really earn your fee.
Now, back to the Avrom King quote. “Fear and love cannot coexist; where there is one, there is the absence of the other.” You can’t successfully take this risk, unless you, like Dr. Pankey, possess an abundant mindset, so are therefore capable of loving (in the M. Scott Peck sense) your patients?
That capacity comes from within. We can’t facilitate growth and development in others without simultaneously facilitating it in ourselves.
Masters’ WeekDATE: June 2 2025 @ 8:00 am - June 5 2025 @ 2:00 pm
Location: The Pankey Institute
CE HOURS: 27
Dentist Tuition: $ 8500
Single Occupancy with Ensuite Private Bath (per night): $ 345
Master Your Skills Masters’ Week is a unique learning experience each and every year where we bring together a group of talented speakers to share on a range of topics….Learn More>