The response to my blog post from last week about the future of Align Technology® has been quite overwhelming. Doctors and industry professionals from around the world have been messaging me with words of support and asking if I’ve finally buried the hatchet with Align Technology®. Mostly, everyone wants to know if Joe Hogan called me. I am excited to let you know that he did reach out! Although I am not able to give more information on the details of the call, I did want to give a big “Hi-5” to Align® for being proactive.
So how did this epic beef start?
Let me tell you a little story that I’ve never really shared with my followers.
Most people know I was on the initial team that launched SmileDirectClub. Love me or hate me for this journey, I am proud to have been an integral part of the disruption that brought down a monopoly, fundamentally changed an industry and provided more access to care. Although I haven’t been with SDC since 2016, a part of me will always be with what I helped to create. Heck, even my own 86 year old mother-in-law knows what a clear aligner is now!
After I left SDC in 2016, I was at a crossroads. I knew the orthodontic profession was rapidly sinking and I feel in love with the freedom of being an entrepreneur. I decided to launch a company that wouldn’t compete with SmileDirectClub but would support dentists and industry professionals wanting to learn more about orthodontics through training and educating doctors and teams. I wanted to learn and teach about all kinds of orthodontic products, not just aligners.
Fast forward 3 years: I now have over 20000 followers on my various social channels. When I first started I only had a handful. I wrote a post about Invisalign® being like the brand Kleenex, eg: it’s the brand name of an industry. It was initially meant to be a compliment, but once I published it, the phone calls started coming in from various contacts from Align Technology® threatening me and demanding me to take it down. My own TM (who I won’t name, because ultimately she was a super-nice individual and I think she was set-up by the powers at be) took me out to lunch, effectively told me I was a “nobody” and gave me an ultimatum: either take it down or she would “cut me off” from the support and collaboration we’d had for years. She left the lunch in a fury and stuck me with the bill. Revenge is best served on a cold platter.
The prophecy was fulfilled. For the past 3 years, I’ve had no collaboration from team Align®. I’ve had to get creative to stay educated and I move on to other systems to educate and support my customers and clients.
So yes, I appreciate Mr. Hogan reaching out and attempting to hopefully bury the hatchet.
That’s the end of the story. I’ve got a few other bullies to tackle in the industry now!
What’s next? Stay tuned!