#12: Cultural identity, Entrepreneurship, Parenting and Divorce with Dr. Calvin Tham

Dr. Calvin Tham is a dentist based in North Delta who has twenty years of experience. He has been an entrepreneur for nineteen years, and is also a professionally trained Co-Active Coach. 

Throughout the episode, we dive deep into his background growing up as a Chinese-Canadian, building and purchasing private practices, parenting young kids, dealing with separation and divorce, self-development, and more.

Calvin’s parents immigrated to Canada in the early 70s from Hong Kong, and Calvin spent his childhood being shaped by both Canadian and Chinese cultures. Calvin dives into the conversation with stories about the way he grew up, how Chinese traditions were practiced in Canada, the mindset his parents and peers had about education, language, fitting into the Canadian culture, and more. 

When Calvin graduated from dental school, he was good at fixing teeth but lacked the knowledge and experience in business, accounting, investments, and other things related to business. Despite all that, he purchased a private practice and started to continue working there successfully. We talk about the key tactics Calvin utilized to surround himself with people who had the skillset that he lacked and how it helped make his business successful.

Buying a dental practice, similar to buying any other business, calls for a lot of assessments, evaluations, and effort from the prospective buyer. We talk about what young dentists should keep in mind when doing the due diligence for purchasing a dental practice. We also talk about Calvin’s experience of selling his first practice, moving to another area, and starting his current practice.

Despite all the success, Calvin has had his fair share of challenges in life, including going through a divorce. This experience inspired him to become a coach, which was something he enjoyed throughout his life. He shares with us how he managed to maintain healthy relationships with his children and former spouse post divorce. We also talk about some of the parenting best practices he uses to inspire them with his life experiences. Wrapping up the episode, we talk about how Calvin got his children involved in his YouTube channel to create amazing video content educating other children about dental hygiene.

[01:34] Calvin’s Career Journey – Calvin is a practicing dentist for nineteen years. We dive into the discussion with the story of becoming a dentist and how his childhood background influenced his career path.

[07:55] Family & Culture – How growing up in Canada and having a multicultural experience shaped Calvin’s life and career.

[22:20] Getting Into Business – Calvin talks about how he approached starting his private practice and the way he sought guidance from people who were familiar with the business of dentistry.

[31:48] Value of Time – Entrepreneurs tend to perform the duties of many roles, especially at the beginning of a business venture. We talk about the value of identifying what roles you want to spend your time the most and outsourcing the rest of the work.

[35:00] Buying a Dental Practice – Calving shares his take on a couple of key things new dentists should keep in mind in terms of the due diligence of acquiring a dental practice

[41:23] Normalizing Income – The process of assessing the value of practice and the client base and tactics for negotiating when purchasing a practice.

[47:51] Calvin’s Second Practice – In 2012, Calvin moved and got into a new practice, focusing on making more time for his family. He shares with us what prompted this move and the process of selling his old practice and starting a new one.

[57:47] Getting into Coaching – Some of the struggles Calvin had to face along the way inspired him to become a coach and help other people make their lives better. He shares with us how he integrated this new career shift into his life.

[01:07:38] Parenting Middle School Kids – We dive deep into a few ways you can utilize your life experiences to guide your children to have a better life in their formative years.

[01:22:25] Separated Parents – For young kids, having their parents separated or divorced can be a huge impact on their lives. We talk about what separated parents can do to minimize the negative effects the separation can have on the kids.

[01:31:06] Kids & YouTube – When Calvin’s kids wanted to start a YouTube channel, he got them to feature in his YouTube channel, creating educational content about food and dentistry for kids. We talk about the journey of how they got involved in his videos.

Resources:

Smiling-Sam and Cavity-Free Kid Talk About Sugar Bugs and Back-to-School Snacks:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6h3cNCtwaE

Connect with Calvin:

northdeltadentist.ca
instagram.com/northdeltadentalhttps://www.instagram.com/vancouverfoodiedentist
youtube.com/channel/UCrphNHcZ0NkyRPaALlvIapw

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