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THINKING BUSINESS
a blog by Chris Barrow

A serious players club


So – my full-day of workshops at The British Association of Cosmetic Dentistry (BACD) seems to have gone down a storm. There are just under 400 people here at the Britannia Hotel in London’s Docklands and, with 100 at each of my half-day sessions and about 6 concurrent sessions each time, the attendance was thrilling – although I have to admit to some trepidation at 9.25am when two solitary figures sat on the front row, waiting for me to start 5 minutes later! Then the room filled and I knew that we had a show to present. As always, the size of the audience, their reaction to the first few funny lines – and in this case the excellent AV back-up – inspired me to give a full-blown Chris Barrow “live and uncut” day.

In fact, I had to contact the conference organiser Suzy Rowlands at lunchtime to clear the air on a matter that was troubling me. You see I do swear during my presentations – as an ice-breaker and as part of my humour. So realising that the whole day was being recorded AND filmed came as a shock. But style isn’t transferable, so I recorded the first “18” rated professional development video ever? Thankfully, when I mentioned this to Suzy, her response was “thank FXXX somebody else swears around here!” The day was a blast – in the morning business planning and time management, in the afternoon, marketing. Lots of 100-question assessments and other exercises for the delegates to complete for themselves, lots of banter and lots of serious stuff, presented in a fun way. With 60-minutes for lunch – just about enough time to clear the room, reset the slides, replace handouts and grab a plate of mushroom risotto – by 5.00pm last night I was exhausted and wired. During the day, the delegates attended our trade stand to complete ezine subscription forms and receive a free 60-minute audio of CB talking about the Dental Business School. Discussing the day with Team CB, we have secured some great new readers, some interviews for potential DBS membership and at least three clients who just asked “where do I sign?”. Recognising the power of recommendation, there were quite a few former clients around on the day – and they were magnificent in pushing the unconverted towards us. Today (the last day of the conference) I’m going to spend just wandering around chatting – I have a couple of meetings fixed up but it’s all nice and loose. I am going to congratulate Suzy for an excellent conference – well organised and presented. Also I’m going to recognise that the BACD (which is only 3 years old) is a breath of fresh air in UK dentistry. No bitchers, moaners and whiners in earshot, nobody complaining about the NHS and how dentistry is doomed. 400 positive people who agree with me that the future of UK dentistry is bright – for those who join in the opportunity. Last night I enjoyed dinner with my friend and client Sital Ruperalia from Authentic Resourcing – a welcome change from dentistry – to catch up on what happened to me in Canada 2 weeks ago and on how his business is growing. To avoid the driving rain, we popped next door to the Bengal Quay (although, here in Canary Wharf it was more funky contemporary than traditional Indian – take a look at the web site – it’s hot!) and the empty restuarant we entered at 6.30pm was a throbbing mass of dentists by 9.00pm. Needless to say, I knew quite a few people and ended up selling a place in one of our programmes over the dinner table as well as catching up with lots of old friends. A long day – but a red letter day.

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