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a blog by Chris Barrow


I was asked to speak to the 50-strong national sales team at Henry Schein yesterday – my “surprise” attendance at their full-day meeting prior to BDA. The brief from Patrick Allen was to talk about the changes taking place in the business and delivery of dentistry – so as to challenge the team with two questions:

  1. how should HS respond to those changes?

  2. how can I as an individual best respond and make myself useful to the company and the customer?

So I asked for 12 sheets of flip-chart paper to be fixed to the walls of our room – and headed each sheet with a “factor” that I regarded as a potential game-changer in the UK right now:

  1. Direct access

  2. The re-appearance of Private Equity

  3. The Cloud

  4. The new NHS contract

  5. The changes in commissioning for the above

  6. Digital Dentistry

  7. Product diversification

  8. Corporates, Retailers and Micro-corporates

  9. Globalisation of manufacturing and distribution in emerging markets

  10. The Connected Economy

  11. Teamwork

  12. Individual relationships

It took me about 30-minutes to introduce each of the headings. I then asked the delegates to form into 12 groups and answer the first two questions in respect of each heading. What followed was an energetic conversation, followed by team presentations. We needed twice the time (at least) to allow the discussion and feedback – but the content was dynamic, optimistic and full of innovation and opportunity.

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