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THINKING BUSINESS
a blog by Chris Barrow

Its me - I'm back (kinda)



I've been away from work for so long now - 2 weeks in Greece followed by 2 weeks in accident recovery - that I feel as if my brain has atrophied as much as my right arm.


Reading the backlog of dental magazines has been one way of re engagement, another has been keeping an eye on the email traffic from my clients, their WhatsApp chats on our owner's and manager's groups and, finally, the often tedious business of scrolling through the endless "living my best life" social media posts (mine included, of course).


As an aside - I have found the repetitive Instagram self-promotion by both clinicians and practices alike to be boring. There is still a clear dividing line between those who want to promote the positive difference that make to their patients/team and those who want to promote themselves - yawn. It all needs a shake up and some original thinking - there are better minds than mine that I hope will see the opportunity there.


Meanwhile, this week marks a serious attempt by me to get my head (as well as body) back in the game.


I've set myself the objective of starting naturally each day (no alarm calls yet) and just working at my desk until I can no longer concentrate.


Last week, my energy levels seemed to function for about 2-3 hours at a time, by which time I was in need of a nap - but I did have a GA and surgery on the Monday so I think I can be excused my very slow start.


It will be interesting to see how this week evolves - in the department of "small stuff" I'm sat here typing without my sling on (first time )and, although I can feel a dull ache from the new metal plate in my shoulder, so far, so good.


Whilst I've been distracted, firstly by lamb kleftiko, cheap wine and reading great books, then by morphine (God - that was good), codeine, ibuprofen and paracetamol - dentistry has continued to stumble forward (much like the rest of the UK) from one crisis to another.


I could have restricted my market research to the ever-erudite comments of Kevin Lewis in Dentistry magazine if I had wanted confirmation of the pickle that half the industry faces (you know which half).


Maybe I have also missed something - has the cost of living crisis affected the demand for private dentistry? It doesn't seem so amongst my clients - everyone busy as ever, even though they are juggling with the ongoing recruitment and retention (R&R) issues.


(p.s. I"ll be publishing a link to Mark Topley's brand new (and free) e-book on R&R tomorrow morning - don't miss that).


Challenges and opportunities still abound in equal measure. It's what we do with them that makes the difference.


Arnie famously said "I'll be back" - me too over the days ahead - a little bit less skin and bone and a little bit more titanium.


For the last time I'm going to thank everyone in dentistry for their supportive messages and lovely gifts, my clients for their patience and loyalty, my team and coach for their support, my family and close friends for helping me attend my son's wedding last Friday and my amazing wife Annie without whom I could not have made this journey feeling so loved and in so little discomfort (apart from very painful laughs every day).

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