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a blog by Chris Barrow

The Female Principal blog series part 11: Wisdom

Wisdom The Native Americans have a phrase that: “wisdom enters through the wound” The main reason for you to attend dental trade meetings is that you will meet and make friends with a lot of very wise people. People who have lost their shirts in dentistry, have been screwed over by partners, abandoned by banks, stabbed in the back by clinicians – have flown too high or too low. And over dinner/in the bar they will share their stories and listen to you. Wounded wise people who understand dentistry are a fantastic asset. I know that the three ladies who reached out to me before Christmas did so because they understand this. I have had my fair share of disasters in life and in business – even as recently as February 2013 I watched a business that needed £2.5 million to lift off the runway crash and burn after the first £1m ran out – not a pretty sight and a horrendous experience. That makes me useful to have around – because if I see people making the same mistakes that I saw – I will tell them. I wouldn’t wish my experiences of the first half of last year on anyone. How did my three conversations work out? Well that’s confidential. We had some tears, a lot of self-doubt, the realisation that all three of them were being taken advantage of in some form or other. In the event, two of them have decided to fight on another year – and one (who I think made the bravest decision of all) has decided to sell her practice and spend some time focused on herself, her family and other priorities. Would it surprise you to learn that the third lady had been motivated to move on from her quest by a family illness? *An excerpt from The Female Principal manuscript by Chris Barrow – to be published as an ebook later in 2014

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