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a blog by Chris Barrow

The paradox of reduced fallow time

I have clients telling me that they have enjoyed fallow time because it has given them a chance to fully complete appointment follow up and treatment plan preparation, as well as allowing time to work ON their business between patients.

So I wonder whether, as we move into a more relaxed Covid environment, fallow time will continue to reduce (perhaps even vanish) and dentists will find themselves back in a sheep dip of patient appointments?

It takes me back to my years as a fee-based financial planner, when I would see one client in the morning and another in the afternoon.

Each meeting was three hours long, two hours with the client and then an hour with my para-planner to complete all of the follow up - whether that was the creation of a financial plan for a new client, a follow up report and recommendations or the paperwork, underwriting and compliance associated with completed business.

When I escorted the client to the front door of my office and shook hands to say goodbye, the reception team, admin team and my PA knew that the meeting wasn't over - that the DND sign would stay up until the follow up was done.

Then and only then, would I accept messages and questions.

When we have protected time in the day, we can get things done to completion.

When we are jumping from one Quadrant 1 activity/meeting to another, without a break, the follow up work piles up around us, causing stress and, ultimately, burn out.

(p.s. that's the mistake I made last week - too many back to back Zoom calls 🐑)

Fallow time may have slowed you down but it did give you a chance to plan, prepare and breathe.

The Government are likely to want their dental sub-contractors back at the NHS sheep dip quite soon now.

In private practice you have a choice.

Do you really want the sheep dip back?

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