Festive lights at the end of the tunnel

With many practices shut across the country, David Houston suggests now might be a good time to look at pulling together an awards entry.

Date night

In recent years the Private Dentistry Awards have become widely regarded as the highlight of the dental calendar.

The 2020 event will be hosted by FMC in the Great Room at the iconic, 5* Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane on Thursday 10 December.

What better way to emerge from our professional hibernation than to participate in a glittering celebration of all that is best within dentistry across Britain?

Given current circumstances, the poignancy of this year’s event will provide an opportunity to join together in mutual optimism for the future, rewarding all those who have inspired their teams, cared for their patients and contributed to the recovery of the nation.

Dark days

Whilst the whole dental profession seeks to cope with the vagaries of the COVID-19 induced closure of our practices, finding a positive use for the resultant time made available – which also contributes to improving morale and maintaining team spirit – must be viewed as a opportunity to be seized.

Re(a)ward yourselves

Although it may seem a concerningly distant prospect at present, the current crisis will come to and end. When it does, many enlightened practitioners will seek to reward their teams for their understanding, support and loyalty through such unprecedented times.

A glamorous, five-star ceremony at the stylish landmark venue of the Grosvenor House Hotel represents the perfect opportunity to emerge from lockdown, celebrating your innovative survival strategies and also the robust, adaptable character of your team.

The judges look forward to welcoming you and your staff to the ultimate Christmas party and a night to remember!

Apply yourself

With time now unexpectedly available, please take this opportunity to draft your entries. Create eye-catching submissions which showcase your efforts to best advantage and promote your teams’ achievements.

All entries are requested as digital submissions. So working in isolation from home presents no logistical barriers for presenting yourself in the best light.

Morale boost

At a time when your team could feel detached and dispirited, create a focus on your cohesion and mutual support. Reflect on and promote your core values, operational strengths and unique attributes.

Out of this period of adversity could come renewed team spirit and a reinvigorated shared passion for your practices.

This can include promoting you and your ethos to the wider profession.

By engaging with and involving all of your team it will provide a vehicle for focusing on the positive, having the potential to compensate for furloughing and social distancing.

Not forgetting the subsequent wider commercial and patient-marketing benefits of recognition by your peers.

Categorise yourself

Please scrutinise and carefully consider the organiser’s stated expectations for each category contained within the published guidance for entrants.

We place a limit on the number of words entrants can use within the text of their entries. However, entries can attach unlimited supporting material.

With such strong competition, ensure that your entry truly stands out and is memorable by ‘thinking outside of the box.’

Carefully consider your strengths and then pick the categories which provide you with the best chances to shine!

Read the small print

The devil really is in the detail.

Please carefully review the published entry criteria for each category.

With literally hundreds of submissions received each year, the judging panel must strictly observe the stated requirements to ensure fair comparisons.

Put the try in entry

In recent years the actual ceremony has been a complete sell-out. As such, simply to be shortlisted is a considerable achievement in itself.

Competition is fierce and to stand out requires strong content, eye-catching graphics, memorable video clips and innovative supporting material.

However, corroboration and validation of your claims is essential. So please do not forget to include testimonials and proof of your claims.

Charity begins at home

With reference to the current pandemic situation, the long-established ‘Best Charity or Community Project’ category must be considered to lend itself to showcasing the wonderful efforts of the whole profession to contribute to the nation’s campaign to support not just our own teams but all members of wider society in a time of unprecedented crisis.

The profession has always thought of others before itself. Perhaps more so now than ever, this quality will be at the forefront of our motivation and it would delight the judges to reward this.

A force for good

It would be naive not to acknowledge that the concept of awards ceremonies does not find favour with all. Whilst I acknowledge my obvious bias, I would point out to any detractors the constant support for the concept from the profession.

The fact that entry is open to all provides an ideal platform for literally any practice or individual to showcase themselves. It allows for a broad range of entries from anyone who rightly seeks recognition for their efforts.

Having the privilege to review the entries over the years, it is gratifying to have been involved in promoting so many practices that were previously unknown and unheralded.

Their efforts and achievements are truly inspiring. Consequently they have since featured in many journals bringing them to the attention of the profession at large.

Speaking personally, I can see no disadvantages for the profession in continuing to promote excellence and presenting dental professionals who lead and inspire for well-deserved and often long overdue recognition.

‘Just do it’ 

Stop prevaricating and seize the moment! You have to be in it to win it.

Please make best use of this time when clinical work is impossible. Create stunning submissions which have contributions from your whole team.

The judges look forward to your inspirational submissions, which will help promote both your practices and dentistry in general. This will also mark the start of a positive new era for the profession and the country.

Good luck!

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