Dentistry Online’s award winners – Claire Berry

Claire Berry collects her award from Julian EnglishClaire Berry discusses her experience at three different award evenings – and what it’s like to be among the winners.

How does it feel to have won an award?

It is a great feeling to win an industry award – nothing beats it. We work so hard and so to be recognised for your efforts is such a rewarding feeling. Nothing beats the rush of hearing your name called out and then having to walk up on stage to motivating music blasting out in front of a crowd of peers and colleagues you respect and admire. It’s a very proud moment that’s amazing to experience.

Did you enjoy the awards evening?

The evening is spectacular. I was lucky enough to win awards at the Dentistry Awards, Oral Health Awards and Private Dentistry Awards last year. Each event was fantastic in its own way. The Dentistry Awards was at the Athena in Leicester and it started with an acrobatic display and then a count-down to start the ceremony. It is all very dramatic.

The Oral Health Awards was a daytime event in London – also very very good. The Private Dentistry Awards was a very lavish do in London, with singers who got people dancing on their chairs in ball gowns and tuxedos. It is great to be involved in the evenings’ celebrations, let alone win something.

Why did you choose to enter the awards?

I wanted to represent dental hygienists amongst some of the industry’s best. Some amazingly talented hygienists and therapists were also at the awards as our profession is starting to become more recognised. I work hard to raise the profile of my profession. I am proud to work with some fantastic dental brands that I whole heartedly endorse and being an award-winning hygienist does help to raise their profile too. The fact that your work is recognised by the industry sets you apart.

What do you think the awards are doing to the standards within the profession?

As the awards celebrate excellence in our field, the talented clinicians and colleagues up for the awards will be working to an impressive professional standard to even be selected. The more people that want to be involved in the awards I believe the standards can only get better. It is obviously a great thing for the industry.

Why do you think you won?

It’s a hard one to answer because I genuinely felt I was amongst some amazing clinicians and colleagues who all individually deserved to win. But in terms of how I work on a personal level, my ethos is everything I do is for the good of the profession and never for personal gain.

If my profession is pushed forward, then I stand to gain anyway by default. I am there on behalf of all hygienists and that was how I entered. I feel like I won Best Team Member not just because I work hard in my job as part of a team (although I do), it was because I have a part to play in a bigger team. I’m a team member as part of my profession and I work hard in that role too.

Have you noticed a difference in patient numbers since winning the award?

My patients do like that they are treated by an award-winning hygienist. My certificates are mounted on the wall. Dentists who win at the awards I am sure do very well out of winning too. It has definitely helped me in terms of working alongside some of the brands I already endorsed, which allows me to get oral health messages across to patients and training for colleagues in a way I couldn’t do before.

Will you be entering the awards again this year?

Yes, for sure! It’s such an amazing feeling to be involved and as the profession continues to grow and become more and more recognised there is a reason for me to be there. It’s also an amazing evening that is not to be missed.

Anything else you’d like to add?

The events are a great team building evening for dental practices to go to. On a career level it is a great way to network with colleagues and peers. The industry’s best are there and I have met some amazingly inspirational and motivational people.

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