Opening a Sunday surgery – the debate!

In the last edition of the Breathe Ezine, titled, “Add £5k/Month (or more) to your Gross. 20 Proven Tactics”, I looked at some tactics that Breathe Members are using to increase practice revenue by an additional £5k/month.

Orthodontist, David Horobin( emailed me with the following response to tactic number 12.

“Dear Simon

I do enjoy reading your regular eZines – they are always interesting and often useful – thank you.

However, an entry in the last one made me despair:-

12. “Open a Sunday Surgery for busy executives.”

This really is beyond the pale and I would have hoped you would know better.

What price family life?

What price our British tradition?

Is making a bit more money to kill us all?

Please reconsider this awful suggestion.

Kind regards,



And my reply.

“Dear David.

Thanks for your interesting email response to the most recent Breathe Business ezine.

Like you, I value my free time (I have a young family) and my weekends are very important to me. However, we live in a 24/7 society (This week Parliament has decided to suspend Sunday trading restrictions for 8 weeks around the Olympics and some commentators believe this change could become permanent).

From where I sit, it’s not about, “making a bit more money to kill us all?”, it’s about:

  1. Offering a service that matches our clients expectations
  2. Staying ahead of the competition (Tesco’s are planning to open their dental clinics, 0800-2000 Mon-Sat and 1000-1600 on Sundays.)
  3. Getting past our clients objections to dental treatment, the top 3 being:
  • Fear of pain
  • Finding enough time to have the treatment
  • The cost

I’m not asking any dentist to work more hours. Twenty five years ago, LD Pankey (founder of The Pankey Institute) published research which proved that the optimum number of clinical hours  a dentist should work are between 24 and 28 hours per week. I’m suggesting that in the future, those hours may have to be  re-jigged to coincide with patient demand. There are many private practices around the UK that are very quiet at 1430hrs on a Tuesday afternoon…

Even as a coach, I get to work outside of office hours! Last weekend, Jonathan, Ernie and I facilitated a Life and Business Planning Retreat for some clients and on Thursday evening we are giving a presentation for 40 Dentists in Taunton at the invitation of LLoyds Bank.

David, I’m afraid that we have to make ourselves available at times that suit our clients even if these times don’t always suit us. I enjoy taking time off during the week. On Tuesday last, I went to see David Hockney’s exhibition of Yorkshire paintings at The Royal Academy, so flexible working hours also have their compensations.

Thanks for taking the time to comment!

With All Good Wishes,

We love to hear from you! For further comments please email me direct:


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