As I sit at my gate waiting for the big metal bird to take me home, I reflect on the past few days I’ve spent in Chicago. Once again, the Chicago Dental Society put on a great meeting. At one point, I looked around the exhibit floor and felt goosebumps for all the vendors because it seemed the attendance was higher than I’ve seen in years. I was attending Midwinter with part of my Global Team Solutions team, Janice and Chris. As we walked the floor, we were often asked ‘Are any of you speaking at this meeting?’ No. ‘Does your company have a booth?’ No. Then the quizzical look of why are you here would cross the person’s face.

This meeting has a very special place in our hearts because it was 8 years ago, at this meeting that Janice and I decided to join our consulting companies and it was with that decision that GTS was born. Yes, those that have forged a business know that it is like giving birth. In a Thelma and Louise fashion, we grabbed hands and took that leap of faith. We have never looked back and have not stopped having fun. Isn’t that what life is all about?

I realized another reason that we chose to attend this meeting is having the freedom to walk the aisles and truly see all the different products and services that are available. We asked questions, touched, inspected and considered the value of thousands of dental goods. It gives us the ability to stay cutting edge on technology and provide great insight for our clients. We would visit the booths of vendors to see if our clients are utilizing all the tools with the products or services that they use and learn the new enhancements that may be included soon.

Katherine Eitel and Anne Duffy at the Chicago Mid Winter

However, the top of the top reason that we attend these meetings hit me with one vision. It’s the human interaction, many call it networking, but I would like to refer to it as refilling a hug bucket. The exclamations of joy as old friends meet up with quick reconnections. Questions are asked about the kids, the grandkids, the aging parents and finally the health of business. As entrepreneurs, we often conduct our businesses solo, feeling like an island in this great big sea of the dental world. It takes that heart-felt hug to remind us that we are all in this together and by holding each other up; we help each other grow and thrive.

It’s nice to know that with all the digitalness in our world, we still need that smile, that hug, that personal touch and that true encouragement that we really do matter. My hug bucket is overflowing and I’m ready to go home. I am rejuvenated and feel strong enough to take on the world. I value the friends I reconnected with and look forward to getting to know the new friends I’ve just met. Everyone has their reason for attending the conferences, for me, it’s to see you.

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Denise Ciardello always knew she wanted to be an entrepreneur, and today she is the co-founder of Global Team Solutions (GTS), a practice management consulting firm. Denise is also a professional speaker and published author who brings experience, insight, creativity, and a sense of humor into her consulting. Her industry distinctions include serving as president of the Academy of Dental Management Consultants, and membership in the National Speakers Association, Toastmasters International, and Directory of Dental Speakers. She can be reached at: denise@GTSgurus.com.

1 COMMENT

  1. Denise…I loved this. Totally agree..its all about the people and equally enjoy making those connections with both new and life long friends. To quote one of my favorite movies, O’ Brother Where Art Thou… “And you will find a fortune – though it will not be the fortune you seek”.

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