A surgery in a dental practice is an income generation unit (IGU).In a taxi firm an IGU is a taxi.

In a train company an IGU is a train.

In a restaurant an IGU is a table.

In a cinema an IGU is a seat.

In a serviced office centre, an IGU is an office.

In a financial planner’s business and IGU is a desk, a chair, a telephone and a web connection.

If an IGU is laying idle that’s a bad business decision.

So when a client emails me to tell me that a surgery in their practice is empty, I don’t care what the reason is. The client has an IGU producing no income. That’s bad business.

The fact that the existing dental associate or hygienist can only use the surgery a limited number of days each week for personal or professional reasons – is bad business.

It means the owner’s family, the support team and the customers are having to do more and pay extra to support the under-utilisation of the IGU.

So get it utilised – fast.


Published by

Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.