The Irish dental industry in person: Tony Anderson

Q. How did you become involved with the dental industry?
My father was a dental service engineer working for Claudius Ash. I was training to be an accountant but my father asked me to come for an interview with Claudius Ash Jr to discuss a career in sales. I was the only interviewee and got the job.

Q. What is it about the industry that has kept you so long?
It is the constantly changing techniques and product requirements, as well as the family nature of the business. The people in the trade seem to be very long lived in their careers. Another factor is the chance to establish long-lasting relationships with our clients, as obviously many of them are in the profession for 30 years or more.

Q. What is your favourite dental product?
The Sirona C4+ treatment centre, because it is totally compatible with digital techniques and is our best-selling dental treatment package.

Q. What is your most memorable moment in the dental industry?
It was managing a team to relocate and re-equip a bomb-blasted six-surgery dental practice in Coleraine in its entirety in less than two months back in 1988.

Q. Are you a good dental patient?
Yes, very good.

Q. What changes do you think will reflect the industry and profession the most over the next five years?
Further improvement of digital techniques and a more widespread use of digital technology.

Q. In your opinion, what has been the greatest step forward in the Irish dental market since you started?
The acceptance of digital techniques, and probably the large increase in aesthetic dentistry.

Q. Who do you admire in dentistry?
Roger Killiner (I’m talking trade here, I wouldn’t mention any dentist). I worked under Roger as my managing director for 35 years and I fully admire his foresight and drive.

Q. Who do you admire away from the profession?
Roger Federer – he manages to combine superb talent with a modest personality and sophistication, traits that are admirable in anyone.

Q. What would you like to achieve – professionally?
The continued well-being of my staff and company, and also further professional advance of the Association of the Irish Dental Industry (AIDI).

Q. Personally?
I am interested in helping people who are going through difficult times, through the use of individual counselling.

Q. Have you any regrets – professionally?
Of course, but my biggest regret to date is that I didn’t assume my current professional position earlier.

Q. Personally?
I have never got down to a single figure golf handicap.

Q. What makes you angry?

Q. What makes you laugh?
Eric Morcambe and Jerry Lewis.

Q. How do you deal with stress?
I am better at it now than in previous years, but really it amounts to analysing the problem, deciding if there is any action I can take to sort the problem and, if so, I do it.

Q. What three books would you want to have with you if you were stranded on a desert island?
Great Expectations
Any John Grisham novel
Winston Churchill’s autobiography.

Q. What has been your happiest moment in life?
The birth of my children and grandchildren.

Q. Where in the world would you most like to live?

Q. Can you summarise yourself in 10 words?
I’m a ‘people-person, family-man who tries to brings these values to business’.

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