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Joanne Stanbury

Joanne Stanbury

Joanne’s CV is one of those rare things which suggests that even 20 years ago she was a lady with a plan!

She started as a dental therapist and after three years moved into dental equipment sales and every subsequent step of her career headed in the direction to where she is now as CEO and owner of One Dental.

If you are the sort of person who is considering an entrepreneurial lifestyle you should talk to Joanne – a prime example of someone who has constantly strived for both personal and professional improvement and remained totally focused throughout her career.

Her education parallels her career success. She began with a diploma in applied science, specifically dental therapy, followed by an advanced diploma in business management and has recently completed her MBA.

She has moved from technical specialist to business generalist and now runs one of Australia’s most successful sales organisations within the dentistry industry.

Her company, One Dental, imports and distributes cutting edge dental products. Her company’s clients are not only the dental and medical profession but she also provides dentistry-specific teaching aids to various educational institutions throughout Australia.

One Dental distributes not only to hospitals and universities as well as teaching institutions but also direct to the dental profession. The company also sells to dealers and in effect acts as both wholesaler and retailer.

Joanne has built an experienced technical sales force, as well as a customer service team to maintain contact with the company’s array of customers.

The company was launched in 2003, primarily as a consulting business to the dental industry and then as recently as 2012, Joanne decided that the next stage of the company’s development should be as a supplier of dental equipment.

Joanne is also a fine example of the sort of entrepreneur who starts his or her business with minimum capital and a telephone. At that point she had no choice but to be everything from the salesperson, customer services person and (as many others who have also been in this position), accountant and tea maker!

The gradual build-up of the business meant that Joanne was able to ‘buy-in’ expertise and that too is the classic progression of an entrepreneur who knows where he or she is going and is in full control of expansion.

Joanne’s company now employs seven people and between them they have all the skills necessary to drive the business forward to the next stage.

If you are already a business person you are no doubt familiar with the word ‘goodwill’. It is not an abstract concept, but something which does have a monetary value, and especially now in the days of instant communication and the Internet it is very important that we not only create a reputation but maintain it.

‘Reputation Management’ has been a very important aspect of Joanne’s strategy…… and purely as an example, here are a few snippets of feedback which she and her company have received from customers:

‘It has been a pleasure working with someone with such high standards of integrity, customer service, innovation and enthusiasm for providing the best service to our faculty and students……’

‘Joanne’s impeccable leadership and communication skills have allowed her to build trust and a strong relationship with our faculty…..’

‘Joanne is very open to our suggestions and is always keen to try to work with us to achieve the best outcome. She takes her role very seriously and takes pride in her work…..’

‘Joanne is a very helpful, ambitious leader and terrific team player……’

The above are just some examples of unsolicited testimonials which Joanne and her company have received and clearly demonstrate the rewards of not only being totally dedicated to and passionate about your business – but being equally committed to your customers. Joanne tells us that this ethos has been at the centre of her business from day one – and it certainly shows!

At the outset, Joanne was not aware of all the external help that is still available to all budding entrepreneurs and possibly, if she’d consulted a business mentor of some sort, she may have realised that government grants, etc. were available.

In keeping with modern trends, the company continues to outsource some of its specialist functions, such as tax preparation, computer maintenance as well as website development.

One of the most difficult aspects of running your own business is the ability to achieve a perfect work-life balance in order to ensure that both spouses and family have the benefit of some of your quality time. Joanne is no different. Like most successful entrepreneurs, she tells us that her work-life balance is still ‘work in progress’. Luckily though, her husband is a great support not only in her personal life, but in her professional life as well.

So far, Joanne has not particularly needed the services of an external coach/mentor/consultant but certainly understands that the future will no doubt bring all sorts of specialist concepts and technical advances and realises that inevitably there will come a time when she will need to seek external advice.

It was a great pleasure for us to meet a CEO with a genuine passion for her product as well as the humility to continue to improve her professional skills.

If you are an entrepreneur yourself and are looking for some sort of inspiration or even a template for both company and personal advancement, you could do far worse than have a closer look at Joanne’s career.

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AN UP-TO-DATE BUSINESS PLAN THAT INCLUDES:

One- and three-year projections
A capital budget

AN ANNUAL MARKETING PLAN THAT INCLUDES:

Precise sales and profit goals and timetables
Strategies and tactics for the next three years
Budgets, Forecasts, and Benchmarks
A tentative sales plan
My marketing plan also includes:
The demographics of my target markets
A thoughtful definition of the markets we serve
A definition of the needs/wants our products and services fill
An analysis of the growth potential of our markets
A competitive analysis
A definition of our "Unique Selling Proposition"
Projections for other products or services that could be developed
Timetables for research and development

MONTHLY BUDGETS AND STATEMENTS THAT INCLUDE:

Thorough and up-to-date records
Cash flow budget
Profit and Loss (Income) Statement
Balance sheet
Deviation analysis
Standard cost comparisons
Cash reconciliation

AN INFORMATION BASE THAT ALLOWS ME TO:

Keep track of new developments in the industry
Obtain and study key trade information
Understand what “state of the art” means in this business
Provide customers with the best available information about our products and services
Keep all our employees adequately informed

I’M CERTAIN THAT THE BUSINESS IS PROPERLY CAPITALIZED BECAUSE I:

Base capitalisation on worst-case planning
Have emergency funds (or access to them)
Have discussed this with my banker

I UNDERSTAND THE VALUE OF THE BUSINESS BECAUSE I’VE MADE USE OF:

Professional appraisers
Present value methods to evaluate terms
Professional tax planning
Accurate, timely financial information

I STRIVE TO IMPROVE PRODUCTION, QUALITY, AND OPERATIONS BY:

Keeping the equipment in top condition
Maintaining safe conditions
Establishing high standards
Standing behind our products and services
Not tolerating shoddy performance
Working for consistency
Using our company’s “look” as a statement to our markets

PERSONNEL DECISIONS ARE BASED ON HUMANE, CAREFULLY CONSIDERED POLICIES THAT INCLUDE:

Checklists to make sure objectives are clear
Communication, to make sure objectives are understood
Written job descriptions
Regular progress and performance evaluations
Fair hiring practices
Fair wage scales

AS FOR MY OWN PERSONAL/MANAGERIAL SKILLS, I WORK HARD TO:

Develop my problem-solving abilities
Always stay calm
Be objective
Avoid investments in my own ego
Listen to my employees
Plan changes in our course to minimize negative effects
Make decisions promptly
Always get the facts behind problems
Accept my own limitations
Delegate tasks that can be done more efficiently by someone else
Analyze all available options
Develop my reading/study habits
Improve my skills
Consider and evaluate risks
Be positive with customers, employees, associates

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