A successful week- but some negative feedback!

Firstly- thank you to everyone who signed up and attended the zoom event on Wednesday.

I had offered everyone who was on the call a discount of £19 on the DCT practice test, but some of you had some issues getting this to work. Sorry- my IT support seem to think that the server can only handle a few simultaneous purchases, especially on mobile devices. To make up for this I am please to confirm the coupon has been extended for another 2 days to allow anyone who wishes to make this discounted purchase now can still do so. 

Coupon code"Covid19", which expires on Saturday (20/02/21) at midnight. Remember my advice is to do this question pack closer to the time of your SJT to help target your final week of revision. 

Ok- now onto the main event of todays blog post:

Negative feedback




So as part of your SJT or DCT interview you could be assessed on how you respond to negative feedback.

This does not just stop after you do your interview annual cycle- as the following conversation genuinely happened last week.

As some of you will know, I ran  a free SJT zoom this week. The only benefit from this is so that I can give the tips about what and how to revise for the SJT, and hopefully get the job you aspire for.

Lots of other companies would charge for this, but I feel this knowledge is largely in the public domain anyway, and I genuinely want to help and reduce the stress behind the DCT recruitment process.

All that being said, in order for me to let people know about the free zoom, I have to message people. I have done this through marketing the blog posts, improving the Search Engine Optimisation for the website, and direct messaging a few DCT and DFT’s on social media websites.

Our emails are thankfully really popular. Our open rate for the last blog post (about dental CVs Link) was opened over 85.4%, and then clicked on 53.7%. This was within 2 days of publishing and emailing our list. The standards aspired to in the marketing profession varies per industry, however an email marketing provider published a study where they analysed some industries across the world to produce open rates like this:



Having a high open rate is great, as I think it means my content is helpful and interesting.I also have segregated my lists on my newsletter- so only relevant groups receive notifications about events suitable for them (final year students do not need to worry about a DCT SJT practice for example).

I feel my other marketing; messages on social media, isn’t intrusive as I kept the DMs to LinkedIn, which is “an online platform that connects the world's professionals” (LinkedIn, 2020), and in order for individuals to come up on my search they have to have put “Dental Foundation Trainee” or equivalent on their profile, usually in the experience section.

I get a great response rate (over 80%) from dental colleagues encouraging and signing up for the free zoom events or reading the blogs which is great. Sometimes people don’t respond, and that could be for a number of reasons so I don’t push or spam people.

Last week I received a response which shocked me. For context of this individuals social media profile, it stated “Vocational Dental Practioner” and ignoring the spelling mistake I assumed this individual could be keen to learn about our free event, blog posts or community of young practitioners.

So I sent a harmless message, and got this response (1): 

“If you'd actually read my profile I am not in training. Please do not spam. I hope you feel that advise is useful. Kr

My reply (2):

Your profile says your still a vocational dental practitioner? I know some people have been really extended in training especially in Northern Ireland and Wales this year due to Covid so I didn’t want to assume you had finished training

Sorry for the confusion I really just want to help

I suggest you update your profile and I hope you find this advise is useful.

I won’t message again.
Best wishes, Will

1 minute later I received a reply (3):

My profile includes my experience as a vocational practioner with my bio differently. I suggest you update your reading skills. Best wishes


I did not respond any further to this. I have removed their name and identifiable information for obvious reasons!


Now, I am not for one second trying to force dentists to attend a free zoom event if they interested in attending, but I did find this communication frightening! I did some digging about the Dentist- graduated from a UK Dental School in 2019. Ironically their “about” section stated that they wanted to gain some “further qualification in patient communication” in the future!

How would I suggest you respond to negative feedback from patients?

  1. Take a breath- everyone can give a heated answer in the moment.
  2. Ask open ended questions
  3. Listen to their answers
  4. Apologise- you don’t have to blame anyone, but you can apologise for the situation
  5. Offer a solution to prevent this happening in the future
  6. Learn from your feedback- I am no longer following this person on social media and do hope to not communicate with them again

I hope you all found this an interesting read. Just remember- anyone can write a blog post about something you say…. So…. Every day… have this thought before you respond to negative feedback: always be as positive as an EPT 

I look forward to your feedback- positive, negative or neutral. Seriously- let me know on LinkedIn, Instagram, a comment on this blog or a direct email DO you find these useful? Or maybe you want me to focus on more practice questions for the SJT? Maybe you want to learn more about marketing and branding yourself?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,


PS. We wrote a blog post about complaints in dental practice a few months ago. If you think you want to brush up on the key words of complaint management, check it out:




LinkedIn. 2020. What is LinkedIn and How Can I Use It? Link: https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/answer/111663/what-is-linkedin-and-how-can-i-use-it-?lang=en

Marketing Land 2012. Email Marketing Metrics Study Identifies Top Performers & Sets Industry Benchmarks. Link: https://marketingland.com/study-2012-email-marketing-metrics-identify-of-top-peforming-industries-40548

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