Nov 21, 2019

Finding Balance: Build a team who feels as invested as you are

After an unexpected tragedy, Dr. Effie Gregoriou suddenly found herself as a sole proprietor of her dental clinic. CWB was the partner she could lean on and learn from during the transition.

Three years ago, the unthinkable happened to Dr. Effie Gregoriou. She had bought into her practice at South Surrey’s Semiahmoo Dental Centre, where she was already working as a dentist. The business was running great, with clientele expanding. Then, Effie’s partner in the business passed away, leaving her to run the practice completely on her own.

“We’d always been as a partnership working together, but then it quickly became that I was to carry on the business on my own,” says Effie, who explains that the transition was a great challenge for her, but thankfully she had another supporter in her corner. “That’s really where the bank came in; they were amazing.”

Facing the task of having to suddenly run a business on her own alongside the daily challenges of raising a young family and helping with aging parents, Effie has still been able to create success with Semiahmoo Dental Centre, even investing in continuing education and technologies while continuing to expand her staff and clientele. All the while making sure that she’s available for her family.

The right help in the right places


When the transition began for Effie to take over the practice completely, she looked to her bank as her key partner in making sure the business was secured. She points out that the team she worked with at her Surrey branch wasted no time making sure the business transition was as smooth as possible.

“When the time crunch came and I needed someone to help me out, it was CWB that really jumped in and said ‘Yeah, we’re going to do everything we can to help you,’” says Effie, who goes on to point out that timing was especially important to ensure the business could keep running smoothly. “All the things that have to come together to make something great happen requires everyone to be completely invested."
"There’s a real sentiment at CWB to put the customer first. And they were exceptional.”

Setting up for future success


In addition to working with Effie to make sure the business transition went without a hitch, CWB advisors working at the Surrey branch also helped Semiahmoo Dental Centre find ways to invest in new technology to keep the practice up-to-date with the best equipment on the market. Effie explains that the help she received opening a business line of credit was crucial to seeing her bring in state-of-the art hardware to better serve her patients.

“[Helping me with a line of credit] was something the team at CWB was very proactive about for me,” says Effie, pointing out that she wasn’t even thinking about trying to purchase new equipment when she first became the sole owner of the dental practice. “And it turned out it was a great opportunity to take advantage of it when some new technology came available.”

Making time for balance


Even with the business transition moving well and new hardware investments made simpler for Effie, making sure she still has time for family and her own self-care can be a challenge. Getting up at 5:00 a.m. each morning for time to work out is where Effie finds a moment to take for herself and planning regular time away from her practice for family vacations helps make sure she can focus on all the important things in her life.

“I don’t believe there is a balance at any one moment. I believe that it’s a collection of moments that hopefully add up evenly at the end of the month or the end of the year,” says Effie, explaining that the support she receives from the people in her life helps ensure that she can carve out that balance. “I surround myself with really great people who are invested in what they do and can look after things when I’m away. I have a fantastic office manager whom I can rely on to support that. At the same time, I lean on my family to support me at home. It’s a team effort all the way around.”

For Effie, her success in business and her success as a parent rely heavily on the partnerships and connections she’s made. The personal touch she receives from the CWB team working at the Surrey branch, from business lunches to the regular email and phone call updates, help give Effie the peace of mind to know that she can take care of her business and her family.

“I truly believe that people who really care about what they do, no matter what business they’re in, they should be supported because that’s what it’s all about,” concludes Effie.
“Some banks may just go through the motions and be mediocre, but that’s not CWB’s goal. It’s clear that’s not the kind of company they are. And those are the kind of people that I like to be associated with.”