My first 100% Optical

Reflecting on the optical industry’s Glastonbury

100% Optical 2018

I have just about recovered from my first 100% Optical. The only other time I’ve done that much walking over three days is at Glastonbury. My hopes were high for a repeat of the festival when I saw that Specsavers was making use of silent disco headphones, but alas it was a CET lecture.

For the OT team, the three-day event was a jam-packed schedule of attending sessions, interviewing speakers and checking our watches to ensure that we made it across the exhibition hall in time for our next appointment.

Having joined OT around eight months ago from a foodservice publication, I was keen to see how the optical industry does things when it takes over the ExCeL. For me, meeting eyewear exhibitors was the highlight of the show. The innovation, passion and willingness to talk about their new collections was fantastic to see. And thankfully, the inedibility of eyewear makes it better for the waistline than food shows.

Covering a variety of CET sessions for OT highlighted how much optometrists have to contend with. Not only are there a whole host of clinical topics that optometrists must keep pace with, such as artificial intelligence and genetic diagnosis, as well as prevalent industry issues, as covered by Doug Perkins and the AOP’s Dr Julie-Anne Little and Henry Leonard, but there are also the challenges faced by business owners to manage a team while raising the standard of eye care.

It was great to see so many AOP members use the Association’s stand as a base to refuel before the next CET session, as well as take the opportunity to catch up with their peers.

If we put a microphone and a camera in front of your face, thank you for speaking to us. We’re gradually adding content online for you to read and watch, plus there will be highlights from around the show in March’s journal, before we go more in-depth in the April edition. 

Image credit: 100% Optical