In conversation with … DENIS BUCKLEY

Denis Buckley – Doody’s Pharmacy Mitchelstown

Denis Buckley is the owner and principal community pharmacist of Doody’s Pharmacy, Mitchelstown. The eminent pharmacy has been providing the community of Mitchelstown with diligent care and medical assistance for over 100 years. 

1. What is the most enjoyable aspect of your job?

There are many aspects of my job that I find both enjoyable and satisfying. One of the most important functions of my job as a community pharmacist is assisting the customer and ensuring that their problems are solved effectively. It gives me great satisfaction to have the ability to be able to make time for my customers and to be there to answer any questions relating to their medication.

2. What is your educational background?

As a pharmacist, it was compulsory for me to obtain a college degree. I have a Masters in Pharmacy from the University of Brighton. I spent five fantastic years in Brighton and very much enjoyed my time in such a multicultural university, hosting students from all over the world. I also did pre-registration training in a hospital in Brighton which gave me a great insight into the world of pharmacy and set me on the right path to becoming a successful pharmacist.

3. What do you believe is good leadership?

I once read a book by Stephen Covey that gave me a great insight into leadership. It depicted that ‘good managers do things right, however, good leaders do the right things’. This instilled in me a desire to ensure that we are always doing the right things within our pharmacy, constantly moving in the right direction, whilst ensuring that effective communication is at the heart of everything we do. A team that is not driven through efficient leadership is a team that falls apart.

4. What helps you to stay motivated?

It is the variety of work to be completed within the pharmacy that keeps me motivated. No two days are the same; every day brings its own challenges. However, I relish the prospect of continuously tackling the issues of the day. Doody’s Pharmacy is such an enjoyable place to work, and the continuous support that I receive from both my staff and customers motivates me to continue to aid the community, to the best of my ability.

5. What advice would you give to any aspiring entrepreneur?

Follow your dreams and ensure that you put your whole heart into something that you love to do. Make sure to have faith in your own abilities, and never doubt yourself. Remember that it’s okay to ask for help if you need it, a problem shared is a problem halved!!

6. In what way has Covid-19 impacted your business?

As frontline healthcare workers, we had to keep the business open and running as smoothly as possible. We were aware that the community were dependant on us for medicines and therefore, did our utmost to maintain a steady supply during this stressful time.

There have been numerous changes to our pharmacy as a result of this global pandemic. With an increased flow of people into our pharmacy, we wanted to ensure that we rapidly adapted to comply with public health regulations, whilst ensuring the safety of both our staff and customers. It has definitely been a very unpredictable time for us here at Doody’s, however, we will always strive to ensure that all guidelines are implemented.

7. What was the turning point for your business?

I have only been here in Mitchelstown for three years. However, it is safe to say that the key drivers of this business are the fantastic staff in the pharmacy. It would be impossible to efficiently run a pharmacy without such a competent and reliable team of workers.

A further turning point has definitely been the extensive renovations that we have completed here within the pharmacy. These changes have allowed us to continue to bring a high standard of care to our customers, whilst also expanding our range of products and stock.

8. Where do you see yourself and your business in the next 5 years?

I would hope that we continue to adapt to an ever-changing and unpredictable world. We would hope to improve our current range of services, while always ensuring that our customer service is maintained to a very high standard. We would love to add some new services to our pharmacy, so watch this space for a variety of new and exciting things to come!!

9. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

At the moment a lot of my spare time is spent with my one-year-old daughter and wife. I also very much enjoy playing badminton and attending various gym classes when I have the opportunity to.

10. If you could change anything in your business, your community, etc., what would that be?

During this stressful time, if there was anything I could change, it would be the path to recovery of this global pandemic. If I had a magic wand, I would hope to find a safe and effective vaccine for Covid-19. I can clearly see the devastating impact that this virus has on a local, national and indeed international scale, and would love to see an end to what has been such a tragic and uncertain time for many.

11. What was the most challenging obstacle you encountered?

The most challenging obstacle that we encountered here at Doody’s was most definitely the shop transformation in 2018. The building renovations were significantly more complex than we had originally anticipated and therefore, our plan took longer than expected to be achieved. We had to do quite a lot of improvising and adapting to keep the business running; however, it is safe to say that it has all paid off in the end and are delighted with the modern spacious shop.

12. In what way do you and your business give back to your community?

Here at Doody’s Pharmacy, helping the community is especially important to us. We have hosted a variety of local events in order to benefit the community. Our proudest achievement to date was hosting a coffee morning in aid of a very worthy local Cork charity, Brú Columbanus. By doing this, we were able to raise over €2,000. All of our customers and indeed the community of Mitchelstown itself were extremely generous to help us achieve this, and we are continuously grateful for their support.

Louise Devaney is a local student from Mitchelstown who recently graduated from Presentation Secondary School. Fascinated by how the economy works, she hopes to further her education next year studying Business, Economics and Politics.