Will this system work for my ophthalmology clinic?

Business Coaching for Ophthalmologists

“Our practice is up somewhere between 10 and 20% over the last year. “

My name’s Tim Johnson. I am an ophthalmologist, which means an eye doctor, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. I have been with the Thrive program for three months now, is that right? Three or four months, yeah. I listened to the podcast for a while, and then took a chance and called. The thing that made sense to me was hearing that business people needed coaches, that seemed foreign. But then Clay would talk about Tom Brady needs a coach, but he’s the best quarterback ever. And I got to think of that, that’s true. And he would talk about how other business people like Steve Jobs had a coach and so, it sort of created this idea, or showed me that that is a possible need. So then, when I called, or you called me. We talked for like an hour. He asked me a bunch of questions, and it seemed a lot of questions I had never thought of. And so, it sort of demonstrated things that I hadn’t been thinking about that, the corners around which you could see that I hadn’t even noticed. Does that make sense?

We meet an hour a week when things are going well. When there are emergencies, I’ve been amazed at how responsive you’ve been. I’ve had one or two, and you’ll get on the phone with me as soon as you get the message, and we’ll talk. We have had a lot of small wins and a lot of big ones. Small ones, first. We are at the top place in Google, cataract surgeon in Tuscaloosa, it’s put my name on there, getting Google reviews, things like that. Also, reaching out to referring doctors, systematizing like, putting a lot of systems in place in the practice, where we were being much more haphazard in the past and then, bigger wins, cutting back hours and being sustained, if not increased productivity and profitability.

I think the last two months, over the same two months of the previous year, our practice is up somewhere between 10 and 20% over the last year. Probably closer to 20%. It’s really grown a lot, yeah. We work closely with doctors who refer us patients, other doctors who will refer us patients. And I knew that was important, and I made it a point to have relationships with them but I wasn’t consistent. And I think when you lack the consistency, you lack the outcome, the desired outcome. And being consistent in going every week to each person on that list has really improved those relationships and a lot of our referral sources have pointed that out. We get a much better feedback from them and more referrals.

The one of the things that makes sense to me was that a lot of referrals come from non-providers, like people at the front desk, or the secretary or something like that. That may not be true for everybody, but at least the doctors I’ve talked to like that you go and bring their whole staff donuts or candy, because you’re showing the whole staff that you appreciate them, the whole team and not just the business owner, if that makes sense.

It takes a long time to learn how to do cataract surgery, it takes years. And what’s crazy to me is that I think like a month ago, a couple weeks ago, we got my name as a standalone search for cataract surgeon Tuscaloosa, and we’ve gotten two Google reviews for me over the last week or two, and already I’m at the top of that search result. And we’ve had patients who have come in because of that search result. It shocks me that you would do that, but that’s what people do and it works. And so, it may not be the ideal, but it’s the way it is. And so, they’re going to go somewhere, they might as well go see you.

The big thing from the business coaching for ophthalmologists program, for me, the big thing was consistency, and you calling me out. You called me out today, I’m not following through with a couple things that I knew to do, I just hadn’t done, or hadn’t done well. And so, it’s easy to know what to do, it’s hard to do it, and it’s really hard to do it well consistently over time. And so, it helps to have someone looking at you to say, “You know what to do, you’re just not doing it well.” Does that make sense? I’s just hard, business is a hard slog sometimes and you kind of just want to go home and lick your wounds. But it’s good. You want to do it, and so if you have somebody there who can cheer you on or, I don’t know, press you to keep going, it’s that’s much easier to do it with somebody else. Does that make sense?

I would definitely give this program a shot. I think for me, the month to month model was really low risk, that I’ve gotten a lot of value out of it. We created a website, done a lot of search engine optimization, and transcription services. There’s a lot of value there. I’m still waiting for the catch but really, there really hasn’t been a catch. I think that was the problem. But then, because of month to month, I figured I could get out, and there hasn’t been. It’s just been very, people who genuinely want you to succeed.

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