Optometry Practice Owner Resources

Ready to Throw in the Towel?

We’ve all had those days.  A key staff member is out sick, patients seem extra-unreasonable, yet another medication seems to need a prior authorization, and you find out that something hasn’t been done the way you want it to be.  Some call them full moon days– but whatever you call them, these are the days where you wish you could walk out of your office and never come back (a doctor we spoke to recently who was *really* frustrated said mostly-but-not-all-the-way facetiously “and throw a match behind me as I go!”)


It’s my opinion that private equity companies count on these days to drive doctors to want to sell their practices, sometimes sooner than they initially planned.  Imagine a really bad day, or a really bad week – and your eyes wander over to that letter from a PE company or practice broker inviting you to meet.  Or you re-open the email with a high-value offer, and the temptation to “be able to leave the office and not think about work” is strong.  

But is that what you really want?  For some, it is.  But not for everyone.  You opened your own practice for a reason, and even on the worst days, those reasons still hold.  And when you stop for a second you realize that the desire to walk away and never look back often comes from feeling out of control.  So here are some tips to get through these crazy times.

Look at your schedule and block some time off.  It doesn’t have to be a lot – a few hours one morning might be enough– but it can be longer if you want.  Why?  Because you can.  You’re the boss, and no one can tell you not to.  Whether you use the time to sleep in, get a leisurely coffee before work, spend the day golfing with a friend, or put in some “focused management time” to improve your business, it will be time well-spent and well-deserved.

Do something for someone else – namely your staff and your patients.  Get Starbucks or lunch or gas cards for everyone on your team.  Have fresh muffins or cookies at the front desk for everyone who comes in.  Again, why not?  As the owner of the practice, you can do this if you want to- and it always feels good to do something that makes someone else smile.

Remember that business is a cycle, and where you are now isn’t where you’ll be forever.  You’ve probably heard the term “entrepreneurial roller coaster” and indeed it often feels that way.  You can ride out the terrifying/nauseating parts with confidence, knowing that they’re normal parts of the ride and won’t last forever.

Connect with like-minded people.  I’m not talking about huge online communities where everyone posts their “highlight reels” and it seems that everyone is more successful than you are and no one ever has a bad day.  Ask another local small business owner to meet for a walk or coffee.  Send a message to someone whose posts you relate to on Facebook and ask them to meet in person or virtually.  

Get help if you need it.  Mental health issues are extremely common, and need treatment just like physical health issues do.  If you’re really struggling to get out of a negative spiral, professionally or personally, talk to a pro.  

 

And if you have big dreams for your practice that have yet to be realized: Contact us for a free consultation.

 

 

 

We’ve all had those days.  A key staff member is out sick, patients seem extra-unreasonable, yet another medication seems to need a prior authorization, and you find out that something hasn’t been done the way you want it to be.  Some call them full moon days– but whatever you call them, these are the days where you wish you could walk out of your office and never come back (a doctor we spoke to recently who was *really* frustrated said mostly-but-not-all-the-way facetiously “and throw a match behind me as I go!”)

optometry

It’s my opinion that private equity companies count on these days to drive doctors to want to sell their practices, sometimes sooner than they initially planned.  Imagine a really bad day, or a really bad week – and your eyes wander over to that letter from a PE company or practice broker inviting you to meet.  Or you re-open the email with a high-value offer, and the temptation to “be able to leave the office and not think about work” is strong.  

But is that what you really want?  For some, it is.  But not for everyone.  You opened your own practice for a reason, and even on the worst days, those reasons still hold.  And when you stop for a second you realize that the desire to walk away and never look back often comes from feeling out of control.  So here are some tips to get through these crazy times.

Look at your schedule and block some time off.  It doesn’t have to be a lot – a few hours one morning might be enough– but it can be longer if you want.  Why?  Because you can.  You’re the boss, and no one can tell you not to.  Whether you use the time to sleep in, get a leisurely coffee before work, spend the day golfing with a friend, or put in some “focused management time” to improve your business, it will be time well-spent and well-deserved.

Do something for someone else – namely your staff and your patients.  Get Starbucks or lunch or gas cards for everyone on your team.  Have fresh muffins or cookies at the front desk for everyone who comes in.  Again, why not?  As the owner of the practice, you can do this if you want to- and it always feels good to do something that makes someone else smile.

Remember that business is a cycle, and where you are now isn’t where you’ll be forever.  You’ve probably heard the term “entrepreneurial roller coaster” and indeed it often feels that way.  You can ride out the terrifying/nauseating parts with confidence, knowing that they’re normal parts of the ride and won’t last forever.

Connect with like-minded people.  I’m not talking about huge online communities where everyone posts their “highlight reels” and it seems that everyone is more successful than you are and no one ever has a bad day.  Ask another local small business owner to meet for a walk or coffee.  Send a message to someone whose posts you relate to on Facebook and ask them to meet in person or virtually.  

Get help if you need it.  Mental health issues are extremely common, and need treatment just like physical health issues do.  If you’re really struggling to get out of a negative spiral, professionally or personally, talk to a pro.  

 

And if you have big dreams for your practice that have yet to be realized: Contact us for a free consultation.