Former Power Hour host and Power Practice CEO Gary Gerber talks about ways to prepare your practice for an upcoming recession.

Date: June 1, 2022


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Read the Transcription

Dr.Gary Gerber: I think that’s actually the way to recession-proof your practice, you started thinking I how can I run a practice by still providing great care to my patients that they’ve been accustomed to? But doing it with less.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Hey! I am Bethany Fishbein, CEO of the Power Practice and host of the Power Hour Optometry Podcast. And those things usually feel somewhat normal to say although it feels a little bit strange to say them today because I am recording with the former host of The Power Hour Optometry Podcast and a former CEO or CDO Chief Dream Officer, Founder of the Power Practice, Dr. Gary Gerber. So, Gary Gerber is the founder of the power practice. He is the original host of The Power Hour Optometry Podcast coming up on 10 years of almost weekly episodes, this July. Gary was also my Practice Consultant. When my husband and I opened our practice cold in 2001. Gary now is the Chief Myopia Eradication Officer at Treehouse Eyes, his a well-known Mentalist, and a phenomenal Keyboardist, not only for the PowerBand but for 80’s rocker Joe Lyn Turner. Is Joe Lynn Turner 80s?. 


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yup!


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Alright, thank you so much for being here, Gary.


Dr.Gary Gerber:  Yeah, it’s my pleasure. It’s kind of fun to turn the tables. I don’t have to do either work, which is really nice. So yeah, happy to be here. Thanks for having me. And looking forward to speaking, and seeing where the discussion goes.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Yeah, so I know you have stuff you want to talk about. Before we get into that? We record on Zoom, although we only use the audio. So I’m looking at you and this is my first time seeing you as short hair.


Dr.Gary Gerber: Let’s just be clear, it’s shorter. Okay. It’s not short hair.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Anyone’s watching this from our promotional emails or whatever that gets sent out or they saw this on the Power Practice Website or Social Media will have your shorter hair picture. So when did this happen?


Dr.Gary Gerber: This is as the saying goes “New for 22” 2022 so middle of January. Still haven’t decided if I’m taking it there or not I don’t know. I think as I saw it Journey, Journey- A total play in San Diego and it’s like Neal Schon is determining guitar player. And he was kind of rockin’ shorthair. So I figured Neil could do it. I could probably pull it off. Well, we’ll see.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Was it a gradual thing or you did do it all at once?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Oh no, just one shot. It was totally ripping off the band-aid and just like hey, let’s see where it goes. It was one of those things that grows back but it was long. The guy cutting said “When was your last harcut?” it sounded like 25-30 years ago, I don’t really remember it was a long time ago man.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Looks good. But I know that you didn’t reach out to me to talk about your hair and you really specifically wanted to talk about recession proofing your practice. So it’s a good topic. Certainly, people are concerned about what’s going on economically in the country. Do you think that we are in a recession? Headed for a recession? What got you thinking about this?


Dr.Gary Gerber: I think a lot of Economists, I’m looking at or from the perspective of a patient in a doctor’s practice. And unlike previous recessions that were definitely recessions, their past they were defined. I think the influence of social media is really important here because there’s so much negativity and doom and gloom, it’s easy to amp that up. So whether or not we’re going to have one I don’t know. But I think more people, in our case, patients or prospective patients think that we’re gonna have one and I think most people believe or not anyone right now, but it is pending. And that’s why I think the topic of how to recession-proof while you have a chance because I think once you’re in the thick of it, it’s gonna be a lot harder. From what I’m hearing around the country phones are still ringing. People are still getting eye exams, buying glasses. It’s all happening maybe not to the same extent, but it’s happening. So I think preparing for it whether or not it shows up is important. And now’s the time that we shouldn’t be doing it. The influences of social media the ability to propagate news, good or bad, is that system is a lot more efficient now than it was in a previous recession. So I think that’s why we need to be extra careful with this topic.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So talk about previous recessions because we opened our practice in 2001. So I think we’ve probably survived a couple of them. What are the big recessions that people would remember as being recessions that affected not only people as individuals but as practice owners?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yeah, that’s an important question. I lived through three years ago when I was in practice, and when I first opened, let me think about that was a long time ago. 87 I guess. Not knowing anything about the economy, recessions, and just wondering how are we going to pay the rent? And kind of flying by the seat of my pants. It’s good to have the business acumen at the time. I actually did pretty good. And when I look back on that, other recessions that came afterwards, like in late 2008, ish, lost. With a pretty good for that. Also, it makes me think that we’re in a relatively recession resistant business. I don’t think we’re recession proof. I think we’re recession-resistant being a branch of healthcare. Unlike a dentist, where if something hurts, the odds are recession or not, you’re probably going to call up your dentist and get it fix. With us, I think what we’re likely to see if we get to a full-blown recession, is that patients will still come in but we may have cashflow challenges because a lot of what we do on the primary care side is billable, meaning that I send out a text this time for yearly eye exam to come in and somebody will read your text as they’re reading it with their progressive lenses so I can read this text. Okay, I think I’m in pretty good shape. I’m not going to come in a year, maybe 15 or 16 months. So I think it could be a delay but that person is supposed to come in. If they break through glasses, we may see more people coming in with paper clips and tape and their temple screws. And we use and we cost them early because they want to delay things. Second pair sales could take a little bit of a hit, premium products could take a hit but we’re still it’s not the core business that I think can support us through this. So I don’t want anybody listening to this to like, freak out. I really believe that the only people should be freaking out is if they have a really poor, if a majority of their revenues are coming from brand new patients, and they have yet to establish a relationship with a lot of returning patients. I get a little bit nervous because I think those returning patients will stick with you. If you’ve done a good job they just may wait a little bit to come and see you. So, like I said all that said even though I don’t think it’s going to be terrible, I think we’re going to take a little bit of a hit and if it comes in, it’s just doing what we can to prep for it now. While we have some kind of breathing room if it will.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So like not to be totally dense. I’m not an economist either. When you talk about us being in a recession, what does that mean? Like, how do you know if we’re in? 


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yeah, I think I think the economists’ definition is I’m sure somebody will send me an email that I was wrong. I think it’s three consecutive quarters of declining GDP or something like that, essentially what it means to like non-economist like me is the economy slowing down and people are spending a lot less money than they used to. They get in the habit of spending less of their money and inflation obviously contributes to it, it’s more expensive so you spend less or cash if you will. You know the price of gas goes up so you consciously tried to provide trips and try to go to the grocery store and Target at the same time instead of making two separate trips, tangentially related actually I bought an electric bike, Actually I bought two, one for me and one for my wife this past week. Which is kind of cool. Not because of the price of gas it’s because there everybody in San Diego had a electric bike but me, really felt left out. So I bought two of them last week. They’re very cool. If anybody’s listening if you don’t have it, go go try one. I got hooked. And I was attending.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Stuff costs more,  gas cost more. So people I mean, we’re starting to see that already. You’re in California so I know it’s worse where you are but here in New Jersey $4.60 a gallon, which is more than I recall seeing it. So people just start holding back and differently change what they’re spending. 


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yeah, they’re spending behavior changes. Here gases over $6 a gallon which is just it’s just hard to believe. And you just get in the habit of all your purchases you just buy less you make do with less. And I think that’s actually the way to recession-proof your practice who started thinking how can I run practice by still providing great care to my patients that they’ve been accustomed to? But doing it with less? Thought about? Like, like just thought about? Is this is not unlike? Because you went I went through COVID Nonsense disaster. if you think of like the early, early panic side of  COVID, in practices like March 2020 whe everybody thought okay, oh my god, we’re all going to go out of business. We’re gonna shut down our doors really go out of business. And it really the things that we did during COVID to get lean. really apply here. Thank God most guys did not go out of business. Granted, we got relief from the government we got PPP money. I don’t think we’re gonna get any relief in recession money from the guys who may have caused the problem in the first place. But I don’t think we’re gonna need it. Either. So the lesson from COVID is you can be a leaner machine and be smarter. And I think as I said that out loud. I think one thing that may help us gets through an impending recession is if we kept some of those COVID practices we put in place because of the code. If we’re still doing it. We shouldn’t be even in a better place. We could have could be functioning with seeing if you do a look back to 2020. We could be seeing more patients with less staff. We could be seeing more patients with fewer office hours. Maybe move into a smaller place, i don’t know maybe you expanded it. But I think there are a lot of lessons from COVID that are certainly on the don’t panic side. Somebody in government finally drops the R bomb, Yes we’re in a recession recessions they don’t panic. I mean, dude, you got through COVID, your door was shut. Your door was locked.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Ultimate the ultimate recession right when you can’t see any patients. Patients can’t spend any money and I think remembering now that you and I actually recorded a Power Hour episode together. You were the host and it was about like what happens if you don’t get any relief money? What do you have to do to totally lean down your practice so that you can survive this? It’s interesting, right? You can’t go all the way back. But there are definitely things that you can do before that though, like so what happens if you don’t do anything? If you just keep doing things the way you’ve always done them? Don’t make changes. And we slide into this recession. What do you think would happen in practice?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Nothing catastrophic, but you’re certainly going to most likely have to take a higher hit to your bottom line. Because we talked about the changes you should make. There’s only two ways to keep more money if it weren’t on top or spend less  get a fall to the bottom right. So you got to make more spend less to really oversimplify and non-economist version. So if you’re not attempting to do those, and you’re running your P&L the same and all your expenses are the same and all your sales started to drop, you’re gonna lose money. So I think that if you prepare, you can lose less money. If you prepare really well and you’re really smart. You got to take a couple of risks and probably make more look at all the doctors that came out of COVID and said they actually had a really good year taking the PPP off the balance sheet, what sort of stuff so, the first thing is course don’t panic, which much easier to say now having gone through COVID. And then it’s just looking at your revenue streams that are coming in and look where you can cut and I think if there was ever a time to think about specialty care, in our practice, we talked about to restoring covid and also I’m obviously very bullish on Myopia Management as a Treehouse Eyes, Co-founder. I think if there was ever a time to really double down or bring in something like myopia, dry eyes, wearables, you guys do a lot of level vision in your journey practice. Now is the time to do it. Because you’re gonna have patients, your revenue per patient is higher. You were cost of servicing that patient you can see, I can speak to myopia’s because I can see you can speak about vision but with myopia your revenue per patient is higher. You can ultimately do with less staff. And if you look at the dental model, like I said, where patients will walk around the toothache for too long before they finally be given and call in the dentist. I got to think that parents if they’re affiliated with a good myopia management practice, they realize that it’s not an elective procedure. They’ve been educated that it’s a disease state, it’s like glaucoma, we’re going to take care of it. So could patients stop using their glaucoma drops during a recession? Yeah. They certainly could and maybe some or unfortunately will, if things are really bad. But I don’t think that’s going to be as frequent as somebody delaying, presbyopic exam, who seeing well and if parents understand that myopia is a serious condition, management is not an elective. They’re going to bring that kid in for a treat and also it’s their kid, you know, it’s like I know you’re a dog fan and so am I, you know, as we spend money on our kids and our dogs before itself, pets, but I just happen to be a dog fan. So to the cat lovers, nothing. I’m not trying to tease you guys something, I just like dogs better, that’s all. So yeah, I think getting involved as a specialty care now. While you have a little bit of breathing room, and we were saying the same thing during COVID. We put together, I remember Power Practice talk to me like an eight week, seven or eight-week business plan program we put together. We were bringing an outside expert sharing myopia, dry eyes. And I think those doctors that did it are happier and better off because they did.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: I agree with you. I know that the argument out there is you know, how can we be talking about doing more of a $3,000 procedure during a recession? Isn’t that the worst time to talk about bigger ticket things, but I don’t think that it is or there are certain patients or like certain socio-economic classes that are less impacted by a recession. Like you know what I’m saying, there’s you’re saying there’s gonna be a recession and then to combat this your practice you should essentially do bigger ticket service. They’re gonna have people spending more money than they do on that exam. And progressively, What’s the logic behind it?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Well, I think you get you got to pick the right service, right and pick dry eye and some reason miserable and you can help them like that district and they’re gonna come to practice and I think it’s kind of a bummer. I don’t know what the dry care costs. But paying patients will pay for relief. And I take a thing like in Myopia, we’ll pay to take care of the kids and they may put off something else. If they were planning vacation and it was 3000 bucks, they get their kid treated. Maybe the plan of lesser vacation or we’ll just delay it. So I think like like everything we do in Optometry, Optometrist, they say something like that and I shot the podcast on because this makes no sense timing. People want to spend money and then you’re saying to the faculty raise your fees. That’s the age old optometry thing that I’m afraid to raise my fees because patients are going to pay me recession, no recession. And yet there are doctors who charge a lot more than others in the same market, the same socio-economic market, and generally the doctors’ who chart more are busier than the ones who are chartless. So they might have been busier, but they certainly have a healthier P&L. So I kind of reject that premise that it looks about ripping people off. If you charge $3,000 for something you better get $10,000 worth of service. So that hasn’t changed. That basic consumer module hasn’t changed. Again, I can only speak to my Myopia care. But you got to do it the right way. You got to take great care of the kid and parents, parents will pay. Socio-economic groups, Yeah. If you have a boatload of cash in your house, I guess you’re gonna be like, go put the recession. Not too many Americans these days, I guess. But I still believe we’ve got locations now in 24 states a lot of diverse markets. And there’s not a real big difference between different markets and the success of the Docs. The thing that makes the most successful is their mindset going into it. Whether it’s myopia or selling eyeglasses that hasn’t changed ever. Daily disposable contact lenses second pair of AR lenses. Doctors believe it’s what’s best for the patient. They talk about it, they have a higher chance of patient getting it’s got to be legit. You know, it’s also comparisons, patients with definable need. And if there’s definable need if the kid really needs myopia management that you’re obligated to talk about and do it the right way and charge for your time they can’t pay for it they can’t pay for payment plans are great. Doctors listening is not using payment plans and practice for anything that I take it I think they’re missing. Definitely, a great time to do it now. Again, this stuffing gets ready for it because getting a payment plan in place and educating your staff may take me a couple of weeks. So do it now you got time, your time to prep for it.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: SO I think the shift that has to occur and your thinking is first it’s not so much that people are going to have money. People have money. The people who have money have money. People are maybe going to be a little bit more careful or a little bit choosier about how they’re spending the money, but are still willing to prioritize the things that they feel are important. So how you’re presenting and talking about the things in your practice that really are important is going to be critical in determining if somebody is going to choose to use the money that they have for that over something else. What about on the expense side? What are some things that you can do to lower your costs?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Well, here are the biggest ones. If you looked at hundreds of 1000s of P&Ls, the biggest ones are usually labor and occupancy. I’ll tell you one thing not to cut is marketing. That’s usually like kind of the nature of work it was I think if I think about turning it up because easier to cut through some of the clutter. Let everybody else turn it down and it’s open the door for it, just to show up with your message. So I wouldn’t I would not cut there if you go with the premise of adding specialty care. And you believe you can do it with less labor initial model out would it look like if I could bring in one specialty care patient and that took the place of four eye exams. For example, could I get by with 30% fewer staff fully making up these numbers by the way, it’s going to vary for everybody. But that labor costs we one of the first things that I would look at and again with regard to getting in front of this. Your staff is watching CNN and Fox and every other news feed that’s out there just like you were so they’ve heard the recession word too. So I think it would be smart and dialogue with them and say, look, we got to really start being lean. I don’t want to cut back anybody’s hours I want to get busier and get more patients coming through doors pay more when it’s better. But we got to really do everything we can out towards your bottom line. And just get people on alert and those are good once and the other stuff you know we do a lot of stuff out of habit. Spend money out of habit. Remind the copier, where to buy a copy paper, paper towels, and whatever else that you’re buying is the same place you bought it 20 years ago and never thought to change. So you may have to really slice and dice your P&L and look at other things. And collectively if you go through line item, one line item could you save another three or 4% And you probably could only gonna save 40% But I think if you’re really spend the time, and I think it’s you should be doing that anyway, every now and then it’s I think it’s time well spent just to go through it carefully. Every other smart non-optometry company does it so why can’t we do it? It’s just being conscious of where you’re spending your money, but the big ones are going to be labor, occupancy costs if you own your space and you haven’t done or if you haven’t done a refi or if you refile a while worth looking at the commercial rates while imagining everything else. And then the same thing with your lease. If the lease is about to come up, let’s say your lease is going to be up next year may be good idea to get in front of it with the landlord now and have a discussion along the lines of look. We both know recessions coming so don’t even think of raising my rent. In fact, I’d be willing to sign up right now if you keep it the same. And I know I have escalation clauses in there and let’s be realistic when we sign that we weren’t expecting to go into recession, so only to sign another three-year deal. Now, if we do it at the same rent that are paying now. So those are the things you can get in front of you just renewed your lease. Good luck with that one. It’s not gonna work. But I think if you consciously look at these things and spend the time going through it, you’ll find the place that you can go absolutely. Like you’ve like I said you’ve looked at hundreds if not 1000s P&L to see some of the crazy things that doctors spend money on it they don’t even know about until you call it out to the retention. Do you know what is this line item for? I don’t know I’m gonna have to check and they are spending money on its every month like for the last 14 years. You got to take a look at that.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Yeah, we certainly come across those when we do the practice profitability tune-ups, we see things that are line item expenses sometimes for a membership that a doctor doesn’t even know that they have or a service they’re paying for that they thought they quit and they never use. So those things come up but go back to staff because it’s interesting to hear you say cutting expenses on the staff line. The feedback we’re getting from a lot of practices is because gas and groceries and everything else the cost of everything is so much higher and combined with really low unemployment are offices are feeling that they have to pay more than ever to get not even necessarily a great staff to get any staff to even apply. So how do you pay people more than ever and decrease the amount that you’re spending on staff?


Dr.Gary Gerber: You can increase the hourly wage and cut their hours. And a lot of all these discussions do frequently get back to culture if you have somebody working in a practice that they love. They just love working for you. And they’re not they’re not going to view it as if you cut my hours you’re paying me a fair wage. So you did give me a bump and pay because I told you I have a half-hour drive to work and I’m spending an extra 30 hours a week on gas. So thank you for that you gave me a bump. If that person uses your practices just any other OD practice and you cut their hours if they’re smart they should leave, they’ll say I can get this in any place. They have to love working for you. That’s got to account for something and with that, if they want to be part of your team and you say look we’re in this together just help me get through this. If the recession gets really bad, is it just like COVID look at all the doctors when the phones went dead and how many doctors that we speak to before we knew PPP money was coming, Doctor said there’s no way I’m gonna let any, my staff, alone to keep pay. We had doctors paying their staff out of their own personal savings, which is an admirable nice thing to do, but it’s a really bad business move and it’s obviously not sustainable. So it’s kind of like a twist on that where if revenues are going to drop and you have built a good culture, good team, and people want to support you and are willing to get through this with you. That’s in the middle of a couple of big ifs they would like to stay with you. I’m not talking about dropping your pay, although you could certainly bring it up. We just can’t afford to pay I hate to see you go, we’re all taking a hit. I think the doctors if they’re listening to this and your practice owner, see if you can take a personal hit just to get through this if that’s required into paying yourself a couple of 1000 bucks a week can you cut it back? 10 or 15% just to not have to do it to your staff. I think that’s it’s not a reason. Reason personal financial situations can be different. Some people just can’t pull it off. But we just have to acknowledge that labor costs is gigantic. Yes, super tight labor little crazy. Every place. It’s all 50 states. Everybody’s having trouble getting people to show up for work. furlough stories they don’t show up for an interview. If the higher up they don’t show up for work, so and then they do and they sucked anyway. So you got a fire. So yeah.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: They’re awesome and then they get Covid. So it’s all good. 


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yeah. You know, the thing that we have to think about is I don’t think we leverage our cultures of the good practices, listening if you have a sucky practice then too bad you have to call Bethany’s will help you fix it. But the good practices I think, don’t leverage their culture. Looked at college kids who have a business degree they might they would probably like want to go work, or if they are in the hospitality business. They would probably want to go work for Disney. Because, I’ve never worked for Disney, but it’s probably perceived as a cool place to work, if you’re a tech nerd, my perception is Google’s perceived as a pretty good place to work. And I don’t know what they pay, they can pay great or they can make terrible, but regardless, it’s perceived as a good place to go work. So at a minimum, I wouldn’t want to be contacted by a recruiter or I would go on my way to try and get a gig at Google. And it’s secondarily find out what they pay and in fact, I th ink we could even go so far as to say, if it turns out that they were paying way below market for the level of nerd skills that you provide. You still might work there you got Google’s it’s prestigious. So I think the practice is to have great culture it’s probably don’t leverage them enough. When they go through the hiring process they haven’t created a strong enough brands in our community, to make it a place for people to want to go work. And I think that’s in this labor market in particular, I think that’s a really big miss and one of our, our Treehouse Eyes like goals is to make it the preferred employer in eye care. I want people to come work for us. And we’re slowly getting there. It’s a slog, it’s magic but we’re, it’s fairly easy for us to hire now than was when we started as we kept building the brand. I think doctors need to do the same thing. It’s not. It’s not all about money. It’s mostly about money. People have to live they got to feed their families. They have to gas the car to get to work, but they want to have a reasonably fulfilling, pleasant working experience. And that has to figure into the ingredients and for some people, it’s all about money because it’s just their life situation. That person is probably not going to work for you. And for others, it’s a little reward a culture side. It’s hard, hard to find. I absolutely agree. It’s more challenging than ever, we call it being and I’ve been doing this for 30-plus years long time.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So the idea, assuming that we’re headed into a recession or at the early stages of a recession, or are going to be in one shortly. Overall, the idea is to do what you can now to have your practice be in the best shape to survive and thrive through that. On the income side, you want to emphasize building your specialties. Because unlike a pair of glasses that if somebody’s seeing out well out of they can wait a little bit. If there’s a specialty care someone’s uncomfortable or they perceive that there’s a problem that needs to be treated. They will allocate the money to treat it. Anything else on the income side that I’m forgetting?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Those are the real ones. I think another big one just imagines if we had a heads up. Like if we had a six-month heads up that COVID was coming in, we’re gonna have to shut down for two months. Like, what if we knew that, so we shut down in March. What if we knew August before that it was coming, the government said we’re gonna force every business to shut down for two months in March, don’t have been a huge beyond a political uprising. We can’t do that. I can’t tell you to shut down once we get past that. But you know why guys are gonna shut down. It’s not negotiable. The smart people would say “I got a six-month window to prepare for this. I better start to save my acorns. And really like ramp up my revenue.” So it’s like you’re out riding a bike like you’re driving there, and there is a big hill coming up. You got to get up but before the big hill that goes up this big hill is going down. So you better pedal down and downhill as fast and as hard as you can to get as much momentum going up the next big one is coming. So, I think if we envision the recessions the same way and just do it now while we have time. We have resources. If it comes, we’ll be in much better shape and it’s not going to be perfect but will be much better than have we not done it. And I really believe whatever flavors specialty care doctors like, there are still so few practices doing really good. Genuine non-doubling specialty care like pick one we talk a lot about myopia. That’s one of the many, we just don’t see a lot of it as ours to lose. And if there was ever like there should ever be a motivator to do something like that. I mean, I don’t know what’s gonna take to get our collegues to pick one of the pills and shake them. Say look yeah COVID didn’t you want anything and what’s wrong with you? So my advice is they should call you guys, create the power practice help them get this together. And if they have Myopia questions, you can call us but if they wanted to go to Lawrence fine, just do something. I mean, you gotta, Like it’s, it’s almost like you’re given a gift before it’s not going to blindside you like COVID like, man you got you got six days to prepare for a shutdown. And I just as I said it out loud. I just feel the chills when everybody went through. We really thought we weren’t going to reopen. We’re going to shut down. We’re all going out of business. I set up my keyboard and said okay, well at least I can play in a band, wait you can’t do that either, sorry.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Really had no idea but Garry I like the analogy of you know if we had had months to prepare, what would we have done differently and whatever the key pillars of practice happen to be, whether it’s a specialty myopia, aesthetics, dry, binocular vision, low vision. Certainly building that up, adjusting a schedule and when there’s a schedule to adjust, right, if we knew that COVID was going to happen, we would have figured out a way to see more patients maybe a couple of weeks before if it’s a practice to generate revenue by volume. I know that we would have cut inventory so we wouldn’t have been buying frames or stocking contact lenses the same way, would have been looking at unnecessary expenses until we get rid of these preparations. And so, to me, that’s the mindset. Right? Let’s consider this three months, four months, and six-month warning, it may or may not happen. Do they know when recession happens or they like decide after the fact that that was one?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Yeah, I think of it if my definition was right, whatever the GDP gets recorded, Now I guess in prepping for this I should have looked that up but I figured hey, you’re the host you’ll know the recession.


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: I totally do. I was just advising you to make sure. But, you know, we’re optometrists and business consultants, your point is a well-taken recession or not. These are things that are going to improve the profitability of your practice. If you’re doing them to recession-proof, you’re improving the profitability and taking and holding on to that extra profits like storing in your acorns for the winter because we might need them and if it ends up not being the case, oh, well, you have extra acorns. It’s not a situation that anyone’s going to complain about. So this is helpful regardless of the economic state. Super timely now. Any closing thoughts?


Dr.Gary Gerber: Just you know, one of the frustrating things as consultants, so it’s all about execution right till they get done. The doctors can listen to this sounds like a good idea. Shoot the podcast off and tomorrow we’ll just crank out six refractions and go home. Now, what can I say without scaring him other than like you’ve been warned? They kind of I gotta do my best. You guys got to do the work. You got to call Bethany and her team. If you want some help making this happen if you want to do myopia and call us find the dry eyes practice some of the guys call but just like do something. It’s still frustrating and none of this stuff is like, it’s not that hard. I mean, if you can be an OD, which is like really hard. Doing this other stuff is now or if I was still practicing, I could do myopia. I mean, it’s not it’s not that hard. It’s kind of cool. Actually. If I was gonna go back into practice, I would open up a myopia-only practice no question, especially with the tsunami of kids that are coming out there. And in your case, low vision a tsunami of seniors. Alright, we’re gonna have low vision problems. Yeah, you got a parting words or roll up your sleeves get busy. It’s not that hard. It makes perfect sense to do and it’s hard to blow a hole on any of these arguments that you just don’t want to do, which is fine. You want to roll the dice don’t want to work in your heart. It’s fine. It’s really just take a little bit of a risk. I think it’s a big risk. I think it’s a risk and not being prepared. And yeah I wish I wish Doc’s luck is if they decide to do it or not neither side not facetiously and and do what I wish you luck I don’t mean that I think they’re gonna be fine I just I don’t want doctors to be fine want to kill it and just play rock their practices and really love going to work and I think it’s it’s just a great way to do and a great time to do it if they want to contact us or find me go to And there’s a little box there you can find me I can I put a plug for you guys like I want to plug the Power Practice as a non-power practice person so go to, I think that would be the best place to find you guys. Nobody does consultations like they do. They got an excellent team. They feel your pain. You got Doc’s over there they have non-Doc’s they’re industry vets know what you’re doing long legacy of doing it the right way. A lot of successful clients all over the country, diverse markets, diverse talent so the odds are extremely high. That whatever challenge you give them that you’ve encountered before and they can help you. So for Bethany and  for Gary, and I think that’s it, was that a pretty good impromptu close? I haven’t done this in a while.  


Dr.Bethany Fishbein: That was a great plug and I’ll throw in we used to offer Practice Profitability tune-ups to our listeners. We haven’t done it in a while but hearing this and thinking about recession proofing your practice, having a professional take a look through your P and L, and find opportunities where you’re maybe underearning or overspending can put you in a much better situation for the next few months. So I will open that opportunity again if someone is listening and they would like a Practice Profitability tuneup for free. You can contact us on our website or email Gary, thank you so much for being here. Everyone out there. Thank you for listening.


Dr.Gary Gerber: This was fun. Thanks Bethany.


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