Finding the right people to help your practice grow is a challenging task. No matter how rigorous your process is, misfits slip through the cracks. Your team is a vital piece to your success — Don’t let other’s negativity impact your future!
In this episode of The Power Hour, Bethany is joined by Gavin Rebello, an optometrist from the United Kingdom and renowned expert on leadership and management. Together they dive into the impact of negativity and resistance to change in the workplace and how it affects team dynamics and business success.
Listen as Gavin discusses the importance for business owners to stay self-aware and strike a balance between addressing the negativity and acknowledging its validity. He suggests practical steps, such as ‘start, stop, continue’ conversations and gratitude practices, to help shift someone from being a negative suck – or ‘Mood Hoover’ –to a positive, proactive leader. Recognizing this behavioral tendency, or better yet, preventing it from occurring in the first place, is essential to fostering a more productive, harmonious, and forward-thinking work environment that is united to for practice growth.
November 1, 2023
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Becca Starks: We have the ear with the students to hear what they’re looking for. They’re very, very few students that we’re working with, with the class of 2023 that will even consider an opportunity that is not private practice.
Dr. Bethany Fishbein: Hey, I am Bethany Fishbein. I am the CEO of The Power Practice and Host of The Power Hour Optometry Podcast. And I just want to first congratulate all of the new optometrists graduating this week from the optometry schools across the country. It’s such an exciting time. It doesn’t feel like that long ago since I and my classmates at New England College of Optometry in 1997 graduated. It goes fast. It’s really an exciting time. So congratulations, first of all, and this show is inspired by and dedicated to you and all of the people that you are hoping will hire you. Once you get your licenses and get out there into the world. So I’ve invited a guest, I have Becca Starks, Becca handles Enterprise Accounts and Operations for KMK Careers. And she’s here to help me sort out some of the things that today’s optometry students are looking for, and help educate some of the optometrists who are looking to hire young optometrists about misconceptions they may have or differing perceptions of this graduating class. So, Becca, thanks for doing this your second podcast ever. That’s awesome.
Becca Starks: Yes, thank you for having me. This is exciting.
Dr. Bethany Fishbein: Yeah, thank you. It’s an interesting time because we work with mostly established optometric practice owners. So most of the people that I’m speaking to day to day are employers of young optometrists, and they have this vision of what today’s graduates are like, and then I get the opportunity to speak with optometry students and recent grads and they’re not necessarily like that perception at all. So hopefully, you can help us bridge the gap a little bit.
Becca Starks: Yeah, absolutely.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So, talk about yourself for a minute here. I want you to just talk about KMK and KMK Careers because when I want to data on students, I knew you were the one to go to. And so I want all of my listeners to understand your involvement with young optometrists today.
Becca Starks: Yeah, absolutely. So KMK for those that don’t know KMK’s foundation is the KMK board review, which was started 18 years ago by Dr. Kyle Cheatham. And now fast forward 18 years we are inside of all of the 23 optometry schools nationwide. We have a team of optometrist instructors that traveled to all of the schools and we have a relationship with both third and fourth-year optometry students and 98, This is a big number to remember 98% of optometry students utilize KMK to pass their boards. So essentially we have a relationship with almost every single optometry student nationwide from the board’s perspective. And so we now have a new division of KMK specifically on careers which is just a natural extension of supporting those same students and finding their first career.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So you’re initially talking to these students when they’re students studying for boards. And then they hopefully pass boards and you know, move on and take more boards and pass those and move on. So what are the services that you’re providing for these students once they’ve graduated as doctors?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so it’s really fun. Personally, I am mostly an employee you’re facing so those that are looking for these candidates. However, we have a team of career advisors and all day long, they’re the luckiest ones in the world. They get to speak to these upcoming grads. So right now they are around the clock talking to those that are about to graduate here and a couple of weeks or maybe have graduated just recently. And uncovering what they’re looking for in a practice is really it’s a one-on-one relationship, so it’s totally free to students. They sign up to get a career advisor. They have calls with that career advisor to uncover what are they looking for what type of practice is it specific specialties, just anything that may be the true motivating factor as to why they want to go to a certain practice. And then essentially we play matchmaker so the career advisors speak to students all day long. I speak to employers all day long, and then we come together and get to build a bridge between the two and hopefully connect great candidates with a great opportunity.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Maybe it’ll be the next Netflix show after Indian matchmaking, Jewish matchmaking. It’ll be optometric career matchmaking. And be a celebrity.
Becca Starks: I think some of us would watch that, at least your listeners would probably enjoy that.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: My husband and I would watch it so
Becca Starks: same.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So I mean, you’ve got a line of sight into exactly who today’s optometrists or today’s graduating class, today’s brand new optometrists are, can you give some facts and figures of what that class looks like?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so essentially, from a demographic perspective, it’s highly female. The data is showing 70% female and 30% Male.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: 70?
Becca Starks: 70 Percent.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Wow.
Becca Starks: Yes. And there’s information I believe you are going to be able to put in the show notes. But there is a really robust report. I believe it’s lots and lots of pages. I don’t remember how many but there are highlights within that on pages nine and 10 that give a really good but really quick summary of demographics of this class, within gender within race. There’s even financial information about how many needed to have financial aid, that sort of thing, and some really detailed information even about by school breakdown.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Are you able to roll through some of the things in there that kind of stood out to you?
Becca Starks: So the biggest thing that stands out to me is female and how as you it shows kind of year over year how that transition has changed from much more female than male as it was in the past. Same thing with race, I believe I don’t remember how many years ago it was but just not too long ago. It was predominantly white for professionals graduating and now that’s shifted to highly other races, whether it’s Asian or black or other races that are included in that.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And what about the financial piece? Because I feel like that’s such a big topic for new doctors. Is this need to pay back student loans? Do you have any stats on the amount of debt that students are graduating with?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so the report itself shows 85% of students are utilizing some type of support financial aid, loans, and the average for a graduate right now graduating is about $200,000 in debt. So definitely it is.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: That’s just from optometry school or that’s including undergrad debt?
Becca Starks: That’s actually a good question. We just get the stat of 200,000 and I assumed it was just optometry school. But that’s a good question.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So young, female, and any change in like age demographic? Or is it typically right out of college a year or two out of college starting into Optometry?
Becca Starks: Yeah, So typically, it is kind of a typical route straight out of undergrad and to optometry school. There is about of the 16-1700 graduates there are about 150 of those that are considered you know, like other avenues whether that would be part-time or returning back in at a later point in time.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Okay, so out of 1500 you’re talking about? Very typically, right? 1000 young, female, probably non-white doctors.
Becca Starks: Yeah.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: If you had to say this is what’s typical. This is the majority.
Becca Starks: Yeah.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: With debt?
Becca Starks: Yes. A lot of it.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Okay. So, when you talk to this typical doctor and are getting into the field of matching into a career of their dreams, what are they telling you that they want?
Becca Starks: Yeah. So it’s been interesting to learn that so the things that I came into this thinking people would want my background was actually at LinkedIn for five years before coming on to help launch this division of KMK and I thought it would be very different. I would think pay would exceed everything else. But, interestingly, location is the top deciding factor for these new graduates in determining which practice they want. Obviously, that is the hardest answer because no one can do anything about the location of their practice. But we can touch on this later. Kind of some ideas and tips for those to try to recruit folks into harder locations but definitely the location. Again, before and above pay even this work-life balance coming into play that is much more of a topic. Then I think it has been in years past. Not necessarily meaning, Hey, I want to come in and I want to never work. But this generation is much more just passionate about having that work-life balance of the work to live not live to work mentality. And so location, work-life balance, obviously pay, and structuring pay in a way that is understood to the candidate as well too. So being very upfront about what that pay is so that they know before even applying and putting that in a way that they understand what they actually can make because sometimes it can be hard with percent of production, knowing what that means.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So let’s go into those a little bit more and I want to just go back one to work-life balance because I think that’s probably the biggest misunderstanding between a doc maybe in their 50s and a doc in their 20s. This idea of working to live instead of living to work and it’s respectable and it’s necessary and mental health is important and it’s and life has to work for you. But these older docs, that was not their world. And so when I hear it, it’s complaints. They won’t work weekends, they don’t want to put in 40 hours. They’re asking for a four-day workweek. They’re like it’s coming across as we’re lazy. We’re not dedicated to the practice. We don’t want to be here we’re not going to work as hard as you and it. It creates a disconnect from the start like somebody interviewing, who says I don’t want to work every weekend. All of a sudden has all these judgments thrown on them that they probably don’t deserve. Do you see that with the docs that you’re talking to and you’re matching?
Becca Starks: Oh, absolutely. Yeah, it’s the same thing I hear to have. You know, that’s typically the demographic of employers that I’m talking to all day long to have, you know, they came out and maybe cold started or they came out and bought a practice and they’ve been doing it for 20-30 years and like. What?
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Right and they remember, or maybe they’re still working 70 hours a week and they’re there, you know, every day in the practice and their day off there when the cleaning themselves because that’s what the owners do. How do you coach of 50-something and 60-something-year-old practice owners into understanding that it’s not laziness and it’s not to they don’t want to work?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so that is it is a big misconception of the students that it is laziness, and specifically, most students are expecting to work at least one to two Saturdays a month. So it’s not that they’re coming in and saying I only want four-day workweeks, and I’ll never work a weekend. They are expecting a true full work week and one or two Saturdays per month. To your question about how to coach an owner in that situation. I think it’s just taking a step back and looking really high level at your practice as a business and I’ve had this conversation with many owners of I don’t know why we are open Saturdays, honestly, we’ve just always done it and so determined are we doing this because it’s just always been done or when determining this because it is a true business need. And so same thing with later hours or that sort of thing. If it is a true business need 100% voicing that to a candidate that’s a friend and that’s that’s great, but there may be situations where again, it’s just we’re doing this because it’s been done forever. And actually, our patients wouldn’t mind if we didn’t have a late night or we had a late night instead of a Saturday or vice versa.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Do you think docs have like a little bit of that? It’s like that hazy mentality? Like I went through it I put in my time therefore you you need to.
Becca Starks: I think it could be a little of that. Me not being an optometrist. I have to tread lightly because I have not earned my dues. But in the conversations that I’ve had, I think it is a little bit of that at least.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Yeah, I worked weekends for 23 years. I’ve never missed it Saturday. I’ve never called out sick. And now I’m going to change my whole practice because this 24-year-old kid doesn’t want to work, like there’s that so what are the students are the new grads thinking about these practice owners, doctors who are in a different demographic from them because there’s got to be misconceptions going that way also.
Becca Starks: Yeah, I don’t get to hear a ton of the misconceptions from the student side. But I think there’s just both sides can teach each other something right like maybe that student can come in and show this business owner who’s been doing this forever, like, wow, I could totally do this differently. And, wow, I’m kind of relieved that you came in and brought up the idea of work-life balance because I as the business owner, really needed that, and wow, my life is different because of it and vice versa. There’s obviously so much that the practice owner can teach and pour into these new grad optometrists. But as far as misconceptions from them, I haven’t heard any to be honest.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: I hear that they look at a private practice. They think they’re not going to be paid as much. So they’re thinking that not necessarily that the owner is cheap, but that it’s not. It’s not as profitable, therefore there’s not as much money in it for them. You didn’t mention the mode of practice. You talked about location, work-life balance, and pay. Are students coming out looking for commercial opportunities? Are they looking for private practice or looking for MD offices? I mean, obviously, students are looking for each of those, but what are you seeing most frequently?
Becca Starks: Yeah, great question. So motor practice is very important and private practice remains. Top of the list for I’d say close to 90% of the new grads.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Serious?
Becca Starks: Yeah, because I hear the same thing. I hear a lot from private practice owners that say that almost come to the call with me very nervous, like “Becca, what’s going on? Why might all the new grads want private equity and why do they want retail? And can I really afford to hire them? Because it sounds like they’re throwing all the money in the world with them.” And then it’s interesting because we have that ear with the students to hear what they’re looking for. They’re very, very few students that we’re working with, with the class of 2023 that will even consider an opportunity that is not private practice. So there’s just a handful of folks that have said all maybe look at private equity or retail, but the vast majority say I truly, truly, truly want to private practice and there’s even a really good group that says, “Not only do I only one a private practice, but I already know that someday I want to partner slash buy this practice as well.”
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Do you think though that it’s, it’s like self-selecting a little bit because retail opportunities are so easy to come by? That they might not even consider needing to work with a company like yours? They just need to go on Ziprecruiter, Indeed, and type in optometrists job and the geography they want and they have their choice. Are you talking to them before they’re job-seeking?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so we actually start a process with them a year before they graduate. And so we have them fill out a profile with us it looks just like a LinkedIn profile, but it’s specifically for KMK, and go in and select all of the different types of practices that they’re open to. And so, we have both from the data from what they input on their profile and then they all have a one-on-one call with a career advisor as well. And so that’s where those points come from, both in the data they enter and then the conversations they have with a career advisor.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And is that when a student should be starting their job search is early in fourth year?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so we were really surprised in the timeline as well that a lot of students start having conversations about the fall before they graduate. So this class of 2023 they were starting interviews, October timeframe, and then a lot of them were during their Christmas break, timeframe holiday break, going on visits to practice owners. And then as soon as the New Year transitioned over there were many that were in contract. So definitely, Fall time is like you can feel good. About yourself being ahead of the game, wintertime is still very safe, you still have a lot of opportunity to be reaching out to candidates, and then as we enter into more of the springtime, a lot of I’d say probably half if not more of those that we’re working with are 100% in contract ready to go.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: When you start working with them. Is there any issue with students who are starting the search and still haven’t passed their boards or won’t have the credentials to work when they graduate?
Becca Starks: Yeah, Yep. There is information from ASCO also about passage rates. And it goes into detail even of school by school, but it essentially shows year over year the decrease in passage rates, and I think we’re at about 70% passage rate, right now. 73%. And so there’s a huge population of students that don’t pass typically it’s part one where the struggle is and so there are some students that will even graduate and still have not passed boards. And another misconception there is, “Oh, these students are lazy or they’re not understanding the information, and I don’t want those students because they won’t be good doctors”. And completely not true. Those are students that could either be not very good test takers. These are also the population that came into optometry school right in the heart of COVID. There are some that have just had really rough life events around the time that it is to take boards and so but they are all great people that will be great doctors, they simply just need to pass this test. Many of them have had really great GPAs some of them have other degrees that help them with the practice management side and so it’s just a matter of getting past that one test or many of them.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And how does, how did they navigate that with the job contract like, will an employer sign something with a student who hasn’t yet passed boards?
Becca Starks: Yes, we are running into that actually part one. Board scores were just released this past week. And it was a lot of that there was a lot of celebration and there was a lot of sadness around those that didn’t pass. And the good news is, I don’t know that I’ve come across a single employer partner that we work with that isn’t at least open to the idea of bringing on someone that’s graduated in kind of a super tech role. It’s kind of how we position it to practice under that optometrist owner until they graduate and we even have some that say, “Hey KMK I know that you, as an organization, do great at coaching them and helping them after they fail boards.” I will even invest in that side of the house to ensure that they can pass boards not only to show that, hey, I believe in you and the hardest time in your life student but also that gains them a really loyal employee that again, is going to be a great doctor has just had trouble taking this one test.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Coming in as a super tech though, obviously, they’re coming in at a lower pay scale and they would come in as an optometrist, and they have those student loans. So let’s talk about compensation of obviously it’s going to vary around the country and regionally and how many hours and all of that but what is it that a new OD is looking for as far as the ability to earn money?
Becca Starks: Yeah, good question. So, specifically with this new grad population, the way that I kind of coach, the employer partners that we work with private practice owners is, a lot of times they’ll come into the call and say why pay 16% of production, but with this new grad population, they aren’t able to really wrap their brains around what that is, you could have a $1.5 million, your practice and they still just don’t, they can’t really understand that. And so the recommendation that we give is to at least have some sort of salary and we have information and concrete data on specific areas of the nation. So by all means, if, if we can support you in any way with that, I’m happy to to make sure that you’re competitive, but having some type of salary listed up front is what’s going to entice these new grad population because they can wrap their brains around 140,000. They can’t necessarily wrap their brains around 16% of production. And so totally understand, then obviously the argument private practice owner, I hear you what’s going on in your head is. “Well, I need to motivate them to work hard. Like if I just give them a salary, then what’s the motivation to work hard”, and so there’s been kind of this really nice avenue that we’ve taken with a lot of partners that’s worked well in that advertising a salary a little higher than you probably would have normally, but then decreasing to a really low percent of production, so that there’s some salaries that’s there that’s enticing to a new grad, but a lower percent of production. So for the first year only, so year one higher salary and lower percent of production, and then having that shift for year two and year beyond your two to a lower salary, higher percent of production. And so what that does is again, entices this new grad to apply, and even want to learn more about your practice because there’s a salary, but that little bit of percent of production will get them to realize in their first year of working well. I’m doing the math, and if I would have went on the percent of production, I probably would have made more than my salary. This is making sense this is motivating me to work harder. And then again, you can even have it in the contract that upon year two that shifts to a lower salary that’s guaranteed and a higher percent of production. So as they’ve gotten their feet wet, they’ve learned they’ve been mentored that first year shifting then into percent of production.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So you’re coaching your doctors to do a salary plus a percent of production?
Becca Starks: Yeah, that’s pretty typical.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And what about benefits and stuff like that is that important? Yes, it is important. Is that something that a brand new grad is going to give enough importance to that it’s going to help them decide one place versus another?
Becca Starks: Yeah, such a good question. So I’ll give both sides just agree very important. I would say the majority of private practice owners that we’re working with are offering some sort of benefits, whatever that might look like. Some are very comprehensive, some are very “Hey, we will pay 50% of your medical and leave it at that.” But now that we are in this lane of there is competition from private equity and from retail. Those are just a no-brainer. In those avenues. And so to remain competitive from that regard. They will get a full package of 401K’s with matching with benefits with PTO, all of those things, if they’re considering a retailer or a private equity opportunity in comparison to your private practice opportunity. And so, again, I think most I talked to very few that say “Hey, I’m just percent of production and I don’t give any days off you just you if you’re here you make money if you’re not, you don’t but you can take whatever days you want type of thing”. I have a handful of those but for the most part, most private practices are offering the salary with percent of production, at least something towards medical, and then most do have a 401K whether there’s a match or not with that.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Are there other intangible benefits, other things that would make a practice more attractive?
Becca Starks: Yeah. So I think the thing that’s so such a great opportunity with all of the listeners that would have that are trying to hire than our private practice owners that have been doing this for years to a new grad specifically is mentorship. And so those that are willing to do that are excited about that. Well, maybe “Hey, I haven’t really even thought about that. But I’m gonna share over the last 20 years, I really have learned a lot that I could pour into this next upcoming generation”. And so being very vocal with that, even in a job description, or whatever it is that you’re creating, to entice candidates to come your way and some people put a really extensive plan behind, “Hey, we have a weekly meeting, and you get lunch hour with me every week and we will cover XYZ and some it’s kind of informal of just “Hey, I’m going to be with you I’m alongside you. You can call me when you want”, whatever that looks like, or even if you haven’t, some team members that are fairly recent grads, being able to vocalize that to have hey, we’ve got folks that I brought on board as new grads and couple years later looking them go and so the mentorship side is again that intangible free opportunity that I think a lot of people don’t even necessarily recognize they have the ability to give.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Is it mostly clinical mentorship they’re looking for? is it practice ownership? like when you say mentorship, what are they hoping to learn from you?
Becca Starks: Yeah, definitely medical at the top of that, but there are again, those those candidates that just know that they know that they want to be very involved in the practice management, the business side of the house. And so for those candidates that are interested in it, being willing to say “Hey, here’s I’ll show you all of our programs and all of our software and how I design the day and this is how I designed the business side of the house”, and so in those situations for folks that are interested in that side, I think it’s important to have just kind of an open door policy of “I’ll show you all that. I’ll show you that number. So I’ll let you in on this.”
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: So for practice in a particular geographic area, if you can get your salary and benefits close, but they don’t necessarily have to be higher. They just have to be within range and you can kind of check off all the other boxes. Is there a type of practice like heavy medical versus refractive versus specialty that people are looking for?
Becca Starks: Yeah, so definitely looking at highly medical. And then what I would also say is kind of another somewhat intangible, but if practice owners are open to new specialties that maybe you don’t have in your practice right now. But hey, if there’s somebody who comes in and is passionate about whatever it may be, and they want to bring that into my practice, that’s a really enticing thing for a candidate to really see themselves. They’re in the long haul of “Wow, I’m passionate about myopia management and this practice says, by all means bringing that on.” That’s such a great thing to be able to offer to a candidate and so definitely, medical and specialties are really where the candidates are wrapping their brains around of how do I see myself there.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And what if you’re in rural Wisconsin, where there’s just not a huge population of optometrists looking to settle? What’s the best way for a practice like that to set themselves up to find somebody to join because so many of those are great opportunities to become part of a community to ultimately partner buy a practice have a really low cost of living like it’s how do they make themselves attractive or show how attractive they are I guess I should say.
Becca Starks: Yeah, and I think that so often because I get the luxury of talking to these practice owners in some of these more rural areas. And every time I’m just like, Wow, if I could just record this and let all of these candidates see this owner care about the type of patients they get to see a lot of times it’s the smaller communities that because there’s not a nearby ophthalmology or another office like those are the most medically focused practices.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Absolutely.
Becca Starks: Yeah. And so, so often I feel better. Oh my gosh, if I could just package this up and get a candidate to truly wrap their head around it. So one of the things that we do on the candidate side is our current advisors do as soon as a student comes in and says, “I only want Miami in New York and LA”, we try to mentor as well and show your kind of cost of living and let’s truly take a look at this and let’s look at your lifestyle and look at
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Miami, LA, how about rural Wisconsin?
Becca Starks: Right? Yep.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And consider Minnesota.
Becca Starks: Exactly. We play that game all day long. Yep. And then to the practice owners, a lot of what I tell them is, they’ll tell me I say they get to brag. So give me your brag book, when they come on as a partner to me, tell me what’s so great about your practice. And then they’re typically ready to end the call and I say, “Okay, based on your area, we also want you to brag on the geographic location just as much as the opportunity and so getting a candidate to truly understand what their life is going to be like, not just when they’re at work with you all day, but once they leave work, and what does this community look like and what can I do there? Is it great for hiking, is it great for the music scene, and the art scene? Is it great to raise a family and maybe I’m not thinking about that right now. But in the next couple of years, I will be.” And so I always say “Somewhere in your job description, however, you want to do it. It’s a post that you’re putting on to kind of an Indeed or an AOA. Having information, just typed information about your geographic area and what makes it so great. And then also, the other added thing you can do is you can always create videos.” Videos are I feel like that’s kind of how we’re all digesting content at this point. And especially this generation of these new grads, and so if you can even do a quick it doesn’t have to be professionally shot but videos of you just speaking informally, almost as if you’re speaking to a candidate who wouldn’t be right in front of you talking about again, envisioning their life there, the more that a practice owner can make a job description or job post about the candidate instead of themselves. The better that that’s going to relay to the candidates have just really getting to understand “Okay, this isn’t what I thought I was thinking Miami, but now I can kind of envision how my life could be in Wisconsin.”
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: That’s a really strong and valid point. Because when I think about a job ad, it’s all about what we need and what we want. We’re looking for an optometrist to work these hours to do this and when I’m interviewing candidates for Associate optometrist, but really for any position I’m always sensitive to an applicant, who all they’re telling me is what this job is going to do for them. Right. So I’m very critical of it as an employer when they’re like, I’m looking to build my clinical confidence in myopia. I’m looking into, you know, whatever. And I think what are you going to do for me? But in the ad, maybe it should be the other way off, Here’s what I’m going to do for you so that they’re interested and intrigued by the post enough to then come in and want to tell me what they are going to do for me so
Becca Starks: Absolutely
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Cool.
Becca Starks: We even have one it’s a Power Practice member that wrote a personalized it looks just like a letter you would receive from your grandma in the mail and it was so different and so eye-catching and so engaging. It was truly just a personalized letter, Dear Candidate, and then it just spoke really informally like, Hey, I get it. Words are hard, school is hard, but here’s what it would be like living here. Imagine if you could leave work and go out and do this, this, and this and your two hours within this big city so you can go catch a basketball game and be back home at night. And so it was just very, again trying to get that candidate to envision their life not only with that practice but in that geographical location. And so that was an incredible example.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Did it work?
Becca Starks: We’ve gotten some interest. We don’t have anybody signed on yet, but it has enticed interest.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: And talked about KMK a little bit again, just before we close. So if a practice owner is looking for an associate, they can reach out to you or how do they go about tapping into this database network matching service that you guys have?
Becca Starks: Yeah, absolutely. Yep. I would be the point of contact Becca Starks. And I’m sure you can put my email in the show notes, but it’s just Becca@kmkodcareers.com. And yeah, we typically just do a really informal introductory call and learn about the practice, learn about what they’re looking for. And then go over kind of our offerings. We’ve got two different offerings to choose from, just depending on what the practice owner is looking for. And then yeah, we just go from there. It’s really simple. It’s free to be in agreement with us and having us promote a practice. And so basically, we get that agreement going and then our current adviser starts promoting any of our partners that we’re working with. And then essentially once we have a student that is a great fit, we play the matchmaking game.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: I love it. Thank you. I think this is valuable information for new grads to help them understand what they’re going out into and some of the misconceptions they might be facing. But hopefully, we did our part today to try and reduce some of those and really give today’s employers a more real picture of new grads who are looking for jobs. So thank you so much for taking the time to do this and give this service to all of the optometrists out there.
Becca Starks: Absolutely. My pleasure, Bethany. Thank you. So much.
Dr.Bethany Fishbein: Thank you
Read the Transcription
Gavin Rebello: Business success requires business owners to master change, which requires us to be able to support our teams through that change. And if you haven’t someone that’s just resistant to that change, a mood hoover around the change, that just makes your job as an owner all the more challenging.
Bethany Fishbein: Hi, I am Bethany Fishbein, CEO of The Power Practice, host of The Power Hour Optometry Podcast. I’ve got a guest today who is a return guest to the podcast. So I am excited to welcome back Gavin Rebello, all the way from the UK. Gavin is an optometrist. He’s a partner in multiple practices. He is a consultant and a presenter on practice management topics. Gavin, thank you for agreeing to join me again.
Gavin Rebello: Oh, thanks for asking me to come back.
Bethany Fishbein: You were a hit the first time. You were actually one of the top five episodes of the year.
Gavin Rebello: Oh wow, that makes me smile. That does because I’m really pleased that listening to The Power Practice got some value there. So that’s great. That’s why I love doing it.
Bethany Fishbein: They absolutely did. And hoping to get value again from today’s conversation. So one of the things that you’re aware of is we started to work together and I got more familiar with working with the UK team is you guys have terminology that’s a little bit different from ours. You talk about turnover and we’re thinking about staff members quitting and you’re talking about the number of dollars coming in and I say schedule and you say diary. And so it’s been fun to figure out the language differences a little bit. But one of my favorite terms that I’ve learned from you and your colleagues in the UK is mood hoover.
Gavin Rebello: Yeah, mood hoover. Yeah.
Bethany Fishbein: The first time you said it, I loved it because here in the US we call that this person is like a cancer in the office. And I always feel like it’s not that bad. People have family members suffering from like, it feels a little bit extreme, but mood hoover just was a perfect descriptive term for this type of person or person in a specific situation. For those who are just hearing the term for the first time now, will you give a little bit of a definition of what a mood hoover looks like?
Gavin Rebello: So it’s an interesting when I first came across this term and I have to give credit to a brilliant speaker that we have. I mean, he’s a global speaker, but I’ve seen him a few times in the UK. His name’s Steve Head. He’s a great friend of mine and he’s so enthusiastic and positive and he was in huge flow on stage and he just used the term mood hoover. And that just like yourself, it just really sort of resonated with me. It’s the person that walks into the room and just sucks all the joy out. It’s the person that sort of always has a, maybe a negative slant on things or the person that doesn’t seem to want to sort of have that enthusiasm to move forward. And we can be quick to label mood hoover and think that they’re sucking all the joy out and they’re really negative people. But I think it’s really important that we try and understand why they might be the mood hoover or why they might come across like that. And whether it’s it’s our baggage or their baggage or just two different people seeing things slightly differently. So that’s an interesting concept to think about. But yes, it’s that person or that patient, that client that makes your heart sink when you see their name in the diary or they walk into the room or you think, oh, I’ve got this big meeting and that person sat around the table.
Bethany Fishbein: The thing that you started to talk about is actually what I want to talk about today is kind of how mood hoovers come to be and where that comes from and then the impact that they can have on people and how to navigate that a little bit. Because I think sometimes when we’re talking about that and I agree that we’re quick to label. And to me, it’s not usually that that person has those personality characteristics from the beginning. Right. If you have someone on your staff, they weren’t a mood hoover when you interviewed them or you wouldn’t have hired them. Right. So what’s your thought on that, Gavin? Are they born or are they made?
Gavin Rebello: I don’t think anyone sets out in life to be a mood hoover. I don’t think that’s on anyone’s aspirations to be sort of that person that everyone regards as a mood hoover. I don’t even think anyone gets up in the morning to think, you know what, I’m just having one of those days. I’m going to be a mood hoover. I think they are. They’ve ended up how they’ve ended up without any intention. And I think we need to go backwards. So I also don’t think anyone starts a job with the intention of being the mood hoover. I think everyone starts a job with the hope that this will be an amazing job, with the hope that this will be amazing team and with the hope that this will be an amazing leader that can help them have joy in their job, joy in their role and a spring in their step when they go home as well as when they come in.
So something must happen on the journey to make that switch. Now, there may be people that are more predisposed to being sort of a glass half full rather than a half empty. So there’ll be those people in your teams that you just go, you know, if there’s a problem there, they’ll automatically look for solutions. They’ll automatically collaborate. They’ll automatically roll up their sleeves and think, you know, we’ve got to work hard. We’ve got to dig deep here because this is going to be a tough couple of hours. And then there’ll be those people that perhaps are, for whatever reasons, more half empty, glass half empty, or those that are quicker to drop their chin, shuffle their feet.
And life throws curveballs at all of us. And some people have bigger curveballs perhaps than others. And it may be their track record or their track history or their experience that has led them to that point. And it may be their upbringing. You know, if you’re, it’s a well-quoted phrase that you become the average of the five people you hang around with the most. So if you hang around with highly aspirational, hardworking people, you are more likely to become like that.
If you hang around people that will always look for shortcuts, always look to avoid hard work, you’re more likely to become like that because those are the messages you’re always hearing. Those are the people that you hang around with. So if you hang around people that are half empty or hang around people that are generally quick to blame circumstances, quick to not take responsibility, then you’re more likely to take that attitude.
So it’s multiple in the reasons why somebody might be a mood hoover. It could be not wanting to take responsibility for themselves. It’s easy to blame other people, blame the situation, then maybe take responsibility for where you are. It may be that they’re just, it’s a protection mechanism. So rather than stick your neck out and give something a go or be joyful to actually find fault, it could be a protection mechanism, a fear mechanism. You know, nobody wants to look stupid. Nobody wants to fail necessarily or openly failed. And some people don’t like to be vulnerable or open to criticism.
So if, for instance, you’ve got a team that are planning something new, typically the person that will be really negative about that, there’ll be several reasons. One, because there are genuine flaws that this person can see because they’re very detailed. They’re like dotting the I’s, crossing the T’s, and they can see that the I’s aren’t dotted and T’s aren’t crossed. And so they’re putting their hand up and they’re going, look, that’s not going to work. That’s not going to work. That’s not going to work. And often other people around the table can label them as a mood hoover or negative, but actually they’re not. They’re just genuinely putting their hand up because they want the project to succeed. And then you’ll get some people that will go, that’s not going to work. That’s not going to work because their motivation is actually, I’m worried, I’m scared, I’m fearful that if I try this, it’s going to fail. And then there are repercussions on that.
So I think in answer to your question, a long way around is actually, I suppose the mood hoover becomes a mood hoover in people’s eyes because of the baggage they bring to the table or through experience of life, either in that role or a buildup of situations to that place.
Bethany Fishbein: And a lot of what you’re talking about is kind of internal to that person. Like this is just coming from within them. I feel like there are situations also where that negativity comes out as a response to something that’s going on externally, how they’re being treated by somebody else, or you said earlier, just two people not seeing things the same way. Talk about a situation where that could come up, particularly in an employee-employer situation.
Gavin Rebello: We base our future judgments on our experiences. So we all have our natural bias and we can’t help but be biased by our own experiences. And I suppose a good example, and it’s not one I’m probably proud of, but historically, if I reflect on how I was when I was a full-time optometrist, my dad was a heavy smoker. He had a quadruple bypass at age 46. So he was a heavy smoker. And I grew up in a time where you could smoke around the kids, you could smoke in a car, you could chain smoke in a car. And it used to make me carsick. And my dad, he didn’t intentionally, that’s how life was in the 70s and the 80s.
So it used to make me carsick. So I used to hate the smell of smoke. He used to just put me in that place of not feeling great. It’s just, I didn’t like the smell. So if I’m being brutally honest with myself, I can’t hand on heart say that I wasn’t biased if I had two challenging patients to look after. One was a smoker and one was not a smoker. I think I would have been more biased in those situations and being less patient, maybe even less helpful, if I’m being brutally honest, to the smoker than the non-smoker.
And so that would have affected my attitude or my mood towards supporting that patient. And the same will occur on a subconscious level, because I didn’t intentionally be biased. It was a subconscious thing because smell, for instance, the smell of smoke will really sort of tap into your subconscious bias. I’m sure that’s the case in teams. If you have a boss who sees potential in one staff member, and maybe they’re a little bit late with a project that you’ve asked them to do, then your bias around them could be, okay, I know they’re doing a good job. They’re late because they’re really trying their best to really give a great job, so I’m going to give them a little bit of leeway. And you can have the same situation with a different team member who perhaps the boss has a different opinion of them and then jumps to the conclusion that they’re late because they’re not organized or lazy.
When you get this repeated message, or that team member gets that repeated message, their motivation, their wanting to try their best will probably drop down. There’ll probably be a self-talk that goes, it’s pointless me trying because it’s going to be misconstrued anyway. So yeah, I think repeated messages based around, I use bias as an example, there could be other situations where a team member misses out on a promotion or misses out on being given the opportunity to grow or misses out on a training program that actually their shoulders drop. And so they go into a bit of a downward spiral. So they become a, well, what’s the point type of attitude and that what’s the point type of attitude could actually lead to behavior that others would construe as a mood hoover.
Bethany Fishbein: I feel that as you’re saying it, because it does feel like once you’ve identified someone, it just, it spirals because you’re feeling that they’re not motivated. And maybe there’s other behaviors too, like coming in late or not wanting to take that patient five minutes before you close or not going the extra step. And it just confirms what you already think about them, which probably confirms to them how you feel about them and which makes them do more, which makes, and it’s a cycle that almost never ends well. We’ll talk about productive ways to get out of this in a minute, but talk first about what somebody who’s in that looks like during the day, what their day is like for themselves, and then also how they stand to impact the people around them.
Gavin Rebello: Well, I suppose to answer your question about how it impacts some of the people around them is probably the easier explanation. If you have somebody that’s in that state, it massively affects everybody else. It’s the whole, the extreme is the rotten apple will affect all the other apples. And so if you have somebody that’s slightly negative or just putting a negative spin on any idea, then it just impacts on the whole of the team that they then go, if they’re not going to try, what’s the point in me going out of my way and trying? Because there’s a TV program in the UK, and I’m sure this has been franchised out to the US, it’s called The Weakest Link.
We’re only as good as the weakest link. Our team won’t thrive if there is a massive weak link in the team. That’s our limiting factor, shall we say, and we have to fix the weakest link. And we don’t have to be brutal about it. We just have to be supportive on helping that weakest link. And I suppose the mood hoover really is a big challenge, yeah, on the day-to-day stuff, but also when you’re trying to implement change. Implementing change is hard at the best of times. And if you’ve got somebody that’s finding fault, negative, not going the extra mile when you’re trying to implement change, it’s often even harder to implement that change.
You need everyone on board. You need everyone on board wanting to implement the change. You need everyone understanding that change is hard and it’s messy as you move forward. And if somebody is just dragging their heels, somebody is not putting that change in place, then it just ends up not building any traction.
And Bethany, you know, as all the listeners will know, that if you’re looking to improve your business from where it is now, then the only way you’re going to improve your business is to actually implement change. If you continue to do exactly the same thing, you’re not going to improve the business. You’re only ever going to get the same result. So business success requires business owners to master change, which requires us to be able to support our teams through that change. And if you haven’t, someone that’s just resistant to that change, a mood hoover around the change, that just makes your job as an owner all the more challenging.
Bethany Fishbein: One thing that I’ve seen is that it also makes it more challenging for the people who are positive on the team to be their positive selves. Like they start to wonder what’s wrong with them or they start to feel bad about going along with it because when you’re working with somebody closely day in and day out, and they think something’s stupid and they’re vocal about it, it’s hard to be the one who says, actually, I think it’s not bad. I’m going to go along with it. Like it’s just a human dynamic that kind of draws people in. I guess that’s the hoovering.
Gavin Rebello: Yeah, you’re right. And I think your explanation there is absolutely spot on. You’ll get the positive people that will stay positive for a little while, but then it’s kind of just grinds you down. It grinds people down. It’s natural, especially if the owner’s not addressing it. It sort of underlines that, yes, it is okay. And we mustn’t forget that sometimes it’s the owner that’s the mood hoover, especially if they’re a perfectionist. And as perfectionists, people can see the things that aren’t quite right. And they’ll often really hone into the things that aren’t right.
But as an owner, if the only thing that’s coming out of your mouth are the things that are wrong, you will come across as being extremely negative. You have to get a balance and notice the things that are going right, as well as the things that need a little bit of polish. And even just reframing it from, this is wrong and this is wrong, is this is wrong, is actually these areas here we need to spend some focus on. We need to put some training in. I’m sure we can make this even better than it is now. I think we need to add some polish around these sort of areas. It’s a much more positive way of tackling things that aren’t right. But yeah, so many times it’s the business owner that’s the mood hoover. And actually, the business does really well on the business owner’s day off.
Bethany Fishbein: Sometimes does well on their day on. I recorded an episode a while back on negativity bias. And it’s one of those two-sided things because being that perfectionist and being able to see all of those little things and care to adjust them is what makes business successful and also is what makes the owner really hard to be around. So it’s very often it’s gotten them where they are and at the same time is making it harder to move forward. So it’s an interesting thing to think about if someone is listening to this and they are realizing that as the owner, they are the lead mood hoover. What are some things that they can start to do or shift within themselves to start to change that mindset? Or is it about changing your own mindset or is it really mostly about managing the perceptions of others?
Gavin Rebello: It’s both. And first of all, the owner being the mood hoover. Yeah. I really loved what you said there because like we said at the beginning, nobody intends to be a mood hoover. The owner cares for their business. This is their baby. They care that the service delivered to the patients is absolutely premium. And it’s this enthusiastic caring for your business that actually makes them see the things that aren’t quite right. So it is managing your state and it is understanding how you tackle the situation in a positive, non-mood hoover way. So the first thing, awareness is key.
We have to learn to be more self-aware, to understand how we are in our day-to-day job affects other people. And the only way to be aware is through self-reflection. The end of the day, just ask yourself, how was that day? Or in a one-to-one, in appraisal, one-to-one to remember, it’s a one-to-one. It’s not, it’s never a boss giving dialogue out to the team. It’s about asking questions and reflecting on those.
I’ll share with you something that I learned from a colleague that I do a lot of training with. Her name’s Kath Truman. She’s an awesome trainer in the UK, absolutely brilliant. And she introduced me to this concept of start, stop, continue, where an owner can just have a one-to-one conversation and just go, look, what would you like me to start doing? What would you like me to stop doing? And what do you like me to continue to do? And that can actually, if the owner is in a place where one, they’re aware and two, they’re keen to improve. So they have to put their ego to the side here. They have to understand that they aren’t perfect in themselves. They’re not the perfect boss that doesn’t exist. We’re always evolving. We’re always trying to improve.
And they have to be receptive to sort of putting improvements in the way that they work. I am definitely a different leader, or I’d like to think I’m a different leader to how I was, say, in my first business, but through self-reflection, through listening, through getting feedback from the team, through listening to podcasts like Power Practice. And it’s all very well listening to podcasts like Practice, but we’ve got to implement, we’ve got to actually put the work in place. So first of all, it’s awareness, which comes through self-reflection. Then it’s desire to want to be the best boss you can be. And that should go hand in hand with caring for your practice.
Owning a business, taking responsibility for owning your business, isn’t just about being a clinician. If you’ve taken the responsibility to own your business, then yes, you have to be a brilliant clinician if you’re still in that role. But two, you have to be able to get a handle on the business itself. And three, you have to be a great leader for your team because your business, if you want the results for your business, you have to get the results through people. And to get the results through people, you have to be able to inspire them to be able to do the job that you want them to do, to support them, to give them the tools to be able to deliver on that. And the part of that is to create an environment in which they can thrive so they feel the joy.
Because we know that if we have happy staff, then we have happy patients, and then we have a happy business. And it has to come through in that order. So awareness, reflection, a desire to improve, and then the hard work and the discipline to put those improvements in place. And it can be very, very simple. Start to notice the things that go well. Now, this is interesting. And again, I’m going to take something that I was made aware of through training during joint workshops with Kath. I’m a real people pleaser, as you know, and Kath Truman is the same. And, you know, I love the high five. I love the sort of big pat on the back. Yay, team. We’ve done really well. And Kath tells this brilliant story where, you know, one of her teams sort of felt uncomfortable with the highlighting her in front of the rest of the team. And she said, please don’t praise me in front of the team. And that was really alien to Kath. It’s really alien to me.
So Kath just said, well, how would you want me to praise? Well, in private and don’t gush. Quote. So the learning of that is some people just come in, they do the job, and the reward is in doing the job. That’s their remit. They do the job. They don’t feel that they need praise for doing the job. And there are other people in the team that want to celebrate. They want the high five. They want the big thank you. And if your natural tendency is, well, I’m the sort of person that gets on with the job. I don’t need the praise around the job. Then you naturally won’t praise that team member. You’ll naturally notice the things that are really wrong. And that, from your perspective, might be fine.
But be aware that other people will start labeling you as somebody that always finds fault, that never sees the good in people. And so your first thing is you need to notice the good. You need to make it your job to notice something and be able to take that person aside and go, that was a job well done. Really pleased with the way that you handled that patient. Just small things. Another small thing, it could be you’ve had a great quarter. It doesn’t take much to go to the local stationery shop, buy some cards and write a thank you note. Thank you. That was an awesome quarter. Really appreciate what you’ve done there.
It’s those little things consistently, which will shift you from perhaps being a mood hoover. You know, and if we go through all of the neuroscience and psychology around gratitude, if you start noticing the good things and maybe just writing that down in your phone or on a journal, just three good things, you start noticing more good things. It starts to get on your radar. And so you shift from seeing all the negatives to actually the balance is there are more positives that go on in this world than there are negatives. It’s just the media, the news, the mood hoovers make us see all the negative all the time. And the kind of, we have to have this dialogue that yes, there are positives and we need to notice the positives no matter how small they all contribute to making us have more positive outlook in life.
Bethany Fishbein: Not that it’s easy work, but I think that for an owner or a leader who hears this, they can hear this, maybe internalize it, think about it, start that process of self-reflection and start to do that work. It’s a little bit harder when they’re trying to impact someone else. So if as a leader, you have someone on your team that maybe is already pretty far into that spiral, maybe it’s somebody that other people have noticed and identified, or you’ve noticed and identified, but the other person who has that role in the practice left and they’re the only ones in the circumstance it’s just been for a while. Talk about how to help somebody else start to see and change that in themselves, especially if their nature or their situation is to blame others for making them this way in the first place. That feels harder.
Gavin Rebello: Yeah, of course it is, because we can be in charge of our own emotions and how we show up, it’s much harder to influence somebody else.
Bethany Fishbein: But I don’t think the answer has to be just get rid of them, because if you’re doing something or the business is doing something that’s creating them, then you’re just going to create one out of the next tiny happy person that starts.
Gavin Rebello: I completely agree with you. I think we have to understand that, okay, first of all, we need to get a little bit under the skin of the team member. So knowing your team well and having those conversations with the team members is really important. And we have to understand, okay, we have to unpack, well, how do we get here? Because it may be nothing to do with work. It may be that they’re carrying a lot outside of work and actually just being a great person and having a conversation, allowing that person to sort of share is often enough and helping them with their awareness, just taking them aside and going, I’ve noticed that you seem a little bit down or how are things and opening that dialogue is important.
So the one-to-one conversations, the recognizing things are new. And then from that conversation, we can work out, okay, what’s the plan? If it’s a work thing, is it because we’re overworked? Is it because we’ve had things that we’ve tried to put in place, but nothing ever changes here? So they’re just a little bit more demoralized because what’s the point? So taking ownership and responsibility and doing what you can, what are the frustrations in the practice? What are the things that as a boss you can change? What realistically can you change? Because you can’t change everything.
We don’t want to get to a situation where the tail wags the dog. The business is the business and we have to make sure that people are right fit for the business. So for me, it’s always about, I’ve noticed somebody’s just going downwards bar. I’ll need to find out why I’ve noticed this. How are things? How are things at work? What’s on your mind? What’s frustrating you at the moment? How can I support you in that? How do you see your, what aspirations do you have for your career? And seeing if there’s a match here that can help, but it needs to start with dialogue. I think so often as owners, we put off the conversation because it’s a tough conversation.
You know, we don’t know where to start, but actually what we’re really doing is just putting a head in the sand and putting it off and allowing the downward spiral to go further down. And I think a little bit of courage to set aside the time to have that conversation. I’ve noticed that, or in situations where we’re talking about discussion change, I’ve noticed that either you’re not contributing or you don’t see them on board. Can I just, I just like to talk to you more about that. And the power of silence once you’ve asked the question is golden. Just staying silent and allowing the team member to reply. And sometimes they need to percolate first. They need to think about the question first and gather their thoughts and they need to pluck up the courage to be honest.
And you might need a few conversations first because often with the mood hoovering, it’s a defense mechanism. Maybe the trust is lost. Maybe something’s just happened on the journey. And I’ve definitely, I’ve definitely tackled situations with the team member. If I could wind the clock back, I would have the conversation differently. And in that conversation, I probably lost trust or not handled it really well. And that makes it really, really hard to get back on track. And then a couple of them, regretfully, I didn’t get back on track. We parted companies. And if I could have that conversation again, I absolutely would do. But that’s part of being an owner. That’s part of being a leader. That’s part of growing. And that’s part of that reflection of learning through the process and understanding, okay, I didn’t handle that well. Let’s see if I can make sure I don’t handle that again and using it as a lesson rather than just beating yourself up.
Bethany Fishbein: And to close out, share a story of a time where you did do it well. Because I think that one of the things that people are up against, and maybe like you said, as an owner, a manager, they’ve got their own fear and their own reasons for not wanting to engage in this conversation. And maybe they have their feeling of this isn’t going to make a difference. Why am I going to bother? Or they don’t want to do the follow-up work to hear that maybe there’s something they’re doing that’s making things worse, that they’re going to have to change. Can you think of a story or a situation in one of your businesses where somebody really had a turnaround that you were able to bring about through the things that you’re sharing?
Gavin Rebello: Yeah. It’s the whole philosophy I change and how I deliver change, I think, would fit in. As an owner, in a team meet or a team huddle, you are outlining or discussing a change that you want to put in place. And the mood hoovers would voice all the negatives or the people that would just find fault. And again, let’s just differentiate here. There are people in your team that are just highlighting pitfalls. That doesn’t mean to say that they’re a mood hoover. It’s just that they’re very good at picking out the pitfalls.
So with those people, I’ll direct the conversation to them and I’ll go, you’re really good at spotting things that could be bumps in the road. Is there anything that I need to be aware of? Or I might run the idea with them first. So I’ve got that ahead of myself. So I’ve come up with a plan to address that. Or it may be that I’ll have an initial discussion, get the pitfalls and flaws and come back to them the following week and go, okay, that was great. So I engage with them, but I change the terminology so that the rest of the team knows that they’re really good at finding the flaws that we can address. And then I’ll launch and it won’t be perfect. And I’ll say, look, no plan is perfect because change is difficult and you’re used to doing it a certain way. So you’re confident and you’re competent in doing that way.
And this is brand new, so it’s going to feel clunky. But my way of addressing this is I’ll always have a follow-up meeting or review and improve. So it allows those people that are good at finding the flaws and those mood hoovers the opportunity to put their hand up a week later and go, these are the flaws. And I’ll go, okay, fine. And to address it, we have a philosophy there where we’re constantly reviewing and we’re constantly improving, knowing that we will never achieve perfection.
And for me, I think that ability to create a space where they can be heard and listened to and the areas that we want to address and can address, we address. The trust that I impart on them to have a voice seems to go a long way to dissipating the mood hoover. One of our values in my practices is we are positive. Another is we are fair and respectful. Another is we are kind to each other and our patients. And this framework around our values seems to help flag up when somebody is going the downward spiral on the mood hoover route, it sort of flags up that actually that’s not how our values of our business works.
And actually it helps with recruitment as well. So perhaps it puts a gateway or a drawbridge against those sort of people, because we’re up front with our values at interview level. This is the way we work. You’ve got to fulfill these values. And that’s how we judge ourselves as we move forward.
Bethany Fishbein: Gavin, thank you so much for sharing your wisdom and your perspective. Conversations like this are interesting because these are things that we think about and talk about. And when you hear it in another way, in another voice, it just makes you think a little bit differently. And I so appreciate you doing this and spending your time and accepting the unusual circumstance that I created around this conversation. I think this is tremendously valuable. Thank you so much.
Gavin Rebello: I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. And I would recommend to any other guest to do it unprepared.
Bethany Fishbein: Perfect. Sometimes having an outside observer helps you see the things that you may not be aware are happening in your own practice. If you’re looking for additional clarity around your business, want to reach your goals for the way that you’re spending your time and the profitability of your business, you can learn more about the power practice at www.powerpractice.com. Thank you so much for listening.