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Article Date: 7/1/2014

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SHAKE IT UP

Change provides us with positive, meaningful growth. Don’t pass on this opportunity.

BY SCOT MORRIS, O.D., F.A.A.O.
Chief Optometric Editor

Every once in a while we all need to look at what we do, and then try something completely different. Why, you ask? The answer is that we might be amazed at what would happen to our practices if we got out of our tradition, ritual or rut.

All we have to do is look at Mother Nature to understand and accept that change can be a very positive thing. When something different happens in nature, evolution occurs. Sometimes, it is subtle, and other times it is a radical change (maybe better termed revolution).

Learning the lessons

There is a lot to be learned by change. Sometimes, these changes, big or small, create huge growth and opportunity. Other times they fail to create change, or maybe even move us backward. We might even label change a failure. The great thing is that failures are nothing more than a new way to NOT do something.

Status quo means we don’t need to change anything. It is the disruptive change that creates positive meaningful growth that is the real gem. Whether it is an instantaneous change or a slow change that created a new reality, it is all GOOD. For us to succeed, we just have to WANT TO do something different.

The case of the incredibly powerful word

Let me give you a recent example of change that happened in my practice. In my office, we really focus on trying to improve one part of our practice every three months. I mean we REALLY focus. We evaluate our processes, our scripts, our charges, our merchandising and just about everything else.

In the second quarter of this year, we focused on selling sunwear. This has been the one area of our practice that I have never felt has been our strong point. During our strategy meeting, our new optician pointed out that we were saying the wrong things and asking the right question the wrong way. Specifically, she said that instead of asking IF the patient were planning on buying sunwear, we should ask WHEN he or she will purchase sunwear.

We all decided to change our script by just one word. One month later, our sunwear sales grew 27%. One word. Not incredibly disruptive but incredibly powerful.

Your challenge

Here is my challenge to you this month: Look at your business. Find a few things that each department does, and try something dramatically different. Say things a different way. Do things differently. Track the outcome of these changes. If they fail — try something different.

The end game

If your change leads to no change, be happy, and keep doing what you are doing. But maybe, just maybe, your “little change” will create a new reality or a new process in your business that increases consumer satisfaction, patient care, revenue, efficiency or profit.

Change is powerful. You just have to take the first step. OM



Optometric Management, Volume: 49 , Issue: July 2014, page(s): 2

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