Dr. Matt Geller, founder of NewGradOptometry and CovalentCareers, had a chance to talk at Vision Expo East with Dr. Scott Jens, co-founder and CEO of Rev360, about his advice for doctors who are just getting started in their practices, along with some great optometry practice management lessons.
He stresses the importance of having a strong support system at work and at home, especially when starting an optometry practice.
When Dr. Jens was first starting to build Rev360, he would come home from working at the clinic all day and get to work on building RevolutionEHR. The early stages of Rev360 were filled with long nights, eating bags of Oreos, writing business plans and working on the software. He spent so much time working on RevolutionEHR that when people would ask his daughter what her dad did for a living, she didn’t say he was an eye doctor - “he’s a typist,” Dr. Jens laughs, quoting his daughter.
He mentions how nervous he felt when the product was ready for testing. “Once we got the practice software in other doctors’ hands,” he says, “that’s when the pit in my stomach grew for me.” He shared the software with doctors he knew personally or found on listservs, and asked them whether they wanted to replace their paper systems or current cloud-based software. After getting good feedback, those doctors spread the word and the product was ready for launch.
Having the Right Support System
A key factor for Dr. Jens was finding the right business partners and support system. While it’s impossible to see every obstacle or plan for every crisis, having the right support system keeps you from getting caught off guard. Another key factor is learning how to use failure to grow your business. “When you hit failure - own it,” Dr. Jens says. Look for the reason that the failure happened, and “find a way to look back while moving forward.”
Finding the right balance between moving towards your goals and learning from your mistakes is crucial for building a successful business. “It’s like driving,” Dr. Jens explains. “If you’re in your rear view mirror too much, all of a sudden you’re off the road.” When things go wrong, own your mistakes and tell your customers that you’ll support them and find a way to make things right.
Using Failures To Grow Your Business
For doctors starting a new clinic or adding a new component to their business, Dr. Jens’ advice is simple. “Drive it, own it, hustle,” but don’t continue to pour time and money into something if it’s not working. “The best advice I can give? If you know in your heart something isn’t going to work - stop.”