Ophthalmology Business

SEPT 2013

Ophthalmology Business is focused on business topics relevant to the entrepreneurial ophthalmologist. It offers editorial, opinion, and practical tips for physicians running an ophthalmic practice. It is a companion publication of EyeWorld.

Issue link: http://digital.ophthalmologybusiness.org/i/174774

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T here's no question that ophthalmologists are busier than ever nowadays. "In the present environment, everyone is spinning as fast as they can," said John B. Pinto, president, J. Pinto & Associates, San Diego. You probably get a good deal of business from word of mouth or referrals from other doctors. In addition, you probably have a busy family life to balance with work obligations. "Most of us have families and tend to hurry home or get the kids after work," said Sandra Yeh, MD, Springfield, Ill. It's common for ophthalmologists to network with other ophthalmologists and optometrists. However, if your practice and family life are already operating at full tilt, why should you consider networking at nonmedical meetings? Depending on your market, nonmedical networking meetings could be a way to grow your business, keep your practice's name in the community, and get leads not only for patients but also for other connections your practice needs. Some nonmedical networking you may want to consider (if you haven't already) includes the local chamber of commerce, free and paid local business organizations, fraternal groups such as Kiwanis and Rotary, and charitable/nonprofit groups. Here are some tips to help you decide how much your practice needs to network outside of the medical community. 6 tips to better outside networking 1 Know your market. In a small town or if you're at a new practice, networking outside of the medical or ophthalmic community can help grow your business, Mr. Pinto said. In a large, competitive market—such as Dallas or Los Angeles—shaking hands at the Thursday Rotary Club lunch may not be as important. It's also a slow way to build relationships, he added. Mr. Pinto believes that networking with optometrists is the most effective practice-building move for ophthalmologists, although he added that outside networking has its place for a number of practices, especially those located in the suburban and rural markets. 2 Plan and prioritize where you will network. If you decide to invest in networking outside of the medical community, you'll probably find you have many options. "The struggle is there are so many groups to choose from, we could have a full-time position for someone to continued on page 10 September 2013 • Ophthalmology Business eZine 9

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