Optometric Management

FEB 2017

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26 F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 7 • O P T O M E T R I C M A N A G E M E N T . C O M FEATURE PRACTICE MANAGEMENT countants. Given that I needed this person's advice, I knew I wanted him or her to be very direct and to the point. I did a mini-interview with each. One of the accountants was very passive and the other was assertive, so it was an easy decision. My accountant ran the numbers of the practices I was interested in and gave me feedback to help me negotiate the pur- chase prices of each, so I could decide which one to make an offer on. For example, I was advised that the first practice I was interested in was going to require me to work for a few years sans payment to pay off the debt of purchasing the practice. Knowing that I would not be happy working every day without any financial reward for a long time, I decided against buying this practice. e lesson: If you choose practice acquisition, be prepared to hear that you may have to go some time without a large income, pos- sibly making the practice price out of range. PERFORM DUE DILIGENCE e final person I spoke with was the banker-rec- ommended lawyer. is is important, as he or she will be able to make sure there are no lawsuits on the practice you are interested in acquiring and can, at the appropriate time, transition the practice acqui- sition to setting up shop. My lawyer helped me to with each of them individually and as a group about expectations, etc.) All these factors need to be consid- ered to know whether the practice is a good fit for you. I looked at three practice acquisition opportuni- ties the prior two years or so before making a de- cision on the practice I have today. For all these instances, I had either previous professional experi- ence within the practice or had visited on multiple occasions to get a feel for the inner workings. CONSULT PROFESSIONALS e first person I sought advice from was my bank- er, who had experience with medical practice acquisi- tions. He helped me analyze my personal finances, so I could determine what I could afford to purchase and guided me through questions and scenarios I had not thought about prior to deciding to acquire a practice. e banker also stressed the importance of having a good accountant and lawyer and provided me with names of people he trusted and knew had experience in situations similar to mine. (Side note: Bankers do not charge an hourly fee, so it's helpful to get their advice before investing in the advice of others who do charge. Bankers are also invested in wanting you to succeed, so you can pay your loans back.) Next, I reached out to the two recommended ac- While the path to practice acquisition can become complex, answering a few basic personality-related questions, such as the example above, can help you decide the right course. WHAT TASKS ARE YOU HAPPY COMPLETING EACH DAY? PRATICE MANAGEMENT GREAT! CONSIDER PRACTICE ACQUISITION ARE YOU ABLE TO MANAGE TIME TO COMPLETE BOTH TASKS WITHOUT CUTTING HOURS? CLINICAL/PATIENT CARE WOULD YOU CONSIDER A REDUCTION IN CLINICAL/PATIENT CARE HOURS? YES NO MAYBE IT'S NOT THE RIGHT TIME TO BUY. YES

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