After spending most of the past 2 months getting the new office ready for business, it was great to finally get back to doing what I normally do this week. Along the way, I have learned many valuable lessons that I want to share with anyone thinking about starting their own business:
- No one is on the same timeline as you. Granted, the holiday season is not the best time to start a new business, but no matter how quickly you want to get going, the rest of the world will move at its usual glacial pace. It doesn’t matter if you are an insurance company or medical staff coordinator in charge of credentialing new doctors, a web design team in charge of building your website, or a previous tenant packing up to move out of your future office space, no one is in as big a hurry as you.
- You cannot do this alone. There is no shortage of people wanting to cash in on you (e.g., passing themselves as “working with Google” to increase your business). However, there is way too much to do, so as with all things in life, it is imperative to surround yourself with good people that you trust. I could not have done this without the help of my team, too many to list here. Special shoutouts go out to Yvonne Mounkhoune at TMA, Nick Albino at Independent Bank, Jenny Frix at AthenaHealth, Josh Johnson at McKesson, and Caroline Domin, who connected me with several of these folks and was an invaluable source of help and inspiration along the way. And finally, my wife and family, who continue to tolerate and support me, no matter what I do.
- At some point, (almost) everyone should do this. I get so tired of listening to doctors constantly complain about how medicine has changed, and how they are powerless to do anything to change it. Well, I am living proof that you can do something about it. Call it what you want (boredom, burnout, midlife crisis, or a combination of the above), but I left a very successful practice with a load of administrative responsibilities largely because I was miserable. I was too busy to realize it myself, so it took the people who knew me the best to tell me so. Now, I am a changed man. Having your finger on the pulse of your practice is empowering and uplifting. When you own your own practice and become your own boss, almost every decision begins and ends with you, and there is no better way to control rising health care costs than when you are the one cutting the checks.
Feel free to comment and pass along to whomever you wish. I plan to revisit this topic a year from now, if not sooner. Until then, I will continue to periodically share my thoughts with you on various topics, on business, medicine, or whatever. I will try my best to keep it funny and interesting. If you have any specific topics you want me to discuss, please reach out to me.