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Optometrical Practice Management Newsletter - Tips & Reviews. Volume 10. October 2007

MBA for Eye Care Professionals

sponsored by CibaVision

MBA logo

September 5th 2007 I think will be a historical day for optometry. It was Day 1 of the MBA course. The focus was LEADERSHIP.

We all know that a ship without a captain, is a ship that will never find the port it was heading to. The leadership day was devoted to why the optometrist needs to be a great leader. Below is an extract of an article I wrote in MiVision. Make sure you try and read the November edition of MiVision.

"The MBA for Eye Care Professionals has been derived from an already successful concept launched in the US a number of years ago. Leading Inititiatives (a company specialising in leadership skilss) and Jenny Saunders an optometrist, turned business consultant were invited to co-ordinate the redesign of the course to suit the Australian market and we were also very lucky to have Dr Gary Gerber of the Power Practice (USA) attend and present his unique perspective of the role of the CEO in an optometry practice.

Over the years I have spoken to many independent optometrists, who are frustrated with their business. It nearly always comes down to:

“If only I had better staff, I would have no problems!”

The reality is that the problems that the proprietor perceives are not created by the staff, but by the proprietor themselves. The people from Leading Initiatives presented the Three Conditions for Success (The 3C’s); Clarity, Climate and Competence. The message was “the competence of the leader creates the Clarity, Climate and develops the Competence of their Team.” In other words if the optometrist does not lead in a clear direction in a happy environment with appropriate skills for the tasks at hand, the business is at best going to be mediocre. Gary Gerber’s message was:

“It’s all about the process, it’s not about person”.

The highlight of the day for me was the two workshops. Both had a similar concept, so for the sake of brevity I will describe the one that I found the most amusing. Imagine this:

Three teams of ten people each.

All members of all three teams were blindfolded.

Each team is issued what felt like polyester material and some plastic rods.

The instructions were to put this together.

Can you imagine now ten blindfolded people feeling around trying to work out what they had before they could even begin? It was just mayhem! Many businesses are in mayhem because all the staff are running around “blindfolded” and are just expected to perform. What was interesting about this exercise was that nothing could begin until someone elected themselves as the leader. Leaders were created by either speaking the loudest or by coming up with good logical direction. Other team members quickly fell into line and the task at hand was eventually completed by all three teams.  The task proved to be the assembly of a small tent. Trying to work out what we had was an incredible challenge with no sight (and therefore no obvious direction)."

This course is fully subsidised for invited optometrists. I have been to many business courses over the years. I can assure you that similar courses will set you back more than $1,000 per day. If you get an invitation make sure you do not miss it.

Day 2 will be in early November. Watch out for its summary in the December edition of this newsletter. The full story will be in MiVision sometime in the New Year.

Next month we continue with Excellence in Optometry -

Business Acumen: Part 3 -Marketing.

Email me if you would like to implement

"Excellence in Optometrical Practice" into your business



Therapeutic Tip: Refractive Surgery Update

Apart from being one of Australia's premier corneal surgeons, Dr Gerard Sutton is also one of Australia's highest volume refractive surgeons. This month he will share with us what's new in refractive surgery.

I personally am all for most types of refractive surgery, assumimg the patient is a suitable candidate. in most consultations that I feel refractive surgery might be a suitable option, I try and offer it as an option well before the patient gets a chance to ask me - why? Simply because it adds credibility to my consultation process.

At the end of the day, unless the patient is having significant problems with their current vision correction, the vast majority only think about it. Bringing it forward though shows the patient that you have their best interests at heart.

Download Dr Sutton's paper here


Read this for Dr Gerard Sutton's biography

Dr Sutton would welcome your enquiries at:


Phone: 02 9424 9999

Address: 3rd Floor, 270 Victoria Avenue

              Chatswood NSW 2067

"We have started to use this

Find out how The Eye Practice is going with the new product in the next newsletters.”

For further information please contact:

Anne Guethoff, Marketing Manager

Phone: 02 9748 0988



Email me if you would like to implement

"Excellence in Optometrical Practice" into your business

A cost effective program of hurdling the challenges of optometrical practice and rekindling your passion for your profession is only an email away.

You can email me at:



Information Technology & Optometry

If you want to invest in new technology you must have a solid computer system to make sure that the use of the technology is efficient. Having a solid computer network for an optometry practice is way beyond the average optometrist's skill set. That's where Richard Rees comes in.

Richard Rees works for They are specialists in Information Technology solutions. Phone Richard on

1 300 553 559

Visit Lookup for all your IT needs                           




MBA logo

Remember to talk to your Ciba representative about this exciting event. I believe it will transform optometry - it is not to be missed!



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