Archive for May, 2010
Marketing is one of the biggest challenges a budding entrepreneur faces. One of the first rules is to make sure everyone you know is aware of what you’re doing. So when we began Derry, Nolan & Associates Medical Practice Consulting Services in 2003, our first step was to tell everyone we knew in the healthcare and medical field. After years in healthcare and being members of professional associations such as the Washington State Medical Group Managers Association (WSMGMA), that added up to a lot of breakfasts, lunches and dinners (Crystal gained 12 pounds)!
Next, realizing that a physician or medical practice group would likely contact their attorney or accountant if they were having financial issues or needed temporary practice management, we began visiting area firms. We set out to “wow” them with our LEAN training, our years of experience and of course, our bubbly personalities! Barbara went kicking and screaming – she did not like talking about herself. Crystal, being gregarious and a natural marketer, pulled her along.
Three months later, the phone began ringing and hasn’t stopped yet. Sure, there are days of no calls and we don’t land every prospective client, but we’re established and proven as a healthcare medical practice consulting firm. In fact, Derry, Nolan & Associates’ results-driven reputation is known in not only Washington, but also Oregon, Alaska and Montana.
Our marketing efforts continue to evolve with the times. We advertise our medical practice consulting services on industry-related websites, such as WSMGMA and Pierce County Medical Association’s Physician Directory. We present educational seminars at specialty medical practice and industry conferences. We write and publish many articles in medical journals such as King County Medical Society’s The Bulletin and the multi-state healthcare publication, Washington Healthcare News.
Most recently, we took the deep dive into social media with this blog. Plus you can find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!
That said, the best advertising remains word-of-mouth, for which we are very grateful to our many clients and colleagues who consistently recommend us to others!
“Nobody becomes visible or in-demand by keeping quiet.” — Crystal Nolan
Get free consulting! Derry, Nolan & Associates’ offers a free, one-hour initial healthcare medical practice consultation.
Remember in our first blog entry, we told you that one part of our blog is about being true to yourself and taking risks? It’s part of being a successful entrepreneur. Well, some of our setbacks, and successes, are attributable to very personal stories that led us to quit our jobs and pursue the dream of owning our own business.
In 2002, hit with serious health issues, as well as personal loss, we each took a step back to re-examine our lives and reconsider our careers. Barbara, dealing with the stress of ever-increasing responsibilities in a new position and new boss stress, learned she had “pre” breast cancer. After a painful stereotactic breast biopsy, surgery and several months’ regimen of Tamoxifin, she was miserable. Severe hot flashes, depression, anxiety and loss of concentration – all supported her breast oncologist’s very clear message: If you want to prevent getting breast cancer, you need to remove the major stressor in your life. When leaving her doctor’s office one day, her husband turned to her and said, “Barb, you make a great salary, but no job is worth your life. I think it’s time you start your own business.” That was seven years ago, and Barbara has had no further episode.
Around the same time, Crystal’s right leg began swelling to the point she could barely walk, plus she was having chest pain and difficulty breathing. Unknown to her, a life-threatening deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism was brewing. Told there was a very real possibility she would not survive more than 48 hours, she was hospitalized for a week, but all she could think of was relieving the excruciating pain. Both sons were called to her side, one flown in by naval aircraft carrier. When released, instead of resuming her customary healthy lifestyle, she went to months of doctor’s appointments, strictly monitored Coumadin levels, and dealt with chronic leg swelling. So when her younger brother, dying of lung cancer, told her that “people who don’t take risks, don’t have shit!” she listened.
Very scary incidences paired with heartfelt advice from loved ones. What more catalyst did we need? So in March 2003, Derry, Nolan & Associates, Healthcare Medical Practice Consulting Services, became a reality. We’ve never looked back.
Today, our client list includes Oncology, Cardiology, Multi-specialty, Family Practice, and Plastic Surgery Clinics, as well as Ambulatory Surgery Centers. We use a structured, consultative approach to eliminate waste, help clients become more profitable, more flexible in scheduling, and most importantly, happy in their daily work. Knowing how invaluable family time is, we help providers get home at a reasonable hour – that’s much more important than dictation or paperwork. Sometimes (one of our favorite roles) we act as healthcare interim executives and help healthcare organizations as they recruit for a permanent replacement.
In seven years of healthcare medical practice consulting, we learned to cherish our freedom to be creative, to laugh, to mentor others, and to help ensure our clients have the right people, doing the right work, in the right amount of time. We also learned – and take this to heart – never settle for less than your full potential!
Next time…our approach to marketing and how we launched Derry, Nolan & Associates!