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Optical Success Needs Learning

The President of ACBO, Dr. Paul Levi, has advised optometrists that to succeed in the current challenging environment, they must differentiate their practice from the competition.

“There is no doubt our profession has changed, as many predicted it would. The changes are not expected to end soon. More and more it is important for optometrists to offer a point of difference that will make them stand out from the crowd,” he told mivision.

He said this can be achieved by undertaking professional development courses, such as therapeutic qualifications; investing in technology to demonstrate a practice is up
to date, and specialising in particular areas such as sports optometry or children’s vision.

“The common factor in all these strategies is learning – learning as a competitive advantage has long been recognised by strategists as a vital part of developing a robust and sustainable business,” said Dr. Levi.

There is no doubt our profession has changed, as many predicted it would…

Dr. Levi said health professionals have a deep moral and professional responsibility to not only learn as much as possible about current practice, but to push the boundaries of knowledge for the benefit of their patients by challenging paradoxes and paradigms.

“In a very convenient reciprocity, growth that benefits our patients will inevitably benefit our practice in both professional and commercial outcomes. Through learning we can develop advantages that are hard to imitate and that evolve and grow with the practice,” he said.

“Along with the “challenge” of responsibility comes the need to ensure that we adhere to scientific principles and bring knowledge under the professional umbrella in a recognised way.”

Dr. Levi said ACBO is working with optometry Universities to develop research and education programs that will give optometrists that competitive point of difference to help the public differentiate them from high volume, low cost spectacle sellers.

“In the current environment, creating a unique position that has sustainable value is becoming harder and harder. Strong links to a learning organisation can provide you and your practice with advantages that major competitors will find hard to duplicate, and you might even reconsider some of your own paradigms of practice,” said Dr. Levi.