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We Wanted to Know What ECPs’ Biggest Challenge Will Be in 2024

There were definitely some reoccurring themes!

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What do you anticipate as being your biggest business challenge in 2024?

  • Staffing. — Mitch P., Victoria, MN
  • Retaining staff! — Colby S., Dothan, AL
  • Keeping staff. — Danielle D., Detroit, MI
  • Insurance issues and collecting payments from patients. — Marc U., Pine Beach, NJ
  • On one hand, as long as it does not include shutdowns, masks, or aliens, I really don’t care. One the other hand, product shortages may be an issue. — Amie R., Spring Hill, TN
  • Inflation and losing sales to cheap online retailers because of it. — Rick P., Clinton, NY
  • Telehealth eye exams. — Robert E., Oakland Park, FL
  • Cost of goods, coupled with inflation will affect customer spending and affect the net profit of the practice. — Angie P., Johnson City, TN
  • Trying to gain more outside Rxs. You can only fill in so many appointments. Outside Rxs are key to building the business. — Rick R., Girard, PA
  • Marketing, like every other year. Oh, and staffing up for Optical Kitchen. — Kevin C., Glenview, IL
  • Staffing. — Kim H., New Ulm, MN
  • Maintaining staff. — Scott M., Christiansburg and Salem, VA
  • Trying to sustain sales in this economy. — Pablo M., Atlanta, GA
  • Finding a way to make a profit with managed care. — Lisa S., Vancouver, WA
  • Employee retention. — Tania P., St. Petersburg, FL
  • Cold start right before Thanksgiving, so biggest challenge is getting momentum getting patients in the door and discovering us. — Chris C., Oskaloosa, IA
  • Staffing. — Douglas H., San Angelo, TX
  • Competing with online. — Carolann S., Quincy, MA
  • Time. Finding time to do all the things. Next year is going to be a lot of growth reshuffling. — Nikki G., Oakdale, MN
  • Keeping our schedule full. So many patients are brainwashed into thinking that Costco is cheaper and better, even if they have vision insurance. It is killing quality independent optometry offices. We have to change the perception of the patient. — Susan K., Phoenix, AZ
  • Managed care. — Scott K., Dover, OH
  • Quality competent staffing. — Texas S., Citrus Heights, CA
  • The economy falling. — Richard F., Wildwood, NJ
  • Our rural region seems to be dropping into the long-predicted recession. 2024 is going to be yet another “different” year. (Is normal ever coming back?). — Jen H., Sandpoint, ID
  • Rising cost of goods. — Cynthia S. Lewis Center, OH
  • Keeping staff motivated and engaged! — Mark P., Orlando, FL
  • Scaling. — Travis L., Logan, UT
  • Balancing work/life. — Marcia E., Dublin, OH
  • I try not to anticipate challenges. I just try and outdo myself with unique ad ideas and photoshoots. I love coming up with stuff. I guess my challenge is continued inspiration. — Nancy R., Petaluma, CA
  • 2023 we’ve had more people using their own frames or taking their Rx to big box and online cheap stores. People are not that confident in spending money in California these days. All prices of commodities are way up here right now. — Jeff G., Spring Valley, CA
  • Growing the business. — Dorothy R., Fairfield, CT
  • Optometry and business are predictable and easy. Staff is always the variable! — Ben T., Miami, FL
  • Making up the money from the flood we had and the hurricane delays that occurred. — Frances Ann L., Valdosta, GA
  • Increasing gross without adding additional space. — Mason C., Ozark, AL
  • We will be implementing new software for inventory and sales … a challenge for a paper-based practice. — Chris C., Panama City, FL
  • World Peace! If everyone is fighting with each other, who is buying eyewear? — Ron C., The Villages, FL
  • Election year uncertainty which tends to make people more cautious about purchases. — Melanie J., Spring Hill, TN
  • Finding the right frames lines for my clients. Still finding the right “fits.” — Jennifer Y., Canandaigua, NY
  • Managing rising cost of frames and lenses. — Thomas S. Tonawanda, NY
  • Competing with online retailers and local competition. — Amy D., Fergus Falls, MN
  • Making managed care profitable. — Robert L., Jefferson City, MO
  • Getting people to spend money on upgrades whether that’s a nicer frame, adding Transitions, etc. I think with inflation still going up, people are trying to be a little more aware of how they are spending their money. — Samantha H., Birmingham, MI
  • Patients only wanting an eye exam and taking their Rx online and onboarding qualified staff. — Diana C., Chicago, IL
  • If we need to hire in 2024, it will be a big challenge. There are not many individuals interested in this field and if so it takes them a long amount of time to get up to speed. Wouldn’t it be nice to have an optician school or optometric assistant school for them to get certified before we hire? Could this field be better advertised to young adults looking for a career field? — Kate B., Hutchinson, KS
  • Battling those online retailers. — Shannon C., Fort Dodge, IA
  • Education and certifications. — Caitlin N. Montrose, CO
  • Cost of goods continuing to increase. — Ann-Marie W., Lewis Center, OH
  • I hired a new office manager. Trying to keep the staff engaged and drama-free. — Kathy C., Lititz, PA
  • Staffing turnover. I have a number of experienced opticians who will be facing retirement in the coming year. While I have found a few amazing new people, we will end up with a lot of collective knowledge leaving the clinic. — Matt C., McMinnville, OR
  • Low insurance reimbursement and charge backs. — Shawndra F., Salt Lake City, UT
  • Online retail once again. — Dr. Kenneth W., Livingston, NJ
  • Persistence, being short staffed. — Adam D., Madison, AL
  • Inflation. — Chris G., Inver Grove Heights, MN

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