As a business owner you never stop working on your business and working in your business. They go hand-in-hand. When you are committed to what you’re doing you’re constantly trying to improve the quality of the care you provide and create efficiencies where they weren’t before.
I had a pleasure to interview Dr. Michael Hall an aesthetic surgeon, specializing in anti-aging and regenerative medicine. With over 25 years in the industry, Dr. Hall attended medical school at age 17, received his medical education at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine in 1994 and is now board-certified with the American Board of Family Medicine. He completed residencies in New Orleans, Louisiana and New York City, where he studied internal medicine at Alton Ochsner Medical Foundation and ophthalmic surgery at the highly esteemed Weill Cornell Medical College-The New York Presbyterian Hospital, Hospital for Special Surgery and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
In 2007, Dr. Michael Hall established the Hall Longevity Clinic in Miami Beach, where he focuses on services to patients that provide a “balance of the mind, body and soul.” At the clinic, Dr. Hall is dedicated to discovering the world’s best remedies and procedures, aiming at increasing human health span and slowing down the aging process.
Thank you for joining us Dr. Hall! What made you want to start your own practice?
Istarted my own practice because I saw that there was a window of opportunity in medicine to do something completely different. Often times there is very little accountability and quality in medicine. I wanted to create a more pleasant experience for patients, where they have direct contact to the healthcare provider, who really wants to provide value for money along with quality care.
Managing being a provider and a business owner can often be exhausting. Can you elaborate on how you manage both roles?
Managing a medical practice along with being a business owner is quite a task. It requires someone to wear many hats, while constantly staying relevant. When one works for themselves there’s a tremendous amount of responsibility required to maintain the health of the practice and continuously grow and experience success.
As a business owner, how do you know when to stop working IN your business (maybe see a full patient load) and shift to working ON your business?
As a business owner you never stop working on your business and working in your business. They go hand-in-hand and when you are committed to what you’re doing you’re constantly trying to improve the quality of the care you provide and create efficiencies where they weren’t before.
From completing your degree to opening a clinic and becoming a business owner, the path was obviously full of many hurdles. How did you build up resilience to rebound from failures? Is there a specific hurdle that sticks out to you?
After completing my medical degree I went through multiple years of training. I often found there were many hurdles especially during my ophthalmology residency at the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center. I witnessed inadequacies in the system and I saw people unnecessarily be harmed by uncaring physicians. In my humble opinion, this was due to an elitist/racist belief system and non-aberrant occurrence, which I believe is inherently baked into our healthcare system. I spoke out and got into much trouble. Whenever you speak out about a system, you have to be prepared for the repercussions. I truly had no idea what I would encounter, but I knew I was doing the right thing. That experience taught me that it is better to follow the right path and not the wrong one regardless of consequences. Unfortunately, the morality of our days become less emphasized and making a quick buck seems to be what most people want to spend their energy on. In my experience, old-fashioned values and doing the right thing always wins out.
What are the five things that you need to grow your practice?.
That’s a loaded question because always at the top your customer is always right and when you you have things figured out you know you don’t.
- Number one. Understand that your character really is what you’re selling. First and foremost people have to trust you before they will invest in you.
- Number two. It’s always best to understand your audience and know you attract those that are attracted to you. It is important to demonstrate authenticity in what you do and if you’re affable and considerate people will continue to come back.
- Number three. Leonardo da Vinci often carried a small notebook around with him and made sketches of people’s faces he thought were interesting. I think it is important to pay attention to what inspires you and when you’re out and about pay attention to the nuances in your professional environment. Implementing them into your business allows you to constantly stay innovative and fresh.
- Number four. As they say, “hard work pays off.” 90% of what you’re doing in business is brute force care perspiration. Another 10% comes from wild ideas and creativity, which is inspiration. There are a lot of things you must do in a business that require you to separate yourself from others and being an owner is much different than being a worker.
- Number five. You can’t win all the time. It is important to be able to let go and realize not everything is going to work. Most of the time we expect our hard work and good conscience to pay off, however sometimes it backfires and we have no idea why. Asking why will sometimes shed light on what you really rather di vs. what you think you should do and create a clear path to success.
Many healthcare providers struggle with the idea of “monetization.” How did you overcome that mental block?
In healthcare there are many people that feel that they should mortar their time as well as themselves. Time is money and is the only thing you can never achieve more of.
I think that medicine is a touchy area and anything related to money often times is gauche or uncouth. Many practitioners are very risk adverse and aren’t willing to put their name out and stand behind what they do for fear their inadequacies will come to light. Never be afraid of charging what you think you’re worth and in my experience people will pay what it is you’re worth.
What do you do when you feel unfocused or overwhelmed?
Oftentimes we can get into a rut and feel we’re losing passion for what we do. When that happens it’s important to disconnect from what you’re doing and make time to revitalize your mind and your spirit. It is important to take a break and focus on other parts of your life. In these moments, you experience epiphanies and then better understand what changes you need to make.
I’m a huge fan of mentorship throughout one’s career — None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Who has been your biggest mentor? What was the most valuable lesson you learned from them?
Having a mentor in business isn’t necessarily important, but it often is an ingredient for success. Reading Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich and listening to Tony Robbins tapes could be good for some, but for others totally unnecessary. I think when one sets out to change the world they know exactly what to do. In my experience, there are many people creating their own life and business, however healthcare seemed to be an untapped market. I have a background in healthcare management policy and currently I’m trying to build the best healthcare system possible through technology.
What resources did you use (Blogs, webinars, conferences, coaching, etc.) that helped jumpstart you in the beginning of your business?
When I began my business, the Internet was still in a state of infancy. There was no Facebook, Instagram or blogs. I did have a basic website, which was based around HTML that I was very proud of. The initial way I raised awareness for what I was doing at my clinic was by sponsoring different fashion events and I also created buzz through local media and magazines. Now I find Instagram influencers and twitter are very popular. I do some basic work with Google AdWords and continuously try to promote certain articles, but quite honestly it’s very difficult to compete with so much noise in the background.
What’s the worst piece of advice or recommendation you’ve ever received? Can you share a story about that?
To be honest I really don’t listen to people. I really have no interest in anything negative that other people have to say. Often times when I start to hear someone go on about why something can’t be done, I think about what my grandfather said about Hallmark. He was a car dealer in Kansas City and sold some property around the dealership to the founders of Hallmark. He told to my father he couldn’t understand their concept or why anybody would pay $0.25 for a greeting card. To his chagrin their cards now sell for eight dollars.
I love proving other people wrong. All you have to do is believe in yourself and your dreams and they will come true. I think we live in a time with enormous opportunity and intentions are manifested all the time into reality.
Please recommend one book that’s made the biggest impact on you.
I recommend a book I’ve written titled The American Gentlemen, A Contemporary Guide to Chivalry. In the book, I elaborate on many of the ideas I think have made me successful. I still have a long way to go before I feel like I’ve completed my exact mission, but if one does read this book I believe that they will be more aligned with what it is they really need to do to achieve their wildest dreams.
Thank you so much for this!