When hiring for different roles in your optical practice you're going to be looking for different qualities, skills, and experiences for each position that you're looking to fill. What you're looking for in an optician is going to be different from what you're looking for in an office manager. That's why we thought it would be helpful to lay out for you the skills and characteristics that we think make someone a candidate for each of these different roles. Is there a skill or quality that you look for that we missed? Let us know in the comments!
The Skills You Need to Hire for In Your Optical Practice
Your all-star optician candidates are going to know everything from the technical side of your products to sales strategies to knowing how to provide the best customer service. But apart from the obvious, there are some additional, more specific skills and qualities that we think make one optician stand out from another.
- An ear for listening. Every good salesperson needs to know how to listen to a customer's wants, needs, and problems.
- Inventory insight. Your optician should have the management skills to keep track of all the products in your dispensary, with the ability to make smart decisions about what inventory to keep in stock.
- Taste for trends. Your customers come into your dispensary looking for the latest trends in fashion eyewear. Your optician needs to portray a strong fashion sense and the confidence to make anyone feel good in a new pair of frames.
- Strong attention to detail. From finding frames that fit a customer's face shape to taking accurate measurements and placing orders, someone who is detail oriented is likely to excel in this role.
Your optical tech works closely with the OD to keep patients moving quickly through your office. In order to maintain an efficient and healthy working relationship between the tech and OD these are the highlights we think you should be looking out for when interviewing candidates for the role of optical tech in your practice.
- Knowing what the OD needs before they need it. This is a huge time saver for any OD, and helps keep the office workflow running smoothly.
- Problem solving skills. Almost every patient who walks into your office comes in with a problem. The ability for your tech to listen and understand patient problems while answering questions on the fly is an important attribute.
- Understanding boundaries. While a patient might barage your tech with questions, there are times when it's best for the tech to slow down the patient and wait for the OD to offer their advice and expertise for the important things like diagnosis and treatment.
- Product knowledge. Sales doesn't just fall onto the optician at the end of the appointment. Patients are going to have product questions throughout their appointment, so a tech who has product knowledge is going to help start a sale from the beginning of an appointment.
Running an eyecare practice is a lot of work, which is what makes your office manager such an important part of your practice. Having an office manager helps take some of the business responsibilities of owning a practice off of the OD. And in many practices, an office manager wears a lot of hats to help keep things running smoothly.
- Be approachable. Your office manager is going to be the go-to person in your practice that your staff can turn to when they want to address concerns, voice an opinion, or simply ask for a day off.
- Not afraid to get their hands dirty. When there is an office problem that needs solving, your office manager should be the first one jumping in to find a solution. On top of that, they need to make sure that the solution is implemented by the rest of the staff.
- A creative side. Your office manager could very well end up being your office marketer too. In order to gain new patients, and keep current patients happy, your office manager should be able to execute creative ideas to make things happen.
- An analytical mind. As we mentioned earlier, your office manager should be able to help out with the business side of your practice. The ability to calculate and analyze benchmarks and look for ways to implement improvements can help your practice bring in more money.