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Dr. Woods Hearing Center: is doing All the Right Things (and then some!)

Dr. Woods Hearing Center opened its doors nine years ago and, despite a modest start, has achieved a level of success that has everyone at Consult YHN turning their heads. Since partnering with Consult YHN four years ago, not only has the practice tripled its sales, but this year alone, it is on track to hit a 50 percent growth rate. It’s hard to imagine where the practice would be today if owner and audiologist, Dr. Jessica Woods, didn’t hire her brother, Cameron Mills, as the Director of Operations or if Cameron didn’t become a licensed Hearing Instrument Specialist. And, this is just the first chapter of the practice’s success story: on July 1, it opened a second location in Londonderry, NH. Cameron explains how an entire team of Consult YHN professionals has helped him steer the practice in the right direction and the difference it makes when you’re held accountable for your goals.

"Basically, we’ve tripled our sales since joining Consult. This year alone, I think we’re almost 100 percent to goal already. It’s just been amazing."
Cameron Mills, DO & BC-HIS

Q&A with Cameron Mills, Director of Operations & Hearing Instrument Specialist

1What three things would you say have been the most instrumental to the practice’s success?
First, we’re constantly using the Strategic Business Plan that Consult created for us. Second, having an active Annual Marketing Plan. We’re working with [Marketing Account Executive] Julia [Shreckengast] on each and every campaign. I have a call with her every month where we discuss what’s working and what’s not and which campaigns to repeat. Finally, I think a great deal of our success is thanks to our partnership with Heather [Carter, Account Manager] and Consult YHN. We wouldn’t be anywhere near where we are if it weren’t for Heather. She came on and encouraged me on the phone for weeks. I took those calls and thought, “You know, these people are really going to work for us.” She brought us from doing less than $200,000 a year to where we are now. And she’s helped me grow professionally, too, with getting my HIS license.
2How has having an Annual Strategic Action Plan and Annual Marketing Plan (AMP) changed the way you run the business?
It’s just keeping us focused on what’s going on so that we’re planning ahead; We’re being proactive instead of reactive. Last year we had a business plan, but the problem was that I threw it in a drawer and never really looked at it. There was no real accountability at that point. This year, it’s more comprehensive and Heather has kept us on track during our weekly calls and held us accountable.
3Tell us a little more about what accountability means to you and why it’s so important.
The accountability piece has been key for us. It’s all about the work that we’re doing together as a team. We’re actually doing All the Right Things daily. Not just looking at a document and checking off boxes. I also do the weekly tele-trainings and regularly attend the EDP workshops and Owners Meetings where we review the progress of our ASAP and ensure we’re hitting our individual benchmarks.
4How has our Analytics team been able to help you in meeting your goals and planning for the future?
The pricing analysis and financial package that Kim [Costanzo] worked with us to put together were wildly helpful in deciding whether or not we could or should open another office. The pricing analysis has shown us a lot like, “Are we discounting when we shouldn’t be?” And, “What’s patient-facing that could make us more profitable?” It’s all about tracking. Basically, we’ve tripled our sales since joining Consult. This year alone, I think we’re almost 100 percent to goal already. It’s just been amazing.
5Tell us about some of the things you’ve had to do in preparation for the grand opening of your second office.
We just signed the lease the other day. I’m like a madman trying to get all of the paperwork ready. I’m doing the research, figuring out what are we going to charge for hearing aids, things like that. Now we’ll have to manage our time between two locations and, initially, operate very differently. We used Consult’s recruiting services to hire an FOP so that I can focus more on our new Marketing Plan. We’ve already done a Territory Analysis with Kim’s team to determine the potential in the area. And because we’re starting with a zero database, we’re leaning on Consult’s Marketing department to help get more people to know we’re here.
6What’s the biggest milestone or goal that you’ve been able to reach?
Three or four years ago, I couldn’t even picture being able to open a second location. It never would have happened.