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Thread: OAA Leadership Speech 1992

  1. #26
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Sharpstick, you are not misstating my points.
    We need to be better at sales. Regardless of degree of ametropia or perceived need, the same psychological and habitual hurdles in the eyewear sale paradigm must be overcome.

    Otherwise, even if you know everything technical, what *real* value are you to an optical business in any walk of our industry.

    B

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy R. Ferguson View Post
    While the state society was fighting so hard to avoid minimum educational requirements in Tennessee I keep asking the same questions. There were no answers, just blind, vicious (and ultimately successful) personal attacks directed against me at the state, regional, and national level. The college was deluged with coordinated and scripted complaints that had no basis, only volume and repetition. In the end, the proposal was destroyed and I was ousted as program director. If the society had worked as hard to promote the concept as to prevent it, we could have been the first state to have provided education to all our opticians.
    Roy,
    I am deeply saddened that you had to endure such a terrible situation. If its any consolation your personal reputation is well known even on the West Coast here, and you are deeply respected by people who you have never met in person... namely me. You are a legend really.

    So while those who opposed you slowly slunk back into the drive through, you have continued to shine. Maybe its a "prophet has no honor is his hometown" type of thing.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by sharpstick777 View Post
    I agree that its incremental... But I think what Barry has been discouraged with is the focus has always been on purely Technical education. I don't think Barry is against education per se, but I believe he wants to see it include a thorough understanding of business and sales.

    I agree with Barry on that issue, it has to have business and sales education included.

    I am teaching an Optical Management class this quarter, and there has been a lot of resistance to my segment on "Professional Selling". We need to include business skills in a optical education.
    No one said we do not need business and sales skills, and that should be an integral part of the education and training of all Opticians. BUt it would be nice to have them understand at least the basics of optics.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Santini View Post
    Sharpstick, you are not misstating my points.
    We need to be better at sales. Regardless of degree of ametropia or perceived need, the same psychological and habitual hurdles in the eyewear sale paradigm must be overcome.

    Otherwise, even if you know everything technical, what *real* value are you to an optical business in any walk of our industry.

    B
    But Barry, as Roy has mentioned several times, how can you expect anyone to be able to professionally seel a product they do not understand. If I read you correctly, all you feel we need to do is sell? Opticians are supposed to be the "experts" in optics, but the truth is they are far from it. As I travel the country I always stop by offices to see what Opticians are doing in different states, and some of the BS I have heard from these "experts" is ridiculous. So......we agree sales are important, but do you not see value in some understanding of the professional knowledge and skills needed? From your posts, all you talk about is sales, so obviously you see little need in learning any real technical stuff, right?

  5. #30
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Barry Santini's Avatar
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    Warren:

    What I'm saying is that the traditional emphasis on std curiculum, without more sales psychology of sales, fashion training, business management, and real, honest to goodness Sherlock skills is a skill set that has no tangible value for a dispenser in todays market. Not sales alone. Tech skills plus. If you're not gonna do the "plus" then IMHO, what's the point.

    B

  6. #31
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    Barry,
    Thanks for the clarification. The marketplace does dictate the sales aspect of what we do, and it is important. I really do not know why I continue to get mired in this mess, and will step out at this point. I guess all we really need today, based on the marketplace demands is to measure a PD and Seg Height, call the lab if we have questions and be able to sell second pairs. I wish you and the rest who seem to let the markeplace shape us the very best. I only wish I had the ability to motivate you and others tounderstand my vision for the field.

    I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.
    Warren
    Last edited by wmcdonald; 03-09-2012 at 01:08 AM.

  7. #32
    ABOM Wes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Santini View Post
    Warren:

    What I'm saying is that the traditional emphasis on std curiculum, without more sales psychology of sales, fashion training, business management, and real, honest to goodness Sherlock skills is a skill set that has no tangible value for a dispenser in todays market. Not sales alone. Tech skills plus. If you're not gonna do the "plus" then IMHO, what's the point.

    B
    It'd be nice if Laurie chimed in here...
    Wesley S. Scott, MBA, MIS, ABOM, NCLE-AC, LDO - SC & GA

    “As our circle of knowledge expands, so does the circumference of darkness surrounding it.” -Albert Einstein

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Santini View Post
    Warren:

    What I'm saying is that the traditional emphasis on std curiculum, without more sales psychology of sales, fashion training, business management, and real, honest to goodness Sherlock skills is a skill set that has no tangible value for a dispenser in todays market. Not sales alone. Tech skills plus. If you're not gonna do the "plus" then IMHO, what's the point.

    B
    I totally understand what you're getting at Barry, and I agree with you 110%. Patients don't want a rocket scientist only type fitting them for glasses. They want some personality to go with it too. You don't have to go much further to understand this, than to just listen to what many opticians say about engineers that come in for glasses.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmcdonald View Post
    Barry,
    Thanks for the clarification. The narketplace does dictate the sales aspect of what we do, and it is important. I really do not know why I continue to get mired in this mess, and will step out at this point. I guess all we really need today, based on the marketplace demands is to measure a PD and Seg Height, call the lab if we have questions and be able to sell second pairs. I wish you and the rest who seem to let the markeplace shape us the very best. I only wish I had the ability to motivate you and others tounderstand my vision for the field.

    I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.
    Warren
    I don't think Barry is arguing AGAINST you Warren or education, he is just pleading FOR Business and Sales to ACCOMPANY a Technical Education. I don't think he ever championed a world with Business only education and watered down technical skills. Today many Office Managers come up from the billing side and not the Optical Side of many practices. Opticians as Managers give us a much larger stake in the future. It benefits us and the practice to be there in that role in larger clinics.

    I think we can all agree that Business AND Technical skills are both crucial to the future of Opticianry.

    ......... This is a valuable thread by the way... thanks for everyone's participation but I think maybe we are seeing arguments when there is none?

  10. #35
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    Wes,

    Did you just call me to the front desk?

    I think all of us have the same goal, we paint the picture differently, but it is the same objective.

    There is no doubt that 20+ years ago, an optician needed tech info, and not much in professional sales.

    Barry,

    I totally get the sales part...I know that you are a grad of NYC Opticianry...you get the tech part. And, throughout the years you have gained business and fasion savvy to combine the best of both worlds.

    Today's opticianry edu is much different than the past. In addition to the important OPT courses in ophthalmic optics we also have courses in business management, professional sales, CL, Refraction and more.

    I can cite three different courses that I teach that include many hours in professional sales, aesthetics of eyewear design, combining fashion and function (including face shape analysis to create an oval, and color/fabric draping for cool tone and warm tone....like Ragu, It's in There (or 'It's in Theayah' in NY speak).

    Remaining the optical-optimist, given the new norm in regard to understanding optics to best present the latest in lens designs, and having fashion savvy to connect function with fashion, our future opticians need more than the 'what I learned, you will learn' apprenticeship route. An AS in Opticianry with give them a head start.

    As Warren stated, all current opticians are fine...we are talking about future entrance requirements and shaping our futue.

    A quote from Lykes Lines (sp?) Shipping Magnate....

    'We can and should shape our own future...for if we don't, somebody else surely will'...

    : )

    Laurie
    Ophthalmic Optician, Society to Advance Opticianry

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