“We’re getting phone calls off the hook, we’re tracking those phone calls, and we’re implementing quality measures for that conversation for the front staff, when they schedule those new patients. We’re launching numerous marketing campaigns, seminars. Basically we have a full service marketing system that can be dialed up or dialed down at any time, depending on how we feel. That’s a really, really cool thing and it’s a really good feeling. It’s a really good feeling.”
|Hey everybody, what’s up? Today I’ve got a really special guest on our show here today, and we’re going to kind of go through a little bit of a case study on PRM practices, Dr. Sunny Kim. Dr. Sunny Kim is out of Cedar Rapids Iowa, and he runs one of the most successful clinics out there when it comes to regenerative medicine, physical therapy, and he’s doing a whole bunch of other stuff. I’m going to let you, rather than taking your thunder, I’m going to let you talk a little bit about it. Give me an introduction on yourself, and what you do out there man.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|All right, well good to be on Bob, thanks for inviting me. For the longest time, I’ve always felt that we need to be something better in medicine, than just prescribing pills and doing surgeries. That’s always stuck with me, and that’s why I got into what I do now, is that we want to tap into our body’s natural ability to heal, and create that environment for healing. The truth of the matter is, there’s nothing that we do in medicine that actually heals people. We create the environment for healing, the body heals itself.|
|Bob Mangat:||Right. Yeah, so how long have you been in practice for? How long have you been doing this for?|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||I’m in practice for about 12 years now.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||I’ve been in Cedar Rapids for 12 years, Cedar Rapids Iowa.|
|Bob Mangat:||Where did you do your schooling?|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||I went to Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in New Jersey.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||I did my internship at Johns Hopkins, in Internal Medicine. I did rehabilitation medicine training at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and New Jersey Medical School.|
Cool. Let me ask you, I’m going to get right into it because I really love what you guys are doing out there, and I think you’ve been working with me for the past almost year now I think it is. I want to talk to you, you went through a lot of challenges I guess you can call it, this year with some staffing and all that kind of stuff. Tell me about when we first met, let me know what the challenges you were facing at that point in time, the challenges that we’ve had up until this, and then sort of like maybe some results, and that kind of thing. Where your practice is, if you can kind of go through that for me.
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|Sure. Well for any private practitioner in medicine, you’re dealing with a lot of variables in healthcare. You’re dealing with an uncertain insurance industry, you’re dealing with growing hospitals, hospitals that want to take over small private clinics. I’ve always wanted to stay independent, because I felt that, that’s going to allow me to keep my level of innovation very, very high, and play an active role in that innovation. I’ve always felt it’s important to stay independent, and I’ve been successful in doing that.|
|Recently we had to revamp our entire staffing, mainly because I was basically using hospital employees to staff my clinic. Well, hospital decided to say, “We’re going to take all your employees away from you, because we’re no longer going to do that for you.” For whatever reasons, it wasn’t very good, it wasn’t very good for me, it wasn’t very good for the staff members, and I personally don’t think it was a good move on the hospital. But that’s how they do things, you know? I had to reorganize my entire practice and hire new staff members. I hired 90% new staff members, and I did it in a very short period of time. I got them up to speed in a very short period of time as well.|
|[00:04:30]||But looking back on it, it was a very good experience for me because I learned a lot. And I learned the importance of really being proactive in making sure that you have good staff who are on board, and buying into being independent, and not being owned by the hospital.|
|Yeah, I remember, let me just stop you there. I remember it was a Friday afternoon and you called me when you found out that, that’s what was going on. You were a little bothered by it, I don’t know if you were worried by it or not. I think we had a great conversation that day. In fact, I dropped off my kids and I was sitting in the car talking to you for about an hour. We were just talking about when there’s adversity there’s opportunity, right? Looking at it, you can either look at it one way where it’s like, “Man, this is going to ruin my business.” Or, you can look at it another way where it’s like, “This is an opportunity for me to make it great.”|
|[00:05:30]||I think that there’s two types of people that will either take that and they’ll just kind of fizzle, and then just keep going through the mold. Or, somebody like yourself, and I think that’s why we get along so well is ’cause we kind of have very, very similar traits, is because we just don’t take no for an answer. That status quo stuff is not good enough for us, and we want better, and we gotta work to get there, and that’s what you’ve done. I don’t know if you remember that conversation, but it was probably around that time when you were going through that.|
Dr. Sunny Kim:
Absolutely. I was very bothered by it. I was stressed out, and I really appreciate the opportunity to be able to voice my concerns with you, and for you to get my head on straight. It was that coaching that you provided, helped guide me through those very difficult times, and it was very beneficial.
|Yeah, I mean sometimes people think like when they bring me on, it’s just like we’re going to run some digital ads and that’s about it, right? It’s kind of like going into my sort of my next question is really, that’s not what we do. I mean, we had conversation for about an hour yesterday about opening up a new location, and partnerships, and all these different things. Really that’s where the value is. Any Tom, Dick, and Harry can run digital ads, right? They can run Google ads. But I think getting you out of times, and bouncing ideas off, and sharing ideas, I think … I’ve talked about it in my book where I said, “I owe all of my successes to mastermind groups.”|
|The reason why I brought you on today is because we almost have, we had a mastermind meeting last night when you were driving home from Des Moines. The conversation that we had was like, it started to open up my eyes too, it was like, “Okay well, let’s look at something for a minute.” You get so much out of that when everybody’s on the same page, and they just want to grow, and they want to help each other. Rather than holding everything in, and I feel like that, that’s a big part that’s missing in clinic owners, or practice owners, or physician owners. They always want to just kind of hold back everything, and keep it, and not let anything kind of go. I don’t know if you’ve experienced that with your colleagues as well, but my mission has always been just share it. If you share it, then you get the benefit of that as well, and you get the benefit of those conversations, of somebody else helping you.|
|[00:08:00]||I think you are one of those guys that you understood what I could probably bring to the table, and I could help you get through those certain situations. Not only from a marketing standpoint in helping increase whatever you’re doing there, but also help you grow it where you want to, you know?|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|Yeah, absolutely. I mean for crying out loud, we went from losing 90% of my staff, to rehiring, and now looking at opening up another clinic. Obviously something went right there.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||90% of, I think, the success of a small private practice is mindset. If you don’t have your mindset on right, it’s doomed to failure because there’s just too many variables in healthcare right now. There’s a lot of uncertainty. That uncertainty mindset is what destroys private practice.|
Yeah, I talk about it all the time. I talk about it with my sales guy. I said, “If you are not certain, you will not get the business.” Certainty plays a huge role in what you do. I want to know that my future is certain, because I have that control. I don’t want to put that control in anybody else’s hands. If I can control … That’s why I don’t invest in a lot of stocks. In fact, I hardly invest in any of them, is because it’s out of my control. I like to control what I want to build. If I lose it, at least I make a … At least I get a lesson out of it. If I put money into a stock marketing or anything like that, this is just my personal opinion. Put money into the stock market and it drops, well where’s a lesson in that? Where did I learn something? I didn’t really learn anything, at least if I start a business, or I start a new program and I bombed on it, there’s some sort of lessons that I get out of that.
|I think like I was saying, is that, that mindset is huge, it’s massive. Especially when you want to take your clinic … You can go and you can be an ordinary practice, and you can be over worked, underpaid, and do the same things over and over again. Or, you could start to shift your mindset, and open up your eyes to a new way of doing business. One of the things that really, what I loved about you, is that you understood marketing. You understood sales, and you understood that you are selling something. Everybody is. Sometimes that’s like a taboo word in this, is we’re not selling. And you are selling something, everybody’s selling something, you know?|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||Yeah.|
|I think that was one of the cool things, ’cause when I met you, you had done a lot of the things that we teach here, and marketing. Maybe you can touch on that, marketing. A lot of guys don’t think about the marketing side, or the business side. How important is that?|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||Oh, it’s huge, it’s tremendous. It’s really important to be genuine, and authentic, and build that trust with the patients. That’s the approach that we’ve taken. You’re absolutely right. There’s an exchange. I think that a lot of times-|
Dr. Sunny Kim:
I think a lot of times, healthcare workers, they get caught into this misperception that you shouldn’t sell to patients, you know? It’s, like you said, taboo. But what I’m really doing is I’m advising. I’m advising, and I’m giving my best advice to my patients, and I’m letting them make the decision, what they want to do.
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||Now, if you have that trust with the patient and you’re doing good work, well then naturally they’re going to want to work with you. It’s just a natural consequence of doing good work, and doing what’s right for the patient. And-|
|Bob Mangat:||Let’s go like … Sorry, go ahead.|
Dr. Sunny Kim:
… Well as I was about to say, this thing about selling in healthcare being taboo. In my community in Cedar Rapids, when I drive around town and I look at the billboards, it’s all healthcare marketing.
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||It’s this eye group, this cancer center, this orthopedic group. I don’t do that.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|You know? Our approaches are different, but everyone’s marketing. Everyone’s marketing. Anyone who says, “Oh, I can’t sell or I can’t market because that’s just immoral.” They gotta wake up.|
|Yeah, yeah. I like what you said, you’re advising. It’s educational based marketing, really is what I preach to, and I know that you follow as well. If we can build expert status and authority before they ever come into your office … Let me talk about that as well. Like I said, we were brought on probably almost a year ago today. I think you mentioned to me once, “Bob, the people that are coming in are much more qualified.” So whatever you’re doing is working. Maybe if you could talk a little bit about what we’ve done for you, and how that relationship has gone to now.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|Absolutely. What you’ve done, you revamped my website, you expanded my online presence. We’re getting phone calls off the hook, we’re tracking those phone calls, and we’re implementing quality measures for that conversation for the front staff, when they schedule those new patients. We’re launching campaigns, marketing campaigns, seminars. Basically we have a full service marketing system that can be dialed up or dialed down at any time, depending on how we feel.|
|Bob Mangat:||Yeah, yeah.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||That’s a really, really cool thing and it’s a really good feeling. It’s a really good feeling. [crosstalk 00:14:38].|
|Yeah, and I appreciate that. I think one of the biggest … I always say, I wrote about it the other day on one of my social posts. I said, “The most successful people out there understand their weaknesses, and they put people around them to compliment them.” I think you understood what you needed, which is in itself, a great CEO or a great owner that understands and knows what their weaknesses are, because you understand that you have other duties to take it and grow. Had you not done that, you would have still been working inside your business, doing all the marketing, doing all of those tasks. Now you’ve got a Chief of Operations there, you’re looking at new locations. I mean, you could not have done that had you not had a systematic process, not only to get patients through the door, but also have them handled and serviced as well.|
|That’s how companies scale. For people that don’t understand that, you have to know what your weaknesses are, and what your strengths are, and put those weaknesses that you have, just let somebody else handle that. You gave me the freewill to do that, and hopefully we haven’t disappointed.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|Oh no, I’m totally satisfied. You’ve met my expectations, and exceeded those expectations. And you’re absolutely right, what we need to do is be able to delegate, delegate properly. That was something that was very difficult for me at first, but you can’t do it all. You absolutely can’t.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:|
|Like I said before, there’s just too many variables in healthcare, and there’s just too many things to be looking at. You just gotta have good people doing the right things for you, and maintain a vision, maintain that vision, and keep moving forward with those core principles and philosophies. You’ve allowed that … I mean, if it wasn’t for you and your team, I’d still be stuck doing all the little details, and checking on the little details for each marketing campaign that we launched. For me, that was very time consuming, and extremely stressful. Instead of having to worry about whether or not A, B, C and D were done and done in that right order, I just let you take care of it.|
|Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. No, I mean that’s what we do, and that’s a lot of time, some people want to just … They want to dig their hands in everything, and that’s a separation disorder that they have. You’ve got to separate yourself from that. You know, I’m to blame as well. There’s certain things, but I think that I understand, that’s why you can scale companies at will whenever you get your marketing system down in place, and you can get your sales system down in place, and you can have people that manage those systems. Once you have all those things in place, you can start to go and get locations.|
|This is what I was talking to you yesterday, and I’ll just kind of finish up and wind down. But this is what I was talking about, talking to you yesterday, is that most people, they don’t have their first systems built in their own office, and they’re going out, trying to find different locations to start new locations. I think we talked about this six or eight months ago, or even longer than that, about opening. I said, “No, let’s get the systems down pat inside your office here, and then let’s start to look at something later on down the road.” I think you’re at that level.|
|Most people, they have this notion that bigger is better, but it’s not. What matter is what’s in your bank account, right? And how much time you spend with your family is really, that’s what we do these things for.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||Yep.|
And help patients, right? And help the people that are out there. If you’re doing that and you’ve got more money in your bank account than the year before, and you’re not working harder than everybody else, and your family is pissed off at you, then there’s something wrong. There’s something going on in your life, you need to change that. That’s what we sort of build. I appreciate you coming on. If there was any last words that you would say to somebody that may be looking at bringing us on, or on the fence, or something like that, what would you tell them?
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||You can’t do it all alone. Like Bob said, surround yourself with good people. You’re not really letting go of control, what you’re doing is you’re delegating, and think of it that way, and keep that mindset of delegating properly.|
Dr. Sunny Kim:
That’s an art. I think it can be scary, and there could be scary times, and I went through some of that. But if you have the right team around you, then it’s not just this service or that service. Especially with you, it was more than that, and I really appreciate that. It was about doing smart business.
Dr. Sunny Kim:
You do have those skillsets. I mean you’re a shrewd businessmen too. It’s really nice being able to pick your brain.
|Bob Mangat:||Yeah, well I appreciate that man. I appreciate you coming on, I know you’re busy. I want to thank you, and yeah man, thanks a lot.|
|Dr. Sunny Kim:||Yeah, no problem. Appreciate it.|