22 years in business on October 1. Even as I typed that, it is hard to believe.
Where did the time go? Well, let’s see.
I finished book #42 yesterday and books #43 and #44 will hopefully be finished before the end of the month. All books have been sold internationally – that is so stunning to me.. I have written articles for magazines, chapters for other publications, and blog posts that have also made the international circuit. Thousands of eyes have read what I have written, which all reminds me of the massive responsibility I have for the written word.
I have spoken for hundreds of conventions, study clubs, and meetings to many thousands of listeners on a variety of subjects. I have been a guest on many podcasts and interviewed for my professional practice financial organization expertise, as well as my thoughts on ethics or caregiving.
I have worked with many law enforcement agencies in preparing the evidence culled regarding a practice embezzler who betrayed the trust of a dentist or veterinarian or doctor. From small town police departments, to large city white collar crime departments, to state police, to the FBI, they all need the information I provide to present their case to the prosecuting attorney. And I have walked with the doctors to the very end of that prosecution.
I have consulted with thousands of practices on how their QuickBooks is or is not working for them, how to organize it to have back-to-back accountability with the practice software, and how to create a QuickBooks that the practice owner can truly understand from a business perspective. In fact, I began strongly and loudly emphasizing that necessity when no one else was doing so.
I have had some of the most amazing clients.
Some of them call me from time to time to check in. Some came to one or both of my parent’s funerals. Some of the hardest to work with are the best clients. Some did not like what I had to say and went their own way. I always wonder how they are doing and hope they got the kick-in-the-pants help they needed. But overall, I am protective of the professional practice industry because of the practice owners I have met these past 22 years. They are amazing individuals, not always gifted in business but gifted in a fine art, true craftsman in what they do AND have extraordinary compassionate hearts.
“Know your heart to find your voice.”
I saw this printed on a keychain many years ago and have it on my desk as a reminder that if I lose my voice, then I have to find out where my heart has relocated. For a person with ADD, that always makes me laugh as there have been many squirrel moments these past 22 years.
My heart in starting my business was to provide the flexibility to care for my aging parents and their growing needs in their elder years. I had no clue what that would look like. I certainly did not plan on writing this many books, though I have always loved to write. I had already been speaking professionally in various positions but did not plan on being a professional speaker. I had no idea what it would be like to grow and change with technology during a time we had just moved from Windows 95 to Windows 98.
What I knew was having left a great secure job I enjoyed, I was nervous about the future. And there have been a few of those moments throughout the years when the client pipeline was slow or the economy was creating havoc or terrorists were successful in a business’ sacrifice. As I am growing older, I wonder about the future and what it holds but if there is one thing I have learned the past 22 years, business will ebb and flow often. Or, as my Dad said, “When the Lord closes a door, watch out for a window. It’s sometimes not always a door that will open.” I guess he got tired of someone always saying there will be another door to open. Remembering his version still makes me laugh. So, I keep my head down and focus on the job at hand, whatever that may be. And, of course, watch out for those open windows.
Unlike when I started, I do have a much clearer vision for my business future. That has been culled and honed over the past 22 years. Chuck Swindoll said this many years ago and I keep it visible in my office to remind me:
“Vision is essential for survival. It is spawned by faith, sustained by hope, spared by imagination, and strengthened by enthusiasm. It is greater than sight, deeper than a dream, broader than an idea. Vision encompasses vast vistas outside the realm of the predictable, the safe and the expected. No wonder we perish without it.”
There are so many friends and colleagues that have been an invaluable part of my business over the years. I could not begin to list all the beautiful ones who have encouraged me and believed in what I have to offer the healthcare community. To them – a big thank you and a bigger hug.
It is mind boggling to realize there will probably not be another 22 years, but that does NOT mean the best part of my business has already happened. With newly revised speaking presentations, new services, and a great team, the best is most certainly yet to come!
Thank you to everyone who has made the past 22 years so successful!