Optometry Podcast: Mr. Roberto Monaco and Dr. Mick Kling take on Leadership

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Mr. Roberto Monaco, Founder of Influenceology

What does it mean to be a leader? “Successful leadership is the capacity to move people into action, with integrity,” explains Roberto Monaco, noted public speaking coach and founder of Influenceology. In a brand new multi-course program, Mr. Monaco is bringing his interactive course on influence and leadership skills to help eyecare providers both acquire and retain new patients this spring at Vision Expo East.

After working for renowned life coach Tony Robbins for 6 years, Monaco noticed that every single leader making a big impact in their industry was successful at telling their story.  He decided to focus on the power of public speaking and story-telling, and that’s how his brand, Influenceology, was born. “Every entrepreneur needs to be able to tell a story,” explains Monaco. For ECPs, the moment when the patient or personally identifies with the doctor or optician’s story, you have less resistance and are more likely to influence the patient to make the best decision for their ocular health care or optical purchase.

Dr. Mick Kling

Working with Vision Expo in creating the new Leadership Forum courses, Dr. Mick Kling, owner of Invision Optometry in San Diego, had attended an Influenceology course taught by Monaco and was blown away by the human psychology of how our behavior – including body language and facial expressions — has a huge impact on our success in patient care.  “It’s no surprise that some of the most successful practices are run by some of the most dynamic leaders,” states Kling. “In optometry we don’t really fully grasp the power we have in influencing both our patients and the employees in our own office.”

The Leadership Forum’s goal is to grow the eyecare professional’s ability to connect with patients, staff, and the public as a whole through focusing on skills that include:

Identity. Most optometrists identify themselves as “I’m a doctor,” but that’s different identity than being a leader.  How do you embrace a dynamic self-identity with multiple layers? “When you change how you see yourself, you change how your audience sees you,” explains Monaco.

Overcome limiting beliefs about sales.  What does sales even mean? Many optometrists site the doctor/optical handoff as very uncomfortable, where they are handing patients off from medical care to the optical salesperson.  It’s something that even a successful business owner like Dr. Kling struggled with. But when you put yourself in the place of genuine concern for the person you’re caring for, that apprehension goes away.  Take your focus off of yourself, and put your focus on your audience. It makes you become authentic and relatable.

Mastering your Influence. Monaco is a strong believer that your sales presentation must be your favorite part of your storytelling presentation as a whole, because that’s where you’re going to effectively communicate and influence outcomes to truly help your patients. He encourages eye care providers to rehearse their presentation and make the words their own. Script out what you want to say and role play with your staff; practice truly does make perfect.  The important part is to find words that come for the heart and that are true to you for maximum effectiveness.

One of the best places doctors can practice their storytelling skills and grow their business is through digital and social media. Monaco believes many doctors are struggling with effective digital media marketing because they aren’t effectively telling their own unique, personal story.   He encourages doctors to record more video content, featuring themselves and their office. Consistency is key when it comes to social media, so get a journal and start writing down every single question your patients ask you in a day. Eventually you will create a library of content. Each week record 1-2 short videos, just a minute or two in length, where you record your answers to these common questions. Having a stockpile of ideas for video topics helps you keep consistent new content coming.

Why is becoming a leader in eyecare more important than ever?

There are market forces trying to define our profession right now, from private equity groups to retail consolidators to online disrupters.  We need to make sure as ECPs we are defining our profession as we want it to be defined. “No time in our history have we been able to communicate with so many people directly, for free!” cites Dr. Kling. If we want to continue to be impactful in our industry, we have to able to communicate and effectively tell our story to the broader public as a whole.

“If you don’t share your story, your marketplace will create one about you,” explains Roberto Monaco. Let’s own our story in eyecare, and share it powerfully and effectively!

The Leadership Forum will be held on Thursday, 3/21 at Vision Expo East and will feature interactive training to expand your skills.  The event is broken up into 3 different sections:

The Psychology of Leadership and Success 1:30-3:30 PM

Effective Communication 3:45-4:45 PM

Action Planning and Execution Strategy 5-6 PM

Defocus Media listeners can register for Vision Expo East for FREE here.


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