My dream of opening my own practice came about when I first started studying audiology during my sophomore year at the University of Maryland. It didn’t seem like a reality until our private practice management class in grad school at Towson University. We had a project to come up with our own private practice concept, and that concept is what I used 3 years later to build my practice.
My main goal for the Taylor Listening Center was simply to help people. I wanted to create an atmosphere that was modern, professional and clean but more importantly, a place where people felt at ease and looked forward to their appointment. Developing good patient rapport was at the top of my priority list so we offer extended appointment times so we never have to rush. Patients are always surprised when I take the time to learn more about their families or how they met their spouse or how old their grandchildren are. Usually after just one appointment, patients feel like part of the TLC family and less like a name on a schedule. I usually get a hug or a kiss at the end of an appointment.
When asked what it took to build TLC, I would have to say a lot of determination and a bit of risk. I decided to open my practice in Pikesville, an area already inundated with other audiologists and hearing aid dealers but that didn’t scare me. I knew I was bringing something different to the field; a concierge style practice without the concierge price tag. Some may call it naïve, but I didn’t even think about the possibility that the practice might not be successful. I knew if I was honest, caring and trustworthy, the practice should do well.
Another important distinction about my philosophy for owning my own practice is that I am not a “business person” and have no formal training in owning a business. I opened my practice without the intention to make a huge profit, which may sound silly but really I am more concerned with doing whatever it takes to help the patient, even if it means less money at the end of the day. As long as I can afford to pay my rent and my employees’ salary, I am a happy business owner. Profit is usually donated to a local charities so sometimes our “business numbers” don’t look incredibly impressive but I am proud of what I have created and can’t wait to see how TLC grows in the future!