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EDITOR’S LETTER

The BIG How-To Issue

Welcome to the second issue of our new PentaVision publication—The OD Connection—which delivers key information, critical intel, and fresh ideas in the optometric alliance and buying group arena to help independent O.D.s make the right choices to be successful in today’s uniquely competitive marketplace.

The focus of this issue is “How To.” Do you know how to go about finding the right buying group or optometric alliance for your business?

In our cover feature—Know Before You Go, starting on page 10—we check in with two expert optometrists—one HEA member and one Vision Source member—who divulge key strategies to serve up eight intelligent questions to ask before you join.

In our Best Practices Primer column on page 8, we turn to Mary Schmidt of EyeSystems to turn up the heat on staff training. ECPs point to staff training as a key benefit from their group or alliance, and Schmidt delivers on that with eight top tips and savvy strategies she shares in her education sessions with alliance members.

We also reveal fresh details on the optometric alliance and buying group landscape with our new, exclusive 2020 OD Connection Focus Group Study. Starting on page 14, get key intel on what features, perks, and services eyecare professionals find most beneficial from their buying group or optometric alliance.

There’s also much, much more actionable intel in this How-To issue of ODC, so keep on turning the pages. Don’t miss our engaging interview with PECAA’s senior VP and general manager, Jamie Hughes (page 9), plus our guide to optometric alliances—The Players: Part II—starting on page 16, which is an excellent, must-keep resource.

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We hope you enjoy the issue!

AN IMPRESSIVE 96% OF SURVEY RESPONDENTS SAY THAT THE PERK OF SPECIAL PRODUCT PRICING IS ONE OF THE KEY BENEFITS THEY LOOK FOR FROM BUYING GROUPS AND ALLIANCES. 96%

86% OF THOSE ECPS LOOKING FOR STAFF TRAINING, A STRONG MAJORITY OF 86% ARE LOOKING FOR OPTICIAN TRAINING OPTIONS.

IN THIS ISSUE
In our second special issue of The OD Connection, we focus on the How To, from eight questions to ask before you join to how to improve staff training.

ERINN MORGAN
Editor-in-Chief + Editorial Director
The OD Connection Corporate
Optometry Today!
Eyecare Business