Insurance Coverage for a Working Professional

I am a working professional looking to attain insurance coverage, where do I begin?
The first place to begin is to find a qualified insurance advisor who can help guide you in protecting your future. The three main types of insurance are:
  • Life Insurance
  • Critical Illness Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
Life insurance is meant to protect your loved ones upon your passing when you can no longer provide financial support to them. Critical Illness Insurance acts as a living benefit that provides a lump sum amount of chosen coverage upon 30 days of survival after the diagnosis of any of the covered conditions.
For the purpose of this post, the focus is on Disability Insurance.
What – Disability Insurance is meant to replace a portion of your income if you are unable to work due to injury or illness.
Who – In order to qualify, you must be a working individual who has attained proof of two years income
Where – Make sure you applying with an insurance company who has a full suite of disability insurance services that include all of the different options, such as Future Income Option, Cost of Living, Own Occupation, Residual Income, Return of Premiums, etc.
When – The best time to apply is as soon as you begin working. As your income increases, you have the ability to increase coverage to be in line within you new income.
Why – The main purpose of attaining coverage is to make sure you can pay your bills and not go broke in the chance you were to become disabled and unable to work and make an income.
How – In order to apply, you must complete an application with a registered insurance company and pass a medical examination. At that time and upon approval, you will be offered a contract based on your applied for plan.
How Much – The maximum amount of disability insurance a person can attain is 66 and 2/3rds of their annual salary.
The above points apply to anyone who is either employed or self employed looking to attain disability insurance. Please keep in mind, if you are employed, there is a chance you already have coverage through your employer and can thus only add coverage as a top up due to the maximum amount requirements. A few other important differences between employed and self-employed individuals are:
  • Contact definitions
    • Employee benefit disability insurance plans have an Own Occupation rider for the first two years and then switches to Any Occupation.
    • An individual disability insurance plan does not switch definitions through the contract.
  • Future Increase Options
    • Employee benefit disability insurance plans will only allow your coverage to increase to certain maximums with out medicals
    • An individual disability insurance plan that has a Future Income Option built in does not restrict you as much
  • Leaving your employer
    • Employee benefit disability insurance plans end when you leave your employer. Some can be carried forward but as very high premiums.
    • An individual disability insurance plan does not end when you leave your employer.
For more information, please watch this video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=105&v=t89a1rdcUr0
Samuel Waxman, CFP, CLU, CHS

Managing Partner and Financial Advisor, Millennial Financial Group

416.817.8897

What Optoprenuers can Learn from the Patriots.

We are witnessing greatness whether you like the Patriots or not. We are experiencing a historic dynasty that has spanned over two decades.  Appreciate it, because we may not see it for a long time or ever again. Optopreneurs can learn a lot from the New England Patriots. It doesn’t matter if you are the person that answers the phone or the owner of the optometric practice, you have to work for it to be an accomplished success business. It’s the same as a football team. The Patriots arguably have the best quarterback but if the offensive line did not perform at a certain level or the receivers don’t catch the ball, then it doesn’t matter. If the coach is concerned about scoring points and neglects the defense then there is no way to win a championship. All people within the organization are important. It doesn’t matter if you are the President of the company with the best business strategy, if the people under your leadership don’t believe in it or understand it, then they will not be able to effectively execute that plan.

The Patriot Way is a System that Optopreneurs can simulate for their own business growth and success. Here are 3 proven ways:

1. Teamwork Philosophy (#DoYourJob)
It is not about the name on the back of the jersey but the name on front and working together to get the win. It is not about individual stats. Each player has a versatile role on the team and is held accountable for mistakes on the field and not preparing for the game at the highest standard. Each opponent is to be viewed as top priority no matter what their record might be. There are development programs to help evolve players and help them grow. The Patriots are really good at finding raw talent that others over look and developing them to a championship caliber.

Optopreneurs Take Home Message
Optopreneurs must wear multiple hats to be successful in their business. The success of that business is only as good as the employees that you have. You need to have that vision to direction that you want to take your career and business but you can’t get there alone. You need to develop a diverse team that has the ability to be trained and developed to be better.

2. Always a Room for Improvement (#NotDone) 
We always will hear at the press conferences after a win or lose that there is a room for improvement and adjustment. The Patriots Leadership team does not focus on past successes but will focus on the present situation and understanding adaptability and hard work will continue to create a better team.

Optopreneurs Take Home Message
Having a policy of open communication is very important to ask for feedback on what others in the office or organization like or dislike. Asking all team members for input no matter what level, will help provide insights for individuals and organizations growth. You are only as good as the people on your team. You give credit where credit is due.
Even if the office is doing very well, the philosophy should be we could always do better and it starts from the OD business owner being open to feedback on efficiency, patient communication or overall practice management. Different perspectives help grow businesses and will prepare them to better handle competition when the industry changes.

3. Resiliency and Urgency is a Mindset ( #AbovetheNoise, #Lets Go!)
Since 2001, the Patriots have always continued to reinvent themselves. Having a game plan and executing it is critical to the game, but what if that plan is not working do you continue to keep that strategy if you are behind? Resiliency is a mental part of the game. Being able to bounce back during a stressful situation separates the Patriots from others in the league. Resiliency has won key games for the Patriots whether it be fourth quarter comeback or winning a Super Bowl in overtime.
Urgency to get better at a personal level and evolve the team whether it be through trades, restructing contracts with players to be able to bring other leaders into the organization that will improve the “long term game”.

Optopreneurs Take Home Message
The importance of business resiliency and urgency is a mindset that starts with you! Being confident in your business strategy and being able to adjust it as each quarter comes to a close is vital to your business success. Tracking your numbers and understanding the business metrics of a practice and how you compare to the national average or have an idea of your local competitors can help you adapt to inhibiting factors that reduce your business success.
Not waiting too long to make an adjustment is a sense of urgency for a business. Being the first office in the area to introduce the latest technology or services to the community is a way to innovate your office and stay ahead of the curve. Reframing from a failing business strategy and understanding the end goal will lead your business into the “Optometry Super Bowl”. Don’t let outside “noise” of what could happen in the future of optometry deter your road to success. As Bill Belichick would say “We are on to next week’s game”. Don’t let failure be the focus; focus on the next strategy with a sense of urgency. The strategy development should be done as of yesterday to separate your office from others. It is a level of high commitment and selfless leadership. You will have to make sacrifices as the leader of that office to guarantee being the “feared” office in the area among your competitors. Are you ready for the challenge?

What Can A Recruiter Do For You in Corporate Optometry?

Being active in your search for the right job in corporate optometry is imperative to landing the best job in the first place, but what can a recruiter do for to help you in that search? Recruiters often work with hiring managers or specific companies to find the perfect person to fit an open position. Let’s consider four ways they do.

1. Recruiters want to help you get the job. They are consistently looking for someone that fits the position and what you want to do is present yourself in a way that is complete. Talk to the optical manager of that location or even the past OD. Discussing the opportunity with the regional manager can help as well , to make sure that all the information you’re being relayed is straight forward.

2. They know the company’s interests. The recruiters know exactly what the company is looking for and can offer your valuable insight on how to market yourself. Recruiters can help you understand what is happening within the company’s culture and what a day in the workplace might be like. Ask about how many days a week are best for availability and what the flexibility is for that. Understand that they do work for the corporation, so they have guidelines that they have to follow. If its an outside company recruiter, then they have different options. If the location has been dark for a long time, then your chances of getting what you want from that company are better than a location that has three or four candidates looking at it.

3. The recruiter can’t tell you everything, but they can guide you. One thing you can do is ask the recruiter if they can share any feedback. Recruiters are a great resource for information that you don’t know about. You can ask them what you can do for your resume could stand out, or what you can add to your resume to be able to take over a profitable sublease location or employment position. Many young ODs may not have all the answers, but the recruiters are able to guide you. Just remember that it is your responsibility to do your homework. Talk to doctors within your area about what your starting point salary should be because that is one thing a recruiter can’t tell you about. Take advantage of their suggestions. If they recommend a resume change, this will help you in your search for the right position. Get some insight from them.

4. A recruiter can help you get what you want. If you are clear and honest with your recruiter, they can help you get the flexibility and pay that you are looking for. In the same way you need to be clear about what you don’t want. If you’re looking for certain days, hours, or earnings the recruiter can work with you. They can discuss your compensation and relay your requests to the employer. They also know job openings before those positions are posted.