"What made you decide to start doing house calls?"

Doing house calls was the furthest thing I thought I would be doing when I graduated from chiropractic school in the fall of 2014. My plan was like many other young grads: work as an associate or start my own practice. I chose to go with the former. Having interned with two clinics while in grad school I learned some basics of running a practice from two seasoned docs in the twin cities and then a machine of a practice down in Dallas Forth Worth area Texas. The second practice I deliberately sought out for two reasons: Warm weather and Practice Management.


Every industry including chiropractic has management consultants that are there to help the practice owners build a profitable practice. These consultants are basically using a licensing model from their successful days in practice and applying it to their clients. I sought this practice out along with my first year as an associate strictly to learn the business that is chiropractic. And it is a business. Something they do not teach in school. What I found was that I actually enjoyed the business side that is chiropractic. Maybe even more than chiropractic.


Fast forward to my associate position that I took because there was lots of training, external marketing, and personal development. This practice was quite successful boasting 500+ patient visits a week! I wasn't treating patients to often (maybe 30 or so a week) I was doing exams, shooting x rays, and floating around the front office to take calls, schedule patients, and process payments.


Now all of this is some quick background as to how I got into house calls. In 2015 my dad had suffered from a heart attack and was in the ICU for about a week before he passed away. I remember the call at 3AM on a tuesday or wednesday. Being all the way down in central Texas there wasn't much I could do for my family 16 hours away in South Dakota. A few hours later I made the drive back to South Dakota.


About a week prior to my dad passing my dog Daisy had died. She was rescue from Dakota Dachshund Rescue and her death I believe was hard on my dad and certainly was a correlation to his heart attack. A few months later my Grandpa had passed away!


These deaths, which all occurred in about a 3 month period, as well as being a burnt out associate making very little money was the prelude to me quitting my job. I had never quit a job before, it was surreal in the moment. Even my boss who after telling me I was replaceable was shocked (To be fair he wasn't wrong). I remember him asking me, "Are you sure about this?." To which I responded with a resounding, "yep!" I actually think I finished out the day. It was a Friday afternoon so maybe an hour or two left in the day. There was a little poetic justice however a few weeks to months afterwards as I believe the entire staff left shortly after I quit. I remember getting home to my apartment and calling my mom telling her I had quit. She was unsurprisingly supportive asking me what the plan was now?


That's when I started looking into doing house calls. I had just graduated from school with a mountain of debt. There was no way any self respecting bank would give me a business loan. My family doesn't come from money so there would be zero collateral. I googled a lot of states using the search term "Alabama . . . Alaska . . . Arizona House Call Chiropractic" and really couldn't find much on chiropractic house calls circa 2015. But I created an action item list of what I had to do everyday for the next two weeks to get moving on with my life. From letting the property management know I would be moving, letting the Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners know I was moving, informing my malpractice that I was moving to South Dakota, applying and getting licensed to practice in South Dakota, forming an LLC (Don't ever do and LLC haha) etc. etc. *


I wasn't really sure what I wanted in life at that point but I did know what I didn't want. I hated Texas, I hated working for someone else, and I hated what my mom and sisters were dealing with by themselves. I guess I mean to say, I just missed home.


Fast forward to launching the little house call practice that is MyChiro I was initially met with some mockery and contempt from colleagues. Probably still to this day, but I don't really care. I started doing house calls strictly out of necessity. I had to work on my own and I didn't have money. 6 years later still doing it and have a decent base of regulars that I see every week. The reason I keep doing it is because my costs are pretty low, people really like the convenience, and it's unique. No one does what I do (in Sioux Falls currently).

 

Plans for the future

Plans for the future are to continue delivering convenient chiropractic care into the comfort of peoples homes or offices. Maybe some day I'll grow up and get an office. But I do like not being tied down to an office all day. I'm quite agile and can work whenever I want. My father passing away at reasonably young age (51) sort of woke me up to the reality is that we don't have that much time on earth. You spend your life working to eventually save up enough money to buy back your time, which is of course is priceless.


I'll leave you with a quote from one of my favorite authors Morgan House:


"Money's greatest intrinsic value - and this can't be overstated - is its ability to give you control over your time. . . Use money to gain control over your time, because not having control of your time is such a powerful and universal drag on happiness. The ability to do what you want, when you want, with who you want, for as lalng as you want to, pays the highest dividend that exists in finance."


* A quick side note: if you want to be productive create a list every night or day and attack it like your life depends on it. I believe this is what the most productive people do. It is self rewarding crossing things off and getting stuff done. You'd be surprised how much you can accomplish.


Lucas Marchand, DC



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