Episode 65

Bridging the Gap: Communication Techniques for Interacting with Different Generations In Your Practice.

by Ophthalmology Business Academy | February 22, 2024

Modern ophthalmology practices comprise diverse teams spanning generations, each with unique communication preferences and styles. Understanding and navigating these differences is crucial for fostering collaboration, achieving practice goals, and building strong team relationships.

This unique episode on our podcast brings four masterminds, practice management experts Sarah, Guido, Jane, and Brittany, together to give you their combined expertise, real-world experiences, and proven strategies that are super helpful in overcoming communication challenges faced by Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Baby Boomers in your practice.


  • 00:01:00 – Introduction: Getting Started in Ophthalmology
  • 00:09:23 – Navigating Generational Challenges
    • Exploring the unique challenges encountered while working with different generations within the ophthalmic practice and strategies for overcoming them
  • 00:17:25 – Understanding and Adapting Communication Styles
    • Discussing the importance of recognizing and balancing different communication styles within the practice environment.
  • 00:25:23 – Enhancing Staff Communication and Motivation
    • Exploring effective strategies implemented within ophthalmology practices to improve communication and motivation across different generations of staff.
  • 00:41:39 – Strategies for Bridging Generational Gaps
    • Drawing on Jane’s extensive experience visiting multiple practices to highlight successful strategies for bridging generational differences.
  • 00:44:20 – Addressing Generational Dynamics Among Ophthalmologists
    • Examining the unique dynamics and challenges arising from generational differences among ophthalmologists, with insights on effective approaches for fostering collaboration.
  • 00:51:52 – Concluding remarks and key takeaways on navigating generational diversity within the ophthalmic industry

Listen to this Episode on

Sarah Duval, COE, COA

Sarah Duval

Operation Sight Program Manager
ASCRS Foundation

Sarah Duval, COE, COA, is the Program Manager for Operation Sight, the ASCRS Foundation’s U.S. based charitable cataract surgery program, which serves financially vulnerable, uninsured individuals who cannot afford or access care.   After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of New Hampshire in May 2001, she began her career in ophthalmology in June as the Refractive Surgery Coordinator at Concord Eye Care in Concord, NH. 

She quickly realized that she was intrigued by ophthalmology and could see a strong career path forward in the industry, and she decided to learn many aspects of the business. As the refractive surgeon started slowing down toward retirement, Sarah looked to fill her time with additional skills and duties and trained to be a technician. As a technician, she focused primarily on diagnostic testing and photography, including retinal angiography, eventually earning the COA credential. Her role as a technician morphed into being a cataract surgery counselor, mainly focusing on the education and growth of the advanced technology IOLs. Through her savvy promotion of ATIOLs, and ability to connect easily with patients, she was recognized as having an aptitude for marketing. She was promoted to marketing coordinator, acting as a liaison to the outside marketing agency the practice had retained. During this time, Concord Eye Care merged with another practice, creating Concord Eye Center, and Ms. Duval played a part in the marketing and direction of the merger. Soon after, she replaced the agency as the Marketing and Business Development Director.

In October 2020, Sarah earned the elite Certified Ophthalmic Executive credential through ASOA and was soon after elected to the National Board for the Certification of Ophthalmic Executives (NBCOE) where she held the position of Vice President. In addition to her role on the NBCOE, she has been an active ASOA volunteer, having served on the annual meeting program committee, the Administrative Eyecare Editorial Advisory Board, and the webinar and podcast taskforce. She has authored articles for Administrative Eyecare magazine, presented at the ASOA annual meeting on more than one occasion and has participated in panel discussions on webinars and virtual roundtables.

She lives in a small New Hampshire town outside of Concord with her teenage son, John.

Connect with Sarah

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/sarah-l-duval-coe-coa

Guido Piquet

Guido Piquet

Chief Operations Officer at Mann Eye Institute

Guido Piquet is the Chief Operations Officer for Mann Eye Institute in Houston and Austin, TX. Entering the world of Ophthalmology in 2006, Guido began his career as the IT Director for the practice. Since that time, he has learned about all aspects of managing an Ophthalmic practice by taking on different roles within the organization. In 2011 Guido took a Clinic Manager position in one of the largest practice locations in Katy, TX. He credits his time there for learning the business of Ophthalmology from the inside out.

Guido’s leadership approach has always focused on building those around him. He learned from one of his mentors early in his career that a leader’s job is to surround themselves with the best and the brightest people. Only by creating an environment for the development of those around you can a leader find true success. In 2016, Guido’s advancement in the field and leadership skills helped to propel him into the role of Chief Operations Officer so that he could help others find the same path to success. In his tenure, the practice has more than doubled in size, opened new offices through acquisition and organic growth, been involved in new construction projects, opened Ambulatory Surgery Centers and is currently working on an Office-Based Surgery project in Austin, and successfully navigated the challenges of the COVID pandemic with the practice emerging stronger than before.

Guido has a passion for education and, more importantly, continuing education formally and through networking with peers across the country. In 2001 Guido graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Houston. He has recently been involved in the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators. He successfully completed their Certified Ophthalmic Executive certification in 2020 and actively attends annual meetings and continuing education events. Mann Eye Institute is also a member of a group of top practices from across the country that meets twice per year to network, listen to industry-leading speakers, and learn from each other. In 2020, Guido decided to further his formal education by entering the Master of Business Administration program at the Jack Welch Management Institute. He is close to graduating and has loved the program, truly being able to experience their motto of “Learn it today, apply it tomorrow.”

Outside of his professional career, Guido enjoys spending time with his wife Dianna (Licensed Professional Counselor – Associate) and their two teenage daughters and enjoying the qui

Connect with Guido

Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/guidopiquet

Brittany Williams, COE, COA

Practice Administrator

Energetic and dedicated, Brittany Williams is a seasoned professional in the field of ophthalmology, currently serving as a Practice Administrator in Vision Institute. With a decade of comprehensive experience in various capacities within optometric and ophthalmic offices, Brittany brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her role.

Brittany obtained certification as a Certified Ophthalmic Executive (COE) in July 2021, further solidifying her credentials in practice administration. Prior to this, Brittaney earned the Certified Ophthalmic Assistant (COA) certification in February 2020.

Brittany’s passion for advancing the field extends beyond her daily responsibilities. She has actively contributed to the industry through her involvement in prestigious organizations. Serving as an Editorial Board Member for the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators (ASOA) from 2020 to 2022, Brittany has played a pivotal role in shaping discussions and disseminating knowledge within the community.

Moreover, Brittany has held esteemed leadership positions within the National Board for the Certification of Ophthalmic Executives (NBCOE). Her tenure as a Board Member in 2022-2023, followed by assuming the roles of Vice President in May 2023 and President from 2023 to 2025, underscores her exemplary leadership qualities and dedication to advancing the profession. Driven by a genuine passion for enhancing patient care and operational efficiency, Brittany continues to inspire and lead within the ophthalmic community. Her commitment to excellence, coupled with her extensive experience and leadership acumen, positions Brittany as a trusted authority in ophthalmic practice administration.

Connect with Brittany

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/brittany-williams-coe-coa

Jane Shuman

President and Founder of Eyetechs, Inc.

Jane T. Shuman, MSM, COT, COE, OCS, CMSS, President and Founder of Eyetechs, Inc., is a nationally recognized authority on clinical flow, scheduling and technician education. She worked in a high volume ophthalmology practice for over fifteen years and founded Eyetechs Inc. in 1999.

During her work as an Ophthalmic Technician and Clinical Manager, Jane has seen firsthand the many important issues confronting today’s busy ophthalmology practices. Based on her past experiences, she has learned how the proper schedule and competent technicians positively impact patient flow by decreasing wait times and increasing volume and practice revenue.

Jane has taught countless seminars on the integral aspects of today’s busy ophthalmic practice, including the annual conferences of both the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators. Jane is the current Director of the Nursing and Allied Health Program of the Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting and was recently named Co-Editor in Chief of Ophthalmic Professional. Previously, she served as the Director of the Massachusetts Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons Ophthalmic Technician Training Program, helping to earn the 2002 and 2008 AAO State Affairs Star Award for Programs for Ophthalmic Administrators and Technicians. She was also a Member-at-Large on the Board of Directors of the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators.

Jane has published numerous articles that can be found in many publications such as Review of Ophthalmology, Administrative Eyecare, Ophthalmology Management and Eyeworld. JCAHPO approved online courses can be found on the BSM Connection for Ophthalmology website.

Connect with Jane

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/jane-shuman-eyetechs

Website: https://www.eyetechs.com/


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