This week the newest inductees into the Baseball Hall of Fame were announced, including the first-ever unanimous selection, Mariano Rivera. I expect that when he gets to make his acceptance speech in Cooperstown, he will focus on those who helped him along the way. Family, managers, teammates, and I expect even some of his competitors.
We all have those people who have been there for us – to help us learn from their own experiences, demonstrate how they overcame similar challenges we face, share what worked for them in their career and in their business.
At NCPA, we know how valuable peer-to-peer learning is, and we do our best to incorporate it in all our various programs and meetings. Nowhere is this truer than at the NCPA Multiple Locations Conference. This year we will be at the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach in Florida, Feb. 27-March 2.
As you might expect, I often get questions about NCPA. Questions like, what goes on at NCPA's MLC meeting? I always start my response by saying that MLC is truly unlike any other meeting you have ever been to. Here are what I cite as examples of its uniqueness:
Everybody is together and interacting in a single program – Our presenters and discussion leaders have plenty of substance to share, but it doesn't stop there. You'll get just as much from the Q&A dialogue that follows. And I'd bet you'll find yourself sharing something that others will take home and benefit from.
Take 5! – New this year: Owners will take five minutes to share something that is working well for them and then interact with everyone about it for 10 minutes.
Shoot the Breeze™ – All pharmacy owners in attendance sit in a large circle and have an open bull session. What is selling well for you? How are you handling specific challenges? Here's what I've done to lower my costs and increase my sales.
One-on-one conversations – After all of this, there is no doubt you will hear something from someone that you will want to learn more about, and MLC has plenty of time and opportunity for that follow-up too. The feeling of camaraderie and desire to see each other succeed is palpable.
(Quick Baseball Hall of Fame commentary intermission: Mariano Rivera is the first player in history to receive 100 percent of the HoF vote. He is well deserving, but how in the world did Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, Cal Ripken, George Brett, etc., not get 100 percent as well? Discuss.)
This year we have a great mix of topics to help your business, with interaction led by outside experts and by your peers. We'll spend time focused on your business culture, getting the most out of your staff, lowering your costs and finding opportunities with self-insured health benefit plans, and dealing with a marketplace that now includes the Amazon/PillPack combination. We'll wrap up by discussing activities related to NCPA's Wildly Important Goal of changing the pharmacy payment model through advocacy and market opportunities like CPESN® USA.
Just this week, an NCPA staffer was talking with an NCPA member who mentioned that some of the other owners he had relied on for years for their peer-to-peer perspective have retired. He is now making plans to be in Clearwater to refresh his network he can call on through the year. I invite you to join him and me for a few days at the end of next month.
I can honestly tell you this: You and your business will benefit.
See you there!