Later this year, Look + See Eye Care will take over the vacant condo next-door along the riverfront in downtown Minneapolis. This is the second time Sarah Jerome, OD, will expand her office. The original space where she started the practice cold in 2004 was located three blocks away with one exam room and 1,400 square feet. Eight years later, in February 2011, Dr. Jerome opened the doors to her new office and doubled her space, and she says that she has no doubt that she made the right decision investing in her business. “There is greater visibility and word of mouth for our new, bigger space,” Dr. Jerome says of the relocation for her practice Look + See Eye Care. Within a year of the move, overall growth of the practice, exams and optical revenue were up 30 percent from the previous year. “We had such a great return on investment.”
The original renovation of the new space took just a few months in late 2010, and Dr. Jerome worked with friends who helped map out the blueprint, as well as local designers who built her Scandinavian-style cabinets and frame displays. The current Look + See Eye Care office is located in the first floor of a residential condo building and brings the outside indoors through large, floor-to-ceiling windows. Dr. Jerome replicated the clean, modern look from her former office. “I wanted the interior to be an inviting place where people felt comfortable and warm.” She regularly gets comments and questions from patients about the décor, particularly the lighting fixtures. “They like the design and how welcoming it is.”
Dr. Jerome welcomed an associate OD to her team shortly after the move. The optical dispensary displays 900 frames, three times as many as in her former space. “We are absolutely capturing more sales,” Dr. Jerome says. In the original office, the pretesting area was cramped with a retinal camera and visual field analyzer. A room is designated for special testing in the new office, and Dr. Jerome has added an optical coherence tomography unit and a topographer. The new office also has a break room to give employees a chance to relax and also gather for meetings.
While growth has slowed down since the move, it does continue steadily—warranting the expansion to another condo unit. “The response was far more than I ever could have expected,” Dr. Jerome. “There’s a buzz in the neighborhood and among our patients that this is a great practice.”