Optical Retail Success 110


Tasty, weekly nuggets of random goodness; tips, stories, and science hand-picked to help you find the most success in your optical retail business/career.



The undeserving maintain power by promoting hysteria.
—Frank Herbert



Blue Light Hysteria

Stop or you’ll go blind!

There’s a new round of blue-light hysteria and you can trace it back to a paper published last month in the journal Scientific Reports. It showed that a molecule key for sensing light in the eye, called retinal, combined with blue light, can damage and kill cells.

So I asked the paper’s senior author, chemist Ajith Karunarathne at the University of Toledo in Ohio, whether his results mean that staring at my tablet or iPhone will make me go blind. His answer was simple: “Absolutely not.”



Opening Eyez


Earlier this week we posted a lens photo on Instagram that included a piece of San Francisco street art, from an artist named Peat Wollaeger. Peat’s art and his tag @Eyez led me to a TED talk Peat did telling the story of his art and how he became known for his Eyez.  


If I had a store anywhere near St. Louis, I’d be looking for Peat to discuss commissioning a mural, not only because it’s cool, but because of the Instagram-ability—a built-in marketing strategy that drives itself. 



Space to Grow


In just another example of vision technology moving into the future, NASA is getting into the remote vision testing and diagnostic game. These devices will allow NASA scientists to detect, monitor progression and guide medical interventions for vision issues astronauts are experiencing on long-duration deep space missions.


Also, published in the science journal Nature Medicine, a study reports that DeepMind has trained its algorithms to detect over 50 sight-threatening conditions to the same accuracy as expert clinicians. It's also capable of correctly recommending the most appropriate course of action for patients and prioritize those in most urgent need of care.


So, when the robots (or AI, or Amazon) come for your job, what are you going to do?

Solomon says future-focused young professionals should look for jobs that are imbued with humanity, and are fueled by our capacity for empathy, emotion, and creativity.


You may be tempted to shrug it off thinking, “That’s the very definition of opticianry. We’re good.” On the surface that seems true. However, if you take a deeper look and consider the lack of knowledge in so many opticians (no, that’s not an argument for licensing), the inefficiencies and unpleasantness of the eyewear buying process, and the lengths people will go to in order to shortcut or avoid it altogether, it’s clear there isn’t nearly enough empathy or creativity.



Fork in The Eye

There are two paths, really:

"I will serve just enough to make the maximum profit"


"I will profit just enough to provide the maximum service."

—Seth Godin

The first one works well in the short-term, the second one has a longer view in mind.



Your Brain on Complain... ing

The human brain is remarkably malleable. It can be shaped very much like a ball of Play-Doh, albeit with a bit more time and effort.


Within the last 20 years, thanks to rapid development in brain imaging and neuroscience, we can now say for certain that the brain is capable of re-engineering.


We can increase our intelligence (IQ); learn new, life-changing skills; recover from certain types of brain damage; become more emotionally intelligent (EQ); and “unlearn” harmful behaviors, beliefs, and habits.

On the other side of the coin, we can also re-engineer our brain for the worse.



Fortunately, there better alternatives than complaining: Learning to see problems as opportunities.

Unfortunately, making the shift from chronic-complainer to solution-seeker is about as easy as making the change from junk-food addicted couch potato to vegan exercise enthusiast.

That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.

If you’re still not convinced, there’s this: Complaining on social media could cost you your job.



Video of The Week:  Converting A Muilt-focal Rx to A Single Vision Reader

This week we cover the steps of converting a distance eyeglass prescription with a given add power to a single vision reader. Here are step-by-step examples of the simple math involved in making that conversion.



Through the OpticianWorks free video lessons, Laramy-K Optical is making every effort to provide better and more accessible education for opticians everywhere, but we’re only able to do it with your support.

You can help keep it going in two ways:

Become a paid-member of OpticianWorks.com for access to the best in online optician training (The videos are only a small portion).

Or, even better, open a Laramy-K Optical lab account for the very best in independent uncut work and we'll throw in the OpticianWorks memberships for free! Your customers and your staff will thank you!


I hope you enjoyed this edition of Optical Retail Success.   

Here’s to your success in this year and beyond. 

Thanks for reading and sharing!