As a pharmacy owner, there are many things you do that are so routine it may not occur to you that a new owner could benefit from your knowledge. Certainly, a new owner will want to put their own stamp on the business and may change the operation but understanding how things were done in the past will help them formulate and implement the new procedures. Here is a list of a few things a new owner might want to know.
- Is there anything special you do for certain customers? Perhaps Henry always pays his bill on the first of the month, Irene always wants her prescriptions in large bottles, Harry never wants patient information leaflets in his bag, Charlotte never wants her daughter to pick up her prescriptions, and so on. Hopefully, there are notes in the patient’s profile to help with this, but any heads up you can give the new owner will save a difficult situation.
- Is there any special consideration give to any doctors or facilities? Maybe Dr. Wolf gets a 10% discount on vitamins, Dr. Owens gets office supplies at 15% over cost, we take lunch to the assisted living administrators the first Friday of each month, etc.
- What are the policies for deliveries and for whom do you make exceptions? Mary is a great customer but can not get the concept of next day delivery, so we always just take hers on the same day. We say the delivery area is 5 miles, but we do go to the town that is 10 miles away.
- Who are the key personnel, what do they do, and what is important to them? Maybe Sally is a great data entry person but does not like to talk to customers, Brenda always takes care of the inventory, Marsha does the daily deposits, etc. It is also important to understand what is important to the staff. Is there a certain day off or hours that has been promised? Is a Christmas bonus expected?
- Where are all the old documents and files stored and how are they organized?
- How does the pricing model work and how is it set up in the computer system?
- Are there specials OTC items that must be carried or that sell exceptionally well?
- How does the security system work? How can I play back the recordings?
- Do you have a list of contact information for all vendors?
- Are there certain charity or community events that the store has always supported?
- What are the compounding procedures and stands that are in place?
No matter how hard you try, there are bound to be questions that arise in the first few months of transition. Just being available to answer them is extremely valuable to the new owner. While all of this is helpful, the best thing you can do as you pass on the store to a new owner is to be supportive and positive. You will find yourself in a position where customers or staff will say to you “things are not the same since you are gone”. It is so important you do all you can to assure them it will be fine. If there are any patients or doctors with which you have a special relationship, an introduction to the new owner will be very helpful. You worked so hard over the years to make the store successful and it can be very satisfying to see it continue to be a valuable asset to the community. Knowledge of the “little things” can make a big difference.