December 21, 2022

Episode #58: Chris Antypas – Perigon Pharmacy

Christopher Antypas is currently serving as President at Asti’s South Hills Pharmacy, a retail pharmacy that is pushing the boundaries of community pharmacy practice. A native of Pittsburgh, Chris earned his Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy, and has extensive experience in a variety of pharmacy practice settings. In addition to his role at Asti’s, he owns and operates 2 additional pharmacies in Pittsburgh, PA that each serve a unique patient population. His pharmacies include a specialty pharmacy that supports patients suffering from complex conditions by providing specialty therapies, as well as a long-term care pharmacy that services patients residing in a facility.

In addition to his experience as a business owner, manager, and clinician, Chris is practicing as a pharmacy consultant and adviser. He is presently the Director of Pharmacy Solutions for Henderson Brothers, Inc., an insurance and benefits brokerage/consulting firm in Pittsburgh. In this role, Chris helps to support large, self-funded employers manage their pharmacy benefit with thoughtful and innovative strategies.

Chris currently serves as President-Elect of the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association and also sits on the advisory board for both Value Drug Company and Prescribe Wellness. He has been named as a Luminary for The Community Pharmacy Enhanced Service Network (CPESN) as well as The Pennsylvania Pharmacists Care Network (PPCN), and in this capacity, he is helping to reshape community pharmacy practice with innovation and cutting-edge pharmacy care. Known for his commitment to advance pharmacy practice, Chris has been invited to speak nationally and regionally on a variety of pharmacy topics. Chris was recently honored to be named the 2019 ‘Pharmacist of the Year’ by the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association, and in October of 2020, Chris was named the ‘Next Generation Pharmacist – Entrepreneur of the Year’.

Pharmacy has been a life’s passion for Chris, and when he’s not solving medication related problems, he enjoys every minute with his wife and 3 children in the South Hills of Pittsburgh.

Transcript

hello this is coach Tim Campsalll and I’m your host for the self-made is a myth make a difference together show where we’re talking with successful business owners to hear their story of the journey to building their business and because we know that achieving success in business is not something that we can do on our own we recognize the folks that have helped us to excel today I’m excited to have a fellow business owner from Pennsylvania with us today my guest plays Adult Hockey which is so cool being a Canadian so that’s awesome I’m going to ask him a little bit more about that he loves spending time with his family and he is most proud of his children and as well as his father who immigrated here from the Middle East and built a prosperous life for himself and his family it is my pleasure to welcome Chris to the show today hello Chris hello good morning so hey um I’m from Canada originally so I just love the fact that you play hockey tell us a little bit about that how did you get into it yeah this is going back from when I was a young lad in my neighborhood a couple of the kids in the neighborhood we just really enjoyed hockey and there was a one driveway that we played religiously it was even if it was raining rain or shine we were playing hockey together so most of my childhood I spent playing hockey on Rollerblades roller hockey and when I was able to uh get ice skates and learn how to ice skate transfer that to the ice and I it’s a it’s a habit I haven’t been able to kick and now when I’m I feel like I’m way too old to play the game because these teenagers or early 20s and yeah it’s as if their body is made of metal and then I look to the other side and I see a 60 year old guy that’s busting tail and I say I guess I don’t have anything to complain about it a lot of hockey left to play I hope I love it well hey because let’s start by having you introduce yourself tell us a little bit of your personal story like where you’re born where you live and about your family yeah so uh Chris antipass I’m a pharmacist and I currently live in southwestern Pennsylvania uh I was born in Ohio but uh soon after I was born my family uh settled down in southwestern Pennsylvania and grew up in the suburbs of Pittsburgh and ultimately went to college at the University of Pittsburgh and studied Pharmacy all along throughout my high school career and then during college I I wanted to be a pharmacist I worked in a pharmacy and a family-owned Pharmacy and I just had a strong desire to follow that path of being an independent pharmacist and to build a business around helping people taking care of people and Pharmacy had a number of unique qualities that were really appealing at the time didn’t really know much about business but I I lived with the philosophy that if all of these other people are doing it I I should be able to do it and uh so I pursued that professionally uh I have a couple of siblings and two sisters an older brother and uh very family focused our uh I’m an antiochian orthodox Orthodox Christian a church is a really important part of uh of Our Lives and that’s coming from my father and mother who uh made sure this is going back to the story about hockey uh we I didn’t I started ice hockey a little bit later because then my friends because at the early ages practice was always Sunday morning and Sunday morning was reserved only for church and nothing else so uh it’s a it was a lesson that I will never forget and really important I think to remind me about priorities but uh if I’m not working I’m with my family either at church or just hanging out uh you know enjoying them growing up and having fun and being goofy I love it Chris what’s a funny story that your family likes to tell about you that you’d be willing to share with us today uh yeah the couple that I probably shouldn’t share those are the perfect ones yeah I know my family loves to uh I love to have a good time I love to joke but uh it’s fun when I am now a father I have three kids uh they’re young they’re growing it’s it’s it’s an incredible journey but uh I I love to complain about how my kids terrorize all of my stuff and so my family loves to tell stories about how I was a maniac when I was a kid and especially as we approach Christmas uh some of the goofy things I’ve done and how I would destroy everything rip into pregnancy and they like to show me video evidence of said destruction so my dad enjoys rubbing that in my face and it brings me down a few notches from my uh frustration with my own kids that’s awesome though Chris tell us how the business came about net what time did you have the confidence that you could run your own business yeah so in the pharmacy industry uh being a pharmacy owner it it’s it’s a really personal decision where people choose to get their medicines the pharmacy industry uh likes to paint Pharmacy as more of a commodity and getting your medications is pretty much like getting anything from a vending machine you find one that’s the lowest cost or you find it a vending machine that’s convenient and you just go and get your medications working at an independent pharmacy at a young age uh showed me that Pharmacy is more of a personal and like I said intimate relationship where it’s far more than just convenience and it’s certainly far more than about price and so I was really attracted to the relationship aspect of being someone’s personal pharmacist being someone that they could rely on and really trust and reach out to when they really needed help the most so I I knew and as I said I had this philosophy of uh if other people are doing it I don’t want to sell myself short I’m confident that I can do it and I had the fortune of working at a pharmacy where I had a tremendous Mentor in fact a couple mentors at that Pharmacy uh and so when I graduated pharmacy school I where where most of my friends were looking to get their first job uh I was really eager and interested to be a pharmacy owner and that can that can happen two ways you can start a pharmacy from scratch or you can acquire a pharmacy that is already in existence and most existing uh established communities uh it’s it’s more challenging to start a pharmacy from scratch in an established Community versus going to an area or being in an area where there’s significant growth people moving in new people living in a community that are searching for a pharmacy that might be an area where you could start one from scratch and be successful at the end of the day you could be successful anywhere just rules of thumb uh southwestern Pennsylvania is a really really old Community not a lot of growth a lot of history and so I wanted to stay here with my family and after a couple years of searching I found a pharmacy that was essentially on the market uh and I along with my father uh approached the business owners my now Partners Dan and Jen Asti and we negotiated to actually buy half of their business and that came about in this journey started in about 2012 and we closed on our deal in about 2014. awesome fantastic what a great story so tell us um a little bit more about your company how do you uh how do you uh serve your your customers and what makes you guys unique yeah so from that time in 2014 the pharmacy is called asti’s South Hills Pharmacy and it’s named after my partners Dan and Jen Asti who they have a great story as well they actually started that pharmacy from scratch in 2005. grew it to really a very highly impressive and unique volumes and then my father and I stepped in as that it became a really large burden for them to bear on their own as owners so they cashed out a portion of their business uh we paid them uh for for half of the business and since that time the pharmacy has grown uh as a retail pharmacy we service traditional prescriptions where folks walk in get their prescriptions filled but we really have stepped up our services to be more than just a place where people come to get their prescriptions we we offer a variety of other enhanced services to make their life easier using medications services Like Home Delivery where we’ll have one of our employees hand deliver their medications to someone’s home we offer medication compounding so when medications are either not available or a formulation just doesn’t exist think of a child that can’t swallow a tablet or a capsule making that a liquid for them or preparing a cream from medications that just don’t exist as a commercially available product it’s a very patient-specific preparation that we mix in a in a certified laboratory called a compounding lab we offer special packaging for patients to help them remember to take their meds appropriately do you think if you have anyone or listeners that have any uh family members that take more than three four five medications it can be difficult to remember what to take when to take it and most people often have a little pill box that once a week they fill up their little pill box at home and they take their meds our Pharmacy provides essentially a disposable pill box that our staff fills on their behalf oh wow so a number of services aimed to improve health building relationships with our customers and patients and that business has grown to where we’ve added a couple other pharmacies one is a pharmacy that is a closed door Pharmacy servicing nursing homes and assisted living facilities where nurses or aides help patients take their meds directly we also have a pharmacy located in a medical clinic that Services the patients of that clinic and is dedicated for the management treatment and prevention of STDs and we also started a specialty pharmacy in 2016 and especially Pharmacy our Specialty Pharmacy is licensed in all 50 states and we’re dual accredited with the highest accrediting bodies for that industry and it focuses on high cost and highly complex therapies that are used to treat rare diseases in some cases cancer cystic fibrosis some conditions that where these therapies can be you know hundreds of thousands of dollars per patient per year and they require expert clinical knowledge as well as really you know strong logistical handling of drugs that are very temperature sensitive Etc so a lot going on within all of these pharmacies servicing unique unique patient uh you know patient clientele and it’s all aimed at bringing value to the patients to their providers to their families and to other stakeholders in the pharmacy industry fantastic wow what a a breadth of of awesome services to be able to help the community I love that you guys are sounds like you’re really thinking differently about how to how to serve your customers in a way that meets their needs for sure yeah and it’s it’s when you come to the realization part part of the the reality here is that if you don’t have experience dealing with a complex medication regimen we have some patients that take 20 different medications per day when you experience the challenge of navigating that uh you really appreciate any type of help managing your meds and that’s kind of the niche that we’re focused on we we’re not going to be the most convenient drive through you know transactional Pharmacy but we have demonstrated that if you’re looking for personal dedicated high quality service and services to help you be healthier our Pharmacy you know really our Niche is taking care of that part of the community and it’s proven to be very uh successful so far fantastic so um Chris tell us uh what share a story of where someone pushed you or inspired you that you could do it even though maybe you didn’t think you could and the impact that that person had on you yeah I mean I can think of a few uh a few people that fell into that category and I would say that the most profound would probably be my business partner Dan Asti and coming into the pharmacy prior to purchasing it uh when you looked at the pharmacy on paper it was almost unbelievable that a pharmacy in a little community in the South Hills of Pittsburgh was doing the kind of things that this Pharmacy was doing and in fact it’s interesting because I I needed to secure a loan to purchase this business right it was a big loan because the pharmacy was uh in the you know highest tier of performers nationally I mean this was not a small Pharmacy when I came in and became a partner and when I was talking and working with the bank it’s a bank that was really dedicated to uh Pharmacy businesses and a couple other health care verticals Dentistry Etc and they had pharmacists that were former Pharmacy owners experts in Pharmacy that did their diligence before they released a loan they weren’t going to loan a pharmacist money to buy a business unless they knew that it was good and it was all you know they did all of their diligence and I remember to do that they wanted to do a secret shopping experience at the pharmacy and really see what was going on because when they look at it on paper they said this is just not a pharmacy you typically see something’s not right yeah and when they walked into that Pharmacy uh they had a mind-blowing experience and when they that later that day I got a call from one of the these loan officers this gentleman from this gentleman from the bank and he said you know I was I’ve been telling you all along that something’s not quite right here there’s there’s got to be something that is that is you know not good that I I’m questioning giving you this loan uh but I don’t have that concern anymore after walking to that Pharmacy Dan Asti is among the most impressive pharmacists I’ve ever seen wow ever uh and I he says I’ve seen a lot of Pharmacists I’ve been in a more pharmacies than most and I can see how and why that Pharmacy is as successful as it is and when when he shared that with me I mean I got excited because I said I you know I had that feeling I knew that right yeah and I wanted to be a part of it and I could tell that at that time a person can materially influence uh a successful business in a really really big way and it’s not a super complicated formula it’s it’s more simple than that and especially in Pharmacy uh it’s really about relationships and your ability to build them maintain them and give above all else it’s not about receiving it’s really about giving and that’s what breeds loyalty with your patients your provider relationships and everyone else wow that is cool so Chris what’s your biggest learning as a business owner

my biggest learning is that and this comes back to the to the point in the story I just shared about people uh business is really highly dependent any business is highly dependent on the people in the business because there there’s really no easy path to success there’s no easy button you know you often look out and you say wow that person is successful or they’ve done it uh they had it easy there’s really no easy Pathway to success because you’re inundated with barriers and challenges that require you to get you know think critically get creative lean on others ask for help to to overcome and the quality of your people that are supporting you your co-owners or your management team your employees I like to call them co-workers they’re not really employees even though I employ them they’re really co-workers uh those individuals really make it possible to be successful and when that isn’t working well uh you really feel a lot of pain so just the the amount of value that your people play into running a successful business is has been a really eye-opening experience and I and I see that not only with my businesses but I even see that within large corporations that I interface with large companies uh you know they’re almost an enigma when you think of big brands companies that you see every single day that you know what it’s run by people and I’m sure you’re familiar with the book good to Great it talks about how individual people have transformed businesses from good to great and I feel that even as a small business owner it’s really critical on a daily basis yeah yeah you can definitely see the difference as a consumer when you’re interacting with companies that believe in that philosophy that you know people and relationships are the most important and you can tell the the companies that invest in team development and training and relationship building and and that the the customer experiences is critical for the long-term health of the business and so right you can you can definitely experience that as a consumer of companies that believe in that philosophy and companies who don’t seem to care right yeah and I mean I do my best to reflect on how I would feel about a certain engagement and oftentimes it’s the little things that change an entire experience we’re all humans and we rely on human interaction to get us through the day it’s not easy but we you know there’s there’s a the phrase and I’m sure you hear this you know a million times that you know the customer is always right the reality is the customer’s not always right but you don’t have to punish them when they’re wrong the goal is I’m provide I’m here to to help you I I need to help you and I use a skill and I tell this to everyone uh the most valuable skill I think anyone can have really in any business and arguably I think this is a Just A Life Lesson is motivational interviewing and I’m not an expert on motivational interviewing but uh it’s something that I learned at school and I give credit to the University of Pittsburgh they put us through a class on motivational interviewing it’s a skill set that if you want someone to do something uh or you want a certain outcome they’re as opposed to being direct and being you know right in your face about it for example you’re a smoker and I want you to quit smoking telling you you’re gonna die or you’re going to get cancer it’s not good for you that’s not a way to really get you to the end point you’re going to reject that almost every time but helping you see a different perspective by dropping breadcrumbs in front of you to see that perspective is a far more successful strategy and that applies not just to smoking cessation it really applies to various aspects of life and I think that we we at least do our best to make that realization help our employees understand that and help them to be better servants to our customers our patients because we’re here to serve that’s my belief and we can do that with dignity we can do that with you know with both pride and humility uh but at the end of the day uh those relationships and it’s these little things that we do to improve the experience yeah completely transform uh you know they’ve transformed our business and the magic that happens in that is that people are willing to pay more when they’re treated better right so I’ve heard a lot of business owners who right are are worried about being the best price and it’s like well if you do the things that you’re talking about Chris you know the price starts to not matter right it’s like I’m I’m willing to pay a few pennies more right or or a dollar more or whatever it happens to be to be treated like a human and know that somebody cares about me and they’re paying attention to me right and they remember me and and they have records and can go back and like they’re making my life easier so it’s like you know what that that additional service and Care is is worth something and and most people are willing to pay for that additional service that’s right and I think that it’s you know not everybody there’s there’s a subset of the population that really values um convenience and cost over the relationship and a good friend of mine a good colleague his name’s Tripp Logan he’s a he’s a phenomenal tremendous pharmacist and Pharmacy owner out of Missouri he uh a couple years ago he did a presentation at a conference and uh I I referenced this frequently he said that some people need a pharmacy you just need a destination to get a product and other people need a pharmacist and our value for the services that we provide are for the people that need a pharmacist that appreciate having my cell phone that they can call or text me I spent you know 20 minutes on the phone with a dear customer yesterday who accidentally spilled hot tea on herself she went to the emergency room and she got medications and she just didn’t it didn’t feel right so she wanted my opinion and I gave her a few recommendations and she said I just love you you’re you’re totally doc she said I know you don’t want to be called doc even though I have my doctor Pharmacy uh I said listen I’m just here to help you if I can help you that’s what I’m here for and there’s not a you can’t put a price on that and it’s not that I you know I I my business takes advantage of that but it’s there’s value to individuals on that type of service and access yes and uh those are the people that we’re really proud to have to be able to serve really I love that story and and there’s going to be a ripple effect because she’s going to tell her friends about what other than terrible experience she had yeah that’s awesome so Chris we know that business success doesn’t happen in isolation so tell us about one of your biggest challenges um during the years as a business owner and and maybe a fellow business owner that came alongside of you to help you through that challenge yeah I would say that it’s actually along my journey uh as I was trying to be a business owner where I uh the long version of the story is that whenever I was initially going to buy the the business I actually had intentions of acquiring the whole business I mentioned my father and I uh we bought half of the business but that was actually after our original deal fell through and we were going on this journey uh and there because it was a big deal uh bigger than the average Pharmacy deal uh I had to get a few parties involved to essentially fund the deal I had a bank that bank I referenced gave me their Max loan that they could give in the scenario but I still needed more uh capital and that additional party was actually a pharmaceutical wholesaler that in the 11th Hour they pulled out of the deal and it was later you know there was some uh I don’t know if it’s Vindication or whatnot but later they admitted that it was a big mistake that they did that and they they they came forward and and regretted admitted admitted that they uh they had made a mistake and regretted it but at the time uh I was devastated I didn’t know what to do I was really disappointed and I you know I thought that I was gonna go it was a it’s a long time coming I’d put countless hours into preparing to being a business owner in my mid-20s that’s just not typical for a pharmacy owner to go and you know at 25 26 years old to to become a pharmacy owner because generally most people say I need to work in the industry for you know a decade or so before I get comfortable I was chasing my dream and it was it had really Fallen apart uh but one of my mentors uh his name’s Jerry O’Hare he uh he had been really there by my side helping me to achieve my goal I told him I wanted to be a pharmacy owner and he he truly I mean he’s just an incredible human being uh he gave me every inch of his resources to help me be successful and he essentially told me you know the the it’s not over this is not done we got there’s plenty there’s plenty of ways for us to figure this out uh and that led me to go to my now business partner and after the deal had fallen through I mean I would say that it was devastating for me it was even more devastating for my perspective uh you know seller my partner uh at this uh at this Pharmacy but I went to him and I said you know this is not done we we’ll just find another way and after spending more time together he realized that he didn’t really want to sell all of his business and I said you know what as I look at this this is a pretty big nut maybe I don’t buy all of it and that’s what led us to buy half of the business we relieved significant burden from my now Partners uh they cashed out a little bit and we were able to that that decision transformed the trajectory I think of my career and all of our futures because you know owning a hundred percent of uh of something is Meaningful and great but having partners if you can figure out the partnership which a lot of people can’t unfortunately but having partners and being successful in a partnership is has proven to be tremendously meaningful and so I’m really grateful for how things happened everything happens for a reason as they say and uh as a you know as a you know a devout Christian I I believe that God has been guiding and helping me along the way every single step of the way what I love about that story is the the the advice that hey don’t give up right it’s this isn’t a failure it’s just a learning moment so one of our uh one of the things that our founder says is that he never fails he either succeeds or learns I love that I love that so that that story reminded me of that it’s like okay well option A right didn’t work so what can we learn from this how can we adapt and pivot and and it sounds like option b ended up actually being the better option for you overall in your in your journey so what an incredible story thank you for sharing yeah I think that the the point that resonates with me on what you just said is that resilience is a characteristic of successful entrepreneurs you you will get kicked in the face there is no like I said there’s no reason yeah that was my first lesson in building resilience because when you see such a major letdown you feel like you said like you failed you’re at the end of the road yeah I get I tried but it was that trigger that really ignited a fire that no this isn’t over we just have learned one way that it’s not going to work we now have a whole slew of options in front of us and that I that fire has yet to be extinguished and I can’t see living without that really that fire of uh resilience burning deep within me yes I love that resilience my coach in my first uh couple years of owning this business the thing that she would say to me constantly is Tim it’s all about being persistent and consistent yeah because to your point right it being a business owner is can be hard and there are lots of hurdles and and unknowns and and uh so so when I would get discouraged and frustrated she’s like just keep doing what you’re doing right you’re doing the right things it’s just going to take time and and because I was paying her I had to trust what she was saying because I couldn’t see it on my own but that’s why I had hired her to help me right navigate through this uh unknown and and so I your your resilience I’m I’m gonna uh internalize that because I like that word that is definitely a key thing for business owners to be successful love it so Chris if I asked you to pick three people in your business owner Journey that you’re most grateful for being there for you and helping with your business growth who are those three people and how they help you yeah I would say there are a lot of people uh I could name 10 people more than 10 people uh but in the in the Journey of the you know my Evolution from honestly a lot of people didn’t even think I would get in the pharmacy school I didn’t think I would get into pharmacy school yeah I got in I graduated uh and most people would not have pegged me to be you know a business owner and go and own my own Pharmacy uh but so early in my career really the gentleman I referenced Jerry O’Hare uh has had a profound impact on me uh he I would say showed me that you can do the right thing sometimes to a fault uh generosity he’s the most generous person I’ve ever met uh he would literally I know people say this statement they give the shirt off his back to you uh the guy gives until it hurts uh and being able to observe him and watch him and learn from him as a 6 15 16 year old kid uh all the way up through my graduation from college and then even beyond that uh he’s literally been since that time since I was 15 years old he’s been a person that I can go to with confidence that has has provided me immense guidance and even to this day still gives me great advice as recent as last week uh gave me just such great advice that’s worked out really favorably for me so Jerry O’Hare Falls in that category the same uh time the pharmacist that I worked under as an intern who really taught me so much her name’s Samantha pizzarella uh Sam was my preceptor the pharmacist that I learned under and who signed off on my internship hours okay she uh she is just she blew me away as a kid uh and she’s only a couple years older than me but she happened to be uh really integral I think in my growth and maturity as a pharmacy student she helped me get through Pharmacy School uh and she is just an incredible talented pharmacist she she understands clinical she understands business uh and she is tenacious she she taught me that it’s okay to not want to lose ever if I were to put use one word to describe her she’s a winner and she is tenacious she does not want to lose she will not lose and uh she in that whole you know discussion on resilience I would say uh resilience she she embodies resilience as well and then lastly I would really put my partners uh Dan and Jen nasty in that category of really I’m grateful for for what they’ve done uh specifically because they don’t need to be working in the pharmacy and over the years they’ve not needed to be there uh they could have given their time and said you know what I’m going to take a step back uh but after getting a big check from my dad and I uh on the loan that we were able to secure to buy half the business uh they have stuck it out and it’s still today like they don’t need to be there yet they are there grinding every day in the trenches uh dealing with the challenges of our industry uh and so and there’s so much I’ve learned from all of these people and and the honorable mention goes to my business manager Amy Wilhelm who uh she’s she’s she’s not she doesn’t own the pharmacy but everybody would think she does because she’s literally there all the time uh she’s she reminds me of the human aspect of employee management but this greater team not to mention my my father and business partner uh I just can’t imagine being anywhere near where I am today without the profound impact that all of these folks have had I’m immensely grateful to all of them so as you think of the next three to five years Chris um what are some of the what are the biggest challenges that you see that you guys are going to face in reaching your goals and who are the types of people that you’re going to need to overcome those challenges yeah the it’s interesting Healthcare uh is evolving and it is there’s no I don’t think there’s any larger uh area of Health Care that has more attention and focus than Pharmacy medications are a huge part of our total cost of Health Care uh Canada is involved and implicated in the uh the drama of the pharmacy supply chain as uh you know Americans are getting their medication some of them are from you know across the border from Canada uh but a lot of meds even in Canada like I mentioned in these high cost specialty medications in Canada and other parts of the world are still really expensive and we see a lot of vertical integration in the Health Care System where you have uh Pharmacy benefit managers which transact claims between pharmacies and payers like health plans or employers Pharmacy benefit managers are buying or they already own pharmacies and they’re buying or they’re being acquired by major health plans so when you think of verticals like Aetna the insurance company CVS Caremark the PBM now Under the Umbrella CVS health because CBS acquired Aetna they own retail pharmacies mail order pharmacies specialty pharmacies that type of vertical integration uh you know is present across multiple different organizations like United Healthcare and Cigna and they all want to own down to the transaction level like us at the pharmacy level and so unfortunately uh there’s a lot of I I have to have contracts with these health plans to be able to fill prescriptions for my customers right but that requires me to have a contract with them that dictates the terms of reimbursement and other terms surrounding our business relationship it’s challenging when you have to sign a contract that governs your reimbursement and other business terms when that entity is also your competitor uh so there is a lot of anti-competition where in some cases people that want to use my Pharmacy that prefer to use my Pharmacy are actually forced to use another Pharmacy and that Dynamic is uh is a challenge that’s been affecting the pharmacy industry and specifically Pharmacy owners uh for several years now but it’s really getting worse and more challenging and so our our reality is that we we may not have the ability to service many of the patients that we’ve taken care of for in some cases generations and uh really the way that we get out of this is to evolve our business model and think of new ways to engage with our customers and continue to service them I think we while we are certainly nowhere near big enough to get vertical uh there are some strategic Partnerships and alignments that that we can establish where we can continue to work with a subset of the population that isn’t Bound by some of these restrictive and anti-competitive policies until such a time where you know our government which is supposed to protect us from these types of monopolies until they actually figure it out and uh and intervene and it’s like one of your former guests Nathan gabhardt uh he is in a separate segment of that supply chain and partnering with individuals like Nathan engaging with him and his peers at that level as well as health plans and other other components of this you know supply chain that is really how I think we can carve out our place in the industry because we offer a unique experience it’s more than just about getting a medication right it’s about the total experience some of the services that I offered not everybody needs those services but those that do are at a severe disservice if we do not provide them access and that’s really what we’re out there advocating for well significant uh significant things to overcome in the coming years so that it sounds like you guys are you know you and some of your your peers and colleagues you you’ve got different Avenues to to sort through it so uh wish you tremendous uh success in in that Jim Rohn said that if that we become the average of the five people that we spend the most time with so as you think about that of course what advice do you have for business owners who feel like they they need to do it on their own or they’re trying to build their business on their own and without seeking help from others I think that uh I I never doubt the the fire and inspiration within one individual I don’t know their journey and I’ll it’s really impossible to know all the intimate details of what makes a person tick but what I do know is that it is really difficult to know everything you cannot be an expert in everything and you mirror you simply do not have the bandwidth there’s not enough hours in the day they’re not enough hours in the day to do everything literally so uh there are some things that you can do just solo and kind of go with the flow and organically grow uh but to really develop a true Independent Business that can support and sustain uh your life assuming that most people have to work uh earn an income to get through life uh to get to that point you really need help and support and I would say that don’t be afraid to to give equity for value the only caution that I make is that when you do that really the only reason I see that our my partnership has prospered when most of my colleagues in my circle say I you know I I could never do it I had a partnership it was it was horrible my one close friend says that you know you know the only uh ship that sinks is a partnership and he highly advises against partners because it can be challenging but if you find individuals that are philosophically aligned with you that will do the right thing Above All Else it’s worth having them on board and I think that was one of the most you know enlightening experiences as I mentioned when my deal fell through and I you know I was going to be a sole owner uh having other people to lean on to idea generate to be responsible for certain components of your business like Finance or like growth and marketing or operations as your business grows it’s you’re going to have to have diverse thought and uh you really you’re never going to have enough time to do that by yourself and it’s pretty much impossible as I said to be an expert so I I can’t imagine and I I I would be surprised to find anybody that would say they have built this very successful business and they did it without anyone’s help I just don’t I don’t think that exists awesome Chris uh it sounds like you’ve been blessed with some incredible people who have been part of your journey if they were all on the show here today what would you want to say to them just thank you thank you for for teaching me uh in some cases they don’t even know they’re teaching me but they’re teaching me I try to be a sponge and soak up every little detail of any interactions uh I’d say you know I’m looking forward to the next Journey because I want to do it with these people and and I’m taking those steps to do that I think being successful with others uh it’s kind of like there’s everybody it’s it’s fun to begin to get receive a gift but it’s also I think when you when you experience giving a gift the joy of giving a gift and watching someone really love and appreciate and value that gift uh I I think it’s far far better of an experience than receiving and so I think that my goal is to ensure that I’m giving back uh to those individuals and then also to other individuals I’m on I’m on a kick now where uh you know having kids and teaching them lessons aside from the business side of the equation uh there are a lot of people that are suffering and struggling uh out there you think of now I mean especially in Canada uh but here in southwestern Pennsylvania it gets cold it was in the 20s I think of the people that are outside that don’t have a warm home to go to that don’t have warm food you know I sit in my office and it’s you know in the 70 degrees in my house and I’m like oh my gosh right I think it’s make sure you’re helping people uh and I want to to work with my people to to help those around us that are less fortunate I think that’s got to be a Guiding Light uh because success on an island is not it’s not that fun right Chris it’s been a pleasure speaking with you today thank you so much for being on the show it’s my pleasure thank you Tim thanks for what you’re doing bringing awareness and helping folks realize uh that you know there are a lot of people in their lives they may not even realize have helped them get to where they are and they as an individual can help a lot of of other people as well thank you to everyone who tuned in thanks for listening to the self-made as a myth show with your host coach Tim campsel be sure to help us spread this Movement by liking the show and posting about it on your social media to join our movement go to bemadtogether.com all right folks that’s a wrap make sure to pay it forward and I’ll see you all next time take care