Hello, and welcome to Beauty and the Biz where we talk about the business and marketing side of plastic surgery and blending plastic surgery with wellness.
I’m your host, Catherine Maley, author of Your Aesthetic Practice – What your patients are saying, as well as consultant to plastic surgeons, to get them more patients and more profits. Now, today’s episode is called “Blending Plastic Surgery with Wellness — with Emily Hartmann, MD”.
The healthier your patients are, both physically and mentally, the better their outcomes and the less grief you have to deal with.
So, you can either hope your patients are fit or you can proactively help them get to sound body and mind, so they have a smooth journey before, during and after surgery.
⬇️ Click below to hear “Blending Plastic Surgery with Wellness — with Emily Hartmann, MD”
This week’s Beauty and the Biz episode is an interview I did with Dr. Emily Hartmann, a board-certified plastic & reconstructive surgeon in private practice in Chico, CA, where she was born and raised.
She takes the sound mind and body philosophy to a new level. After suffering from her own health issues trying to juggle being a wife, mother, surgeon and business owner, she needed a new approach for herself and her patients.
Here’s what we talked about:
- The downside of tackling medical school, marriage and babies all at once
- How the COVID lock down helped her prioritize
- How her approach to addressing ALL of her patient’s mind, body and wellness issues has grown her practice kingdom quickly through word of mouth.
P.S. If you want to attract more cosmetic patients, check out my latest resource to help:
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Blending Plastic Surgery with Wellness — with Emily Hartmann, MD
Catherine Maley, MBA: Hello and welcome to Beauty and the Biz, where we talk about the business and marketing side of plastic surgery and Dr. Hartmann’s wellness package with surgery. I’m your host, Catherine Maley, author of “Your Aesthetic Practice, what your patients are saying”, as well as consultant to plastic surgeons to get them more patients and more profits. Now I have a very interesting guest today who has made a success of blending plastic surgery with wellness.
It’s Dr. Emily Hartmann. She’s a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon in private practice in Chico, California, where she’s been blending plastic surgery with wellness. So, I’m in Sausalito. She’s probably two hours away from me. So, she was born and raised there, which is probably how she founded because I don’t know where Chico is. And she’s owner of Beauty Eternal Surgical Practice, as well as, Beauty Eternal Medical Spa, and also, the Medical Director of the Eternal Wellness Spa, offering holistic services to support the mind, body, and soul, and thus, blending plastic surgery with wellness.
Now, Dr. Hartmann is a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Medicine. She did her residency at the University of Wisconsin Madison and her aesthetic surgical fellowship at an ASAPS credentialed University of California Keck School of Medicine. And she practiced in Marina Delray and Beverly Hills.
So, she has several publications under her belt and summer Along the way, she found time to get married and have three kids. Yikes. So, Dr. Hartmann, welcome to Beauty and the Biz.
Emily Hartmann, MD: Thank you So, much. It’s an honor to be here.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Thanks So, much for coming. So, tell me this quick journey. I like to hear the journey between fellowship and solo practice. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Was it a jig jag or did you go straight to it?
Emily Hartmann, MD: I went straight to it. I knew I had my sight set on coming home because I, my kids were young and I just wanted to be closer to family and I love the idea of serving my community once I realized I wanted to do more aesthetic surgery and breast reconstruction.
So, it just really. I bee lined over here.
Catherine Maley, MBA: So, did you have to start from scratch? Did you buy a building? Did you rent a space? How’d that happen? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: So, I found a partner and a guy in town who was in private practice, solo practice, and he was incredible in terms of letting me come in just 50 50. Kind of hung a shingle with him as we expanded to new buildings and we opened an, an operating room a quad, a s f, and Medicare approved operating room as well as a med spa.
So, he was very, Open with me and, and was able to give me a platform to spring from very quickly once I was in practice.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Is he a plastic surgeon? Yes. Yes. So, when you two came together, what was the agreement was, were you his associate, were you partners? Were you Completely two different? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: We were partners 50 50.
Oh. And yeah, it was pretty incredible. So, I just had, he had the, the, the worth of what he already owned. And So, I just bought in 50 50 with what I brought with me, and then we built from there.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And was like, was the goal to have him and you come in or like, what, what was up, what was his motivation for adding another surgeon, especially somebody young with not, without a following?
What was the benefit to. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well probably his retirement plan that I would slowly kind of buy him out and he would have an exit strategy. So, I, you know, he was a, he’s a very a very kindhearted person, just enjoys having camaraderie around him. And I think that was part of it too. We just kind of —
Catherine Maley, MBA: That’s unusual, right?
Yeah. I mean, had you known about him or had he known about you? Like, did he also, grow up in a community and like what was your, what were you bonding over? It’s weird, right? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, I think we bonded over plastic surgery mostly, and that I wanted to be in Chico. So., I woke up in the middle of the night and thought, oh my gosh, I need to look at Chico as options.
Maybe I want to work in Chico. So, I started calling around So, that there were five plastic surgeons in town and he was just So, open and kind. And., we’d had some good conversations back and forth, and then it just went from there. He had a great business manager who then contacted me when I was in fellowship and she, she came down interviewed cause I was working at, with Grant Stevens at the time.
Wow. And she toured the practice and I just said, I want to, I want to do what Grant’s doing. I want to build the dream and bring ev watch everything come to fruition. And so, She did it.
Catherine Maley, MBA: That’s seriously amazing because not everyone thinks like ran Stevens. He’s an anomaly for sure. So, you were hanging with these big thinkers, like he’s such a big thinker.
And then you’re coming back to Chico and I’m sure that them, the plastic surgeon you were going to join. I just like, did he know you had big. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: I shared them with him. Okay. And he was, he wanted me to, Just succeed in whatever it is that I, I needed to fulfill, have my own sense of fulfillment. Mm-hmm., he was very happy in his practice the way it was.
So, I just brought more elements, more energy. You know, we, we bought a cool sculpting machine almost immediately, and he was, he was excited, I think for the new experiences.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And then how did you enter the marketplace? Because were you just feeding off of his patient list? Was he already doing some pretty good marketing?
And then he said, oh, by the way, you know introducing, you know, how did, how did you step into the marketplace? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: So, he had been here for 12 years before I, I came along. He already had a pretty good footing though. He was predominantly a hand surgeon and a reconstructive surgeon, and, Really, I started from scratch.
He was not doing much in the way of marketing you know, outside of local magazines and such, but didn’t have really a strong website or anything, so, So, that was I, I essentially was starting from scratch and building from, I just started taking, you know, call at the hospital and whatever I could do.
It was a very stressful time. Mm-hmm. Trying to, Get through my board’s experience and then I had small children at the time. It was, it was a really intense, intense time. And my, the person I was in practice with he was very understanding and supportive. It was a good, it was a good relationship.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And then is he still in practice now? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: He is, and we have separated. Okay. Practices. Honestly, I, I had this massive experience when Covid happened and I just, I just realized that I needed to make a dramatic shift in what I was doing, and I really was better off by myself. Mm-hmm. and he understood. We’re still great friends and I, you know, operate, we still operate out of the same or.
He just, you know, has a big heart and is excited for me to fulfill my dreams, but we are definitely kind of going in different directions.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Well, I would think if he’s recon, you know, is he’s doing mainly hand surgery and you’re probably loving cosmetic. You’re probably loving both. Like how are you balancing that?
Because if you were hanging with Grant Stevens, you, you know, he, he, he’s got it all going on over there. So, how were you? Did you like cosmetic or did you think you were going to be reconstructive and then cosmetic really got ahold of you? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, So, in residency all you really see is reconstructive. And that’s really what I remember.
My brain was, you know, I was going to do peripheral nerve, I did a lab year and then I just really had. I was starting to get this big realization around my fourth year of re residency that I needed more in terms of interactions with patients and also. The whole research thing didn’t jive with my what my sense of purpose was.
I didn’t really get that, the fulfillment that I was hoping for. And So, that started to change me. And I actually started to interview attendings around me about their lifestyle and what, you know, what kept them up at night. And it was just a, a lifestyle that I think was not for me. And then I started doing a rotation with aesthetic surgeons.
And I was started to see some really neat stuff going on, and, and they just seemed to have the, I’m just, the private practice world seemed to have So, many opportunities for me to think outside of the box that it really just pulled me in.
Catherine Maley, MBA: But you hadn’t been thinking about that until way later, right?
Like a lot Actually that’s not true. A lot of surgeons never even think about it until they’re 10 years in at the hospital and they say, this cannot be the way we do this. You know, and they like, So, you, you get these revolutions whenever you get them. You know, this might be the actually a good time for us to talk about why you’re on this.
So, this is how you got on my. I happened to I don’t know why I, I, I just can’t get enough of this industry. And So, of course I signed up for this 7:00 AM on a Saturday morning. Beautiful. The Aesthetic Society had a great webinar with the women and it’s about burnout. Mm-hmm., and I just couldn’t miss that because, you know, you guys are really like gosh, I mean, you’re doing the, the job of a lot of people in one, So, I loved your story.
So, could you just, let’s just talk about burnout for a minute. Cause nobody ever talks about it. Everyone’s fine. Everyone’s doing great. Everything’s great, you know, and I love when people are authentic. So, j could you just go into your story a little bit of how you got to that? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Absolutely. Thank you.
Yeah. So, this. This whole process has been constant episode of rediscovering myself and when you get through residency, well, medical school, residency, fellowship, and you’re just doing all the things that you feel like you need to do, and then you get into being an attending. And a young attending in a new practice, new location, I really didn’t feel like I knew what I was doing.
Everything seemed to be just So, challenging and it wasn’t what I imagined. I think I had all these expectations that were really unmet. It was hard for my spouse as well because he was. Thinking that everything was going to be easier after training, and then we buckle down, then, you know, everything’s going to open up in this, and the, the, the, the lights will be brighter and money will fall out of the ceiling.
none of it. True. So, there was a lot of pressure on me to, to make things work. And I. Doing it. I was in survival mode. I was, you know, showing up for my kids and showing up for my patients and showing up for my family, and I just, over time showed up for myself less and less. And then I realized that I, I was starting to have some.
Some health issues and really some mental issues. I mean, I, I had started I developed an anxiety disorder in medical school, So, that was something I was already grappling with and had kind of managed.
Catherine Maley, MBA: But then what does that mean, an anxiety disorder? Like what does that look like? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: It looks well, it manifested as panic attacks.
When I was studying for my shelf exams in medical school and I had to see a psychiatrist, I could, I had terrible insomnia and, and I needed heavy medication
Catherine Maley, MBA: So, that, opened the door for the…? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: The route of panic attacks and anxiety to be more sort of, it creeps up every now and then. And So, I had developed methods of coping, but they weren’t exactly healthy.
So, then Covid struck, and I had all this time to sit and think to myself as many people. and I started to meditate. I started to read books that were, seemed to like, kind of come to me divinely. Mm-hmm. And one of the main books I read that really had an impact on me was Mind Over Medicine by Alyssa Rankin.
She’s a very prolific author. I’m not sure if you’re, if you’ve heard of her.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I’m going to mention her in the notes then. Yes. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Mind over medicine. She is just fabulous. She actually lives in Marin near you. Oh yeah. She’s, I’ll get her on the podcast. Oh, she’s amazing. So, Alyssa Rankin is an OB-GYN not practicing any longer, as she had experienced her own burnout.
And from that fallout, she developed this system of tuning into your internal wisdom. and there she has this whole methodology, and a way to prescribe yourself what you think you need. And it’s beautiful. It’s a beautiful way to prioritize your needs and realize that what you’ve been conditioned for doesn’t have to be that way.
You can think outside the box, you can write your own rules. And that was very empower, empowering to me. And I realized that I wanted to create a, I wanted to create something very special for my patients and. What came to me was this idea of mindful plastic surgery and putting together my love of wellness and my love of l embodying all the other modalities that can impact patients with plastic surgery and.
Took out big pieces of paper and started drawing on the walls and became extremely directed in my vision. And that’s when I decided to break ways with my partner, move o physically offices, and I not looked back.
Catherine Maley, MBA: So, what did you create? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: So, it’s now a year and a half old as our brick and mortar has opened.
And it is a two buildings plastic surgery and a meds spa. And then across the parking lot is my wellness center where I have. A whole host of complimentary services, hypnotherapy, which we use to prepare patients for surgery. My hypnotherapist has a beautiful pre-op program that patients see him two months prior to surgery and they start to flood their system with positive affirmations.
It is the most beautiful.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Can they do surgery without anesthesia? Thanks to him. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, like, like a hypno-epidural. There, there, there are, there are. We, we haven’t really ventured into that yet, but there hypnotherapy is extremely powerful. Mm-hmm. People know it a lot from the hypnobirthing and how impactful that can be, where you dissociate completely.
And it’s, it’s pretty incredible what the mind can do. So, what, when I, when I first started putting this together, my main goal was to tackle anxiety leading up to surgery for sure.
Catherine Maley, MBA: It’s a big deal. I deal. Cause I’m training coordinators, you know how to get people to a Yes. And what they’re forgetting is people are scared.
oh, it’s So, scary. You know? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Mm-hmm., we also, carry a lot. Stress and trauma and different ways of managing it. And a lot of people just bury it deep down and then surgery comes along. And, you know, it’s interesting. Patients have a tendency to, they just don’t, they don’t think about it in the way that it.
It’s like a huge life experience. Mm-hmm. and that sense of vulnerability and lack of safety, that feeling can all of a sudden manifest all of this anxiety. Mm-hmm. and tension and fear, and we know going in to surgery when you’re like that harder to manage from an anesthesia standpoint and a pain management standpoint, but then after surgery, they’re tense, they’re anxious, they are harder to rationalize with.
They’re just, they’re, they’re tricky because they’re con, their mind has sort of captured them and So, that we know a lot, many studies that show an. Complication rate in patients who have a higher anxiety rate prior to surgery. So, it, it’s just been revolutionary. I also, do not tend to prescribe narcotics, or at least I try to avoid it.
And by doing this, I prescribe herbal supplements prior to surgery that our anti-inflammatory. And then supplements after surgery. This, this also, has completely changed the way, you know, my patients walk in, they’re very clear. They’ve got very little bruising, very little swelling. And this is definitely stepping outside of the box for plastic surgery.
Mm-hmm., you know, we, we are trained to hold all our herbal supplements prior to surgery because Right. Who knows what’s in them and it could cause bleeding and some have more compelling evidence to increase the risk of bleeding. And some, you, it’s, it’s largely vague. Mm-hmm. So, in searching for, Well, in my county, the issue with opioid abuse is, Through the roof.
Mm-hmm. So, I have to be extremely careful. I feel as though being a good warden to my community, I, I just don’t prescribe them on the front end. And I always tell people, I will give them, if you need it, you know, you get my cell phone number and if you need it, I’ll, I’ll prescribe them, but I don’t dole them out without real care and consideration.
In addition to that, we have reiki, which is energy healing. Reiki is a very beautiful experience that is hard to explain until you have the experience yourself. But essentially someone who is trained with reiki uses their hands on your body in certain areas and they just spend time shifting your energy, trapped energy, stuck energy, childhood energy traumas, and Realign you.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I’ll just give you my Reiki story. I, okay. I’m like Irish Catholic from Chicago, like we don’t believe any of this hooey. But cause I’ve lived in northern California So, long, I’m, I’m a firm believer now. However, I’m in graduate school, we had to do this weekend getaway, and I have always jogged forever and I have a pulled hamstring and I’ve had it forever.
The girl from India, of course, knows Reiki and says, I can take care of that for you. And she doesn’t touch me. She just does some weird thing gone forever. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: That wow. Crazy. Wow. Yes.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I’m a true believer.
Emily Hartmann, MD: Wow. That is a wonderful story. I hear, I, I hear So, much of that just in, you know, until you feel it and experience it yourself.
It’s kind of hard to convince people. Yeah, it is life changing. It is. So, we have reiki, we have my nurse practitioner who’s in charge of all the wellness programs, she, she actually spends three sessions with my surgical patients, getting them ready for surgery. So, she, it’s amazing. She talks to them about things that I, you know, we don’t have time to talk about.
Things that are important to the surgical experience, like getting your environment ready, reducing inflammation, reducing stress and, you know, breath work and breathing techniques. She’s, she’s just incredible. So, that is my goal in terms of optimizing patients for surgery. And we also, offer, you know, massage, lymphatic massage and facials and function similar to a day.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Holy cow. Alright, So, the way the office is set up, you have one building with the plastic surgery and the med spa. Mm-hmm., the non-surgical, the surgery is done in another building that you two are sharing. The other surgeon is sharing. How far is that from your office? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: It’s about a five-to-10-minute drive.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Oh, nice.
And then the park across the parking lot is the holistic center. Yes. Right. So, alright, those are a lot of moving parts there. So, how many, how many staff is involved in all of this? Like how and, and how many are revenue generators?
Emily Hartmann, MD: You know, we have about 20 staff. Two of those are nurse injectors who function in my med spa.
They do the lasers and injectables, and they’re very gifted human beings. So, those, those are my co providers. Mm-hmm. And So, yeah, we have about 20.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Well, you jump right. You’ve invested in the lasers, you’ve got your buildings, you have your or holy cow. How’s it going? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, I appreciate you saying that because it feels like we always need to be doing more, but, but I’ve come to a point where I want to, now that I’ve realized the dream mm-hmm.
I just want to spend time making it better. And I, I feel like we, we keep having people call. We, we don’t have a microneedling RF device yet. We don’t have this, and we don’t have that. We have a lot of things, but I, I, I really want to be experts at what we deliver and I want to focus on the patient experience because when, when you get So, bogged down with all these different facets, it’s easy to.
To lose sight of the purpose, you know, the main.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And it’s not, it’s not always more is better because if you had too many variables, you absolutely lose the patient experience quality part because there are too many things going on. Too many people work there, too many patients are in there. You’re there for too many different things.
I personally love the idea now of more concentration on the patient experience, So, they return, refer, and review, than constantly trying to get a whole bunch of new people. Looking at all your different services and I just think that’s a different kind of game to play. You can do it, it’s just complicated, you know? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Right. Yes, yes. And you know, creating your own definition of successful, you’re right. To me, I, I would rather have a really in-depth conversation with a patient and discover that plastic surgery really isn’t for. You know, they need to go focus on, you know, managing their traumas or leaving their abusive husband.
You know, plastic surgery isn’t going to make you feel better. May, it might make like, You know, in the, when you first go in and talk about it, and people think that it’s like getting a haircut, it’s going to suddenly make you feel lighter and better about yourself. But I have to be really careful with the tools that I have been, you know, I have developed, I, I’m acutely aware of how.
How selective I need to be and that not everyone is a good candidate, but unless you take that time, it’s really easy to miss those things. So, for me, I would just much rather let those patients go mm-hmm. and pull in and focus on the ones that You know?
Catherine Maley, MBA: I feel like are really need the investment at every medical conference I’ve gone to.
There’s always that topic of I wish I had followed my intuition. I wish I knew this was going to be a problem, but I thought I could handle it. There’s always the unhappy patient’s story there. Do you have any tools you are using to get you to identify those red flags before you get into deep. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, My number one method is I schedule enough time with my consults that I really can talk with them about what brought them in.
And I always ask the, the difficult stuff. You know, that’s, and I don’t let spouses in because I just wanted to focus on the patient mm-hmm. And So, I, you know, I dig deep into understanding what brought them in. And that takes time because you have to kind of first establish trust. And So, I think that’s the best way to the best way I’ve found to, to find those red flag patients.
Other ways are, of course, just paying attention to how they interact with your staff, and that can be a real. But it’s, it’s tricky. It’s tricky.
Catherine Maley, MBA: What are, what are the tough questions you would ask them that would help you indicate something might be off? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, I always want to know what do they think they’re going to accomplish with plastic surgery?
And I’ll tell you, it’s the people who don’t have solid firm answers that raise my red flag. You know, people who come in and, and they just, they can’t really explain what they need. They just say, I just want you to look at me and tell you what I need. Tell me what I need. And I’m like, Oh yeah. Versus the, you know, mother of 3 42 comes in as like, take off this extra skin.
And I say, yes, Mm-hmm. So, it’s the non-descript kind of sad and or overly energetic, but have a hundred things that they want to do. They’re just not quite as focused. And those patients
I have to really give pause.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Okay. You know, that’s interesting. You say you don’t have the husband come in. I actually want the husband to come in number one because. Don’t they always say at the end, every woman blames it on her husband. I have to talk to my husband about this. I can’t, I can’t give you an answer.
I have to talk to my husband. And I’m like, what is with this, with this husband thing? I’ll put the husband our boat without telling you or asking you, So, whatever. But I then I say, okay, then let’s bring the husband in because he can also, be a red flag if he’s the one doing all the talking and she’s just sitting.
I think that is really helpful to know because you start asking, well, why do you want to do this? And he answers for her, that’s really good intel too. So, you’re doing it the other way, you just, you know, don’t even want the husband involved. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Yeah. Yeah. And it depends on the situation, but when I first meet someone, I like it to just be us.
Catherine Maley, MBA: That’s a great idea. How do you somehow introduce them to the holistic side? Because it sounds like everybody is going to have a holistic slash surgical experience with you. Is that right? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: For the most part the everyone is signed up to meet with Lauren. She is. The one who spends a large amount of time with them.
And So, I know that they’re going to get that introduction, but when I’m talking with them and I’m going through the process, I just introduce it as a normal part of our experience. So, I, I say we have a pre-op hypnotherapy program. It’s essential for managing your anxiety and optimizing your outcomes and, and increasing.
Level of satisfaction after the surgery, and it also, reduces the sensation of pain. Everyone is like, oh, okay. And that the you know, I just, I basically just work it in like I would anything else?
Catherine Maley, MBA: And is it part of the package? Yes. Is it, it goes, it’s included in the., but what about the lymphatic massage?
Because that can also, often be a little stickler because a lot of the practices just do the, the surgical procedure and then they refer out, you know, to somebody else to do the lymphatic massage. And some of these groups are charging the patients, you know, your patients several thousands of dollars. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
And how are you working that part out?
Emily Hartmann, MD: We just bundle it all in and So, it’s a requirement. Obviously, I can’t force them to show up for their appointments, but it is, they’ve paid for it, So, it is a part of their package and that way they’re not paying for multiple things, but everything is sort of, is all inclusive.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I love that idea. Thank you. Good for you. Because you know what you’re, that’s how you’re differentiating yourself as well, because others aren’t doing that. I’m trying to think though. Somebody like me who’s type A is like, oh, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Like, can we just get on with this? But I also, love the head the mind stuff, you know, So, I’d probably be okay.
I, I want the hypnosis. I think that sounds fantastic. And then I love the lymphatic massage, So, maybe, I mean, have you had any resistance to it? Are the patients loving having that full package? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Man, they, they’re, they’re loving it. I’ve had some interesting resistance to it, just to kind of random reasons that they don’t like massage.
One patient who has a bad experience as an adolescent and So, they don’t like people touching them. And I said, oh, yes. No problem. That makes sense. But we have hypnotherapy that can help you. So, it’s a, you know, you know, it’s customizable, but it’s generally something Yeah. That, that people are excited about.
It is So, beautiful to go from this experience because we, breast reconstruction can also, you know, use the services have this experience where you’re, You know, this very emotional difficult time. And to be able to walk over to the wellness center where everyone is, is on board with your healing, everyone understands versus going to another place that’s off brand and they don’t know you.
You have to explain yourself. This is an a, a relationship that we are establishing with patients that carries through this. Beautiful. Oh, sure.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Let’s go back to the staff again. 20 staff or a young surgeon is insane actually. How are you, how did you, did you study leadership and management? Did you get a killer practice manager who’s handling this for you?
Like what’s the secret to handling all of that? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Thank you. I’m So, glad you asked this because this is my secret weapon. My business manager is insanely good at her job. So, she has a medical business consulting, or excuse me, a medical consulting business. Mm-hmm. and called Medical Business Solutions.
And So, she and her staff do all the HR and, and hiring and firing the sticky stuff. Yeah. I, however Do not. I am. I like to be involved. I like to be a leader. I like to, to set the vision and I’m, I’m, she doesn’t treat me like just a money generator. She really brings me in and she is, she actually builds me up as a leader and I lean on her quite a bit.
She, I just went to a leadership meeting for the Aesthetic Society. And So, she supports me in trying to be the best leader that I can because it doesn’t come naturally to me.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Nobody, nobody’s a born leader. It’s a learned asset. Some people are more innately attuned to it, you know, it’s learned. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Yeah, but it’s, it’s really, it’s So, rewarding Once you can have this functioning body of people who are growing and learning and, and propelling forward with the same vision and you can set back and watch people find their own zone of genius and you don’t have to do everything. You can just kind of let them take the lead and, and.
It’s just, it’s a beautiful process. So, I’ve grown a lot. I’ve learned a lot. It was blood, sweat, and tears, but it’s been wonderful.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Would you say staffing is the biggest challenge or what would be your biggest challenge? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Well, it’s interesting for me personally, staffing and turnover. You know, I had the, an amazing nurse practitioner who then had to get engaged and married and be happy No.
And then move away. And So, those, those kinds of unexpected things, I’m just kidding. I’m very excited for her. But those unexpected things, those shifts are of course, challenging. You know, I’ve got such a strong team that we can lean on each other. So, I think the staffing stuff doesn’t bother me as much as what?
What really is tough for me is to hold firm to. What I need to maintain my mental health. Hmm. That is a, I’m constantly being squeezed, and not by anyone’s intention, but it’s just the nature of the beast. Mm-hmm., I naturally want to show up and say yes and do all the things so, I, I’m constantly kind of reexamining where we’re at and, okay, I need to re reestablish my boundaries.
I need to see the wipes of my kids’ eyes in the morning. I need to kiss them goodnight. Good. You know, at night. And I have all these phys, these, you know, I do things that keep me sane and maintain my anxiety because I’m the one running this shit. So, I affirm me personally, that is the, a very big challenge that I, it takes a lot of discipline and self-awareness.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And you need to learn that now for the next three decades because every surgeon I know who had developed bad habits now have to develop better habits in their fifties because their neck is killing them, their back’s hurting, their E. Everything hurts and. And, and their attitude’s getting bad. Like, if I have to do one more liposuction case, I’m going to kill myself, you know, it just, it starts numbing.
So, I’m So, glad you’re developing good habits now. How are you finding the time to meditate? I have tried to meditate for years, and, and I know it’s So, good and I, I struggle with it to sit still. I, I, if there’s some, some kind of like jogging meditation, I would be better off. Or like, if I could meditate on the treadmill, I’d be like, I just like to. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Actually, there is. So, So, today I actually did a walking meditation and it was synchronized to my steps and it was a really beautiful, I’d never done a movement meditation of that. It was like a guided meditation. So, there, there are methods for people who are not sit stillers. Mm-hmm. But I still. Still, you know, running is definitely a movement meditation.
But there is something magical about sitting there still. And I, I, Lisa Rankin talks about this, that the things that are sometimes we are the most resistant to are exactly what we need. So, I mean, that’s always helped me.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I can do 15 minutes. I used to be able, yeah, I was doing four and now I’m up to 15, and I can do that fairly comfortably.
On the weekends I can go. 30. Whoa. But after that, I’m getting itchy. I just, because I’m really, I know what’s going on in my head and I get all the messages that I’m, that I’m, I know when I’m, when I’m, when I’m open to it and when I’m not. Like I, I just, I feel like I’ve spent enough time with me that I, I, I understand a lot of that already.
Boy, I, it’s So, important to stop, like stop and stop thinking. Stop thinking, stop. The monkey minds us. All that stuff going on. I just, you know, it’s hard to do in this world today. Yep. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: It is. I was just reading Michelle Obama’s book. Mm-hmm. The Light We Carry and she talks about picking up knitting during Covid because she was ordering stuff on Amazon and she thought, okay, I’ll, I’ll order some knitting needles.
And she taught herself to knit, but that, that she had never. Done something. Like that with her body that wasn’t So, like, you know, intensely using her brain and now, and she just knits, she’s knitting up a storm because it really brought her this sense of calm and peace and home sense. Mm-hmm. And I just thought, there you go.
There’s a meditation.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I, yeah. Yeah. I knitting’s not going to happen probably, but I, I do a lot of journaling and you know how they always say with journaling, oh, you must do, you know, pen and paper. Hand and paper. You know, you’ve got to hand. And I thought, no, I don’t. Every time I try to do that, I resist it because my handwriting is atrocious.
Oh. And I can, I can’t write as fast as I can think, but I can type like nobody. So, I type and it is So, meditative for me. I just, you know, like the thoughts of the day, you just type them out. I get it all down. I do it every morning. That is my. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Right on. That’s amazing.
Catherine Maley, MBA: All right, well then thank you very much for that conversation,
Cause as you get older too, you say, who says you have to do that? Like I, I question a lot more than I used to. I used to just be like a good soldier and I know you were too, and you’re probably your worst critic and you push yourself more than anybody else pushes you. Have you gotten a handle on that and you’re feeling like you have a better control over your life? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Most definitely. Most definitely. And I have the freedom to push back and to create those boundaries that I’ve, I’ve never had before. This is a really, really incredible time for me. And that’s not to say that the, those like, So, it’s interesting I, if you start reading. Mm. Masculine and feminine and, and things of that nature.
You know, plastic surgery was built on, the masculine medicine was built on the masculine, and there are certain ways that we, you know, that we learn that are very masculine. And So, I. Once I realized this and I started to I stopped wearing a white coat, I just started to like, kind of slowly break down some of those just automatic or auto automat automatic reflexes and.
Decide what, you know, what was best for me? It, it was a real game changer. It was a real game changer. So, we’re, we’re very stuck in our, our routine. Oh, what’s interesting, I know what I was going to say is this idea of a morning routine and, and of this, these check boxes. And if you don’t do this, you know, everything isn’t going to be just perfect that day.
It’s a very masculine way to approach your day. And So, I, I love that you said this because I, you know, there was a time when I was very check boxy and, oh, I’m going to have a morning routine and a meditate. It doesn’t work that way. We are cyclical beings and every day is different. Every week is different, every month is different, and phases of the moon are different.
It is a really, it’s a really, it’s a very freeing sense to have that realization. And say, oh, okay. That’s why it feels So, impossible sometimes because I don’t need to do that right now.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Well, I, I love podcasts. I’m sure you do too. And I’m constantly listening to the men, like these internet marketers who just crush it every day.
And I think I have become a man. I just, you know, I have got to chill and they take cold showers. Okay? I take cold showers and it’s just So, habitual. All of this. And then I think I’m kind of lost if I don’t do it. And that’s even worse. Because then I think really, I mean, is it, seriously, Catherine, you, you know, you’re not conquering the world here.
You know, I’m just conquering my corner of the world. But. Back to you. I think you’re amazing. Thank you. So, you have, I’m loving your business idea. You’ve got these three entities, you’ve got 20 staff, you’ve got a great group managing it for you, which absolutely, you should be the leader in the visionary and somebody else should be in the weeds.
You cannot do what you’re doing and be, do the Knickknack, all that. Just not healthy now. So, tell me about the revenues though, because you have. This is a big boat to float. So, how are you keeping that steady stream of patients to cover the overhead and are you losing any sleep over that? Is one group making more than the other group or do you find that if things slowdown in surgery, it seems like the meds spa will pick it up, or the holistical, like any of that going on? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: It does seem like this really interesting yin yang happens when one is down. Things just seem to compensate and I think that’s the beauty of having a diverse practice that it will now the wellness. Center is the youngest of the, of the situation that we have going on. And that is definitely still we’re just, we’re just So, fresh and new and the revenue stream is not as robust as it could be, but we’re, you know, it’s, it’s getting better and better every day.
So, that one is, is sorry. It’s getting So, dark where I am. Fine. That one is a. You know, we’re just, I, I have, I hate to say low expectations, but it’s just really starting to take off and they’re doing such a beautiful job, but word of mouth in my area is So, important. So, we’re, we’re just chugging up the mountain.
Yeah. Year and a half in.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Yeah. How important is social media to you to grow that practice? Or what marketing channels are you using to make sure everyone knows you’re there? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: So, our, we still rely heavily on social media for followers and you know, people seem to. Kind of start following for a few months and then decide to make their consultation and then they’ll start messaging us in social media, you know, getting gearing up for that.
And, and that still seems to be holding strong. I, I wasn’t sure when we first started if social media was going to be as important as it is down in Southern California, but still it. Still a great way for people to get acquainted with who, with our philosophy. Mm-hmm.. So, that is definitely important. I, the, the largest number of new patients come from our website.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Okay. And are you doing SEO and you’re keeping up with content, that kind of thing? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: So, our website is also, new in formation, and we are just starting to really make tweaks to it, to, to enhance how well it conveys our brand. But these, these things are So, much harder than I realized.
Catherine Maley, MBA: And they take longer and they cost more than you think and Yeah. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Oh, my goodness. Yes. Yes. But we just hired a marketing director in-house, So, she is We’re really excited, excited about that So, that we can start really changing the website and making it more of our own as we had someone outside of our, outside of our company build it. So, So, that’s exciting.
Catherine Maley, MBA: That’s also, a big question. Do we bring it in-house So, we can control it? Do we outsource it and hope we can manage it? There is no right or wrong answer for that other than trust your vendor. Treat them like their staff. Communicate with them a lot and tell them what you expect. Don’t make them guess.
Meet with them regularly. Tell them what you’re like, what you’re not liking, and don’t wait until you’re mad. You like, you’re angry at them and they’re like, what, what, what’s wrong? Probably do a podcast just on outsourcing, because frankly, that’s really a, a good way business model is if you don’t have to do it in.
And you don’t have to manage people and they can, it’s just getting rid of some of this stuff. So, you can focus on the patient experience rather than the external marketing experience. It’s the way to go if they’re, and then they’re the five is to go with it, you know? Exactly. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Yeah, exactly. I found experience of with the, with the web designer I found it.
The person that we used was very good. It was just, it was hard to communicate with them because they had So, many other accounts that it, I felt very impersonal. So, that’s the only thing I would say to it. Otherwise, I was happy to have someone outside just putting it all together with their expertise.
But then, you know, the finished product I felt really didn’t convey our message, but I think that was probably a result of, Of me still not owning that message yet, because it was a couple of years ago when we started building that website. Mm-hmm. So, it’s been an interesting evolution, but I, I feel as though all things settle out in time.
Everything feels like it’s not happening quick enough. But in reality, 10 years down the road, I’m going to look back on this time and, and chuckle a little bit about the experiences, but I’m enjoying watching things happen in real time. And they always turn out better and different than I could have ever hoped for.
Catherine Maley, MBA: I love your tagline. Can you tell us what it is?
Emily Hartmann, MD: “If it’s important to you, it’s important.”
Catherine Maley, MBA: I love that. That’s really, it came off very genuine when I, when I opened up your website. It’s like, if it’s important to you, it’s important. And I thought, oh, she hears me. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Yeah. Thank you. I, I that’s just something I always say to patients who are.
Concerned that they’re not making a good decision or they feel bad about, you know, financial burden on their family and whatnot. And, and I just always bring it back to if it’s important to them, that’s all that matters. It’s So, simple.
Catherine Maley, MBA: So, far you’re like a year and a half in or a couple years in.
What’s your, like, what would be your advice to anybody else that’s still new, you know, coming out? What, what would you do? Would you do this again in this big way? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Oh, well, you know, hindsight’s always 2020, So, it’s So, challenging. But I would, I would, I wish that I had learned to listen to my inner voice sooner. And I wish that I had been more observant of the lifestyles of other plastic surgeons and, and really rather than trying to copy them, learning why they do what they do, but then, Listening to myself and digesting it and figuring out what works best for me.
I didn’t learn that, learn early enough, but, you know, it’s what gives us the depth of understanding for other humans. So, I don’t regret it either.
Catherine Maley, MBA: You’re learning an awful lot at the young age. You’re, you really are, you’re, you’re way ahead of the game, as far as I’m concerned. So, tell us one thing we don’t know. How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?
Emily Hartmann, MD: Oh, well, I became a black belt in Taekwondo when I was 17, and I’m, I am still practicing Taekwondo. I just went back to it two years ago and it has been such a wonderful and refreshing way to re, re find my power again and power through my body, and also, had, Be silly and make a fool of myself, Good for you.
Yeah, yeah. With people who just encourage me and want the best for me.
Catherine Maley, MBA: So, it was great. So, if you and your husband are walking down a dark alley and somebody approaches you, does your husband step back and let you handle it? Or what? How does this relate to blending plastic surgery with wellness?Emily Hartmann, MD: Yes, we do talk about that.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Yeah. Honestly, I go have at it. I’ll hold your coat.
Yeah. Anyway, I’m going to wrap it up now. Tell us how can somebody get ahold of you who would like to hear more about you? And by the way, what’s your website?
Emily Hartmann, MD: The website is www.BeautyEternalChico.com. That’s c h i c o.com. and the easiest way to get ahold of me is through email. So, EmilyHartmann, make sure there are two ends at the end of that @mac.com.
That’s m a c as in Macintosh.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Gotcha. Gotcha. Okay. Thank you So, much Dr. Hartmann for being on. I really appreciate it. And everybody, if you’ve got any comments for Dr. Hartmann or myself, you can certainly leave them on my website at www.CatherineMaley.com. I’d also, appreciate if you subscribe to Beauty and the Biz.
Do you have an Instagram account that they,
Emily Hartmann, MD: you want to mention? Yes. @BeautyEternalChico as well. Oh, there you go. Okay.
Catherine Maley, MBA: Everybody that’s going to wrap it up for us today, a Beauty and the Biz and this episode on Dr. Hartmann blending plastic surgery with wellness.
If you’ve got any questions or feedback for Dr. Hartmann, you can reach out to her website at, www.BeautyEternalChico.com.
A big thanks to Dr. Hartmann for sharing her story on how she’s blending plastic surgery with wellness.
And if you have any questions or feedback for me, you can go ahead and leave them at my website at www.CatherineMaley.com, or you can certainly DM me on Instagram @CatherineMaleyMBA.
If you’ve enjoyed this episode on Beauty and the Biz, please head over to Apple Podcasts and give me a review and subscribe to Beauty and the Biz so you don’t miss any episodes. And of course, please share this with your staff and colleagues.
And we will talk to you again soon. Take care.
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-End transcript for “Blending plastic surgery with wellness — with Emily Hartmann, MD”.
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