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Thoughts on the Park City Conference

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  • Uhh … well I can already tell you it’s not as profitable as his other “ventuers” @ WCI.
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    How do you know that Newbie?  The conference was packed.  There were “sponsors” also.  A video will be sold.  Also lots of Word of Mouth advertising I suspect.
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    It would be nearly impossible from a margin % standpoint. Things in the real world have a much higher cost of goods sold and are one and done, so the profit percentage will inherently be lower than things online where the effort is one and done, maintenance costs are low, and revenue is recurring indefinitely (one hopes).

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    • Because hatton1 there is no recurrent revenue from it. Downstream income from engagement and conversion to WCI method sure, but he gets more mileage out of it from doing podcast while kids are shouting in the background than conference which was "packed" with what ? 200 people ? That took a lot of planning and effort. I could do a throw away BOE calculation I suppose.

      As an aside aside. I am half way giving WCI kudos but personally I'll be a full convert (on some issues I don't see eye to eye with WCI) if he hosts a resident conference with literally no profit immediately. That's be insanely socially impactful.

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      • 2. I am scheduled to be a partner in 4 months -3. I only submitted for plane and conference cost (stayed with a friend). I have to find a new job.  “Partnership-track” has been held over my head for four years, so I stuck it out.
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        Wait. What?!? Was partnership dangled for 3.5+ years and suddenly pulled? Did your conference attendance have anything to do with this?

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        • I'm all for WCI expanding his business -- deserves every bit of it. Unless scaled up, the conference is likely about meeting some like-minded docs in person rather than profit. He doesn't have to do it, but it's likely fun to meet people who are fans.

          How does a pro-bono resident conference change one's perception of his advice? Same advice, whether he makes a profit or not shouldn't affect much (other than opinions about financial advisors and other sponsors). He's not a saint on a social mission, nor should we be jealous of him for making a profitable business. Any resident can read the blogs for free or buy the book for a few bucks. Not enough to do the trick? OK pay for the conference or course if you like, but don't ask for a free conference!

          The conference was half full of 40-50 year olds who get it and are essentially FI. If each attending with access to residents and students did a talk about finances, that'd be quite impactful.

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          • As a resident who made it to Park City, I think that more of us could have attended. Money is likely a big issue as programs vary widely on the amount of CME dollars they shell out. Time is another factor as we only get 3-5 days for CME courses per year.
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            Well, we can’t have the slaves prisoners with jobs running off to attend conferences that will teach them how to improve their circumstances, now can we?  We old farts are counting on you youngsters to run things when we retire early!  ????

            I hope you’re able to share what you learned with the other residents in your program.  It really is unfortunate that residency makes it tough for physicians-in-training to benefit from educational conferences.  I know when I was in residency I didn’t manage to travel anywhere for CME.

            (Two of the books in the swag bag were ones I already owned, so I passed them on to our newest attending, who’s only been in our group for a year.  He was very grateful.  I think most of your fellow residents will appreciate any info you can pass on to them.)
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            I am scheduled to give a grand rounds presentation in June right before I graduate, and I've already got "Physician Financing for Dummies" approved as my topic. I plan on using many of the topics from the conference as starting points. Slides from a few of those presentations may be useful, but I've been lurking on the site long enough to know where to find what I need.

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            • I guess if he doesn't put another one on, you guys will just have to put together a reunion event in 30 years or so to relive the glory days, Woodstock '99 style.

              Is that a young Vagabond or Zaphod I see below?  Upon further inspection, it's clearly PoF.

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              • so you would be willing to have a 7am start time for conferences even if that was 6 am for west coasters?  personally, and I’m sure I am in the minority, I don’t necessarily want to get up that early for conference
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                The room was packed at 7 am in Park City.

                The only problem was that coffee was in short supply on Friday, but our hosts had that problem solved by Saturday.

                Despite the fact that the conference was held in a resort town during ski season, every session (morning and afternoon) was very well attended, with virtually every seat taken.
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                I am being less clear than normal.  I have certainly attended 7 am conferences, I’m kind of shocked that you guys chose to have start time at 7 am.  what time did the sessions end?  that’s a really long day needlessly in my opinion.  people show up at 7am for many reasons for 8am and 9am lecture starts. certainly east coasters are on a different schedule, presenters that will need help possibly with technology, and people wanting to meet with other people, I’m just really surprised that a full day CME starts at 7 am.  good for you guys, though, obviously glad everyone had a good time.

                the last part is my point.  every session well attended, every seat taken, no need to throw a break in at 9am.  jmo. skiiers will disagree.  ????

                 

                 
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                For clarity, the schedule was as follows:

                Day 1:

                Lectures: 7-10

                Break for skiing, lunch, exercise, etc.

                Booksigning: 3-4

                Lectures: 4-7

                Day 2:

                Lectures: 7-10

                Break for skiing, lunch, exercise, etc.

                Blogger panel discussion: 3-4

                Lectures: 4-7

                In my experience, this is a typical schedule for a winter CME meeting at a ski resort.
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                I actually requested in the survey to at least start the breakfast earlier (like 0600). I thought that was a great time to socialize with people, but it was too short before the conference started. i’m a very early morning person…by 0700 you have no idea what i have already accomplished ????
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                Ha ha. Far more people said starting classes at 7 was too early! The other issue was the buffet could only be left out 90 minutes. So if it started at 6, it had to be taken down by 7:30.
                Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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                • I love the advice not disputing that but I've seen altruistism and volunteerism in my lifetime by some folks without profit or any remote thought of any payout and I guess I'd put WCI at that level after the pro bono thing as you said.

                  Right now he's a nice capitalist rather than a benevolent altruist. All this just how I think and feel and how I perceive him. My internal meter spits out what I said; to many I'm sure it's been godsend and they see it in much different light. To each their own.

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                  • I love the advice not disputing that but I’ve seen altruistism and volunteerism in my lifetime by some folks without profit or any remote thought of any payout and I guess I’d put WCI at that level after the pro bono thing as you said.

                    Right now he’s a nice capitalist rather than a benevolent altruist. All this just how I think and feel and how I perceive him. My internal meter spits out what I said; to many I’m sure it’s been godsend and they see it in much different light. To each their own.
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                    I disagree with this. WCI no doubt toiled for several years before breaking even, giving freely of his time and writing free blogs for anyone who cares to read them. He responds to email from people with questions and does not charge for the answer. He has created this forum, which is probably at best a break even venture, to allow knowledgeable physicians to help educate those who have questions. And he has established a scholarship program for medical students, which he pays into and provides the infrastructure to support. Short of giving you the shirt of his back, what else do you want from the man? Why can't he be a capitalist and altruist? Short of Mother Theresa, who would even qualify as an altruist?

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                    • I agree with Vagabond as usual.

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                      • I agree with Vagabond as usual.

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                        Look at you guys, two peas in a pod and only 13 replies apart in total posts as I type this. Now if you want the real definition of an altruist, look no further than the moderators. I bet we collectively put in a at least 45 minutes a month of blood sweat and tears trying to keep you forum participants in line. That is 45 minutes we'll never get back!!! It's a thankless job, but somebody's gotta do it (huge sigh for which there is no icon above).

                        Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory and ignorant advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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                        • I love the advice not disputing that but I’ve seen altruistism and volunteerism in my lifetime by some folks without profit or any remote thought of any payout and I guess I’d put WCI at that level after the pro bono thing as you said.

                          Right now he’s a nice capitalist rather than a benevolent altruist. All this just how I think and feel and how I perceive him. My internal meter spits out what I said; to many I’m sure it’s been godsend and they see it in much different light. To each their own.
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                          I disagree with this. WCI no doubt toiled for several years before breaking even, giving freely of his time and writing free blogs for anyone who cares to read them. He responds to email from people with questions and does not charge for the answer. He has created this forum, which is probably at best a break even venture, to allow knowledgeable physicians to help educate those who have questions. And he has established a scholarship program for medical students, which he pays into and provides the infrastructure to support. Short of giving you the shirt of his back, what else do you want from the man? Why can’t he be a capitalist and altruist? Short of Mother Theresa, who would even qualify as an altruist?
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                          I appreciate the kind words and it was great to see you in person.

                          All aspects of WCI are currently profitable except the scholarship (And maybe the Youtube channel. Still working on that. And of course all that emailing. Maybe someday I'll figure out how to make that profitable.) That includes the conference and this forum. Some parts are more profitable than others, and no, I won't tell you which. It's been fun to watch over the years what makes money and what doesn't and how that changes over time.

                          Maybe some people are willing to do this much work for free. But I haven't found one in this niche yet. When he or she comes along and puts me out of business, I'll go do something else. While it would be sad to lose a pretty good source of income, it would be pretty awesome if there were no need for WCI in this world. I don't practice medicine for free (most of the time) and I don't blog/podcast/conference etc for free either (most of the time.)
                          Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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                          • Umm, I can understand being envious of what WCI has built into a profitable business venture, but to be critical or demanding of more pro bono work seems a bit much. Perusing the blog and forum are free and a paperback copy of his book is listed for only $14.89 on Amazon right now.  No one is under any obligation to buy anything from his advertisers, purchase his online course or pay to go to the conference. I’d be more concerned as one of his ED patients that he has focused so much on his financial empire that his clinical skills may have slipped (I kid).

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                            • As much fun as it is to play internet psychologist and to try to guess what WCI’s motivations are, I’m not sure what difference it makes. Let’s say WCI’s initial plan was only to make money with this blog and that he doesn’t actually care whether doctors make financially sound decisions. Does it mean the backdoor Roth tutorial is now invalid? Is living like a resident for a few years after becoming an attending now a bad idea? Of course not.

                              To play it safe, assume people are generally acting out of their own self interests and then figure out whether that matters to you. In this case, WCI is delivering content to people that they can access for free (in most cases). If WCI can make money doing this, I don’t see why I should care. Sure there may be some conflicts of interest (which WCI typically discloses), but this is the case with anything in life.

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                              • Regarding the profitability discussion, there's really a big distinction between WCI (and all its ventures) versus a lot of other business models:  the profit WCI makes from all things WCI is generally NOT coming from the people he's trying to attract to this website (physicians, dentists, other high earners).  It's made from advertising.  He has an incentive to put out good, useful information because that generates clicks and people using his recommendations.  With the exception of the conference, he's not taking money from the people who use the site.  Therefore, whether he's doing it altruistically or capitalistically (is that a word?), he's still incentivized to put out good information for his readers, unlike most financial advisors.

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