Dr. Euan McGinty is a transplant from the UK to the Maritimes,
having practiced in the Highlands of Scotland until 2009.
He then successfully completed the bridging program at U of Waterloo
and in 2013 started Ocean Optometry in Halifax Nova Scotia.
Dr. Euan McGinty
Optometrist Owner, Ocean Optometry
Doctor of Optomtery, Cardiff University, Wales 1993
How did you get into the Eye Care business?
It’s not an uncommon story in our industry – my dad was an optometrist. When I was born he was still lecturing and then when I was four he moved in to independent practice, relocating the family to the seaside town on the west coast of Scotland where I grew up.
Growing up I never thought that I would be an optometrist, I thought that a legal career was pending, however in my final year of high school I changed direction completely and I’m glad that I did! I’ve been fortunate to really enjoy optometry throughout my career to date. It’s allowed me to work in many different settings and is a continually evolving career, I’ve enjoyed some wonderful travel opportunities and met an amazing array of people.
What is something you plan on implementing in your business this year?
This year we’d like to invest in an OCT. A major instrument purchase like this is always a difficult decision – are you buying the right machine for you; will you be able to recoup on the investment; what will the lifetime of the machine be; what will aftersales support be like; how will I fit it into your routine?
There’s no easy answer to these questions, however, colleague feedback is always a great resource and regardless of machine, I haven’t heard anyone regretting their purchase.
What is something you have done in your business to set you apart?
When were planning Ocean Optometry we had a clear vision of what products we wanted to carry, knowing that we wanted to focus on the upper end of the market. As we started to review the collections it became obvious to us that we only wanted to work with independent frame manufacturers. At times we have questioned this decision, especially in the early days, when we were sitting with a lot of expensive product on the shelves and people would come in and ask, “where are your Ray-Bans?”
For us it was an opportunity to educate our potential customers about our product selection and the decision-making process behind it. Some people get it, others don’t care. Almost five years later it seems like we’ve hopefully made a good choice.
I have three children, a daughter and two sons. The two boys are 16 and 12. Over the last year we decided to get in to RC car racing and it’s been great fun. We are fortunate to have three tracks within a short drive from us and a good hobby shop in Dartmouth, dedicated to lots of stuff radio controlled.
We purchased a car each (let’s hear it for an accumulation of birthday/Christmas money from doting grandparents!). They are all the same model, but in different colours to keep things even.
What’s your favourite 80’s jam?
The 80’s … what a musical decade! I graduated high school in 1988, so this question really spoke to me! If you ever come in to Ocean Optometry you’ll soon find out how influenced we are by the 80’s and early 90’s music scene from especially the Manchester scene, indie and alternative music, electronica and folk rock. I could go on and on about this!
Okay, okay … do I have to pick one? The band would be James and the song would be Sit Down. So many good nights throughout my university life included this anthemic song. A whole disco full of revellers sitting down on the dance floor in empathy (and spilled drinks!). As an acoustic song it’s haunting and emotional. I even sang it to my children as I rocked them to sleep in my arms. If you haven’t listed to James for a while (or ever), go and do so, their recent albums have also been stellar and are well recommended and they have some amazing concerts you can watch on YouTube.