Portrait: Hi, Mary Beth! It’s such a pleasure talking to you today. Will you introduce yourself?
Mary Beth: Hi! I’m Mary Beth Hagen, and I am the CEO and founder of TITAN Aesthetic. I started in aesthetics back in 2005 working for Medesis which is the first company that sold the Restylane® line of products, and then I went over to Allergan in 2008. I was a regional manager for the upper midwest. Then I was the Botox® Cosmetic Professional Marketing Manager before I started the national account team. I worked with all the big derm groups, aesthetic teams, and state practices across the country, and then I started TITAN in 2017.
TITAN specializes in five areas that help support clinics and aesthetic providers throughout the United States so that patients will have great outcomes. We do placement for both new and experienced injectors. We do screening, so whether you are a new injector looking to be placed in a practice, or you’re an employer that has found a candidate on your own, we will do screening for you to help you get to know that candidate with our proprietary TITAN screening assessment. The third thing we do is injector preparation through the TITAN training program. We don't do hands-on training, we have a clinical network that we refer people out to. We don't take any money for the clinical training referrals that we do, we just have people that I trust. But TITAN Course 1 and Course 2 help you get a good foundation of what you need to know about aesthetics before you start sticking needles in people. Then we do consulting. A lot on compensation. We also run the TITAN Injector Membership program, it’s only $250 a year. We do a lot of webinars and a lot of peer-to-peer education about real-world issues that injectors face every day.
I’m really blessed that we get to support great injectors in great practices for great patient outcomes.
Portrait: This month we’re looking at breaking into the industry, tips for getting your first job, and anybody trying to get in and build a name for themselves. You immediately came to mind just because you’re the center of the job universe in aesthetics!
Mary Beth: When I look at people trying to get into this industry, I usually will give people three pieces of advice.
Number one, make sure you really understand the job and what the job is. Not just an idealized version of it. So many employers post Indeed ads and every time they do this, they get a hundred responses of people saying they’ve always wanted to get into aesthetics, and asking for training. But they really don't know what the job is. They don understand that it’s cash medicine and that you really have to build a clientele.
My advice is to learn about the job: talk to people who are injectors, shadow someone, go to open houses, read as much as you can, don’t necessarily follow people online who are just dancing and make it seem easy - follow the people who will give you the guidance and the tips to learn what you actually need to know.
The second tip that I will give people is to start with a clinical foundation. You cannot just decide you want to get into this industry by going to a weekend training course. First of all, there is no way you can learn enough in just a weekend training course, secondly, people won't hire you if all you’ve had is a weekend training course. So that’s why at TITAN we work really hard to try to help people understand that there really is a development process, just like for a Physician doing a residency. It’s very much the same in aesthetics, if you are a competent nurse, nurse practitioner, or PA, you still have to do additional training to do aesthetics. It’s going to start with understanding the market and learning anatomy, particularly facial anatomy.
That’s why we partner with CompleteFace.net. It is an amazing online anatomy tool that’s divided into two sections. It’s the essentials section which is the foundational anatomy you need to learn, and then a specialized section which is more advanced training techniques and areas to inject. In that essentials section, you learn the anatomy of the upper face, the middle face, and the lower face, and by being able to do that you learn the muscles, nerves, fat pads, ligaments, bone structure, you learn where everything is and when you stick a needle into the face where you’re sticking that needle in terms of anatomy. It’s 10 hours and more than 100 high-definition videos of facial anatomy, so I really recommend that app to people who are starting out.
There are some great cadaver training courses, Dr. Chris Surek has the Academy for Injection Anatomy and does an amazing job with their training course, Dr. Jonathan Sykes has the Sykes Facial Sculpting Institute and he is an absolutely amazing anatomist and facial plastic surgeon. I love recommending those. I always recommend that people follow Sebastian Cotafana on Instagram because he’s an anatomist and trauma surgeon who teaches at Mayo Clinic and his research and awareness of what you need to understand about anatomy is so impressive.
So I tell people, learn about anatomy first then learn about facial aging, learn about the products, learn about adverse events and what could happen, learn about the patient journey - because when you’re an injector, as Dr. Tim Pearce says, actually injecting is the easiest part of being an aesthetic provider.
Third, they really need to understand what the different options are for them to work. What are the laws, guidelines, and rules that they’re going to have to work to follow in their state? That’s why it’s such a hard industry to get into for somebody who hasn't done their leg work. Every state is different, so there’s no set path. That’s why at TITAN Aesthetic Recruiting we do offer the Injector Preparation Program where we start with Course 1 which is learning the market, the history, and the Complete Face essentials (it’s only $750). I really try to help people know, at this point, this is your foundation. If you do this and you find out you don't want to work in aesthetics, great you only invested $750. But if you do like it, then we have Course 2 which is teaching your brain to inject, and that’s where Kevin Harrington and his team of injectors do a 5 week home study interactive webinar course that really helps people think through the why behind injecting.
That’s what we provide people before they go to hands-on training programs. And then TITAN has a clinical network of trainers all across the United States that are phenomenal nonphysician injectors (RN’s, NP’s, and PAs) who own their own aesthetic training companies. They all have published websites with documented curricula and faculty that you can learn about who are all national trainers for the national manufacturers. They are all active practitioners who can share with you what they see and learn in their practice. So we really do try to have a good network so that people can go to a trainer in their geographical area and learn from someone who can also be a mentor when they’re done. At that point, when you’re getting ready for course two and hands-on training, that’s when you want to start looking for the job, but when you’re interviewing there’s a whole different set of things that people need to know.
For the rest of our conversation with Mary Beth, including how to interview for a position as an injector, how to understand compensation for non-physician injectors, paying your dues to have a successful career, and the history of the industry, read part 2 of the interview!