Leyla Bilali, RN, BSN
How your clients refer to you:
Email: Leyla@fertilitytogether.com, Instagram: @fertilitytogether, Ph. (201) 638-8618, Website: www.fertilitytogether.com
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
8 years as a registered nurse – 5 years in pediatrics, 3 in fertility. My business launched August 2017.
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
I have a knack for connecting with people, which is why I went into nursing in the first place. I’ve always been drawn to science/medicine/healthcare, but the closeness of the nurse/patient relationship is what ultimately led me to nursing over medical school or research science. I find it very easy to connect with my patients at the fertility clinic and my clients, especially the ones that I do injections for throughout their cycles and/or counsel outside of my practice’s regular hours. One of my most dear patients kept urging me to pursue my own concierge business. She pointed out that it is the perfect niche for me – a combination of medical care and knowledge with the ability to ease a person’s anxieties. She kept saying: “I don’t know how anyone does this without a ‘Leyla’” and I would laugh, but then go home and think to myself: “Why am I not pursuing this?”
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
I go above and beyond for my clients – my career isn’t just a 9-5 job to me. I’m truly invested in their care and their cycle outcomes. And it’s not just the compassion – you need to have the most up-to-date knowledge and education in the field as well. I spend a lot of time outside of my work hours researching and learning to always have the best information for my clients.
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
I think that with something as intimate as fertility you need consistency and continuity. You want a go-to person who isn’t necessarily your partner, as he/she will be navigating the journey as well. This is missing at many fertility clinics – not because the nurses aren’t caring and compassionate, but rather because practices are usually open 365 days a year and the staff has rotating schedules and a huge volume of patients. It’s hard for one nurse to be consistently taking care of 30-40 patients at a time. So you don’t always end up speaking to the same person and it can be frustrating re-telling your whole history and feeling comfortable with different people. Having one person who knows the ins and outs of your journey and medical history and who is easily accessible via text/call/email takes away a huge piece of the anxiety that comes with going through fertility treatments.
How do you positively impact your clientele?
Listening is a huge part of what I do. Clients want to be heard – they don’t want to be dismissed with even the smallest things, even if medically we’ve seen it all before. I think that as medical professionals we often become jaded and forget that for the patient it’s their first time going through all of it – just because it’s not our first time doesn’t mean it’s illegitimate. And I like to give it to them straight without being brash. It’s a hard balance not sugar coating medical information and statistics, while at the same time catering to the sensitivity and vulnerability of this clientele. But it’s so important to make sure you are not just putting out “fluff” as I like to call it. My clients will always get the 100% medical truth but with my compassionate delivery.
What is your favorite part of your job?
The end goal – my babies! Some of my clients joke that their babies are “our” babies because I’m there with them from beginning to end. Even when the actual fertility treatments are over and they are discharged to their OB/GYNs I follow up with them and go through the emotions with them. There’s nothing more special than seeing them with their little ones, knowing everything they went through to get there.
How do you benefit mamas?
Some of my clients suffer from secondary infertility, so juggling the fertility journey with being a mommy is that much more difficult. Having me just a quick text away or being able to come over at off hours when their little ones aren’t home or tucked away for the night is very important and helpful.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
This is a hard one – all of my client testimonials made me cry the first time I read them and I still get overwhelmed reading them now. But I think when they tell me they feel “more hopeful” is the most memorable. Because that’s what I want for them – to be hopeful and stay hopeful until they get to their end goal.
Pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field:
Two of the nurses I work with, both of whom I am lucky enough to call friends – Ciara Pratt and Sara Yerkes. Ciara is always going above and beyond for both our patients and our staff. Sara is super smart, dedicated and professional – I look up to her. They’re my go-to nurses in and out of the office and they both have been such a huge support system for me going out on my own with Fertility Together.
What is the best advice anyone's ever given you? Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by?
Don’t sell yourself short. I think as females, especially, we tend to doubt ourselves and forget the things that make us unique, powerful and important. Hold on tight to what you know you have to offer and don’t be afraid to put it out there for everyone else to benefit from.
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
I’m a huge multi-tasker. There really is nothing better than that for saving time. Find 2 or 3 things that can be done simultaneously every day. And, it sounds silly and out-dated but I still use a paper agenda/planner, believe it or not. My husband is always nagging me to use my phone and get with technology but I find that having it actually written out is a huge organizational tactic for me.