Dr. Alex Lechin

You are always better off to do things honestly and openly. Working together is the best situation for everyone.


Dr. Alex Lechin comes from a long lineage of doctors who practiced medicine. He has been in the Houston area for many years and graduated from the Central University of Venezuela in Caracas, Venezuela in 1986. Dr. Lechin came to the United States and served his residency in internal medicine at Eastern Tennessee University and completed his studies in 1994 at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, with a focus on pulmonary chest, critical care, and sleep medicine.

Dr. Lechin has had his own practice since 1994 after completing his education. He is the president of the Texas Institute of Chest & Sleep Disorders, serving patients in the Houston and Pasadena area. He also continues to teach at Baylor College of Medicine, as Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Medicine. In addition, he teaches at the University of Houston, in the Department of Clinical Science and College of Pharmacy for Clinical Pharmacology.

Dr. Alex Lechin continues to educate himself within his specialty, on the newest developments in leading-edge technology. His latest focus is in international pulmonary.

Texas Institute of Chest & Sleep Disorders is planning to expand their business adding new research and technology, and possibly merging with another pulmonary specialist group.

Where did the idea for your company come from?

I wanted an institute where many physicians could not only take care of patients, but also to provide our physicians with a place for in-house research as well as education. It would not work with a single practice; I had to create an organized structure. The Texas Institute was created based upon that criteria.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

I start my mornings doing rounds at the hospital. I go to my office after I complete my rounds. My schedule is set for any surgeries or procedures for the morning. The day continues with clinical activities and research and seeing patients until late afternoon. Then, back to the hospital if required.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Ideas have to pass requirements after due diligence. It is all based upon the logistics of “Why”. How does the idea fit: need improvement, new technology, value to the practice, new research? Then we research the feasibility and the economics of the idea, what people or company for the development of the new model.

What’s one trend that excites you?

Right now, I am planning to bring in new areas of pulmonary research. We may be merging with another group of pulmonary specialists for economic growth and to bring patient care to a higher level.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I am able to bring to a business some great solutions. Physicians are not trained to work together. We are trained to work independently. I am able to see beyond the training to a much larger picture where we can all become successful. I am very good at bringing physicians together in a business that is economically feasible and professionally rewarding.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would advise the younger Dr. Alex Lechin to take chances much earlier. At first, I focused on just patient care, it was my comfort zone. But I should have invested in bringing in more services much earlier in my career. It would have saved me a lot of wrestling with “suits”. It would have meant earlier freedom. I would tell myself to not be afraid and to bring all of the ideas under your roof.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Doctors should be able to come together under one group and one umbrella. The old model just no longer works. We should not have to be competing with one another.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

You are always better off to do things honestly and openly. Working together is the best situation for everyone.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

Personalize your time with your patients. They are not just a number. They are not just clients. Keep them happy and treat them as human beings.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Being able to hold on to partners who lack the same vision. You have to go the extra mile in relationships with partners. They sign on for two years to build their business, but if they don’t take the time to build their own practice, they no longer stay a partner.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Create a phone app to take care of tasks or for whatever your business focus is. Kind of like an Uber for tasks. Provide the app for free and advertising will automatically come. It is cheap to develop and it is the future.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

I spent a little under $100 meeting with the developer of an app that I am working on that I think was very well spent.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

The number one software that I use is for my medical records. Amazon, rather than office depot. There is another one called Epocrates, which is an app I use for medications. I also use Uptodate and GoodRx for the latest in up to date medications. I use File Master to manage my records, along with DocuSign.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

“Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind” by Yuval Harari. It is just a great read! Also, “Who Moved My Cheese?” The book addresses people who do not embrace change.

What is your favorite quote?

I would rather ask for forgiveness than ask for permission!

Key learnings:

• I feel lucky and honored that I get to do something that I love and it makes me happy

• The world completely changed and they just didn’t send out the memo. We are in the technology revolution. Move with it.

• Embrace change and move forward. True currency is knowledge!