Columns

Diversity Toolbox

The case for inclusive data collection

Asking demographic questions can enhance a practice’s knowledge base and the ability to serve clientele.

Businesses and organizations collect a huge amount of data. For example, the American Veterinary Medical Association maintains divisions that gather copious amounts of data about veterinarians and veterinary practice. At the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, I annually collect and analyze data related to student enrollment, applicant numbers, faculty and research. Why do we […]

Protect and Defend

Are you prepared for a data breach?

The theft of sensitive client information can do irreparable harm to a small business, so take preventive steps now.

You don’t need to look far to find a story about yet another data breach. Here are recent headlines: Health care data of 1 million N.J. patients compromised since 2009 Hacker attacks on health care providers jump 600% Hacker publishes 5 million Gmail addresses, passwords Breach at Goodwill vendor lasted 18 months Home Depot data […]

Diversity Toolbox

What is your personal narrative?

Knowing a little about each other promotes a better understanding of the world we live in and the people who inhabit it.

Diversity is often seen as a buzzword in business discussions, and these discussions do not always elicit positive reactions. Lack of clarity around definitions, diversity-enhancement goals and diversity’s relationship to veterinary practice is often at the heart of these misunderstandings. In this new column, I hope to provide concise diversity and inclusion content that drills […]

Selling Points

In defense of sales reps

Maximize the relationship with your vendors to help grow your veterinary practice and better serve clients.

We live in a time when competition is increasing and when creating a differentiating factor among your competitors is more difficult. The goal for each of us should be to use every resource at our disposal to satisfy our clients and staff. Most of us overlook or forget about an excellent and underutilized resource staring […]

H.R. Huddle

How to conduct a practice-culture audit

Spoken and unspoken messages say a lot about a veterinary team’s assumptions, values and beliefs.

If you’ve owned, managed or worked at a particular veterinary practice for any length of time, you may be so used to the workplace culture that you can’t effectively define it, much less analyze its strengths and weaknesses. If that’s the case, it’s perfectly normal. Having said this, it makes good sense for your practice […]

VetPartners Corner

Use it or lose it

If employees don’t remember much of what they were taught, your training methods may be at fault.

How much of this article will you recall once you return to work? Chances are, you will remember reading a training article, and perhaps you will recall an important point because it related directly to your situation. The reality is that you retain about 5 percent of what you heard in a lecture or podcast, […]

Protect and Defend

Get serious about EPLI coverage

Employment practices liability insurance safeguards against costly claims of discrimination and other workplace issues.

In today’s environment, protecting your practice against risk is more important than ever. While preparing for fire and professional liability are no-brainers, safeguarding against less concrete threats often takes a back seat. Consider this: Regardless of whether your veterinary practice is small or large, the chance of encountering an employment practices liability insurance (EPLI) claim […]

Money Matters

KPIs leave out the whys

Key performance indicators help monitor the success of your actions, but they don’t explain the reasons for change.

Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are individual business metrics that help veterinarians, managers and consultants evaluate the overall health of the practice, as well as the effectiveness of new programs and any progress toward goals. With the multitude of reports available from practice management information software, plus more that can be customized in hundreds of […]

Talk the Talk

The calm after the storm

Soothe angry pet owners and raise the level of service by training the team to listen carefully and respond the right way.

When faced with an angry client, veterinary team members tend to have two default responses: They either become defensive or suffer in silence. Unfortunately, neither response makes an unhappy client feel any better. While no one likes to be confronted by a livid pet owner, team members who are trained to respond with compassion will […]

Fearless

Eliminate fear in pets — and in your clients

Simple solutions start with the initial phone call and extend to the products offered at checkout.

The writer Malcolm Gladwell once said, “We don’t know where our first impressions come from or precisely what they mean, so we don’t always appreciate their fragility.” As practice owners, we know that our first opportunity to interact with and acquire a client may not occur in person or in an exam room. It may […]

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