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success

A golden opportunity

Politics and Policy

The human-animal bond has brought monumental change to the veterinary industry. You can run with the pack and enjoy the riches, or you can be a slow-to-react naysayer.

Can veterinarians handle success? That’s a silly question, right? Of course, veterinarians can handle success, just like anyone else. But are you sure? Does handling success only mean applauding and cashing the checks while success unfolds around you? Or does it involve understanding the fundamentals of why success is occurring and then evaluating and implementing […]

mindfulness

Your unique path to mindfulness and flow

Go With the Flow

Identify an appealing activity that you can consistently incorporate into your regular routine.

Our most recent article, “Flow in Uncertain Times” — read it at bit.ly/TVBFlow — reviewed the key elements of the flow state. When in flow, we are likely to: Have clear goals that we are inspired to pursue. Experience a deep focus of attention and effectively tune out distractions. Be fully present and accepting of […]

burnout

How to reduce burnout

Getting Technical

The pandemic has made work and daily life even more stressful. You can mitigate the tension if you set expectations for clients, fine-tune staff schedules and practice self-care.

Burnout is an inevitable aspect of working in the veterinary profession. Characterized in many ways, it’s commonly described as “persistent physical, mental or emotional exhaustion caused by long-term stress, usually as a result of excessive workplace and/or personal responsibilities.” A function of where you work rather than what you do, stress-​related burnout is more prominent […]

misogyny

The gender divide

Diversity Toolbox

Truth be told, misogyny is a problem in veterinary medicine. Our increasingly female profession can take constructive steps to even the playing field.

Back in late July, U.S. Reps. Ted Yoho of Florida and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York had a bit of a run-in on the steps of the Capitol. The episode stemmed from policy comments that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez made during a speech and that Rep. Yoho strongly disagreed with. He used strong words when confronting her. […]

practice owner

When your boss is the problem

Take Charge

Conflict with a practice owner can arise from insecurity, personality differences or unapologetic callousness. A manager who understands the root cause can help bring harmony to the clinic.

How should veterinary hospital managers neutralize a practice owner whose behavior toward staff is unpredictable or relentlessly difficult? How do you help the team to cope with such a leader? When bosses behave badly, managing up can be the remedy. Reality Check Hospital managers often feel a sense of ownership. The majority of us, however, […]

payroll systems

The whole picture

Money Matters

A cash stockpile can leave you with a false sense of security if you fail to scrutinize all the systems that keep your practice humming.

When a client presents a patient, how do you assess the animal’s health? Before touching the cat or dog, you might get a feel for its well-being based on coat quality, general body condition and demeanor. Do you stop there? Of course not. If we instead substitute a veterinary practice for the patient, the owners […]

construction manager

Team building

Constructive Criticism

Erecting a veterinary hospital nowadays isn’t as simple as getting a quote and signing a contract. Do you want a construction manager, and if so, should the person be an “agent” or “at risk”?

My August/September article “Assembly Required”— read it at bit.ly/ConstructiveCriticismQA — addressed how to find a builder. In this second part, I’ll talk about project delivery and today’s most popular contract arrangements. Q. What do you mean by project delivery? A. Project delivery refers to the execution of construction work. It includes pre-construction activities like obtaining […]

COVID coverage

COVID, insurance and your practice

Protect and Defend

Questions that few people were asking a year ago are suddenly on everybody’s mind.

As the pandemic sweeps across the United States, the delivery of veterinary services has changed dramatically. Not surprisingly, veterinarians and practice managers have raised questions about insurance coverage and risk management. This is the first of a two-article series highlighting the most frequently asked questions I have received from my insurance clients. Q. Do workers’ […]

social media

Stop, look and listen

Socially Acceptable

Your social media managers spend time pushing out great content, but do they monitor reactions and complaints? You’re asking for trouble when you ignore pointed replies and simple questions.

Most veterinary practices have a strategic plan to publish Facebook and Instagram posts, email reminders and newsletters, deploy push notifications, and send text messages. Once these marketing efforts are scheduled and executed, the team members responsible can breathe a sigh of relief, right? Yes and no. Practices that stop here miss crucial opportunities to build […]

learning

Onward and Upward

Creative Disruption

Forced to adjust amid the pandemic, we proved we’re capable of radical change. We can do a lot more, from pushing for portable licensure to embracing asynchronous learning.

Our profession, an industry known for its aversion to change, has demonstrated a remarkable ability to adapt, innovate and grow over the past few months. Historically, we’ve been the poster child for a belts and suspenders industry, one that’s exceedingly cautious, but in the face of crisis, we’ve learned much that will help us to […]

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