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 […]
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, […]
Craft a treatment plan game plan
Clients are more likely to accept medical recommendations if you clearly explain the services, provide a high-end, low-end fee estimate and know how to respond to financial resistance.
Preparing and presenting treatment plans is an important part of what veterinary technicians do every day. How you handle these plans will make the difference between clients accepting your recommendations or walking out the door. Clients often have a difficult time understanding recommendations, especially if the plan involves diagnostics and procedures. It’s our job to […]
How to launch and profit from a rewards program
Properly managed incentives can boost client loyalty, improve patient health and lift the bottom line over the long term.
Our best veterinary clients — the ones who have come to us for years — are compliant with our recommendations, inherently trust all members of our team, choose to support our small business by utilizing our ancillary services despite less expensive alternatives, and promote our hospital in the best light to all their friends and […]
How to find a good relief vet
Start early when looking for a fill-in doctor, and think about contracting with a headhunter.
Whether you’re a solo practitioner in desperate need of a vacation or a practice manager dealing with an associate veterinarian’s sudden medical leave, hiring a relief veterinarian may feel like a daunting task, particularly if it’s your first time. The first thing to know is that finding a relief veterinarian may take longer than expected. […]
Time to revise your mission statement?
If yours doesn’t elicit an emotional feeling, try again.
Mission statements are dull, boring and useless, and so are annual performance reviews. Now that I have horrified my fellow VetPartners members, let me explain. The issue with most veterinary mission statements, which is the subject of this article, and annual performance reviews, which is not, is that they typically are done poorly. Over the […]
Plot a career path in practice management
Networking, education and certification can help with professional advancement.
Like the parade of preteens who shadow our doctors each summer, I too wanted to be a veterinarian at that age. Growing up in my parents’ practice, where my mother was the owning veterinarian, my father managed the business and I pitched in wherever needed, I experienced the realities of the field. And unlike many […]
Learn drug security basics
Vet techs play a key role in oversight of controlled substances.
Managing controlled substances can be a daunting task that usually falls squarely on a veterinary technician’s shoulders. Issues arise when a technician does not understand the regulations or when the hospital lacks good systems for preventing the illegal acquisition, diversion and use of controlled drugs. Federal, state and local governments regulate controlled substances. The U.S. […]
6 steps to effective worker discipline
Don’t rush to judgment, adhere to the employee handbook and be consistent in your follow-through.
When you see the term “problem employee,” what comes to mind? Perhaps someone in your practice makes negative comments about virtually every situation, whereas someone else may disappear whenever an unpleasant task needs to be done. Or maybe someone believes she has the correct answer for every situation, and she doesn’t follow procedure when it […]
12 ways to motivate millennials
When managing younger employees, a nontraditional approach may be better.
If you think your 18- to 40-year-old employees — aka millennials, aka Generation Y — are lazy, uncommitted and entitled, then either you hired the wrong recruits or you haven’t found the right way to motivate them. Here are 12 ideas to motivate your Gen Y team members. They apply to receptionists and technicians as […]