Leadership

doctor compensation

You owe it to yourself

Practice Smarter

Practice owners need to be fairly compensated. A four-tier formula is the answer.

As the owner of your veterinary practice, how do you determine your compensation and benefits? Unfortunately, many practice owners are what I call bottom feeders. That is, whatever amount is left in the bank account at the end of the month is how much they pay themselves. This is not how you should determine your […]

Take Charge

Stop-gap measures

Take Charge

Your appointment calendar should be teeming with patients but not so crammed that you regularly turn away or turn off clients.

As you plow through the spring and gear up for what promises to be a busy summer season, maximizing efficiency and minimizing the craziness of the appointment schedule should be at the top of your mind. This year I am determined to coach up the reception team to passionately and proactively manage the calendar to […]

Getting Technical

What gets you down?

Getting Technical

Suffering from burnout, compassion fatigue or work-life issues? Make time for yourself, and distance yourself from what causes you the most stress.

Do you ever feel like life is spinning out of control? Like you never have enough time for the things you need to do, and no matter what you do, you think you should be doing something else? This is common among veterinary professionals. The stress begins during school and training and continues in the […]

manager

Pro on ProSal

Practice Smarter

Production-based compensation, when implemented correctly, is a win-win for the veterinarian and the practice owner.

An article recently published in this journal [“A Prescription for Change,” October/November 2018] declared that it is time to do away with production-based compensation and “all its ills.” The article went on to proclaim that production-based compensation is no longer viable as a means of compensation for associate veterinarians. I could not disagree more. First […]

employee

Help is on the way

Take Charge

From employee assistance programs to well-being seminars, the practice manager has a number of options for addressing a team member’s actual or potential personal crises.

Without a doubt, a team member struggling with a personal issue — marriage, financial, substance abuse or mental health, for example — can show a decline in productivity, attendance, energy and attitude while on the job. Personal rough patches are inevitable. But how can a practice manager support the team member, minimize any negative impacts […]

harassers

How to respond to third-party harassment

H.R. Huddle

You have a responsibility to respond quickly and firmly to situations involving outside predators. It all starts with the employee handbook.

Harassment in the workplace lowers morale, reduces productivity and otherwise upsets employees. It can take the form of unwanted flirtation, forced touching or inappropriate jokes about an employee’s religion, race or gender. It could involve an unwillingness of someone to work with, for example, a sight-impaired employee. Harassment also can occur when someone inappropriately contacts […]

hospital

Wield your influence

Getting Technical

What a veterinary nurse says and does can make the difference between a pet owner following a recommended treatment plan or rejecting it altogether.

The veterinary nurse and every other team member has an important role in client compliance. But first, what is compliance? By our definition, compliance is the extent to which pets receive the services and treatments that have been recommended by the veterinary team, from preventive care to more complex medical treatments and procedures. Adherence, on […]

employee leaving

It’s your move

Legal Lingo

Employee noncompete agreements aren’t always enforceable, especially if time and geographic limits are too broad.

Have you ever recruited the perfect job candidate only to find he had a noncompete agreement with a current or former employer? At a time when unemployment rates are low, the situation can be particularly frustrating. A common assumption is that legal liability for breaching a noncompete falls on the employee. Unfortunately, that’s not always […]

The art of centering

Go With the Flow

Being able to see any situation from a calmer and more balanced vantage point is one rung on the ladder to achieving flow.

This column has focused on exploring flow, that state of complete clarity and awareness in which you feel most enlivened and operate from a state of relaxed ease and, even, bliss. This time, let’s look at the role of centering as a step in achieving flow. Centering is a way to calm the mind and […]

You make the call

Getting Technical

Timely follow-up communication underscores your practice’s commitment to client service and patient care.

The concept of client callback systems is not a new one. Veterinary practices have used them for years and have seen positive results. Most practices started with lab results and then added surgery callbacks a day or two after the procedure. Sadly, many hospitals stopped here, thinking that was enough. The common assumption is that […]

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