Leadership

The devil’s in the details

Legal Lingo

Not understanding common contract terms and failing to renegotiate certain provisions when appropriate can cause unnecessary risk and liability.

Reading the fine print in a business contract is probably not your idea of a good time. You have a busy practice and negotiating contracts is clearly not why you became a veterinarian or hospital administrator. That said, every business owner or manager should have a firm understanding of which contract provisions require careful review. […]

Got crabs?

Unmotivated employees hinder the progress of hard-working, career-oriented achievers. Both groups need your attention to ensure a healthy work environment.

Imagine a bucket full of crabs that can clearly see the opening overhead. They topple and climb over each other as they try to scale the lip of the bucket and reach freedom. At the bottom are a few crabs that don’t want to make the climb. In fact, not only do they not want […]

Family first

Take Charge

Rather than look at maternity leave and parental needs as impediments to business, see the bigger picture and adopt a practice culture that communicates empathy.

While I have always respected the roles that mothers play in society, it was not until I became a mom that the breadth and depth of the job sank in. I have the tremendous fortune of working for a true servant leader, a working veterinarian-mom of three who is sympathetic and accommodating to the demands […]

No social media policy? Get one posthaste

H.R. Huddle

Your hospital’s reputation could be at stake if a team member’s online remark goes too far, so be sure to craft clear, legally defensible guidelines.

The use of social media can be a double-edged sword, especially in the workplace. On the plus side, social media is a wonderful vehicle for marketing a veterinary practice and connecting with current or potential clients. On the darker side, what happens when an employee posts content that reflects negatively on your practice? Should you […]

Time out!

Money is wasted during each minute of a meandering back-office meeting. You need to set a tight schedule, establish ground rules and be selective with the invitations.

Staff meetings, department meetings, management meetings, lunch and learns. Veterinary professionals are not immune to the meetings epidemic that plagues many companies. Meetings are often a necessary evil, but many of them are unexciting, unfocused and unproductive. We rarely stop to think about the real cost of meetings because, after all, the attendees are clocked […]

Be of service

Practice Smarter

Do the little things to turn an average client experience into one that pet owners will relish and long remember.

We all know that clients determine the quality and value of a veterinary practice based on what they see and experience. Furthermore, this determination is made in the first three minutes that clients come into contact with the practice. This phenomenon is known as perception of value. During a recent onsite consultation, I noticed a […]

Modern mentoring

H.R. Huddle

Veteran employees often take the lead in sharing knowledge and advice, but newbies can do it, too. The key to success is to create the best possible relationships.

Although mentoring is not a new concept in the workplace, modern partnerships are not necessarily like those of the past. According to HR Magazine, formal mentoring relationships in previous eras would typically last at least a year and informal ones could last a decade. In today’s workforce, these relationships are often shorter and more specialty-oriented […]

From manager to momager

Take Charge

How becoming a mother changed my perspective on clients, co-workers and protocol.

In our DINK (dual income, no kids) years, my husband’s and my parenting efforts were channeled solely on our dog, Marlie, an 11-year-old, gentle, playful chocolate Labrador. We took her on vacation, to the beach, on the boat and out for drinks. We invested in training, Tempur-Pedic bedding and annual preventive dentals. After we had […]

A prescription for change

It’s time to do away with production-based pay and all its ills. The alternative: profit sharing and a formula for robust professional growth.

In years gone by, veterinarians consistently were ranked among the top most-trusted professionals. But public opinion is changing. Today, many consumers think veterinarians are “selling” more services to grow corporate bottom lines. As one client put it, “I felt like I was taken advantage of when I found out after the fact that my veterinarian […]

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