Talk the Talk

The value of empathy

Talk the Talk

Actively listening and focusing on feelings are keys to building stronger client relationships and reducing the risk of compassion fatigue in yourself.

Much has been written about how caring the veterinary profession is and how the extent of our caring can lead to high levels of stress, burnout and compassion fatigue. People, companies and organizations that focus on ways to improve personal well-being are producing studies and surveys and leading seminars and discussions aimed at creating healthier […]

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Buy the dozen

Talk the Talk

Persuading clients to purchase a 12-month supply of preventives gets easier if you explain the benefits well and price your products competitively.

Do you get frustrated when trying to convince clients that flea, tick and heartworm prevention is not just a seasonal issue? We know that pet owners need to give preventives year-round to maintain efficacy and ensure pet health. But clients still walk out the door without purchasing products. Or they buy one to six doses and […]

dog owner

Choose your words carefully

Talk the Talk

Clients don’t respond well to lectures. Strive to partner with them for the good of the patient, and remember to ask open-ended questions to jump-start conversations.

Last summer a friend and I had a conversation about nutrition for her dogs. Well, at the time I thought it was a conversation. She was feeding a boutique brand of food because of the supposed benefits, which to me sounded like nifty marketing rather than real science. Of course, I jumped on the opportunity […]

standards

Raise your standards

Talk the Talk

Authentic, personalized client service will differentiate your practice.

We can all think of a business where an employee told us to “Have a nice day” as we left. Years ago, I imagine, the phrase “Have a nice day” was meaningful. At its best, the phrase conveys politeness and indicates that an employee has had basic customer service training. At its worst, it can […]

veterinary care

Communicate value

Talk the Talk

Confident financial conversations are a team effort and serve to prioritize the pet.

Ten years ago, I gave a conference presentation on the still-relevant topic “Talking to Clients About Treatment Plans and Fees.” The catalyst for this article is what I’ve witnessed recently while working with several excellent practice teams: a focus on giving options to clients and saving money rather than concentrating on patient advocacy and the […]

What’s in a story?

Talk the Talk

Encouraging clients to talk about their pet or lifestyle will help bond them to your practice and improve compliance.

Imagine an older gentleman visits your practice for the first time with his newly adopted gray kitten, Gunny, who is due for a second set of vaccines. The veterinary team asks about the cat’s age, which vaccines were given previously and whether he was neutered. The veterinarian examines Gunny and brings up preventive care. She […]

Care repair

Talk the Talk

When client service falls short, remember the expression “Notice something, say something, do something.”

Something occasionally goes wrong at any business, but how employees respond to the situation can make the difference between losing and retaining a client. With planning and training, you can create a team that knows how to make things right when things go wrong. A significant part of the planning involves establishing that you have […]

How to communicate value

Talk the Talk

A consistent message, outstanding education and the latest technology solutions can help bond a client to the practice.

For as long as I can remember, our profession has stressed the importance of communicating the value of our services and products to pet owners. Dad and I talked about it when I was growing up and working at his veterinary hospital. Practice management speakers discussed it with my senior veterinary class. In 2011, the […]

Why embrace Generation Y?

Talk the Talk

Millennials are the largest pet-owning demographic and — listen here, practice owner — they value the latest communication tools.

To help more pets get the care they deserve, veterinary teams need to respond to trends in pet ownership. One of the biggest involves millennial pet owners. Check out these statistics: The millennial generation, also known as Generation Y, makes up about 29 percent of the U.S. population, having surpassed baby boomers, who are about […]

It’s your call

Talk the Talk

Delivering exceptional phone service can make the difference between a pet owner who agrees to book an appointment and one who gets a quick answer and hangs up.

Callers begin to make assessments about a veterinary hospital based on the telephone interaction with team members. These conversations can easily influence the decision to book an appointment. This is especially true when pet owners who aren’t established clients call to inquire about services and fees. Since the prices of routine services are likely to […]

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