Blogs

Be the first person to recommend this.
Truth can be stranger than fiction. Several years ago, a New Yorker sued the City for two undecillion dollars ---more money than actually exists on the planet—after he was nipped by a dog on a city bus. Yes, it was more than just the bite that upset him. His photo was taken without his permission during treatment. Waiting for the punchline? There is none, but the anecdote reveals that litigation is not always anticipated, warranted or rational. Sometimes a seemingly innocuous event can snowball into the unimaginable. According to Basha Rubin, Forbes Contributing Editor, statistics show that between  36%-53% of small businesses are involved in at least one ...
0 comments

Playing Nice Online

Be the first person to recommend this.
​ We’ve all been there... There’s a problem with a supplier or vendor. You’re incensed, irate, fuming…face it, you’re mad! You know that with a few keystrokes you can plunk your gripe into a public forum and---select all that apply---alert colleagues/discredit the vendor/ assuage your anger. Hold on! It’s time to start counting… remember the childhood admonition of 'counting to 10' before taking action? Venting a personal grievance in a member forum can sabotage relationships, sully reputations (yours included) and interfere with member use of the site. Is this the behavior you would display in a meeting? Imagine this scenario…you’re attending ...
0 comments
1 person recommends this.
I recently participated in a first-of-of its-kind, comprehensive pricing workshop organized by the VHMA. The 2018 VHMA Critical Issues Summit on Pricing explored the potential of adopting Value-Based Pricing in the veterinary industry. Marketing expert Uptal Dholakia, Ph.D., introduced participants to Value-Based Pricing, a framework that merges academic research, proven best practices and concepts from marketing and psychology to create a solid foundation for formulating realistic and compelling pricing decisions. VHMA invited industry leaders, consultants and managers to collaborate and brainstorm for two days in a setting that featured expert presentations, ...
0 comments

Got Conflict?

1 person recommends this.
It’s July and that means BBQs, hot summer days, cold drinks with friends, maybe a good book under a shady tree or enjoying the sea, sand and surf. It’s the Dog Days of Summer, yet I’m thinking about October! I recently spent some time delving into VHMA’s 2018 Annual Meeting and Conference program--a forward-thinking agenda that addresses emerging issues and topics in veterinary management. The conference is scheduled for October 17-19 in Baltimore, MD. Scrolling through the program, I honed in on the title, “Got conflict?” Absolutely…I manage people and teams in the workplace! As we are well aware, managers wear many hats, among them is keeping individuals ...
0 comments

Driving Strategic Directions

2 people recommend this.
I want to share a special ‘thank you’ to the VHMA Board of Directors, VHMA staff and to each of our members. Each June, the VHMA BOD and staff gather to review and update the association's strategic plan. This year we spent three days in Indianapolis, IN where we took an in depth look at the progress on our strategies over the past year, assessed changes to our environment and set out to prioritize the work for the coming year. This effort is one of the primary responsibilities of the Board and the role of the staff to implement. Every participant was engaged and enthusiastic about the progress and future of our association. It is this level of energy and drive ...
0 comments
1 person recommends this.
While many of us enjoyed this Memorial Day outdoors with friends and family, relaxing or spending time at a neighborhood cookout; I hope that each of us took a moment to reflect and show our gratitude to the heroic men and women who sacrificed so much so to ensure that we can enjoy these freedoms. Thank you to all our members and their families who have served our great nation. Memorial Day is also widely acknowledged as the unofficial start of summer---although summer does not officially arrive until June 21. Mention summer and we often think of vacation, BBQ, long days and enjoying cool drinks. I’m sure that if I asked a group of you to tick off the images ...
0 comments

Staff Wellness

Be the first person to recommend this.
Did you know that Veterinary staff experiences death FIVE times more often than any other medical profession. THAT IS HUGE! It is estimated that 3% of client contact in an average veterinary clinic involves euthanasia or death. Our society as a whole, does not talk about death, we are death denying, and even as veterinary professionals, we are not always comfortable talking about it. There are feelings of guilt over a treatment that didn't work out, clients that couldn't pay the bill ... there are always stressors. Do you know the many symptoms of stress?  Nausea, heartburn, backache, insomnia, chest pain, asthma, headaches, dry mouth are just a few, there ...
0 comments

Let's Go Swimming

Be the first person to recommend this.
I have previously introduced you to my border collie, Dash Nash and his sister Daphne. True to their nature, they love being outside and active. This is great, of course, except when it gets really hot here in Florida. They rarely stop moving and we worry about them overheating. We have to watch them closely and make sure they go inside, cool down and drink lots of water. If only we could get them to swim in the pool and cool off, they could enjoy being outside longer. After much effort and little success, we reached out to a friend, accomplished agility competitor and fellow VHMAer, Susan. She encouraged us to keep at it and invited us to spend some time ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Spring is upon us! And while many of you are still dealing with blizzards and frigid temperatures, the anticipation of warm sunshine and longer days brings hope of another summer. For most practices, spring and summer bring the busier time of year. It is during this season that we generate a majority of our income and profitability. In expectation of that, one of the things we may be considering is whether or not to increase our fees. Well, help is here. In this issue of the newsletter, we have   the data from the VHMA’s annual fee survey. This valuable study provides insights into what our colleagues are doing with fees this year and on what products and ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
​ I often reflect on how I can improve as a manager. With such limited time, I try to focus my reading and training in areas that I feel I need help. I am sure that if we thought about the list of qualities that make a successful manager, we could come up with an extensive list. They would include things like good communication skills, the ability to organize and build a cohesive team, a creative problem solver and humility to name a few. As VHMAers, we also recognize that effective managers know when to use resources at our disposal to complete a task efficiently. In other words, we know when it’s not necessary to reinvent the wheel! We try to avoid getting ...
0 comments

Livin’ the VHMA Life

Be the first person to recommend this.
I have spent some time recently considering what makes VHMA such an amazing organization. Of course, it was easy to identify so many different reasons, i.e.: advanced continuing education, networking opportunities, CVPM certification, MemberConnect, webinars, Mastermind Groups, on-demand education, our recently published Compensation and Benefit Survey, and the list goes on and on. While these member benefits are certainly tools that differentiate us from others, they are not the real magic that sets us apart. People. It’s the people in our association that elevates our success. It’s the tireless staff who support and advocate for our members. It’s the volunteers ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Fraud, embezzlement, and theft are serious threats in veterinary medicine for a majority of practices. The 2016 Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse, states that roughly 5% of revenues are lost annually due to fraud for the average company. In your practice, this is a result of theft of products/services, counter-productive behaviors such as time theft, and embezzlement of cash from the practice. These are all perpetrated by people and more specifically, people we hire. It stands to reason that to reduce the instance of fraud within our practices, we must hire the best candidates. Candidates that not only can do their jobs and fit in with your ...
0 comments

Happy Holidays VHMA

2 people recommend this.
Anyone else trying frantically to get everything done this holiday season? It seems each year there is more and more to get done and it starts earlier and earlier. I think I saw Christmas decorations in the store the day after Halloween. As much as I enjoy the magic and excitement of the holiday season, I find myself feeling a bit overwhelmed with all that is going on. In the midst of all of this, I remind myself that this is the time of year for ‘a few of my favorite things’! You’re probably thinking presents and egg nog. While I do enjoy those things, it is actually budgeting and strategic planning on my mind right now. Hopefully you enjoy these activities ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Happy Holidays VHMA! The holiday season is upon us. The fun and festive time when we give thanks, share gifts, spend time with family and drink too much egg nog. It’s such a busy time. Between preparing meals, fighting the crowds at the mall and neighborhood holiday parties, it is easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle and lose sight of what is most important, the people around us that make our lives better. As I think about all the incredible people who are there for me each day, so many of them are also part of my ‘VHMA Family.’ This year has been particularly meaningful for me, as I accept responsibility of building on our great association. I am ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Over the years we have seen an evolution in circumstances pertaining to patients that have multiple owners with interests or responsibility for their care. This type of patient may be a family pet; a working animal, breeding stock, show/performance animal, etc. While some of these patients have a single owner depicted as the authorized person to make all decisions for the patient, many do not. Multiple “owners” correlate to multiple “advocates” which can be good for the patient – but there can be obstacles for the practice in providing authorized care. Having protocols in place for patients of this paradigm can improve efficiency in providing treatment, reduce ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Fellow VHMAers! It is with great enthusiasm and humility that I assume the role of VHMA President. Among the many responsibilities of this position is the opportunity to reach out to our membership with a monthly President’s message. I hope to share some perspective about our incredible profession, provoke thought and new ideas and perhaps bring a little humor. I began thinking about how to connect with each of you in a meaningful way. ‘What can I say that would provoke thought, be entertaining and encourage the membership to read?’ It was about then that writers block set in and my virtual trash can filled with uninspired drafts. I started thinking perhaps ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
Hello - we are a smaller clinic (dog and cat only) in So Cal w/ appx. 20 staff members. I am a non-DVM owner (my father is our Medical Director and primary DVM who built and sold the practice to me). I have various management levels and job titles assigned throughout my staff, but need to revise these.  Currently, we have: Hospital Administrator (myself) - oversees all departments (only exception is Medical Director - medical related decisions); main focus on business financials, growth, HR, payroll, accounting, etc. - the 'business side' while still on site 30+ hours / week (much more from home!) putting my 15 years of experience to 'on site use' DVM/Medical ...
2 comments

Last President's Address

Be the first person to recommend this.
There are over 96,000 associations in the United States.  There is an association for just about everything you can imagine. You are likely to belong to at least a few. Many of us belong to organizations related to our personal interests, as well as professional associations that help us advance our skills and further our career.  I have been a member of the VHMA since 2002. Over the last 15 years I have benefited both personally and professionally from being a part of the VHMA. For the past eight years I have had the honor to serve on the VHMA Board and it has been a pleasure to watch an outstanding organization get even better. Membership has grown, programs ...
1 comment
1 person recommends this.
It is such a helpless feeling watching the news as the images and video footage continue to come out of Texas and Louisiana in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. VHMA has approximately 236 members in those two states and our thoughts and prayers are with each one of them, their families and the other millions suffering through this natural disaster. It is sad when it takes a tragedy such as this to remind us of the importance of being prepared for the unexpected. While the majority of us will hopefully never have to endure anything of this magnitude, we all have the potential to experience our own unexpected crisis. How have you planned for such times?  Do ...
0 comments
Be the first person to recommend this.
As hospital managers and administrators you know that human resource responsibilities can take up to 70% of your time and attention on a day-to-day basis. The majority of us are either directly or in-directly in charge of new employee hiring. There is certainly an art to the success of this process. Whether you have done it for 20 years or just started, it is something that probably can never be perfected. After all, we are dealing with people and people can be unpredictable. The vast majority of your hiring decisions, if done right, should minimize many of the wrong hiring decisions. As you reflect on your process for the years past, you may be able to recall ...
0 comments