Podcast #13

Theatre masks 'happy' and 'sad'.
KICK ASS VETS uses the word ‘Value’ over and over again. We use it in terms of valuing yourself, in terms of being valuable to the clinic you work for, as well as displaying value to your clients. Being valuable is a very important part, and the first step, of being valued (and compensated) appropriately by your boss. Since it is a word that can be construed to different meanings, and can have different ‘feelings’ associated with it, we figured we would take some time to define what ‘value’ means to KICK ASS VETS.

There are two major ways that KICK ASS VETS defines value:

EMOTIONALLY: To regard something as deserving, important, worth-while, useful, desirable, etc.

FINANCIALLY: to contribute monetary worth.

In order to increase your financial worth, you need to first feel and display emotional worth.

KICK ASS VETS will look at the three areas where you need to feel and display value, and list some ways that increase this value:
Value Yourself:
The first step in being successful in ANY professional job is to value yourself. As a veterinary professional you have a ‘career’ vs. a ‘job’. This means that a large part of your ‘value’ to others is not in what you can physically do, but what you mentally can THINK. You are NOT just a warm body in the building. You, yourself, have put in the work to distinguish and educate yourself beyond others. This means that you need to acknowledge and recognize that this makes you important, makes your thoughts and ideas important, and makes you both a NEEDED person in a clinic to your boss and a NEEDED person to that pet owner. They WANT to hear what you have to say, they NEED you, so you have to do your part and feel needed.
Strong woman flexing arm.
Be strong, be confident, value yourself! This is the first step in making positive changes to your life and career.
1. Make an assessment and treatment plan for each case BEFORE bringing it to your mentor to check. This will show you that CAN do it, and also will speed up your path to independence.
2. Contribute your new ‘gold standard’ knowledge to any difficult cases, even if they aren’t yours.
3. Push your comfort zone. Unless you are open to learning and trying new things, you will never progress. It is part of your job to learn new medicine or skills, and to provide that to your patients.
4. Display confidence externally, even if you don’t feel it inside (‘Fake it Until you Make it’).
5. Ask questions. If you don’t understand a treatment plan or a procedure, ASK.
1. Confidently deliver your assessments and treatment plans to clients, even if it is ‘I don’t know, we need _____ to find out.’
2. Be as independent as possible.
3. Work hard to learn how to be efficient and effective.
4. Always be learning and progressing in your career so you can provide more and more services.
5. Advocate for yourself and ensure you are paid appropriately. (See Negotiation Tactics blog)
Display Value to Clients:
Client perspective of value is the difference between their evaluation of the benefits vs. cost of service. Showing value to clients not only allows you to perform the medical care that your patients NEED, but to charge appropriate fees to your clients, and have them pay for services. You want clients to pay for services and feel that they are ‘getting their money’s worth’. Part of your job as a veterinarian is to display the ‘value’ of your services.
1. Display confidence.
2. Explain WHY (why tests are required, why medications are needed, etc.).
3. Explain HOW (how a disease process works, how your test will change your treatment plan, etc.).
4. Give options including gold standard.
5. Recommend honestly what is needed and required.
6. Keep your promises and keep clients informed.
1. Estimate accurately (or over-estimate, but NEVER under-estimate).
2. Explain each test and HOW it changes your plan. Clients will be much more likely to go ahead with a test when they understand how it will help their pet.
3. Always offer best medicine and why you recommend it (you will be surprised at how many people will pursue it).
4. Always charge appropriately for all services.
5. Never use terminology that suggests you or ‘the clinic’ is overcharging or services are not appropriately priced. Do not apologize for prices.
6. Give options for various treatment plans to fit your client’s budget.
Being Valuable to Your Clinic:
Hand with a money tree.
Being of financial value to your clinic is important and it goes hand-in-hand with being emotionally valuable.
KICK ASS VETS are valuable to their clinics. It is a symbiotic relationship where the staff work hard to help the business thrive, and in response the clinic appropriately compensates the staff. Fortunately, and not coincidentally, being valuable to the business requires the exact same actions and efforts that are required to providing the best care for your patients. It is important to not only contribute financially to your clinic, but also to display, prove, and demand appropriate compensation for this value!
1. Be a positive member of the team.
2. Do not gossip about, or talk down other staff.
3. Continue to be excited about learning and progressing the profession.
4. Contribute to teaching of staff/colleagues.
5. ‘Wear the Shirt’ of your business. Support and defend your clinic.
1. Appropriately charge for all services performed.
2. Work hard and efficiently.
3. Contribute to protocols, handouts and other system processes that improve the clinic.
4. Recommend all needed tests and interventions to clients.
5. Advocate for yourself! (See Negotiation Tactics and Clinic Smoke Screens blogs)
KICK ASS VETS need to display value in all aspects of their career, to themselves, the clients and their bosses. It is our job to display value, and contribute value to our businesses. By the same merit, it is our job to advocate for ourselves to be compensated for that value!
Do you have any personal experiences to share regarding displaying value, or feeling valuable? Contact Us with any stories, questions or KICK ASS tips of your own.

If you are having trouble either feeling valuable, or displaying value to clients, your boss, or even to yourself, check out KICK ASS Consulting to see if we can help you!
Written by Dr. Ann Herbst BSc, DVM

Published August 25th, 2019

Advocate for yourself, you are the only one that will!

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