Podcast #50

Dog growling possessively over food
Feeling like you have to fight to be able to take your break? You aren't alone… this blog will discuss how to get your break so you don’t have to bare your teeth each time!
Part One: The Value of Your Lunch Break discusses all of the reasons why both managers, bosses, and staff alike, should ensure that lunch breaks are taken. It outlines the mental value, patient value, business value and financial value of taking lunch breaks. This blog assumes you are convinced that lunches are vital, and now want to know HOW to go about making sure that these breaks are taken!
Barriers/Challenges to Taking Breaks:
Dog on a path in the forest with a fallen tree blocking path
Step one of fixing a problem is identifying the barriers to a resolution. This is the place to start in your clinic when determining why lunches aren’t being taken!
The first step in solving any problem is to determine and address the issues causing the problem. So in order to determine how to get people to take breaks, we need to first address the barriers and challenges that staff face when trying to take a lunch break.

In the veterinary world, the mountain of challenges and barriers is high. It’s no surprise that so many clinics have it the ‘norm’ to work through lunch, given the aspect of the field. Here are some of the main challenges we are facing:


Due to the massive understaffing and recruitment crisis we are currently facing in the veterinary industry, it’s essentially every single clinic that is suffering from chronic understaffing. Add in COVID-19 with every single person buying a new puppy, or sitting at home staring at their cat and wanting an excuse to get out of the house, the veterinary industry is absolutely SLAMMED. Not to mention the extra work that COVID-19 has put on clinics, as contactless consults, and dealing with signing in, masking up, etc, takes WAY more time and staff to accomplish any task.

This chronic understaffing leads to just too much work in one day for an individual. This means that staff are working through lunches, staying late, and doing double/triple appointments, just to keep up. It’s ridiculous, and it’s unsustainable. This is one of the reasons that although it seems counter-intuitive to focus on breaks, it’s so vitally important to focus on breaks! The understaffing will only get worse and worse if we continue to burn-out every person in this profession. We have to make a stand, and deal with the work-load, in order to make this manageable.


Emergencies happen, and in the veterinary industry because our patients hide their diseases, we have to be more aggressive and proactive with working up cases than in human medicine. This means that walk-in appointments, or last minute appointments, will occur.

And, due to so many companies and bosses looking at clients as “customers” (see blog on “Customers vs. Clients”), even things that can wait, things that are not emergencies, are ‘fit in’ due to a fear of losing clients or clients being angry. And clients do get angry. We have let clients get away with bullying us, threatening us, and manipulating us into bending to their every whim for so long, and since clients are paying they feel entitled, and this has led to an expectation of clients that their vets will see them at any moment, any time of day.

This has led to the culture of ‘fitting in’ appointments during lunch, or between surgeries, or just before closing when vets are supposed to be typing and organizing for the day, or during call-back slots.

Sometimes we have no choice, because we do have to be available for emergencies as some conditions just cannot wait or be referred. However, these emergencies are often enough there has to be a plan in place that doesn’t throw off the whole day. Also, our clients need to be retrained to understand that non-emergencies won’t necessarily be seen right away. These are common occurrences, and clinics need a plan that works!
Let's Get Personal
I work in emergency, and it’s ridiculous how many times clients have said, at 10pm on a Sunday night, “and I called my vet and they were CLOSED, can you believe it?”, truly expecting me to be outraged that their vet isn't open 24 hours a day…

or... “and I called my vet’s personal number and they told me to come here instead of seeing me at the clinic! Isn't that outrageous?”, expecting me to be angry with them that their vet, who doesn't offer on-call services, didn’t rush into the clinic to see them.

I always support their vet. I reply, “of course they are closed, it’s 10pm on a Sunday, they need to sleep so they can work all day tomorrow. That is why we are here and open.”

Side Note: NEVER EVER EVER EVER (cue Taylor Swift Music) give out your personal phone number to clients!

Let’s face it, we are an 80% female dominated profession, and the vast majority of us are Type A, and have Superhero Syndrome. We do a lot of harm to ourselves by not being comfortable and capable of saying “No”. Men are much more likely to take breaks independently (aka- take a true break) where women have a difficult time performing behaviours that will solely benefit themselves, which is how taking a break is perceived.

Also, large surveys show that 20% of people worry they will be perceived as ‘lazy’ for taking a lunch break, and to be fair, they are right, because the same survey showed that 22% of bosses felt that employees that take regular lunch breaks aren’t as hard working. This perception by bosses, felt by employees, is a HUGE part of the problem. 13% are worried their co-workers will judge them, and 38% don't feel encouraged to take a break.

The personality types in the industry perpetuate a culture of not taking breaks, both on the staff and management side of the coin, and this is a work culture and clinic culture aspect that needs to be addressed by management, to make sure staff are aware of their complete support in taking a break, and also the importance of taking a break and that it isn't a ‘selfish act’.

Yes, in the vet world we have to be malleable, especially in the emergency setting, but as a general rule lunch breaks should be taken, you should not be staying late, and your work-load should be reasonable.


Managers, bosses, owners, etc. sometimes expect the unrealistic. They often provide mixed messages to the team, and don’t appreciate the reality of how a day progresses. This is more common when directives are either coming from higher management that isn’t ‘on the floor’, or from a boss that really isn’t aware of clinic’s functionality because they aren't there, or a boss that doesn’t hold themselves to the same set of standards in terms of medicine and records that their associates do.

Managers often tell staff to take their lunches, to go have a break, and feel they have done their due diligence, but then immediately turn around and tell reception to yes, book in that itchy ear just before lunch as an extra appointment, “it will be fine”. The expectation that staff are able to complete the extra tasks, as well as take a lunch, in the time provided, is just unrealistic.

The messages that are passed along to different members of the team are conflicting. Think about how many times the receptionist ends up harassing the vet that is trying to take a break to see a consult, because the client is harassing them for why they are waiting when they were told they could pop in on their lunch break, and they have to get back to work. It’s not the receptionist's fault that the manager approved that appointment or walk-in, and it’s not the vet’s fault they are trying to take lunch. And ultimately, to help out their teammate, the vet stops their lunch and sees the consult, because otherwise they feel like a jerk. Or, there becomes bad blood between the reception and vet team. Neither are ideal!

These expectations, and mixed messages to staff, lead to a lack of breaks. This is fortunately a problem that can be addressed easily, but it requires support and clear-cut rules that are consistent across all team members!


This is probably one of the biggest challenges, and biggest problems for clinics leading to missed lunches. If you are scheduled back-to-back with appointments, and the appointment time isn't long enough for you to do work-up, call owners, write records, you will ultimately either work through lunch or stay late. Also, double or triple booking, allowing for last minute non-emergency walk-ins, and not having enough staff or designated staff at certain times to see those emergencies, is insidious in clinics.

There are so often no set rules, no consistency, and no scheduling foresight to allow for phone calls, in hospital patient care, researching of cases, and generally completion of the tasks expected. Also, as client expectations rise over the years, the level of medicine, and the time for communication, has increased. This means that consults just take more time! And with COVID-19, clients have no where else to be and this is their outing for the week, so they want to TALK. Clinics often have 15min appointments, which might be fine for a healthy 2 year old vaccine appointment where you have a rapport with the client, but a new client with a 12 year old dog that is PUPD just cannot be addressed 15minutes.

Clinics are afraid to have different costs for different appointment types and lengths, and try to fit more consults in, not recognizing that with proper scheduling and more time for ‘sick animal appointments' they will actually make more money, because the work-up that can be communicated and performed will out-weigh that ‘lost’ appointment slot. Also, new client appointments can be longer, and longer appointments can have a higher fee, this occurs all the time in the human medical world.

This scheduling issue is a huge problem, but again, one that can be addressed, as long as everyone is on board.


“If I take a break now I’ll just be here late tonight” is a common, and unfortunately all to valid, argument heard over and over by managers trying to encourage staff to take a break. This is a product of poor scheduling. Poor scheduling of staff or turn-over of shifts, poor scheduling of slots for record writing and call-backs, or poor scheduling of when emergencies are then directed to the emergency clinic instead of being seen by the regular vet. It’s also a product of understaffing, overload of work, management expectations, and our personalities. You should not be staying late because you took your lunch break. All of the factors that apply to taking your lunch break, also apply getting you out the door at the end of your shift! If you are constantly staying late, you need to address this with your team just the same as the lack of lunch breaks needs to be addressed!


As you can see, there are a vast number of issues that create challenges and barriers to staff taking their lunch breaks, but fortunately they can be addressed!
Whose Responsible?:
'everyone is responsible for lunch breaks to be taken! Team effort!
Staff, managers, owners… all need to be on the same page for effective lunch breaks. You need support from management, but staff need to actually go take their break.
Before we get into the details of how to ensure breaks are taken, we need to quickly address who should be responsible for ensuring everyone takes their break?

On my Instagram poll 70% of felt that it was the managers/bosses responsibility to ensure lunch breaks were taken. Leaving only 30% of you that felt the staff held responsibility.

The truth is, the responsibility is SHARED.

Your manager and boss need to create systems, support and an environment conducive to taking breaks, and encourage staff to take breaks. They need to address the schedule, and manage client expectations so that breaks are taken and people get out of work on time.

But, it is also the responsibility of staff to take their break. I know so many vets and nurses (including myself) that won’t stop to take a break on a busy day, because work needs to be done. We are ingrained to keep going, to work until the work is done, then we’ll stop… but it’s not sustainable, it’s not safe, and it’s not fun!

We all need to acknowledge the importance of taking a break, and the danger of not taking a break. We need to accept that we are all human, and we all suffer from Decision Fatigue, and our ability work, to care for our patients, and our energy to be a happy, productive and effective team member decreases if we don’t take a break! We need to re-frame how we think about breaks, not as a ‘selfish act’, but as a ‘vital task’ to properly function.

Only when both management and staff come together on these points, can lunch breaks truly be taken!
How to Get Staff to Take Breaks:
Border Collie walking down a farm path with a cat
Getting staff to take breaks can be like herding cats for managers. Here are tips to help you get the most stubborn staff to take a break!
Getting your staff to take their break can be a challenge for even the best managers. The personalities in the veterinary world, rife with Type A, Superhero Syndrome Suffering females, is the perfect storm for working through lunch, and putting all other needs over their perceived own needs. Therefore, I sympathize with managers that struggle to get their staff to take breaks.

Here are some tips on what you can do:


Making the lunch room a calm, resting, quiet place is essential. Ideally it would be removed from the work area, without computers or phones, and without a direct sight-line to the work that needs to be done. It needs to be a place where people can truly escape mentally from work. Sometimes this means a room makeover may be required!

Quiet and calming music, dim lighting, healthy snacks, ear-cancelling head-phones, a comfy chair or couch, and lack of a visual or audible reminder of work are important. All of these allow individuals to truly mentally disengage from work. If the area cannot be removed from the treatment area, curtains that can be drawn to allow for some respite can be a good idea.

Another option is to have a gym on-site, to allow staff to get a quick work-out in, helping disconnect and blow off steam at the same time!

Also, some people might feel rude not talking to other co-workers when on break, but don’t really want to talk. Having a section of the break room that is a ‘quiet zone’ where no talking is allowed, creates a space where staff can go and be alone in silence without the social interaction.


Taking breaks together can work well for some teams, especially if you turn off the clinic phones and all go out for a walk, do a yoga class, or some other activity that promotes a mental and physical disengagement from work. However, most staff taking a break together will chat about work- about the cases, that jerk client, that other staff member, etc. This doesn't allow for a mental disengagement and can negate the positive effects of a break.

So, if you can stagger breaks, forcing individuals to be alone for their break, which is more likely to encourage them to go to the park, for a walk, read a book, listen to music, or even have a nap, and in general disconnect from work for 30min, this can help.


Breaks are just that, breaks. If you can be disturbed, if you are on-call, if you are still having to answer phones… it’s simply not a break.

Create a strict “Do not Disturb” policy for anyone that is on break. Unless something is life-threatening, phone messages are not passed along, questions aren’t asked. You treat the lunch room as if the person inside it has disappeared for the time-frame of their break.


Some clinics have such a hard time getting staff to take breaks, or don't have the right facilities to promote a restive lunch break, that they create a forced ‘off premise’ rule. This means that staff MUST leave the building for their lunch break. Whether they go sit in their car, go to a local park or library or cafe, or go home… they just can’t stay in the clinic.

This is a strategy you can use as a temporary measure as well while you are trying to change the culture in your clinic. Force a break in habit of staff, and create a new habit of them taking lunch. After a couple months of this being enforced, staff will likely realize how important and nice their break is, and you can become more lenient.


Having “Break Challenges” where staff record how often they are taking their lunch break, and rewards given out for those that meet a target of taking their breaks, can be a fun and team building way of promoting taking breaks and breaking the bad habits of not taking breaks.


Have a meeting and discuss Decision Fatigue, discuss the importance of breaks, discuss how it isn’t selfish but in the best interest of everyone, including their patients. Discuss how you going to address the barriers and challenges your clinic faces in taking breaks, so that staff see how they won’t just end up staying late, or be extra stressed during their working time. Discuss how the boss/management are 100% on board, and discuss the rules and policies you will put in place to ensure that breaks can be taken without stress.

Show your staff that you mean business, and aren't just saying “we want you to take your breaks.”


Managers, you are likely worse than your staff about taking your breaks! You need them too, if not more! So, lead by example. Your staff won’t feel safe taking a break if you don’t do it. So, let yourself recharge and recognize that you will be a better boss/manager for it!


Scheduling is one of the most important parts of ensuring your staff get their breaks.

This includes both individual’s daily schedules as well as overall scheduling of staff.

Overall Scheduling: Make sure there is enough staff on, and schedule overlap of staff so that there is time for the leaving team to write records and get out so they don't feel pressured to work through lunch. Also, ensure if you are open extended hours, you have new teams coming in at times when staff will need a break, so the new fresh team can take over. Also, scheduling designated staff to see emergencies/walk-ins so that the person on lunch isn’t expected to see these is imperative, as these consults are the now the norm, not the exception!

Individual Scheduling: Make sure there are scheduled breaks for staff to accomplish tasks required. For vets, this means that back-to-back consults all day, with no designated time to call owners, follow up on pathology reports, research cases, or write records, is not ok. Schedule in ‘phone call/record writing’ blocks before lunch and at the end of shifts, so that staff can get that work done and not feel pressured during their lunch. Also, communicate with the rest of the team that ‘walk in appointments’ do not go in the phone call slots!


People like to have a sense of control, therefore if possible, let people determine as much as they can about their break. Unless it's a problem, let people determine if they leave the clinic or not, if they do a bit of work or not. This may seem counter-intuitive to the rest of the blog, and in a way it is, however autonomy is important. Everyone is different, and you will have some staff that just don’t do well with taking a formal break. This will be the exception, and not the rule.

Another great thing to consider is whether it is an option for staff to leave early if they don't take their lunch break. Now, in a lot of clinics this isn't possible due to staffing and open hours, but if you can make this an option you are going to give people autonomy and choice, and also provide a break- just at a different time then you thought.

Whenever you are managing people, take into their individual personalities and situations, as you might fight a better solution!
How to Ensure You Get Your Break:
3 bears in a lake all facing eachother as if in a meeting
Having a meeting with your boss, your managers and eventually your whole team is the place to start. Educate if needed, and get everyone on the same page, or at least give your boss the oppourtunity to get on the same page!
Staff are responsible for taking their breaks but bosses are responsible for providing a safe space to do so, and a work culture that supports breaks! This section discusses how, as an employee, you can get your break!

Some bosses really want you to take a break, but each day is an ‘exception' and it just doesn’t happen. These well intentioned bosses are easier to deal with, as you just need to help them see solutions!

On the other hand, some bosses don't support breaks, commenting that it is “reasonable overtime” or that “there are no lunch breaks in vet med… get used to it.” It can be daunting and scary try to take your break in these clinics, and you may suffer judgement, criticism, or even being reprimanded or docked pay.

Sometimes your coworkers will judge you, or resent you, because “everyone else is working hard, why are you taking a break?” Your bosses may act like you are being lazy, or even criticize you.

So… what do you do??


Step one is always communication and education. It might be that your boss or manager just doesn’t realize the importance of taking a break. Remember, most of your bosses and managers are also burned out, at the end of their rope, and drowning in their own work. They aren’t their best selves at the moment, so approach this conversation with understanding. Discuss and explain why you need to take your break, and why breaks are important.

Go into the meeting with solutions. This is very important. They don’t want another thing on their plate, so go into the meeting with an analysis of why the breaks aren't occurring (is it culture, is it scheduling, is it staffing) and suggest possible solutions. Sometimes it’s as simple as “can we have a message book for each staff member so instead of lunch being interrupted messages are written there for us to check after our break is over.” (Most computer systems have some sort of built-in message system! )

Give your boss the opportunity to hear you out, and allow changes to occur! You might just be surprised!


Maybe you go into your meeting and your boss just says ‘no’. They are not in support of breaks, they feel you should just work through, and they have no interest in changing the culture. They might even try to bully you in saying ‘this is what you signed up for’ or ‘this is in your contract’ because they have a line pertaining to “reasonable overtime” (see my Contract Review Webinar to avoid these traps!). Or, if your boss pays for your lunchtime, they may try to argue that they ‘own you because they are paying you’.

Most fair work regulations stipulate that a break of 30min is required for a full day, and that break means no working, no obligations, no on-call. This is whether or not the break is paid or paid! This means that working through your lunch is not ‘reasonable overtime’. (Also, the simple argument that anything consistent is 'reasonable overtime’ is ridiculous, because overtime is just that “over” the “time” that you are meant to work! ).

Therefore, if your boss says ‘No’ to you taking your lunch, you have a few options:

1. RE-NEGOTIATE your contract to account for your time- because you value yourself too much to work for free! (See Part One: The Value of Your Lunch Break, and our Consulting Services if you need help! Also, see Important Note below for some important points to consider if re-negoatiating).

2. JUST LEAVE! When your lunch break time comes up, just walk out of the building for 30min. Don’t answer your phone. Make a stand that you will be taking your break. Check local regulations on whether or not they can dock your pay, but most 1st world countries you will be protected.

3. FIND A NEW JOB, one that supports lunch breaks - and read your contract this time!
There are some traps that you can easily fall into when re-negotiating your contract that will actually make you LOSE money instead of gain it! If you are having issues working this out, check out our Consulting Services!

The most important point is that 'lunch breaks are not considered hours worked', so they do not contribute to the weekly 40 hours of WORKING TIME. This means that if you sign a contract for 40 hours/week, your boss can actually scheduled you for a 9-5:30 day (8.5 hours), which puts you at the clinic a total of 42.5hours/week.

So, if a job has a contract for 40 hours/week, and they schedule you from 9-5, and you work through lunch, you are actually being paid for that 30min, it just means you are taking that break at the end of your day when you leave 30min early. (IF you leave on-time). Thus NOT 'working through your lunch', you are just taking lunch at the end of the day.


If you have signed a 40 hours/week contract, and they schedule you from 9-5:30 (an 8.5hour day), and you work through lunch, whether it is paid or unpaid, you are working for free! This then needs to be addressed!

Traps occur however if bosses are vindictive and either offer a new contract that then has you scheduled for longer hours, switches your lunch from paid to unpaid, or decreases your yearly salary to account for that lunch being 'unpaid'.

So, it's important to do the math FIRST, and see what you are making per HOUR WORKED, and what you agreed to make per HOUR WORKED in your contract, and see how that compares.

It is possible for your boss to bend the technical rules, and change the agreement such that you end up working longer for the same or less income. Part of this trap comes from most individuals not understanding what they originally agreed to in their first contract, and how the 'break rules' apply!

The last big trap is the 'Yes, we'll get you your lunch breaks'- then your compensation or scheduling is changed to you working more hours or for less money, and you work through your lunch break again anyways, which is obviously not ideal... but I forsee this occurring. Make sure strategies are put in place from your meeting that actually ensure breaks can be taken!

If your boss, in theory, supports you taking a lunch, but the clinic schedule/dynamic doesn’t really accommodate that, start making a habit of just leaving the building. Push the envelope of “I am taking my lunch break!” Be strong, and know you are doing it for the right reasons. By actually leaving the clinic you can avoid the phone calls, messages, and the walk-ins will just have to wait!


It’s always hard to start a wave, but once it’s created it propagates, so be that agent of change that starts the wave for your coworkers. They may not like you at first, but it might lead to a change for the better for everyone!

Do this by educating your coworkers. Offer to do a presentation for your coworkers on benefits of taking breaks, of having down-time, and strategies to show them how you can improve efficiency and take breaks! Create plans for schedules. Help your bosses/managers. Yes, this is more work. No, it isn’t really your job, but sometimes you have to work for what you want!

You can even try to spruce up the staff room. Maybe ask your boss for a budget to revamp the break room, get some curtains, change the light-bulb, put on some soft music. Or, make it a team-building exercise- and see if everyone makes it out of IKEA alive!

Create a challenge board for a month where everyone checks off the days they actually took their lunch break, and the winner gets a gift-card! (supplied by your boss!)

Encourage your coworkers to take their breaks, and praise them when they do. Change the culture with your attitude!
Emergency Veterianary Staff:
cat looking sick lying on it's side in a kennel
Emergency medicine is it’s own beast, with some of it’s own ‘lunch time rules’. Breaks are just as important, they just look a bit different…
When working in emergency taking breaks is difficult, difficult to regulate, difficult to make consistent, and difficult to enforce. There aren’t ways you can schedule your clients so that you have a break in your consults. You can't just say “oh, could you just schedule your dog to be hit by that care at 1:30pm and not 1:00pm.”

As a general rule of thumb however, you should be able to take breaks. They will be times that are convenient and the “Q-word” (I won’t jinx anyone reading this!), and less on a schedule. However, they are no less important!

Working emergency you have to be on the top of your game, every moment, of every shift. You cannot be fatigued, exhausted, hypoglycaemic or uremic because you haven’t peed in 14 hours! You need to be fresh, and ready to go for that GDV at any moment.


Scheduling of staff shifts and overlap is important for this. Having staff staggered for their start times that allows for the staff that is on to take a break as the new fresh staff come in helps! Also having enough staff so that the work-load is manageable.

Now, no emergency clinic will be “well staffed” every shift, its impossible and financially unfeasible for clinics to have that much staff on for those shifts that aren’t as busy. The general rule of thumb is that 10% of the time you are understaffed, 80% of the time you are appropriately staff, and 10% of the time you are overstaffed. That is the nature of the beast. If these ratios are off, you need to consider hiring more staff (or less, but that’s rarely ever the case).


In emergency, the work is never “done”, or at least it feels that way. In order to be efficient writing records, making plans, performing procedures and surgeries however, you need to be rested. Therefore, even if you have a pile of work, if it’s been 5-6 hours, you need to just stop, leave things where they are (if they aren’t dying) and take a break. When you come back you will be more efficient, and will save time in the long run!


When you are working emergency, prioritize the things that need to be done ‘right now’ and get those done first. Then, if you need to take a break, you have completed the ‘right now’ tasks and the others can wait. If you constantly and routinely structure your day this way, you will find less stress taking a break.


Never ever ever ever procrastinate. Even if it’s a “manageable” (once again, I won’t jinx anyone) day, don’t think - oh I have time later to write that up, or do that chart…don’t chat or goof around… unless you are taking the down time to take your break, make sure all your work is done… because we all know that surgeries come in 3s, and a day can go from manageable to back-to-back critical cases that need surgery, the tree of life, and long conversations, in a moment!


Be strategic about when you take your breaks. If you know that a rush comes at 4pm, and you have time, take your break BEFORE then, at 3pm. If you know a staff member is coming into relieve you in 1 hour, wait until then to take your break.

Be considerate to your team, and think about their breaks as well, and time them in a gap between treatments!


Being supportive of your teammates taking their breaks. Help pick up the work so they can take their break, and they will do the same to you. Don’t criticize or condemn those that take their breaks. Re-iterate the importance of breaks, and if you see coworkers pushing it, send them off to have a break! Maybe see that next consult for them, or remind them that all their patients are stable, and that record can wait 30min to be written!


Now, this is just my opinion, but I feel that in emergency, especially if you are working overnights, you essentially can never ‘leave the building’ therefore you are never truly on a full break, therefore you should always have paid lunches. If your clinic is bigger, has lots of overlapping staff and always more than one vet on duty, sure, unpaid lunches can make sense, but in my experience that isn’t how it goes!

I recommend ensuring that you either have paid lunches, or increase your rate to accommodate for the unpaid lunch, for any emergency job.

This is especially important for locums to determine, and adjust their rates accordingly.

For example: If you feel your appropriate rate for your emergency job is $100/hour, and you are working a 12 hour shift, you should be paid $1200 for that shift. If the clinic doesn’t pay for lunches, you would instead be paid $1150 for that shift, 11.5 hours instead of 12. You would need to increase your rate to $105/hour * 11.5 = $1207.50 for the shift.

Always ask before signing on to a locum or full time job if your lunch is paid, and use that information to negotiate your rate! Ensure you are being paid for the hours you are expected to be in the clinic and available. If you can't leave the clinic, they should be paying you!
Lunch breaks provide a vital recovery period for your brain, your energy, and your will-power and ability to deal with adversity and stress. It’s important both from a business perspective on top of drastically important for your mental and physical health, and the health of your patients.

Communicating and educating bosses, managers and staff about the importance of breaks is the place to start, and we provide reasons in 'Part One: The Value of Your Lunch Break'of this blog series. The next step is to identify the barriers that are preventing staff and managers/owners from getting breaks, and to address these issues. This is covered in Part 2. Remember, your lunch break is more than just your legal entitlement, it’s vitally important for the health and safety of all staff, patients and financial success!

If you are constantly working through your lunch break, and want to undertake a meeting or negotiation with your boss but need some help collecting your thoughts, preparing your arguments, and determining the best outcome, KICK ASS Consulting Services can help you! Feel free to Contact Us at anytime for more information!
Written by Dr. Ann Herbst BSc, DVM

Published February 3rd, 2021

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

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