FIRSTLINE, Jan 1, 2007 - Firstline
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FIRSTLINE, Jan 1, 2007
Team Building
How to beat a bully
By Michelle O'Neal
You're no punching bag, so don't let anyone treat you like one. Use these bully-busting strategies to reclaim your practice.
Ask the Experts
Ask Amy: I work with a serial gossiper
Ask Amy: I work with a serial gossiper
How many is too many?
By Dr. Gary Patronek
Q: At the clinic where I work we have several clients who own more animals than they can care for properly. What is the best way to approach an animal collector?
Lab tests: In or out?
By Caitlin Rivers , Monica Dixon Perry, CVPM
Q: What are the benefits of in-house versus outside lab work?
One appointment, three pets
By Karen Sabatini , Pamela Stevenson, CVPM
Q: Clients sometimes schedule an appointment for one pet and show up with several. What should we do?
What a zoo!
By Susan Logan, BS, CVT
Q: I'm a technician and I'm interested in zoological medicine. How can I get started in the field?
Front Desk
"I love my job"
By Portia Stewart
Believe it or not, I read this gem on the back of a beer bottle recently. (I've heard of reading tea leaves for wisdom, but this is the first time I've ever found insight in the brew of the grain.) This brewer says he tastes a sample from every batch of beer he makes to ensure it meets his high standards. What a job! This brewer is a pretty bright guy. He found a job he loves and he stands behind his work.
Professional Growth
What's bugging you?
By Portia Stewart
Little irritations can cause bigger flare-ups if you don't swat them early. Use these tips to manage six stressful situations.
The secret of my success
By Amy Butzier, BS, MEd, CVT
One technician reveals how she made her career flower, got raises, and offered a higher standard of care.
By the Numbers
Fluffy's 9 lives
What's a pet worth? It may be more than you think. Consider the case of Fluffy.
Pearls of Practice
Move over, James Herriot
Everyone has a great story. Maybe it's the one you tell at Christmas parties or the tale that makes your friends groan every time you launch into the opening line: "A few years ago there was this Great Dane ..."
Sergeant Pepper, U2 can be a rock and roll star
Wanted: Lead male vocalist with an aura of power, a hint of bad boy, and a job as a veterinary technician or veterinarian.
And the clippers ran away with the thermometer
By Joanne Bowman, RVT
You reach for the nail clippers and ? gone. Foiled again. It's anyone's guess whether they're stuffed in someone's scrub pocket or they've slithered underneath the counter in the lab again.
Lost doc: $500 reward
By Krissy Van Buren, LVT
With six exam rooms, it could be difficult for the team at Nassau Veterinary Clinic in Nassau, N.Y., to keep track of which doctors are in each room.
Good morning, sunshine
By Cheryl Hermann, BA, RVT
Maybe you're not a morning person. That's no excuse for waiting until after lunch to greet your team.
On the Job: Michael Hernandez
By Michael Hernandez
What's the biggest mistake you've made in practice?
Paper clips are so yesterday
By Jean Weaver
Do client notes disappear after you paper clip them to a patient chart? Do your blood work or hospital notes sneak into the wrong file? Maybe it's time to kick the paper clip habit, says Jean Weaver, hospital administrator at Catawba Animal Clinic in Rock Hill, S.C. "Our doctors would use two or three clips on charts to try to keep notes and educational materials together," Weaver says. "These notes would inevitably fall off or become attached to another chart in the discharge box."
Take a bite out of plaque
By Sara L. Sharp, CVT, VTS (Dentistry)
Many clients really don't realize just what a bit of plaque can do, says Sara L. Sharp, CVT, VTS (Dentistry), secretary of the Academy of Veterinary Dental Technicians. And it often falls to you to discuss the danger of a dirty mouth. The best approach is a little honesty—with a mix of tact, of course.
Web Exclusive
10 client turnoffs
You don't need to work very hard to make clients feel uncomfortable, dissatisfied, or irritated. Here's a look at 10 ways to chase off clients.
Why me?
Feel like you have a bright, shiny target tattooed on your forehead? Chances are, a bully singled you out for a reason. Here are eight profiles of common bully targets. Even if you can't dodge the attack, you'll understand better why you're the one dodging missiles.
Burnout quiz
Take this quick quiz to discover how crispy you really are.
A traitor among us
Dr. Smith (not his real name) relates this true tale of a covert bully's attack on an unsuspecting team.
Cover story
5 Fishy phrases that isolate clients
By Heather Kirkwood
What you say--and what clients hear--may be worlds apart. When you're fishing for the right words to satisfy clients' questions, avoid these most misunderstood answers.

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