FIRSTLINE, Apr 1, 2008 - Firstline
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FIRSTLINE, Apr 1, 2008
Front Desk
Those new arrivals
By Portia Stewart
We haven't told our dog, Sebastian, that he'll have a new sibling this August. When our son was born a few years ago, Sebastian was the most enthusiastic cheerleader you could ask for. So I'm hoping he'll revive that same joyous spirit when he has another little human brother or sister. These transitions take patience, but there are many little rewards along the way.
Ask the Experts
Extreme makeover: receptionist edition
By Shawn G. McVey, MA, MSW
Q. What's appropriate attire for a receptionist?
Plan for a seamless transition
By Michelle Guercio, CVT, CVPM
Q. I've just been promoted to practice manager. How can I make sure I'm successful?
Create airtight medical records
By Christine Merle, DVM, MBA, CVPM
Q. We have problems keeping accurate records. How can we maintain proper records?
Ask Amy: I can't discipline
I'm an office manager for a practice with 26 doctors and team members. Because the owner hires personal friends, I can't effectively discipline team members who don't meet expectations. One problem employee has known the owner for more than 20 years. She's not a team player and her poor performance frustrates others. What can I do?
Ask Amy: All aboard for policy changes
Some team members consistently resist the policy and procedural changes I make for our practice, but their peers get them on board with no problem. How can I change this?
Great expectations
By Pamela Stevenson, CVPM
Q. In the past, I occasionally gave discounts to friends and family. Now they expect the same generosity every time they visit. What do I do?
Pearls of Practice
Keep team bonding a tail-wagging time
By Debbie Allaben Gair, CVPM
Hosting special events for team members and their families can build better working relationships and strengthen the support system in your practice, says Debbie Allaben Gair, CVPM, a Firstline Editorial Advisory Board member and president of Bridging the Gap in Sparta, Mich.
Bond your team with bonuses
By Marianne Hay, LVT
Bonuses are more than a way to say thanks at VetSelect Animal Hospital in Novi, Mich.
A pet's picture: priceless
By Kathy Clement
The team at Countryside Veterinary Clinic in Carthage, N.Y., knows how to captivate their audience.
Huddles offer more chances to score
By Jane Pinkernell
Move over, Steelers, there's a new team in town.
Sample script: How to discuss the cost of euthanasia
By Sharon DeNayer
"Help clients who make the difficult choice to euthanize their pet by approaching the associated costs with sincere consideration," says Sharon DeNayer, a Firstline Editorial Advisory Board member and the clinic manager at Windsor Veterinary Clinic in Windsor, Colo.
Home sweet hospital
By Becky McGraw, CVT
Patients and clients feel at home at Colorado Canine Orthopedics in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Skill Builder
Do you know your stuff?
By Ernest E. Ward Jr., DVM , Gina Toman, RVT
"I'm not the doctor" isn't a reason to not know the answer to these common client concerns. Here's a look at some of the facts everyone should know.
Making It Meaningful
The long walk to goodbye
By Michelle Miller, BS, CVT
Whether I'm helping pets heal or helping their owners say goodbye, my job in veterinary oncology brings special patients and their families into my life who remind me why I love pets—and my work.
Communication Strategies
Are you serious?
By Sarah A. Moser
How you deliver information may be overriding your message—and preventing colleagues and clients from taking you seriously. Learn how to improve your presentation and earn their respect.
When clients blow you off
By Sarah A. Moser
How you deliver information may be overriding your message—and preventing colleagues and clients from hearing you clearly. Learn how to improve your presentation and earn their respect.
Web Exclusive
Dandy's day at the dentist
Use this client education form to educate clients about the care their pet receives during a dental appointment.
Important reasons to spay or neuter your pet
Use this form to educate clients and encourage them to spay or neuter their pet.
Dog lifestyle survey
This sample form will remind you to ask clients important lifestyle questions.
Form: A lifetime of canine wellness
Use this form to educate clients about your wellness schedule for dogs.
The fecal experiment
This sample flow chart demonstrates how your whole team can communicate more effectively to boost client compliance.
A lifetime of feline wellness
Use this form to educate clients about your wellness schedule for cats.
By the Numbers
7 tips to keep clients happy
Happy clients stay with your practice and promote your services to others. Use these tips to please pet owners and build a good vibe on the grapevine.

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