VETERINARY ECONOMICS, Apr 1, 2005 - Veterinary Economics
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VETERINARY ECONOMICS, Apr 1, 2005
Technology
E-mail etiquette
With the advent of e-mail, it's easy to jot a disjointed note and send it off to clients or colleagues. But a slap-dash approach may lead you to say things you'd never consider appropriate if you were using a pen and paper. Keep out of trouble with these e-mail etiquette tips:
Hate spam? Kick it out of your in box
If you and your employees use work-related e-mail addresses, you probably face in boxes that bulge with spam, technically known as unsolicited commercial e-mail. And you're not alone in the battle against notices for low mortgage rates and questionable pharmaceuticals.
Cover Story
7 ways that your colleagues stepped in a mess
By Bob Levoy
Want to avoid regrets about management? Learn to avoid these common missteps, pulled from candid conversations with practitioners.
Equine Solutions
Pinpointing price
By Lydia Gray, DVM, MA
Imagine you receive a call about a horse experiencing a severe case of colic. You stabilize the horse and perform a physical examination, after which the horse exhibits signs of colic again.
Personnel Solutions
Benefits by the book
By Gary Glassman, CPA
I heard that a veterinarian was audited and fined more than $30,000 in back taxes for not claiming discounted pet care as taxable income on his employees' paychecks. I've been offering $300 in pet care per year per full-time employee (and half that for part-timers). If an employee goes over the $300 limit, he or she gets a 50 percent discount on additional care. Have I been doing it wrong all these years?
Are you giving enough praise?
By Steve Kornfeld, DVM
Studies show morale and turnover improve when team members feel appreciated.
Practice Management Q&A
Can I appraise my own practice?
By Susan Flemming, MBA
I'm about to sell my practice. Is there any reason why I can't do the appraisal myself?
Charging witness fees
By Robert Newman, JD
I've been asked to be a witness in an animal cruelty case. How should I be paid?
Benefits made easier
By Fritz Wood, CPA, CFP
Is there a less complicated way to offer pet care to my employees than offering discounted services?
Practice Tips
Market with free gifts
By Beth Blake
You know the product or service you're recommending could help your patients. The problem is holding clients' attention long enough to explain the benefits.
Get your banker hooked and net cash to fuel growth
By Denton Harris
A growing business adds customers, expands inventory, buys equipment, and hires new staff. The future looks great on paper, but the additional expenses bring a cash crunch, particularly if collections are slow.
Creating a culture of excellence
By Joseph Rubino
Commit to these 10 culture changes to build a terrific practice.
Vetcetera
If you're happy and you know it...
You may be a woman. The world over, women tend to be happier, according to the Pew Global Attitudes Survey conducted by the Pew Research Center. Women in two-thirds of the countries surveyed rated their happiness higher than men. Overall, men and women in the United States and Canada are some of the happiest in the world with more than two out of three rating their lives on the highest rung of happiness.
The Golden Gate city prescribes kinder treatment for backyard dogs
A new San Francisco law passed by the Board of Supervisors says that backyard dogs deserve a daily change of water; edible and nutritious food; nontipping bowls; and a dog house with a roof, floor, and three sides.
Was it an error?
The answer is often colored by preconceived notions, according to a study published in the American Journal of Nursing. When adverse events fall in the realm of nursing they're likely to be reported as errors. When they're associated with physicians, they're apt to be viewed as differences in "clinical judgement" or a "variation in practice."
Testing pups' personalities
Sam Gosling, Ph.D, researches animal personalities. His latest research adapted a five-factor personality test for humans to test dogs. Gosling asked the owners of 78 dogs, both purebred and mixed, to rate their dogs based on intelligence, energy levels, anxiety, and affection and aggression. He then had someone else rate each dog.
Some pets are never out of touch
A client's cell phone probably rings from time to time in the exam room. Soon you also could hear cell phones ringing in your runs thanks to new technology. Pet owners can equip their dogs with PetsCells, bone-shaped phones that attach to dogs' collars. An owner can dial Fido's number, and, after one ring, talk to his or her pet. If Fido wishes to woof a response, the owner will hear that, too.
Hot Button
Looking for spit-polish pride
By Jeff Werber, DVM
Lack of respect for the facility can signal deficits in pride and care that hurt more than just the building if left unchecked.
Personal Finances
Sweating under the load
Three-quarters of people still paying off their student loans say the payments are large enough to keep them from buying a car or a house, says the Cambridge Consumer Credit Index.
Higher interest on student loans
Student loan rates are at historic lows, says Veterinary Economics Personal Finance Editor Fritz Wood, CPA, CFP, but not for long. Wood says recent and soon-to-be graduates should act now to consolidate their student loans.
The perceived monetary gap between spouses
Think you know where your personal finances stand? If you're married, your spouse likely sees family earnings and expenses differently.

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