Sizing up your equine veterinary practice
You're ready to retire, but is your practice ready to sell? If not, you likely need to address one of these three obstacles.
Dec 01, 2007
Why are so many equine practitioners having trouble selling their practices? Well, for one, more veterinarians are heading to the suburbs and cities to predominantly small animal practices. We've all heard about the shortage of large animal doctors in the field. But three other factors are also making things difficult on hard-working but ready-to-retire equine practitioners. All three factors relate to your ability to listen to a new generation of equine doctors and find out what they want in a practice. Read on to learn about these top three practice-selling troubles—and how you can beat them.
Problem No. 1: The generation gap
Women are looking for—and finding—careers other than motherhood. In more and more families, the primary breadwinner is the wife and the husband is taking on the role of caregiver. The stereotypical nuclear family has changed.
With these societal shifts taking place, the average associate's mindset has changed. These intrepid doctors—mostly women—aren't interested in the old-fashioned "my way or the highway" practice culture. They don't want to be on the road for 18 hours a day. Owners need to understand the generational and gender issues present and adapt accordingly. Flexibility and understanding will go a long way in hiring associates and eventually selling your practice.
Solution: Be proactive, not reactive. Don't just wait for the phone to ring to plan your day. This creates large gaps of waiting and longer days as appointments trickle in. The new generation doesn't want to stay late for no reason. Progressive practitioners realize that being proactive and making calls is more efficient than waiting for the calls to come in. It can make for busier and more profitable days.
Problem No. 2: Overvaluing your practice
What sort of systems? Well, if wellness care is more effective and rewarding for patients than "fire engine" medicine, why not use that same philosophy on your business?