Communicating effectively in the exam room is arguably the single most valuable skill a veterinarian or veterinary technician can have. You are in appointments all day long so if you’re doing something wrong, it takes an unending toll on your clients, patients and practice.
If you aren’t handling appointments well, pets don’t get the best care, clients become unhappy because they have to wait, and practices don’t generate the revenue they could. We struggle to get clients to understand the value of our services, and we get frustrated when we feel like we aren’t providing the level of care we want. Ultimately, we wear out and lose our passion for medicine, and that just amplifies the problem.
Why did we make this training video?
For managers, every time we bring on a new staff member or veterinarian, we have to start over by training that person. Properly training new veterinarians and staff members is hard. It takes a lot of time and energy, and that’s why most practices stop doing it.
It’s unfortunate that the vast majority of us don’t have a program we can use whenever we bring in a new person to help make him or her more effective.
That’s why we made the video.
Dr. Dave Nicol and I speak all over the world on how to structure appointments and effectively communicate in the exam room. At the end of almost every presentation we make, audience members come up to us and say “That was great! How can my staff see that? Where can I send the other vets in my practice to get that?!”
We have always hated not having good answers to those questions. We know the best training is training that the entire team takes in together and discusses. We also know that we can’t visit individual practices in meaningful numbers, and that bringing lots of people to the conferences where we speak is too expensive and time consuming for practices.
7 Steps to Fantastic Appointments was created to help as many veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary clinics as possible. We want to share great information in a way that is engaging and will be remembered, and we want to make it affordable. Our goal is to create training that teams will WANT to watch, and that they will discuss and put into action for the benefit of pets, clients and your practice.
The goals of this course are to:
1) Make critically valuable information on communicating and growing veterinary practices not bore people to absolute tears (thus improving learning and increasing the rate and amount of implementation in practices
2) Point out obstacles to compliance faced by everyone working in a veterinary examination room and teach actionable steps to overcome them
3) Draw attention to the most common problem behaviors in veterinary exam rooms so they can be avoided
4) Facilitate brainstorming and/or team discussions to identify areas for operational improvement
5) Teach actionable steps that individuals and teams can take to improve compliance, raise standards of care, get more satisfaction from working in the exam room, and generate more practice revenue
So what is this thing?
To be clear, this is NOT a webinar or a video recording of some lecture we did somewhere. This is a digital course made up of bite-sized video modules, sketches, examples, and discussion questions. The video modules are 52-minutes in length if watched straight through.
I despise when people record a live event and slap the video up on the Internet. It’s like recording a live rock concert and expecting people to be excited about watching it on their iPad. It’s even worse when you realize video can be an awesome tool!
Dr. Nicol and I set out from the beginning to create something that makes video a strength, not a weakness. We filmed in the Cone of Shame studio and also the veterinary clinic. We used a fantastic comedic actress, Ms. Meg Pierson, to play the client and approached the entire project in a way we hope will make this course unlike anything else available.
7 Steps To Fantastic Appointments is approved for 1 hour of RACE CE credit. Each course includes 4 CE registrations, and additional registrations can be purchased for $25 each. Approval for CVPM practice manager credit is currently pending.
Can I see what the course is like?
Sure. Here’s are 2 small pieces of the actual course:
1) Could this video generate productive discussion about how your team could be more effective? If your practice is like most, the answer is ABSOLUTELY.
2) How can you be sure pet owners are seeing value in the services you or your team are providing? Here’s one of the 7 Steps To Fantastic Appointments.
How do I use the course?
If there’s one thing that’s true about all veterinary clinics, it’s that they’re different. We created this course with flexibility in mind. You can use it a few different ways:
1) Self-paced Individual Learning – If you are taking this course alone, the best approach is to move through, module by module and watch the videos. Then review the discussion questions below each module and consider how they apply to your situation and practice. You can also see any questions that others across the world have asked, and the responses they received.
2) Team Discussion – If you are leading a team and want to get the most out of this course, we recommend the leader watch and read everything first so you can be the most effective presenter possible. You can be the trainer and choose what gets discussed. Dr. Nicol and I provide the material to back you up.
Our recommendation is to break this course into two or three 45-60 minute “lunch & learn“ sessions. Most teams cover the ‘Just For Fun’ and ‘Bad Behaviors In The Exam Room’ modules in one session, and then the ‘7 Steps’ in a second session.
If your team has questions you’d like to pass along to me or Dr. Nicol, just post them in the discussion section so future participants can benefit as well.
3) Team Training [Accelerated] – For teams that want a quick refresher course or that do not want an interactive format, you can find the entire unabridged program included.
What others have said about the course:
“I took this course as a self-paced study in an effort to create an even better appointment for my clients. Before I knew it, the clinic owner and an associate veterinarian were trying to crowd into my desk space and rolling with laughter (that never happens)! This course is practical, entertaining and by far, the best online CE I’ve ever taken. I took away new ideas and creative reminders that I’ve already implemented into my practice. I would recommend this course to any veterinarian, technician or practice manager as it truly appeals to every member of the veterinary team.”
– Dr. Caitlin DeWilde, Brentwood Animal Hospital
“When I was in veterinary school and during my residency, the focus was the medicine, the facts, the statistics. But after 15 plus years in practice, I truly believe it’s not just what you know, but how you communicate and perform in the exam room. This course can help all of us do better in the exam room. I’ve had to do other communication training, but the rest pale in comparison to this course by Drs Roark and Nicol. Informative, smart, practical, funny and fun.”
– Dr. Sue Ettinger, Diplomate ACVIM (Oncology), Animal Specialty & Emergency Center of Wappinger Falls
What does the course cost?
Normally, the cost for getting an entire team into a conference to work with trainers like myself and Dr. Nicol would easily exceed $2,000 or $3,000. Larger clinics could spend over $10,000, and that doesn’t even factor in time the clinic has to be closed.
Most practices just can’t take the whole team to a workshop, so Dr. Nicol and I set out to make something that would do the job, be affordable, and make people laugh and remember the lessons. I’m really happy to say that we are able to offer this course for just $299.
Frequently asked questions:
Can everyone on the team use this, or just 4 people?
You can show it to the whole team or individual team members again and again. Only 4 people will be able to actually get CE Certificates unless you decide to buy more registrations.
How long can I use this? If I come back in 2 years, will it still be there?
My plan is YES. I can’t control things like the hosting company going out of business or weird things like that, but for the most part, once you’re in you’re in for the foreseeable future.
If you think this course would help you, or even one single member of your team, become more effective in the exam room, then enrolling makes complete medical and financial sense. There is a 100% satisfaction guarantee, so if you don’t think this course pays for itself in better care and practice growth, the cost of the course will be refunded.
I’m still on the fence. What else can you show me?
If you purchase this and don’t think it pays for itself or helps you grow your practice, we’ll happily give you your money back. We set out to make something that helps pets and practices. If this doesn’t help you, then we don’t want you to pay for it. Period.
If you’d like to see the syllabus for the course, take a look below.
- Goals for the Course
- Meet Your Instructors
- CE Credits
- How To Use This Course
- Course Handouts
LAUGHS & LEARNING
- [VIDEO] Top 5 Ways Vets Get Off On The Wrong Foot
- Client First Impressions: What Are They?
- [VIDEO] Top 5 Ways Vets Screw Up Appointments
- Discussion Questions for Vets Screw Up Appointments
BAD BEHAVIORS IN THE EXAM ROOM
- [VIDEO] The 4 Biggest Mistakes
- Discussion Questions
- [VIDEO] Trust
- [VIDEO] History Taking
- [VIDEO] Physical Exam
- [VIDEO] Assessment & Plan
- [VIDEO] Solve Their Problem
- [VIDEO] Write Your Records
- [VIDEO] Follow Up
- [VIDEO] Conclusion & Example
- Discussion Questions
FULL LECTURE (UNABRIDGED)
CE EXAMINATION & COURSE EVALUATION