Choosing a Consultant

There are times in every business when investing in a consultant can save money – not to mention hours of lost time, misdirected effort and team dissatisfaction. There are many choices for veterinary consultants, but not all are appropriate for your needs or personality. If you have never explored consulting services here are some helpful suggestions.

First, find a consultant with many years of experience in veterinary practice management.

Veterinary medicine has some unique challenges and a successful consultant will understand both the business and the medical aspects of the practice.

Second, call references and look for successful outcomes from former or existing clients.

Paying for expert advice is not inexpensive and when all is said and done, it is results that count.

Third, find someone willing to be candid when conversations get critical.

There is no point in paying for expert advice if the consultant can’t be forthright with the corrections needed because of inability to hold challenging conversations. Sometimes it is the owner who needs the most coaching.

Fourth, choose a consultant who is transparent and realistic about their fees.

Know in advance how your consultant charges, by the hour, the month or the project. Is travel included? What other extra fees may be charged? Don’t be surprised.

Finally, find someone who responds in a timely manner.

Engaging an expert involves having a skilled professional to contact to help you when problems arise. If your consultant is unreachable or puts “gatekeepers” in place, they may not be as responsive as you desire.