It’s tempting after a long week, or even on a Monday to huddle around leftover cake in the break room like it’s a life raft, or the bar a block away to talk about how it would be different if you were running things.
I’m going to be honest, not all of your ideas are crap. Some of them have great potential, but pouring them out to your coworkers over drinks and rants that are borderline rage aren’t going to get you very far. The veterinary world is really small, the rumors will travel, and you’ll end up with a reputation you didn’t anticipate and won’t serve your goals.
Here’s an idea to do instead: Get involved. It’s easy, anyone can do it. Check in with your local technician or veterinary associations; they are always looking for people to man booths at job fairs and conferences. Get to know people. Moderate at your favorite CE conferences. Offer to moderate for tracks that interest you. Bonus, you usually get more than just awesome CE out of moderating: there are usually gifts, moderator meals, and discounted registration. It’s a tremendous networking opportunity.
Don’t know who to talk to first? Talk to your local reps who come in to the clinic. They are your number one fan. To start off with, most of them were you. Most industry reps came out of practice at one point and they have a tremendous amount of insight to offer. Find the information booth at the next conference you’re at and ask the how you can help this year or next.
It’s tempting to rant around that stale leftover cake about how technicians don’t have enough respect and how a client asked you what you did today, but the burden of that isn’t on NAVTA. It’s not on your state organization. That burden is on you. It’s on you to educate your clients, to educate your colleagues, and be to involved at every level.
Volunteer at local schools and grab some of that enthusiasm and let it carry your cause. Speak up and be present. The vocal minority has a voice, but the voice that brings action with it will always have a better shot at swaying the votes.
Your perspective is unique. You got into this field along your own path and with your own story. The path you’ve taken isn’t the same as mine and I’m grateful for that. You’ve got much experience to teach me. Maybe you had a lot more dentistry training than I did, or that magic moment where you get perfect radiographs. The 15 years of experience I had in emergency and critical care reflects getting those IV catheters in crashing patients every time.
We make a tremendous team when we share our resource and we pool our knowledge. What if we did that? What if we networked and shared our resources instead of hoarding them? What if you chose to be a mentor, and shared knowledge and resources with someone who would benefit from them? What if you were the catalyst to the next stage in their career?
Someone is waiting on you to make the move because they believe in you. They believe you are braver than you think you are. No matter your cause, get out there, be kind, and make a difference.
The views and opinions featured on There, I Said It are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of the DrAndyRoark.com editorial team.