Most people in veterinary medicine enter the field because of their love of animals. Nothing seems better than spending the work day surrounded by animals, helping animals, and yes, helping the families of those animals. When you’re on “the floor” either up at the front desk or in the back treatment and surgery area, you get your wish of being around animals most of the time. But if you take or make the move into management, you are veering away from your initial goal. So why consider becoming a member of management? Here are just some of the reasons…
The Need for a Chair
As the years go by, our bodies begin to feel the effects of working a very physical job. If we’re up front in the practice, we are spending a lot of time on our feet. In the back, we are wrestling Rottweilers, tackling tabbies, and lifting Labradors. We get to the point where physically, the job becomes too demanding. The result of years in the trenches can include a bad back, blown knees, drooping feet and more. We don’t want to leave practice, but we need to look for a position that requires more mental energy, and less physical stamina. Management seems like the right fit.
The Need for a Change
Sometimes it’s not necessarily our bodies that give out, but our mental weariness that leads us to consider a move into management. Perhaps we’ve been doing the same job for many years, and it’s time for a change. Maybe we’ve worked nearly every position in a practice, so it’s time to focus on giving management a Go. Where most other professions have a career ladder, we barely have a stepstool, so opportunities are not abundant. Management may be one way to stretch our wings.
The Need for a Raise
Although not necessarily the case, often a promotion in stature results in a promotion of wages. None of us expected to get rich by working in veterinary medicine, but we’d also like to think there is a place to climb to make a more decent living. The “carrot” of even just 50 cents more an hour can look appealing when offered a management position, even if it won’t keep us feeling full for very long.
The Need for a Purpose
As you look around from your perspective on the floor or the frontlines, you may come to realize that there are changes that need to be made, and you feel compelled to help make them for the practice. You want to help improve the working environment for yourself and your colleagues. You know that better patient care can be delivered with a little attention to detail. You notice that client service can be improved by implementing some new protocols. Basically, you want to have a purpose in the practice, and you may need to fulfill that urge from a manager’s position.
Before making that move to management, sit down and really spend some time considering WHY you want to make the move. Be sure it is for the right reasons, and not just because you want to turn your back on what you have been doing in the meantime. You should move TOWARD your future, not AWAY from your past.