At VPP, we spend a lot of time talking to veterinary practice owners about their businesses. We’re a curious bunch and so we’re always asking questions about how owners do things to improve their practices, train their staffs, make clients happy, etc. One observation we have is that there is an immense amount of trial and error going on in the industry. There just isn’t an impressive repository of hints, tips and opinions out there for the average owner to consult when they want to make things a little bit better at their practice. Sure, the industry trade publications consistently churn out pieces each month from the consulting crew, but how many of those folks have actually owned and improved a practice? While in other industries you may see the major corporate groups producing such content, in our industry the big guys prefer to operate in black boxes of mystery.
Today, that changes. We’re giving all of you a golden ticket to the chocolate factory. We are proud to announce the launch of PracticeEdge, a platform on which we’ll be providing practice owners insights into how we do things here at VPP to make our partner practices better. What makes our advice different? Well, for one, we practice what we preach. We actually help our partners operate clinics of different sizes, located in differing parts of the country. What you’ll quickly learn are a few things: 1. we’re kind of nerdy and rely on data to drive our decisions; gut is good, but gut and data is better; 2. we’re convinced that the simplest changes can usually produce the biggest improvements; simple is easier to implement, and you’re more likely to do something if it’s easy; 3. our marketing team resembles a crew of mad scientists in that they constantly test new ideas and refine ones that work; the industry is evolving and we believe it’s important to try new ideas to help stay competitive. Everything you read here will be authored by the actual VPP team, leaders from our company with firsthand experience in their areas of expertise. If there is a dud of an idea, we’ll let you know about it.
What kind of content will you find on PracticeEdge? You can expect pieces that pertain to all aspects of a practice: operations, human resources, marketing, industry trends etc. Articles will range from high-level, thought-provoking essays to nitty-gritty, in the trenches, tactical how-to’s for your managers and staff. Those of you who are familiar with our research-driven VETPulse newsletters will find this content to be very complementary to that publication.
Additionally, alongside with the launch of PracticeEdge, we’ll be rolling out a newly updated Company Page at LinkedIn. A surprising number of veterinarians are on this professional network and so we thought it appropriate to leverage that platform as well for our relationship with you, the practice owner. In addition to everything we publish on PracticeEdge, on Linkedin you will find engaging commentary on typical practice problems, valuable content we come across from other content providers and see value in sharing, and occasional information about VPP and the new courses we’re charting in the world of practice ownership. If you are on LinkedIn, we invite you to follow our page (found here) so that new content will periodically appear in your feeds.
The question many of you are probably asking is why any advice we provide should be trusted. This fair inquiry is best handled in looking at the results we’ve accomplished at our own partner practices. We’ve grown revenue and improved margins at all sorts of practices. We had a string of 36 straight months of double digit revenue growth in our network. We’ve grown small practices (< $1,000,000). We’ve grown large practices (> $6,000,000). We’ve grown rural practices and we’ve grown urban and suburban practices. Admittedly, large animal practice and specialty is not our forte, but outside of that, we’ve seen it all, done it all, and documented how we’ve done it.
All of us look forward to sharing with you over the coming months. We invite feedback of any kind and will happily entertain suggestions for content. If there is an issue you’ve been struggling with, let us know, and we’ll put it in the queue; or simply call us. The team here is very excited about the launch and the opportunity to share with the profession, so without further delay, let me be the first to welcome you to PracticeEdge!