Practice Management


Great investments generate 100 percent of purchase price in one year in revenue

Progress means the continual consideration and addition of new services.

We call it progress, but not all progress is good, so we must be attentive to the shifting marketplace for our services. With practices seeking growth with the stable populations of animals, we must find and add new services to the inventory currently in place.

There are six steps to introducing a new service, product or skill: Finding what is new, development, implementation, marketing, fine-tuning and killing it.

Finding what's new

When seeking to find new services, we can start at seminars or by networking with colleagues. Personal interests can guide the identification and development of new services and new skills.

Local needs can also guide the selection by doing a market survey of the community.

We can look at new surgical devices, like lasers. We can look to new services to offer, like boarding, grooming or behavior counseling.

We can develop new surgical skills, like external fixators.


Planning requires the capital investment in equipment, funds and time for training, introduction to the staff and then introduction to the public.

How will it fit into the current schedule? Does the practice have time for this new project? How much will be invested to purchase and train for the new service?

A good rule of thumb for a great investment will be if it generates 100 percent of its purchase price in one year in new revenues. With ultrasound being added, the learning curve is steep and takes time. Do you have time to study? You need to consider it.

Staff training is a key step in the offering of a new service, such as expended dental work, consumers are going to ask questions of the support staff about the benefits of this new service, as obviously it was not needed last month.


When introducing a new product or service, implement it slowly to work out the bugs in the new product. Stumbling with the introduction of a new service — like a kennel cough outbreak in a new boarding kennel service — is not fun.

Things seem to go off kilter during the first 10 cases of introducing a new service, so plan on introducing it slowly, allow for some free trials, bring some special clients into the loop to get their feedback.


Figure out the target audience and then determine how to inform them of the new service.

Top-of-the-mind marketing techniques work nicely for routine services like wellness programs. Direct marketing is needed for services like endoscopy.


Once a new service is functioning, be ready to upgrade, modify or adjust to the needs of the consumer clients.

Kill it

And sometimes a new idea about a new service must be killed, Do not be afraid to kill a new service that doesn't take off.

Remember that one in 10 new ideas are really good, and sometimes we just get swept up in a new transient fad.

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