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Q&A: Veterinary staff meeting makeover
It's time to spice up your team meetings.
Q: Our practice's team meetings always seem to turn negative. Any ideas on how we can keep them productive and positive?
The meeting leader must turn negative meetings into positive learning experiences, says Tiffany Killion, BS, CVPM, hospital administrator at Animals' Hospital of Levittown in Levittown, Pa. "If something happens at the clinic that sets a negative tone, talk about it first thing during the meeting, then get feedback," Killion says. "You may have to select someone to start the discussion, but once you get the ball rolling, brainstorm solutions to fix the situation." Here are five more tips for turning around team meetings at your practice.
1. Get to the point. Weekly meetings should be short and to the point. "They're a chance to meet with staff about the memos that go out and make sure everyone is on the same page," Killion says. "Also, spend this time setting up weekly goals. Be sure to reward productive team members at the next meeting."
Killion suggests keeping monthly meetings under one hour. This will prevent staff members from losing interest.
2. Spice things up. "At the monthly meetings, I include continuing education compliments of the staff," Killion says. "This promotes staff buy-in."
3. Call out the slackers. Prepare notes and pass out copies. If you notice that people aren't paying attention, ask their opinion or their thoughts on the topic.
4. Access your audience. Make sure the material you present is applicable to the team members present. If the information doesn't pertain to them, they'll be bored and probably frustrated.
5. Wrap it up. Give team members a time frame for when you expect to see results. "Not all meetings will be great," Killion says. "But if you have one meeting that goes well, your team will notice."