Save that firing for the end of the day

May 19, 2018
Karen E. Felsted, CPA, MS, DVM, CVPM, CVA
Karen E. Felsted, CPA, MS, DVM, CVPM, CVA

Dr. Felsted is a CPA as well as a veterinarian and has spent the last 15 years working as a financial and operational consultant to veterinary practices and the animal health industry. She also spent three years with the National Commission on Veterinary Economic Issues as CEO. She has written an extensive number of articles for a wide range of veterinary publications and speaks regularly at national and international veterinary meetings. She is the current treasurer of VetPartners, a member of the Veterinary Economics Editorial Advisory Board, a member of the CVPM board of directors and the current treasurer of the CATalyst Council. In 2011, she was awarded the Western Veterinary Conference Practice Management Continuing Educator of the Year and in 2014, the VetPartners Distinguished Life Member Award.Dr. Felsted enjoys exotic international travel, and when the dvm360 team last heard from her, she was headed to the Galapagos.

Veterinary managers: Sometime you'll have to terminate an employee (if you haven't already). Do it in a professional, respectful way.

Fire at the end of the day. ( a longstanding teammate isn't most people's idea of fun, but it may go with the territory of managing a veterinary practice. At a Fetch dvm360 conference session in Virginia Beach given by speaker Karen Felsted, CPA, MS, DVM, CVPM, CVA, an attendee shared that the prospect of terminating one such employee had her so rattled that she committed an HR faux pas. 

Though she'd done her research and learned that experts recommend doing terminations at the end of the day, the prospect weighed so heavily on her mind, she did the deed first thing in the morning-and with other employees in the practice. It didn't go as well as she'd hoped-although she did get it over with. 

Need to fire someone? Read these articles first. 

What it takes for Dr. Karen Bradley to dismiss you.

Flex or fire: Bend the rules or let them go?

When you need to fire a friend.

Dr. Felsted totally understood the anxiety involved, but told everyone that even though it might not make for a pleasant day for you, letting an employee go after work is the right thing to do. This is so you can give them their dignity and privacy and avoid any walk of shame in front of anyone else. (Of course, there are exceptions, especially if a violation is particularly egregious, like workplace violence or abusive handling of a patient.)

Tackling terminations professionally is a learning experience for all managers, Dr. Felsted emphasized, and urges bosses to stay professional and put their own emotions aside in these emotionally charged conversations in the interest of the practice and respect.


You. Can. Do. This!

At Fetch dvm360 conference, we're the support system you need. With every conference this year, we intend to nurture your mind (meaning quality CE for days) while also encouraging you to take stock of your physical and emotional health. Register now.