Q&A: Adjust to life as a salesperson

Q&A: Adjust to life as a salesperson

I love my career as a veterinary technician, but I'm no good at reinforcing my veterinarian's recommendations to clients. I feel like a salesperson, and I have no confidence in that role. How can I improve?
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Feb 01, 2011

Q I love my career as a veterinary technician, but I'm no good at reinforcing my veterinarian's recommendations to clients. I feel like a salesperson, and I have no confidence in that role. How can I improve?

First of all, you're not the only one with these worries, says Karyn Gavzer, MBA, CVPM, a practice management consultant in Springboro, Ohio. Sometimes team members like yourself are not well-trained in communication and don't feel confident speaking to clients. Other times, you're so busy that you don't have time to talk to clients.

But often the problem is that there are no clear standards of care—written statements of the care that doctors believe is best for their patients—to guide your conversations with clients. Without these standards of care, it's tough to suggest anything without potentially contradicting a doctor. For instance, what if one doctor believes in annual heartworm testing and one doesn't? You'll be wrong half the time, no matter what you say to clients. Ask your practice owner to create these standards of care if they don't already exist—you'll find it much easier to communicate with clients after consulting this guide.

If you still feel like you're being pushy or you're worried you'll appear like you only care about money, remember that most clients have limited knowledge about animal health and that they appreciate your knowledgeable suggestions. Often, using educational handouts and brochures can help start conversations and make it easier to start a dialogue with clients.