#111: Navigating the Pendulum: Adapting to Evolving Veterinary Landscapes. With Dr Sam Bowden.

The last time we had Sam Bowden on the podcast, all everyone in the veterinary profession could think about was: ‘too much work, not enough workers!’ But 2023 saw some changes. The deluge of work turned into a more reasonable stream, veterinary companies are looking twice at their bloated wage bills, and clinics are finally filling those vacancies. It’s a different landscape to be sure, and Sam Bowden is just the man to help us unpack and strategise, whether you’re freshly graduated and about to enter the job market, or a clinic owner who has to start working on attracting and keeping good clients.

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Dr Sam Bowden, with 15 years of veterinary practice experience and a track record of owning and expanding two practices, has spent the last 12 years assisting practice owners in achieving better work-life balance, profitability, and overall well-being. He’s the founder of ⁠United Vets Group⁠, The Ultimate Veterinary Practice, Complete Vet Systems, More Vet Clients Websites, Accelerate Practice Academy, Accelerate Mastermind Group, Vet Business Manager Program, The Dental Academy and also the author of The Abundant Practice.  Sam’s teaching focusses heavily on mindset combined with practical strategies to allow practice owners and teams to reach their full potential.

In this episode, we explore the changes in the veterinary profession in 2024 compared to a year ago, including what Sam calls the ‘profitless boom.’ Sam shares data with us on what our clients value, and some practical ways that we can deliver it in way that is financially and emotionally sustainable. We dig into how the veterinary job market is different now compared to a year ago, and how it might change over the next year or two as we discuss the question: have we become entitled?!

Topic list:

06:30 Changes in the vet profession.

07:54 Sam’s advice for vet students.

23:50 Do we still have too many clients and not enough vets?

27:11 Clinic retail sales have gone down – what’s the impact?

31:38 Do cheap retailers erode trust of veterinary clinics?

36:13 Are wages going to stay up?

37:43 The shift towards service orientation in veterinary practice.

39:09 Better service and changing the model of service increases price elasticity.

41:18 The role of pet insurance and wellness plans.

44:09 Why you should have a business mindset and a positive mindset in vet practice.

55:16 Sam’s thoughts on social media as tool for business and as a vet.




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