Culture. It can be hard to put your finger on it, yet in the setting of a vet practice, it permeates the work areas, floats into reception and beyond and ricochets off the walls. You can feel it when you walk in the door. Long ago I sat in the reception area waiting for my interview at a practice where I ended up spending many years of life. I distinctly remember sitting there and thinking: “I don’t like the feel of this place.” It took me more than a decade to figure out that what I felt that day was a broken culture.
So what do we do about it? That’s the question we ask of our guests for this episode. We’re joined by Dr Dave Nicol – author, speaker, coach, doctor, practice owner, head vet, podcaster, and founder of VetX International and his teammate Dr Dermot McInerney. Dermot serves as the VetX International Head of Veterinary Partnerships and Research, and is the main author of the VetX research article “Leadership actions and their effects on veterinary practice culture“, and it’s this article and the concepts around it that we got together to discuss. Dave and Dermot answer important questions, like the current crisis that the vet profession finds itself in, the role bad culture in this crisis, what toxic workplace behaviour looks like, how leaders can help create thriving workplace cultures, and why you don’t have to a ‘leader’ to influence culture.
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