#90: The life changing effect of valuing yourself and your services, and how to get better at it with Dr Olivia James

Many of us struggle with attaching a dollars-and-cents value to this ‘fixing animals’ thing that we do for a living. We tell ourselves stories about how our work is a labor of love, about ethics and about the noble nature of our profession, and we underestimate the value of our skills and knowledge. But stories can become limiting beliefs that hold us back from realising our full potential as veterinary professionals and as thriving humans, which all-too-often ends up with this story that Dr Olivia James hears over and over in her coaching work: “I’m overworked, I’m poor, and I’m lonely.” 

Dr Olivia James is an equine dentistry specialist, former practice owner, founder and director of the educational platforms The Veterinary Dental Company and The Equine Practice Company and mentor and teacher though the business masterminds and coaching groups she hosts for equine practice owners, and in this episode she helps change our stories and beliefs around valuing our services. Olivia also provides practical strategies for reviewing what you charge in your business. Ultimately, this is a conversation about avoiding ‘overworked, poor, and lonely.’

Topic list:

2:50 What has Olivia been up to since our last conversation.

7:20 Happy/ Thrive /Flourish: What are we actually aiming for? 

9:20 Loneliness in practice. 

14:40 How Olivia learnt how to charge.

19:50 Life changes that can happen when your business works better.

26:10 Why it sometimes makes more sense to invest money in the stock market than in buying a practice. 

29:10 The mental blocks that make it hard for us to charge appropriately .

30:40 When clients accuse us of ‘just being in it for the money.

34:30 Getting the team on board with price changes in your business. 

36:50 The three ways of setting your charges.

42:10 The things we commonly fail to account for in working out cost of service. 

44:30 The ethics of what we charge. 

47:40 How to decide which prices to adjust. 

50:30 Tying business to what matter most. 

56:00 Olivia’s book choices.

59:00 Olivia’s answer to the one question.


The podcast about relationships: Arthur Brooks – The Drive Podcast


Tony Robbins Business Mastery – https://www.tonyrobbins.com/events/business-mastery/virtual/

James Herriot books – https://www.booktopia.com.au/all-creatures-great-and-small-james-herriot/book/9781447225997.html?



“I really encourage people to go out and, find their community, and it doesn’t have to be a veterinary community.”

“If they can do it, I can do it. What I got from that program was the confidence to do it, because learning without confidence is nothing.”

“If you have a think about how many years it took you to complete your vet degree all the years of experience, how many hundreds of thousands of dollars of education is in your head right now?”

“If you do what everybody else is doing, you’re going to get the same results as everybody else.”

“What do you want? What do you want from your practice? What do you want from your life?”

Join our community of Vet Vault Nerds to lift your clinical game and get your groove back with our up to date easy-to-consume clinical episodes at vvn.supercast.com.

Join us in at Vets on Tour in Wanaka, New Zealand on 13 – 18 August 2023 for great CE, live podcasting and snow… lots of snow! 

— Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/vet-vault/message 

Join our community of likeminded veterinary professionals for resources, case and industry discussions, connection and more.

Coming soon: Live podcasting, Q&A, practical sessions, and group discussions