About 2 months ago, I updated my LinkedIn page. The update merely showed that I had separated from the clinic I used to work at and currently worked somewhere else (non veterinary). This tiny update caused the messages to come pouring in. There are a lot of practices looking for a practice manager right now. I think that Covid has caused many to leave the profession or simply the burden is too much to bear for practices owners to go it alone.
One place was offering the role of Hospital Administrator and managing TWO practices was on that horizon. Man, I really liked the sound of that challenge. Somewhere along the way, I realized that I was built for more than picking apart schedules and hours and being in charge of never running out of inventory. I already know that long hours, physical labor, and round the clock text messages from all staff members (and so much more) are part of the gig too. I love it but it’s hard.
I decided that if I ever got back into vet med and will be sacrificing so much of my time away from my family for work, I will need to be compensated well for it. I felt I was paid well for the role that I had at my old practice, for sure. I, however, taking a step out of the profession and into another, really put compensation and what my time is worth into perspective for me.
Anyway, back to the ‘lucrative’ 2 practice position. These folks took me out to dinner; we discussed politics, children (mainly mine), the weather, and of course the health of the primary practice as well as the secondary. I hemmed and hawed at letting this recruitment process get this far in the first place. I didn’t want to look at anything that was too close to my old practice as I felt this would be a slap in the face to the old owners. 50 miles, that’s far enough, right? I could probably make that trip in 40 mins!! AND this was a specialty hospital, not general practice! I knew I could hack it!
So, I did a day visit. Guess how long it took me to get there in a sunny (non snowy) day? One and a half hours. ONE & A HALF HOURS and that was just one way. And I’m known for flying on the freeway. I bumped my salary requirement up by 10K. 5-6K of that is my car which will undoubtedly have problems. Then, it became an issue of what that hourly breakdown is if 3 hours are spent on the road in addition to my worked 8 and, let’s face it, it’s never 8…
I would be waking up to go to work and coming home to go to bed. I have spent enough time doing this being only 15 minutes away. Relocating to this area is not something our family wants to do. It finally dawned on me. I realized I couldn’t put a price tag on this one. It sucked to turn it down. It sucked royally. But, I digress. It was a significant learning experience for me. I was offered an excellent job based on my history and my interview performance. That, I am very proud of. It was just the wrong place and the wrong time, and I wasn’t even looking! I don’t care who you are, a 4-6 month stint at any place of employment NEVER looks good. I decided to cool my jets and be proud of the networking connection that I had made.
I will continue on in my journey in the financial field. I miss animals a lot. I miss the chaos of a vet clinic when it’s incredibly busy. I enjoyed the gauntlet we needed to get through each day and then finally to have success meet you at the end. But it comes at a cost. Price yourself accordingly. Plus… I am learning how to file allllll the business taxes and do allllll the payrolls. I have field trips planned to sit in on advisory board meetings. I’ve taken it upon myself to head up our Social Group for team building fun at my office. You can bet I have contests going on in that office. I’ve even tried to get the company who services our printer to buy us pizza. I’m thinking I’ll have better luck with the check stock suppliers hahaaaa, but probably not… If I should ever go back into veterinary medicine, I’ll be that much more valuable if I can do all of these things too.