Be Open to Learning

Posted: Oct 26, 2015
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One of the things I’ve personally learned in my 12 years at DoveLewis is how important staff training, education and solid protocols are in building and maintaining a successful veterinary hospital. I also think the vital role of training is magnified in a busy 24/7 emergency and specialty practice. When the receiving board is full and lives are on the line, everyone on the team needs to be dialed in. That is when training really takes over.

DoveLewis has a long-standing tradition of taking our belief in training and helping others outside of the four walls of our organization. Our teaching mission is an important, yet often overlooked, part of what we do. I often tell people that those who want to work at DoveLewis like continual learning; that we are, in fact, a learning organization. Even though our staff is at the top of their profession, they always want to keep learning. I think many of them actually take it on as a peer challenge. Hopefully your staff does as well.

It takes a lot of time and effort to produce and our other local veterinary educational efforts. But it is important to us. We dedicate the time and resources to interact with others in our profession, and pass along any knowledge we can to assist other veterinary practices. And we certainly learn every day from all of our referral partners.

The veterinary community is one of partnership and support. We work together on cases for the common good of the patient. Veterinarians are not territorial, so the concept of learning from each other comes naturally. I don’t know too many people in our profession that can’t point to a few other people as instrumental in their schooling and careers. I know I can. Hopefully, you can as well, and those people know what an impact they have made on your career.

Launching our video-based educational website,, in 2011 was a monumental step in growing our Education Program. We wanted to make our training protocols available to an even wider audience outside of the Portland area. We now have clients in all 50 states and many other countries. We are excited to be helping so many others improve the quality of their own staff training. Ultimately, that improves patient care.

Veterinarians, you understand the power of learning and teaching. Make sure to offer that same opportunity to all of your staff and we will continue to support you in those efforts through the programs we provide related to our teaching mission. It is an important part of what we have offered to our community for 42 years.