Hiring Spotlight: 5 Qualities to Look for in a Vet Tech
We recently shared a piece on the most important qualities to look for when recruiting a veterinary receptionist. Continuing along those same lines, we thought it might be helpful to delve into some of the best characteristics of a good veterinary technician. As with a front desk agent, hiring a vet tech should be about more than just credentials, education and experience. Yes, those things are important, but there are certain intangibles to look for that will ensure quality work and longevity. Here are five of those qualities below.
Let’s face it. Working with people and animals can get complicated. It’s not like sitting in an office, doing paperwork all day. The job of a vet tech can be somewhat unpredictable and involves dealing with humans and pets with a wide variety of personalities. As such, it’s essential that the technicians you have working for you possess a great deal of patience. They shouldn’t get easily frustrated, but be able to remain calm, cool and collected regardless of what’s happening around them.
It’s been said that integrity is about doing the right thing when nobody is watching. Proving that one has integrity can be tricky, but it’s something you should always look for as a prospective employer. To assess whether someone is honest and trustworthy, look for evidence that they commit to things and see them through. In other words, look for proof that they do what they say they will do. And, of course, checking their references thoroughly can help you ascertain quality of character more effectively.
Not only does a good vet tech need to respect others, but they must also be capable of earning the respect of their colleagues, clients and patients as well. People demonstrate respect by listening to others and not judging or jumping to conclusions. They ask questions to gain clarity and understanding, but in a way that is friendly and positive. When recruiting for this position within your practice, look for candidates who have a history of demonstrating mutual respect with those whom they have worked and/or interacted.
Even the most experienced vet tech could always learn something new or find a better way to improve on his or her performance. Continuing education may be mandated in our industry, but that doesn’t necessarily mean every individual working herein is teachable. You don’t want someone who just goes through the motions or settles for the bare minimum. Instead, you want someone who is driven by passion and thirsty for knowledge. Someone who is ambitious and always strives to find the best way to serve clients and care for patients.
There will inevitably be days during which it will feel like the weight of the world is on your vet tech’s shoulders. Schedules will get hectic, things will go wrong and pressures will mount. A good vet tech can handle anything that’s thrown their way with fortitude and relentless stamina. They’ll roll with the punches and not let the stress of the situation get under their skin. This is incredibly important, especially since animals tend to sense emotion. A frazzled vet tech will result in anxious patients, which will only make matters worse. Therefore, you should look for someone who not only has a track record of never giving up, but is also willing to ask for help when needed.
These are just a handful of the basic traits that make a vet tech great. When recruiting for this role, you should also aim to find candidates who have the personality and characteristics that closely mesh with your practice culture and existing team. As always, the more homework you do upfront, the better your hiring results will be.
Not sure where to begin or simply don’t have time to source candidates with these qualities? Let us know exactly what you’re looking for and we’ll get right to work finding your dream team. Get in touch today to get started.