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Founders and members of the 7S Society got together for a call on September 10th, 2020, and while we had originally planned to make it an exclusive member private call, we decided to open it up to the public as a bonus, because we just couldn’t hog all of this insanely valuable information to ourselves… You’re welcome!

During the call, we talked veterinary practice design with expert Marie-Eve Allard from Planimal!

Marie is an architect whose passion lies specifically with the vet med industry, making her an obvious choice as Dr. Cody’s architect for his new practice project, Fen Vet, as well as the obvious guest speaker for this call. During the call, we feature some of Marie’s amazing past designs, which you’ll absolutely want to check out.

Marie considers herself a magician of sorts, and if you are looking to design a new practice or renovate an existing one, you’ll want some of her magic.

When evaluating the needs of your practice, she’s going to look at some specific aspects including:

  • Your vision. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT! Marie stresses that her designs NEED to align with the vision of your practice, where you plan to go, and how your design can help to get you there.
  • Demographics. Who are your clients? What do you need in order to appeal to them?
  • Technology. This will continue to evolve and will ultimately take up space in your practice. How can you plan to accommodate that? How will you include existing technologies in your design NOW?

How can we create a marketable vet practice for both clients AND future staff members?

While a lot of design is focused on the client experience (as it should be), what about your staff? The bottom line is that a positive staff experience leads to more success for your practice overall. If your staff WANTS to come to work, feels comfortable, and their needs are met, they’ll excel in job performance, gain you more clients, and ultimately more financial success.

Marie gives us some examples of what a positive staff experience might look like within your design. Have a back entrance for employees. Give them a space for their belongings. Have comfortable lounge spaces where they are encouraged to take breaks when needed. Supply a shower so they can leave a shift feeling fresh, or go for a run on their break and can hit the showers afterwards. Create a lifestyle within your practice that quality people want to work for.

How does COVID-19 challenge typical design?

Marie walks us through the challenges facing some existing vet practices, and how we can accommodate for a “pandemic proof” design as we plan moving forward. We need to leave room to accommodate social distancing within our practices, so consider that when determining what your “flow” should look like. Technology is also a big factor in making sure your practice is able to operate effectively, even under pandemic-type circumstances. Having the proper technology and the space to use it is now crucial to the success of any practice.

What other design topics does Marie address?

Per questions from our 7S members, as well as followers on Facebook, Marie dives into specifics about flooring, lighting (and the perks and challenges of incorporating natural light), ceiling height, ideal number of exam rooms, multipurpose areas, accommodating virtual visits, and SO much more in this call. If you are a practice owner, have goals to be, or are in the process of opening a practice, you NEED to hear all of this!

Dr. Dan closes out our private call turned public with some nuggets of wisdom.

He reiterates Marie’s advice and a common theme within 7S Society in general:

Our vision will dictate EVERYTHING we do. Get clear on your vision in order to get clear on the steps you take to get there.

“The clinics of the future that first and foremost think about the client experience and their team members– they’re going to win.”

To contact Marie, head over to planimal.ca or email her at [email protected]!

To reach your practice ownership goals, be provided with invaluable guidance and resources, and be included in our private member only calls, head over to 7ssociety.com/join/.

To watch the full video of our call, click here: