Business Tools To Start a New Practice Just Got Smarter

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SmartStart PracticeTM Launches Certification Program for Veterinarians Looking to Start or Buy a Practice In six weeks, a veterinarian can have all the essential tools and knowledge needed to build a practice while becoming eligible for a reduction in loan interest. Now that’s just smart.

Since day one, the veterinary practice model has been pet-centric. While animals are the patients, they are not the only clients. Today, the customer has a longer list of demands and many veterinarians are not ready for the upgrade.

SmartStart Practice was created to help bridge veterinarians from the practice of veterinary medicine to the business of veterinary medicine with a core focus in Brand Marketing, Financing and Asset Growth, Facility Design and Practice Management. Bundled in an easy-to-use kit, the SmartStart PracticeTM Program is comprised of four course workbooks, resource CD, online courses via a web site, consulting sessions and a certification process. With completion of the course, veterinarians may be eligible for a reduction in interest fees on long-term loans, which could result in savings of $50,000 or more.

SmartStart was created to help answer the following:

  • Is there a brand image? A logo? Marketing materials? A business plan?
  • What does the customer want? How do they want to be treated?
  • What is the plan for financing and cash flow management? Is there a lot of debt? If so, what is the plan for securing a loan?
  • What will the practice look like? Will there be flowers and warm pictures on the walls to make it feel like home?
  • Who will be the staff and how will they report to both customers and management?

Instead of teaching with a bunch of words, SmartStart engages the veterinarian on many sensory levels by offering interactive workbooks and a network of consultants. In fact, when a veterinarian signs up for SmartStart, they have immediate access to consultants in the areas of finance, brand marketing, facility design and practice management. SmartSmart Practice customers are entitled to twelve 30-minute consulting sessions over the phone or in person depending on the geographic. For example, if a veterinarian wanted to know how to build out a wing to increase revenue, he or she could call Steve Pinger, a SmartStart Practice architecture consultant, for assistance on getting the blueprints ready.

“Most veterinarians don’t know where to start when they have determined they need outside help. In addition, they don’t have MBAs or business training and all the steps necessary to run a successful practice. It’s part of the job that does not get fully covered in veterinary school,” said co-founder Byron Farquer, DVM. “In a short six weeks, a veterinarian can begin to form the building blocks to a successful practice whether it’s design and marketing or how to finance and maintain cash flow.”

SmartStart also offers a Resource CD filled with tools for veterinarians to download and use such as: business and marketing plan templates, agreements, press release templates, event planning details, yellow page sample ads, floor plans, business forms, interior design samples and much more.

“Commercial Lenders understand the value of the SmartSmart PracticeTM program and know that completion means the veterinarians has a plan and knows how to best spend the money. It reduces risk and increases confidence,” added Farquer.

SmartStart Practice starts at $3,900 for a kit. The value packed program includes all of the course materials, $1,500 of support documents, and more than $2,500 of consulting time included.

To order a SmartStart Practice Kit, please visit


Steven May

Vetz Magazine



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