One aim of the Vet Futures initiative (pg38) is to create an intra-professional mentoring scheme. A few schemes already exist, but provision is still lacking for the majority. Several individuals and companies have taken up the mantle and are now providing expert, robust mentoring schemes. These are largely aimed at new graduates. However, there is an increasing need for mentoring of those progressing higher up the chain to provide effective, dynamic leadership.
Mentoring cannot be undertaken half-heartedly if it is to be truly effective. As a starting point, take a look at this presentation written by coaching and business development experts, People and Performance, and the subsequent advice blogs for mentors and mentees. If this is to be undertaken in house by practices, there needs to be a commitment and contracted agreement what to expect during the process. Done properly, it will be time costly, and it may prove more effective and less costly overall to out-source to external expert providers – see below for details.
Vetpol also have some great blogs on mentoring, a webinar and links to external resources.
BSAVA are launching a pilot Mentoring Scheme Spring 2018, but HURRY you need to apply soon!
Dr. Dave Nichols, vet and veterinary business consultant has set up VetX; short for vet graduate accelerator programme designed specifically to help develop new graduates in their first year.
University College Dublin, have trialled a pilot scheme click here for info.
- The RCVS is launching a pilot leadership initiative in Spring 2018. It promises to be a fantastic resource for vets across the profession in a variety of roles to develop leaders of the present and future. You have nothing to loose and everything to gain by learning how to bring out the best in yourself and your team. Read more here
- Adrian Nelson-Pratt of Veterinary Business Consultancy has just launched Emerge which is dedicated to providing effective new ways to deal with the daily challenges faced by veterinary professionals. He says: “We exist to make a positive impact on the mental health, wellbeing and personal development of the veterinary community. Using proven coaching techniques and by building veterinary networks and a wider community, EMERGE unleashes new growth and introduces balance in the lives and careers of its participants. Whether it’s a career change, or helping you to develop yourself, we will help you fulfill your potential.”
- The Veterinary Defence Society have developed training, coaching and mentoring programmes working with a great team of people including Carolyne Crowe, Penny Barker, Catherine Oxtoby and Ebony Escalona. They have also just launched The Veterinary Leadership Programme in response to the VetFutures need to drive positive culture and create the leaders of tomorrow. It’s a fully immersive, comprehensive and supportive multi-modal programme over 5 months using evidence based tools and strategies that will make the difference to those working through the programme.
The Vets Christian Fellowship offer an informal mentoring scheme to provide support to members.
Informal mentoring is better than nothing! If you have connected well with a vet during EMS, or a fellow student a year or two ahead of you, you could request they provide you with peer support when you graduate.
New Graduate Schemes:
- Dr. Dave Nichols, vet and veterinary business consultant has set up VetX; vet graduate accelerator programme, online paid for course designed specifically to help develop new graduates in their first year.
- Grads to Vets is a brand new graduate scheme due to launch August 2018 for new graduates going into small animal and mixed independent practices offering a mix of online and attendance CPD and support.
- Several corporates run graduate schemes. Some of these are relatively new, so it’s worth asking if you can speak in confidence with people who have experienced the scheme in practice. Corporates with schemes at time of writing include CVS, IVC, Medivet, Pets at Home (includes Vets4Pets/Companion Care), Vet Partners, XL Vets