Episode 74

Published on:

6th Mar 2024

Ep 74: Renaissance in Independent Practice Ownership: The Right Time is Now, with Dr. Matthew Salois and Martin Traub-Werner

Episode Description

In this episode of Blunt Dissection, we peel back the layers of veterinary medicine's current landscape, under the guidance of two of the industry's most influential figures, Dr. Matt Salois and Martin Traub-Werner. Matt, the president of VMG, a leading veterinary group purchasing organization, and former Chief Economist for the AVMA, brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in the economic facets of veterinary practice. His insights into financial trends and strategic planning are invaluable to understanding the broader economic environment in which veterinary practices operate. Martin Traub-Werner, the pioneering former CEO of Vet Success and the current CEO and founder of VetBooks, a cloud-based veterinary accounting software, is a titan of data analysis and entrepreneurial innovation in veterinary medicine. His expertise not only lies in harnessing the power of data to drive business success but also in creating tools that empower veterinary practices to navigate their financial landscapes more effectively.

Together, Matt and Martin dissect the complexities facing today's veterinary professionals. They delve into the significant trends that are shaping the industry, from the challenges of navigating economic pressures to the opportunities presented by technological advancements and the shift towards independent practice ownership. Their conversation, while deeply informative, also offers a roadmap for vets to strategize and thrive in an ever-changing professional environment. They discuss the uncomfortable truths of our profession with the precision of seasoned experts, yet also highlight the reasons for optimism, identifying strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats with a clarity that's both enlightening and actionable.

This episode is more than just a dialogue; it's a strategic session that draws on Matt's deep understanding of veterinary economics and Martin's groundbreaking work in veterinary data analytics and software development. Their combined expertise presents a compelling narrative on why now is a critical time for veterinary professionals to embrace change, leverage technology, and fortify the foundations of independent practice ownership. It's a call to action for the veterinary community to navigate the challenges of today with an eye towards a more resilient and thriving future.

Join us as we explore the insights of two absolute titans of knowledge and influence in veterinary medicine, offering a blend of practical advice, strategic foresight, and a vision for what the future of veterinary practice can look like.

About the Guests

Dr. Matthew Salois

  • https://www.myvmg.com/

Matthew Salois, PhD is currently the President of the Veterinary Management Groups (VMG),where he is responsible for enhancing the economic and cultural success of more than 2,000veterinary member practices. Most recently, Matt was the chief economist and head of the veterinary economics division at the AVMA between 2018 and 2022, where he applied his skills in economics, business, and communication to support the daily lives of veterinarians.

From 2014 to 2018, he served as senior director of global scientific affairs and policy at Elanco Animal Health. Matt is also an adjunct professor of applied economics at the University of Florida, where he previously taught and advised graduate and undergraduate students. He earned his Ph.D. in Applied Economics from the University of Florida and holds an M.A. in Economics and a B.S. in Health Services Administration from the University of Central Florida.

Martin Traub-Werner

  • https://vetbooks.com/

Martin dressed up as a businessman for Halloween when he was seven.  Since then, he’s spent more than 40 years refining his skills and honing his craft. He completed an undergraduate degree at York University in his hometown of Toronto, Canada and a subsequent Master of Industrial and Labo(u)r Relations (MILR) degree at Cornell University. His time at Cornell was spent learning and thinking about the complexity of people management in organizations. Martin spent a number of years working in Human Resources in large Fortune 500 companies. Ultimately, his entrepreneurial spirit won out.

 A builder and problem solver, Martin is happiest putting the pieces together to create value. He’s done this a number of times including with VetSuccess. In 2013 Martin started VetSuccess and created the veterinary industry’s first business intelligence and data analytics company. In 2018 VetSuccess was sold to Vetsource and Martin transitioned to an executive leadership role in the company. In 2022 Martin left Vetsource to pay attention to VetBooks which he founded with some industry friends in 2017. VetBooks is a leader in veterinary bookkeeping bringing financial control and discipline to independent veterinary practices.

In addition to being an entrepreneur, Martin volunteers his time with RISE Asset Development serving on the organization’s loan review committee and mentoring entrepreneurs. Martin and his wife Tamara live in Nanaimo, British Columbia and have two teenagers and a lovable Texas street dog named Austin.

Episode Outline

  • 00:00-05:00: Introduction to the episode and guests
  • 05:01-15:00: Personal journeys of Martin and Matt in veterinary medicine and business
  • 15:01-25:00: Impact of COVID-19 on veterinary practices and the shift in demand
  • 25:01-35:00: Discussion on corporate versus independent practice ownership
  • 35:01-45:00: The role of technology and innovation in modern veterinary practices
  • 45:01-55:00: Strategies for success in veterinary business and practice ownership
  • 55:01-1:05:00: Insights into financial management and overcoming challenges in practice ownership
  • 1:05:01-1:15:00: The future of veterinary medicine and concluding thoughts

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About the Podcast

Blunt Dissection
The best minds in veterinary medicine, academia & business profiled so you can learn from their experience.
The Blunt Dissection Podcast exists because everyone has a story worth listening to. It's the original and best interview podcast in veterinary medicine where the best minds in the various subcultures of veterinary medicine (and sometimes outside) are profiled/deconstructed so you can listen to their remarkable stories, and also learn the habits, routines, thought processes and anything else that makes these individuals so good at what they do.

What’s in it for you to listen? For some, it's entertainment, for others the show offers inspiration. My hope is that once you’ve seen the pathway to success all you have to do is follow the breadcrumbs. Simple right? So what are you waiting for? Let's jump in and get to know some amazing people better. :)

Sometimes funny, sometimes dark but always entertaining - welcome to the hidden world of veterinary success.

Your host is Dr Dave Nicol, a veterinarian, occasional CEO, multiple time author, international speaker and mentor/coach to countless vets, nurses and managers in veterinary leadership roles across the world through VetX International.

About your host

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Dave Nicol