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Co worker, deep sigh!

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Old 02-18-2014, 12:15 AM   #1
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Default Co worker, deep sigh!

I've been at my current job, for a veterinarian for 9 years, our vet tech, 15, the Dr. since 1965.

Doc latest hire, is a pain in the back end.

I do have to give her this. She is a hard worker, a good single Mom. She's managed the farm she inherited very well. She is a person, most of us, myself included should admire.

But, she drives me and the vet tech, up the wall. Like bang your head on concrete bricks, up the wall!

She is taking online vet tech classes, so that is the end all be all.

After 6 months, she still can't run our computer software, it's not that complicated. And she's horrid at proper animal handling!

When we get a bit busy, she wants to be everywhere and do everything. She has left the exam table and dang near run me over to answer the phone.

Seriously, there are 3 other people who can answer the phone.
She dang near had a stroke today, when given we were busy, I ran a heart worm test and then, handled the next appointment, because she HAD to answer the phone.

She was pacing, and horning in, can I do this, can I do that, let me, I'll help.

Finally, I looked at her and said, "I got this"

I want to like her. She is a good person.

But, most of us get from point A to point B, along a similar path.

She is like a tornado, and hurricane, that takes a U-turn!

We did finally come to terms, with my grooming. BU** OUT!

I am good at this, I am the only one that does it. I have 9 years of clients, and a reputation! That I intend to keep!
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Old 02-19-2014, 04:45 AM   #2
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Difficult coworkers can make life absolutely miserable.

Would it help if the doctor (or whoever her manager is) sits down with her and talks to her about how to improve her performance? Is she the kind of person who can listen? If not, she is negatively impacting the office and this can be very bad for business.

It sounds like she either does not have experience in working in an office and doesn't know how the job duties are divided or she might be working from fear (due to the stress of starting a new job).

If she can't improve after some guidance and she continues to disrupt the flow of the office, the doctor might need to replace her.

I hope things work out well for everyone there.
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Old 02-19-2014, 05:39 AM   #3
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It sounds like just a basic lack of experience in this sort of environment.

I'd say she needs clear supportive truthful and open communication from her co-workers. Speak directly but kindly she will probably respond well. Hints and exasperation are not helpful.

As someone suggested, a one on one on how to improve performance could be good so long as its explicitly and not too general. Sometimes when people give general advice, its hard to know what issues people are really thinking about.

but maybe she also hates the sound of a phone left ringing too. I find it hard to ignore and i have never been able to sit by a phone and let it ring three times before picking it up as many like to do.
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Old 02-19-2014, 06:38 AM   #4
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Who was responsible for her training? Was she given a clear outline of her duties and her priorities? It's hard to be the new kid on the block when everyone else has worked together for a long time. I'm not sure of her job title, but since you mentioned others can answer the phone I'm thinking she's not an office member and should be helping with other things. Does the vet notice these problems? I'd think he'd be the one to address her.
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Old 02-19-2014, 06:49 AM   #5
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I have several co workers at my job who could very easily fit this description!

I think the best thing to do would be to give her a specific duty and keep her on it till she masters it, and then give her another specific duty....no need to rush. Sometimes when you're expecting them to do everything or know everything, it can be very overwhelming.

I have one co worker right now that she only does one specific thing all day long, and she's happy as a clam. So are the rest of us.
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Old 02-19-2014, 09:57 AM   #6
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I would have zero patience for inappropriate animal handling, sorry. One of the main reasons I've dropped vets and sought out others was how they and their staff handled my cats. Too loud, too rough, I'm out of there. I happily spend more money with a specialist vet than subject my pets to additional trauma.

If she really is sincere in her job I say give her a chance to clean up her act, someone has to sit her down and define her priorities and show her how to do things properly. If she continues to be a bull in a China shop after she's been given clear parameters then she's out, sorry. The practice will lose business if she's not handling the animals properly and the owners see this.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:18 PM   #7
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We have a co-irker in "training" that is kind of the same deal. She's a VERY nice lady but she is not grasping anything we're teaching her and she's been with us since before Christmas. It's not a hard job and we still have to watch and check her work even when the rest of us are very busy. There is a language barrier so it may not be totally her fault but it's not good for business. At all.

I feel bad for her. They probably all think I'm a b**** but what else is new.

I think every job has someone that isn't a great fit. This is why I wish I could just win the lottery.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:26 PM   #8
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Sorry, I didn't mean to make this thread about myself I tend to do that unintentionally.

I would have a talk with the Vet to go over your concerns, especially how she handles the animals. I tend to avoid "she isn't good for business" comments because then owners get the impression you're trying to tell them how to run their business. BTDT. Perhaps the Vet isn't crazy about her either and once he hears complaints from staff he will feel the need to have a talk with her. I'm sure if things don't improve over time she will seal her own fate.
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Old 02-20-2014, 12:32 AM   #9
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I used to have an overly zealous colleague too. She'll run over you and take over your job, without you asking her anything and then she'll complain about it to the supervisor. LOL it wasn't long before she started doing it to everyone, even the supervisor, trying to show everyone she was a better supervisor under the "I'll help" pretense.
One way we dealt with her was that we relaxed and chilled, letting her do everything she wanted to do. At the end she got so exhausted that she left.
Now we're back to normality and peace.
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Old 02-20-2014, 01:08 AM   #10
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Thanks for the replies and support.

I've tried so hard, to be comfortable with this.

But it's not working.

I work for an old, (70) old school veterinarian. The tech has been there 15 years and me 9. It's been the 3 of us for the last 9 years.

Now we have miss perfect!

The tech and I have tried, and tried, and tried, to tell her, how to do things that make sense, save time, are animal and human beneficial.

You may as well take a hammer to your own head, for all of the good it does.

She means well, but thinks that because she was an EMT a LONG time ago, and was blood draw tech, for 15 years at the local hospital, and she's taking online vet tech classes, she knows better after only 4 months.

Add to that, she is extremely frugal. Ok, I get being frugal/financially responsible, but give me a break!

She does not own a clothes dryer, because that costs money in electricity bills. Ok, fine.

We do TONS of laundry at the veterinary hospital. We have a washer and a dryer. For a reason!

I finally after giving many nice hints! Had a fit! Do NOT drape random, half dry laundry all over my grooming table! While I do lots of things, at work, the grooming is MINE! It irritates the crap out of me, to come in and find random, still wet laundry all over my table and the rest of the back room!

She did one last week, that just blew me away. For some reason, she thinks that the laundry basket should be empty before she leaves. So, after the vet and tech, and been out and worked cattle, at 15 minutes before time to leave, she puts their sh***y coveralls in the wash, then, because she has this thing about not letting the cycle finish if no one is there to watch it, she shut the machine off!

I get to work 30 minutes before her. I need the washer for dirty boarding dog blankets. It's full of cow poo, stewing all night coveralls. Yuck!

She does this every dang day! I finally quit restarting it. Not covering her butt on this anymore.

Then we go on to small animal restraint. There is a method to this.

She refuses to listen. Myself and the vet tech, used to go offer help, and or advice. All 5'2" of her, is on her own!

We decided, since she refuses to listen to the voices of experience, she can figure it out on her own. We are not going to get bit/scratched and bleed, for an idiot.

I know this sounds a bit harsh, but, when it comes to this profession, we need and depend on each other to keep each other safe, to the best of our abilities, and keep in mind the interest of the animal we are handling.

There is no trust here. Even the Doc, is getting frustrated.
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Old 02-20-2014, 03:23 AM   #11
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I'm assuming the Doc is the main boss here, correct? There's a not a lot you or the other coworker can do or say because she's not going to really see you as the "authority" here.

I once worked for a boss who refused to do anything about a bad employee. It was the very height of frustration and stress for me. It literally got so bad that I ended up quitting because I couldn't take it anymore. If your boss will not start getting firmer with her, setting down the law, SOMETHING.....then all I can say is stop covering for her, stop helping her, and stop being nice.
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Old 02-20-2014, 11:35 AM   #12
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She drapes wet clothes all over to dry when there's a dryer? :/ Also, I can see not wanting the dryer running when nobody is there (possible fire) but not allowing the washer to run the full cycle when there's poop involved? Bacteria and sitting water aren't a great idea. She needs to go. Talk to the vet. I'm sure she will be gone soon, hang in there.
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Old 02-20-2014, 11:53 AM   #13
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She sounds incompetent which is going to put the vet at risk. I think the vet needs to talk with her and her probation period.
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Old 02-20-2014, 01:28 PM   #14
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I grew up in a vet clinic. Some people have the best intentions, but are not qualified for the environment. If you run around like a chicken with your head cut off, you're doing a disservice to the animals and your co workers. At her size, if she isn't properly restraining animals, she's going to get hurt. And the washing machine? If I came in to sh***y coveralls when I had to do kennels? I'd be through the roof!

Ugh. This thread is giving me flashbacks. We had a vet like this. Seriously. Fully trained vet. She used to walk around all day with blood on her face, never took off her boots, and I watched her drop a dog she couldn't handle. We finally had to get rid of her. she was a liability.

Sorry to hear. Vet clinics are unique places. Unfortunately the attract unique people.
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Old 02-20-2014, 06:24 PM   #15
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her behavior is a HUGE liability for the vet...for a longtime vet, i'm surprised he hasn't dealt with this situation already...document EVERYTHING and continue to document...give it to the vet...hopefully he can deal with this before he ends up being sued by someone
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