Disruption in the Veterinary Industry | Susanna Samuelsson | TEDxDarwin



being a veterinarian I have one of those jobs that when you're out and about and you meet someone for the first time and they find out what you do and if I probably pull out the picture of fluffy from their wallet and start to tell you the life history of their pets and there's no future to the conversation it's preventative chronic bowel problems breathing infertility there is no subject values off-limits and you're honest II don't mind but only enough to know people don't meet other professionals the same way as they meet the vet they don't meet the GP at a party and suddenly talking about the funny rash down there or the accountant and quickly would not last year's financials for some reason that's the kind of consider differently like we are here simply because we love animals and it's true you know it's something a lot of truth I really love what I do but sometimes the fact that we're so focused on our animals perhaps also tracks from the fact that were actually also businessman and sometimes we're not very good businessman and we are learning a lot about business but you know vet clinics are a business we don't have government-run hospitals or clinics like they do in human medicine this are all employed by other words in a small business with the exception of universities of research because if we don't learn anything about running a business from where University there's no no inventory control class between a quiet medicine and dermatology so everything that we kind of know over the Graduate is usually from trial and error or from Google so when let's get a system that works we don't really like to very much and the fact is the very business model hasn't changed much since our grandparents were taking their business to the beds this system of ring up bring it in to visit the veterinarian if it does consult dispenses medication or admits for treatment other places they go it's been the same for decades so we might have if you want bells and whistles we might have say computer systems now we might have those pointers now scary things but no real change but you know if it's don't really like change they don't really want it this change is actually really really hard it's not a hard work the fact is though the world has to stay the same the world has changed and even more so now we're seeing a change at this colossal rate so much so that now our industry our debt many industry like many industries before us and now they've faced with the dreaded digital disruption innovation disrupt or be disrupted it sounds ominous you might be wondering what does it mean a lot of its probably wouldn't know and probably don't really want to but I'll give you the definition of disruption have to write it down it's an innovation that creates a new market and value network and eventually disrupts an existing market and value network displacing established market leaders and alliances now I don't know even I find that quite common code but it's also been scary it's displacing established market leaders and alliances it's changing standard practices and doing things differently now from a very perspective certainly change is OK change is alright that disruption is in the new things destructions been around for some time and the dumas first coined backbone Clayton Christensen back in 1995 the you know to really gain a lot of momentum back then but now with the world being so connected and this whole technology joining us design twisting destructive business models accelerated at a huge rate over the obvious one which is completely during the taxi industry on its head but it's also snuck into our world as well we've we're learning differently with Google web advertising differently with Facebook AdWords but their Facebook advertising you know we had my cubes had fundraisers and not long ago when they had to live up find books door-to-door none of the kids had any idea what a favor was let alone wild of someone who possibly want one but I'm a veterinarian and I'm an animal lover so I like to think of the world in terms of pets for example I've trained my children to sit for their dinner the same way as I do my dog and that is with rewards based training and I like to think of disruptive innovation and disruptive business models as simply adaptation and evolution you see I believe disruptive business homes are simply a great example of Darwin's theory of evolution and survival of the fittest just as thousands of years ago animals came down from the trees started to wear clothes used tools and started farming for food so – the world has changed people have got new needs now here was so busy your most uncomplicated both men and women are in the workforce they're having to bend or flexible with their workforce now because they because both men and women are working with time poor no one has time to stand in the line at the post office anymore and actually pay their utility bill we do all of this sort of stuff online so we don't adapt as business owners and as professionals to what the people are asking for well then we to become dinosaurs and face extinction now I haven't always I haven't always felt this way I too was once afraid of change and what was until I moved from a conventional C practice down south and moved up to her oval regional practice and found that all these little Outback towns joke within several hundred kilometers all around us and there's Outback towns they had pictured them and pet owners and these owners will I placed for doctors with nurses teaches all pet wonders but no one with a vet ffunny that was within driving distance so when they had a problem with their pet they would bring this up on the telephone and offense none of us really knew what to do because the home phone call thing didn't fit into our normal business model this whole system of bring up booked appointment bring 50 in death examines dispenses medication or other places they go completely fell apart where do i dispense medications how do they pay as they go so when the nurse was around phone in hand walking around trying to find a bit for someone to talk to an out-of-towner climate the immediate reaction by all events was obviously to hide first thing you do is try and look terribly busy and in doing so be much too important to be disturbed thankfully for us back then there wasn't quite so many people that were ringing up – back then but now the world has changed those little Outback towns have gotten lots bigger and perhaps it's it's Google more education that these owners are becoming a lot more vigilant about their pets as well we're finding that there's some ly caring with adults building things for a month or they've suddenly run over the cat dr. Google certainly can't help with everything is kind of wrong certainly can't dispense medications so we were saying that our industry our veterinary industry suddenly having the conservative Vetri model being challenged and an entrepreneur to to this status quo finally being born and that is vets having to not hide anymore from the nurse but accept evolution and adaptation that is now we have telemedicine for pets and this is a fast-flowing area where people are suddenly accepting this whole new way that we are consulting and it's completely different the system of the owner now books online pays first then has a consultation with the with a link through the veterinarians through the screen and then the vet either sends a portable prescription sends out medication or organizes if need be for the bed to be transported to the nearest clinic the whole way we consult it's completely different the vet has to describe to the client and dry the client to perform series of tasks so that the vet can extract information from the bed so they can make a decision as to whether the pen is actually critical or not but also from a business perspective it alleviates the costly expenses of investment bricks-and-mortar and equipment so we've also got the ability to be able to to access a pool of veterinarians that can live anywhere in the world and and and work whatever times they want to so from a business perspective I can see it's really scary but it's also really challenging for the company for the governing bodies in order to being able to try and regulate but it's not just these external demographics that are driving this change we're also finding within our veterinary industry there's internal changes as well and that is within the the vets themselves so I was a soldier practitioner back in the tiny little town called Mullen boy that is some 10 hours drive on a dirt track to get to the nearest town I had a two over two year old and I had a nine month old baby and a husband that was working shift work both daily lives so providing an after-hours service was virtually impossible and certainly the grueling challenges of work-life balance nearly impossible so for me I was lucky at least you know being a hands-on mom I wanted to have my kids with me I could at least take them to the clinic with me but you know I saw so many of my colleagues in that same situation with postgraduate degrees and 10 years worth of experience being forced out of the workforce because they wanted to raise a family now's the our industry is changing light a lot particularly with gender so in 1995 60% of our graduates were actually female and now 2013 that's actually gone up to 83 percent of graduates been female so there's also been an action throw to drop in full-time employment company career so the numbers a little bit sketchy but the Australian Veterinary Association predicts that within ten years time as the main events retire and leave the leaf industry and these graduates move on forward that we're actually going to have a shortage in veterinarians particularly experienced ones and that's despite they've been to new vet schools that have opened and more graduates being produced so digital consultations certainly has the ability to help fill this gap in our changing industry so do I think that digital consultations are going to be the demise of vet clinics as we know them I think probably not just as you know Google Maps and eBay your Netflix they've all taken time to to really gain momentum for people to accept them I think that's always going to need a tactile consultation these two things Valon bracelet they'll perhaps start incorporating digital digital consultations into their internet practice or maybe offering it to them to some of the clients that they already have or maybe they might even start coming up with some tools that will help the consultation process example maybe a Fitbit the pets that can measure heart rate and perhaps how much the the PD scratching while you're not around or running around while you're not at home and they've got a car style it's embracing it's embracing innovation and digital disruption to avoid extinction becoming one of the fittest to survive so if your industries staring down the barrel of disruption what are some of the top things that you can do what a key things that I think you need to embrace in order to survive number one is courage if Neanderthal man had have been afraid of fire he would never have harnessed it to keep him warm don't be afraid of what is coming use it to your advantage adapt to your surroundings now I don't mean you need to be a chameleon and completely blend into your surroundings but if the on stage is coming to an end and you're still living in an igloo and there's a really good chance it's probably going to melt let's start looking at how to make a cup add sticks and finally be smart be smart and be aware of what's going on around you educate yourself it takes more than an opposable thumb to survive you

3 thoughts on “Disruption in the Veterinary Industry | Susanna Samuelsson | TEDxDarwin

  1. I wonder if an app could be written that would use a cellphone's abilities to aid the vet to get some of the animal's vital signs, such as heartbeat, pupil dilation, or temperature. My phone has a better microphone than my computer, and the camera can be used as a very strong magnifier, the LED is absolutely blinding up close, and the accelerometer is amazingly sensitive. There should be a way to use these and other capabilities to improve diagnosis.

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