I’ve noted a growing trend for veterinary staff to laugh at client mistakes.

every industry has its classic "can you believe they said that?" moments.
Every industry has its classic “can you believe they said that?” questions. iStock.com/CurvaBezier

While this can sometimes take the stress out of a hectic day, it can grow to become an attitude that shows when dealing with clients – and let’s face it, people are usually laughing at the simple errors clients make because they haven’t our knowledge (it’s why they pay to come and see nice professionals).

It’s possibly time to point out that this may be happening to you in other spheres of your life. Do you know what sales assistants or others are saying about you once you leave? How would you feel to find people laughing at you asking a question, purely because you don’t know better?

Having worked in other industries before veterinary I’ve had time to see what the general public doesn’t know about some fairly important areas, such as house buying and wine!

Most people don’t know that having a mortgage in place does not make you a cash buyer (oh, how the vendors cry when the sale falls through when they lose their mortgage offer). I know estate agents have a bad reputation, but they do ask the right questions, such as “do you have a mortgage” – that’s why you pay them a fee to help buy or sell a property.

The faux pas in the wine world are never ending, yet many people think they are experts. I recall trying to help a client purchase wine as a gift for a friend who was “actually allergic” to Chardonnay. They were quite emphatic about it and thus no Chardonnay was included, ruling out a lot of lovely wines. But who am I argue with an allergy?

champagne-160864_1280We filled the case and got to the fizz section. I was preparing for a prosecco or a non-Chardonnay cava, when it appeared she could drink champagne. Really? I asked. “Oh yes, she loves it.”

It gave me great pleasure to explain that Chardonnay grapes were the main constituent in champagne unless they went for the more unusual Blanc de Noirs. Their faces were a picture and the staff had a good giggle about it later.

From the look on the poor ladies face it seemed this “friend” had been turning down her wine on a false basis. Not very nice. However this lady was making a common mistake, because of the ignorance of a friend.

I’m sure every industry has its classic “can you believe they said that?” questions. However, just because they exist, it doesn’t mean they has to be a negative when they are asked. Could they be turned into an education point in a polite and considerate way?

  1. I’m sorry, but as you are borrowing money against the property you are not a cash buyer. The bank will survey and decide if it is worth the investment so the decision to buy is not solely yours. However it is good you have a decision in principle.
  2. Chardonnay is the most common grape used in champagne. Although there is a type of champagne called Blanc de Noir where a white champagne is made from entirely black grapes. It has a distinct flavour and is more often served in the champagne district.
  3. Although we have said polyps can grow back and fatty lumps may re-appear, testicles are different and do not grow back once removed. There are health and behaviour benefits of neutering that we can discuss.

Don’t forget, where you are not the expert you are always relying on others knowledge. Thank your clients for choosing you by showing them the respect you would expect.

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