Check out this blog below, where our very own Hannah Yeates (Veterinary Key Account Manager) discusses treating your imaging equipment as part of your team, and the synergy this can bring to your working life #WorkTogetherSeeMore.
Early in my career I had a dysfunctional relationship with a team member at my practice. I knew little about them but found them complex, difficult to work with and their use of language intimidating, confusing and overly complex. As a result I avoided them as much as possible.
At times this made working life difficult but I was unsure on how and who to approach and resolve the problem. I was convinced I was the only one experiencing such challenges as well as being embarrassed that I had not solved the situation on my own already.
The relationship I am talking about is my one with the practice ultrasound scanner...
Now, I know this may seem odd, to talk about an ultrasound scanner as a “team member” or to talk about a “relationship” with an inanimate object but hear me out. Nadja Yousif explores the concept of why you should treat tech like a work colleague in her Ted Talk. It’s a novel approach to technology but one that actually makes a lot of sense.
If the above description was in relation to a work colleague I would not have thought twice about addressing and improving the situation. By setting aside time to better get to know and understand them I could establish a better basis of a relationship, even enlisting other members of the team, particularly if they too were encountering similar experiences. Why should the same principle not apply to technology?
Regular contact and catchups is the building blocks of great relationships. With technology chats overs cups of tea and team building exercises are swapped for interpretation classes with an applications specialists and click and play sessions . By collaborating effectively with technology, both imaging and beyond, further enhancement of patient care as well as job satisfaction can ensue.
Myself and ultrasound are now firm friends. Once I took the time and gained some guidance I got to know and understand the language ultrasound uses I began to understand why it acted like it did and how I could interact with it for optimal results. By starting from simple concepts, my understanding grew and our relationship flourished.
There are a wealth of potential starting points for you to start building your relationship with your imaging technology; webinars, courses (both online and face to face), books and application specialists. My advice would be:
1. Start of by getting to know your equipment. To start with keep it simple; What imaging equipment does your practice have? On each piece are you confident on how to input a patient, obtain an image and save it? Are your images of diagnostic quality? If not are you happy with how to adjust the settings accordingly? It's okay if the answer to any of these questions is no, its so we can establish a start point.
2. Then, its goal setting time. Specifically what do you want to achieve? How would you like to be able to use the equipment? Do you want to be confident in basic functions or ultimately develop further so it will become a bigger part of your job? To maximise success such goals should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely).
3. Take that first step of action. As a starting point there is a wealth of easily accessible, cost effective knowledge and resources that can help you develop your skills without being too time consuming. Some ideas include sign up to newsletters, reading short articles or blogs for practical tips to help you improve quickly and even finding the manual! The next step could include watching more in-depth webinars or sourcing articles in Veterinary publications on specific subjects which could build in to attending a practical course to put the theory you have learned into practice.
When you start to build confidence, ensure you are applying your learning in practice and sharing your knowledge with the wider team. By doing so , the whole team will be using the technology that your practice have invested in… making it a valuable member of the team that makes a real difference to the working life of everyone.
If you currently have a tenuous relationship with imaging set some time aside, pour yourself a cuppa, introduce yourself and take that first step. It will be worth it, I promise.