This new year of 2012, I will not try to be flexible as in the past years. I will not tolerate casual dressing by my vets or the staff or intern.
Sandals, T-shirts and jeans are out. Those who persists will get the sack as they cannot do what they like anymore. The young may think they are cool but it is just common sense. How can clients trust you when you dress as in sports shoes, sandals with your toes exposed and T-shirts with advertisements.
Dressing casually is out in 2012 and those, including vets who insist on dressing casually will need to look for another job. I had asked intern Mr Lim whether his school had taught him the importance of being properly attired at the office. He said yes. Yet he and many others including some vets used to dress casually in the past years and needed to be reminded.
Last week, one vet told me she had left her shoes in the car when I asked why she wore sandals to work. This was after I had given her advice several times not to do it.
Then 3 days later, she had sandals on again. "A dog had peed on my shoes," she said. I asked: "That is a creative excuse. What will be your next excuse?"
No more nonsense from the younger generation when it comes to office work and productivity. "Toa Payoh Vets is like a baby or puppy," I said to Mr Min and Dr Daniel Sing at his first day of work on February 1, 2012. "It needs perpetual care and attention. It just dies over the next few years if it is poorly managed or not producing good clinical outcomes. Customers will run away. There will be no referrals. The practice just goes bankrupt and there will be no jobs for anyone."
For the younger generation of employees, they can work elsewhere when they don't like my instructions to adopt a proper behaviour at work. But a bad work attitude is not advised as there are some behaviour and common sense expected of a young adult at work. First impressions do count.
If employees want to challenge authority, it is best they find work somewhere. I will not hesitate to fire vets on the spot even if they have a great number of clientele as their attitude erodes the morale and productivity of the staff and other vets.
It is just not for vets, interns or staff to dress casually at work where there is interaction with the public. Vets who want to dress casually can open their own practices and I wish them good luck. I have enough of staff and intern who come to work at Toa Payoh Vets dressed casually as if the office is their parents' home. Young adult employees may know that they must learn to accept instructions and learn from the older generation before they can assume leadership positions as there are predatory veterinary competitors, litigation lawyers and regulatory officers in the real world, unlike in their school days.