I would teach Mr Saw, my assistant whenever I had a good case. He would be going back to Myanmar in April 2011 to start-up a vet surgery in Yangon with a friend. He had been working for me for nearly 3 years and he would be considered an "experienced vet from Singapore" in Yangon.
I said to Mr Saw: "You can have a good name - experienced vet who has worked in Singapore, but remember one thing: if you can't give what the owner wants, your brand name is no use to him.
"See this case of the cat (with a problem that the brand name practice vet was not given a second chance to review). He takes his ten cats to this famous and big vet practice for the past years. He could have consulted Toa Payoh Vets as he lives in Toa Payoh. But he would never do it for some reasons.
"His wife had consulted Toa Payoh Vets once, the husband had said to me. That means there is something I had not done correctly or given to what the wife wanted. So I have to improve my services or the facilities and review my operations.
"Brand name opens the door for you, but if you can't give what the owner wants, you can be the most famous vet practice in Singapore and he will go elsewhere. You must be able to resolve his cat's problem at the price he can afford. If your practice is famous, you cannot solve his problem and you quote him a high vet cost, he will not come back to you the second time. This applies only to those who don't want to spend and spend on their pets' veterinary treatment."
Mr Saw nodded his head and appreciated the advices I gave him regarding competitiveness, the need to save on costs so as to give affordable vet treatment and not waste materials and medicine as many vet employees are prone to do so. He learns the running of the practice by working for an old vet who has been battle-tested. He was fortunate in this aspect as I had time for him to mentor him knowing that he has a good work attitude.