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April 23, 2014

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” — Albert Einstein

This month, I am  working on me. I want to become a better person and grow personally and professionally. My inspiration is the above quote by Albert Einstein.

Albert would know! It is hard to believe now, but people thought that he was stupid as a child because he was different than the “normal” child.

Here’s how I plan to use Albert’s quote to improve my insight into human behavior. To me, there are two applications of it:

 1.  Children, employees and others who are told by the world that their gifts are worthless will start to believe that about themselves. Both the child and the world will be short-changed as a result.


I plan to give compliments and positive reinforcement twice as often as negative comments this month.

 2.  Classifying things as “stupid” makes it so easy to be judgmental and to write-off people who have different ideas or that see things differently than I do.


I see judgments being made every day in veterinary practices. Hospital members judging clients because they “should know better” – the client didn’t bring in the pet soon enough; or failed to say yes to needed and necessary care. It’s so easy to write off clients like this by judging them as being “stupid” or “cheap” or “uncaring,” when in fact, the failing may be ours.

Did the client read something online that made them under-estimate the severity of their pet’s condition? Did they see a symptom, but fail to understand the significance of it because they are only pet owners and not veterinary-trained? Did they fear they would hear that there was nothing that could be done and delay, hoping against hope that it wasn’t so, until they could no longer deny the inevitable?

This month, I’m going to challenge myself to better understand client behavior – especially when they say “no,” so that I can help veterinary teams find better ways to connect and help these clients make better choices for their pets.

Let me know what you think. And if you should see me this month, let me know how I’m doing! – Karyn Gavzer

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