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Episode 11 · 33 minutes
Dr. Mark Tenenbaum (Director and Founder of The Vet Society, Veterinarian)
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In this podcast episode, we chat with Dr. Mark J Tenenbaum, a vet who didn't start out planning to work in animal health but found his calling in veterinary medicine after life-changing advice from a career advisor.

We talked with Dr. Tenenbaum about the increase in pet ownership in the last several years (1.9 million pets in Australia!) and the demand this has created for animal care professionals. This episode provides a look into the life of a vet and the evolving world of animal health care, perfect for anyone curious about a career with animals or looking to understand more about what goes on behind the scenes in veterinary medicine.

Key Takeaways

  • It’s Never Too Late to Change Careers: If your current path doesn't ignite your passion, consider how your interests can lead to a fulfilling career.
  • Seek Professional Guidance: Don't underestimate the power of advice from career advisors or mentors; their insights can be pivotal in shaping your career direction.
  • Prepare for a Commitment to Education: Anticipate dedicating 6-7 years to veterinary studies, combining foundational science with practical, hands-on experience.
  • Ride the Industry Growth Wave: With pet ownership on the rise, especially post-COVID, there's a booming demand for animal care services. Position yourself to meet this need.
  • Learn from Challenges: Use setbacks as stepping stones. Focusing on areas for improvement, can significantly enhance your skills.
  • Empower Veterinary Nurses: Veterinary nurses are just as essential as vets in clinic operations – this needs to be acknowledged for a more successful practice.
  • The Role Can be Taxing: The emotional demands of veterinary work can be high, so always advocate for your mental health, frequent breaks, and support resources.
  • Set Goals for Professional Development: Whether it's advancing your skills, opening your own clinic, or creating industry innovations, always aim to grow and develop in your field.

Who is Dr. Mark Tenenbaum?

Dr. Mark J Tenenbaum is an experienced veterinarian working at Southern Animal Health in Melbourne, Australia. His work there includes special care for breeds like bulldogs, alongside his innovative ventures into the business side of veterinary science. He’s a co-founder of Differential, a software solution designed to streamline the data collection process during pet consultations, making the work faster and more efficient.

Dr. Tenenbaum previously worked with Online Courses Australia’s as our animal health and veterinary care courses student mentor. Here, he lent his extensive experience and forward-thinking approach to students keen on joining the veterinary profession, guiding them through the complexities of animal care.

Dr. Tenenbaum is committed to the advancement of veterinary medicine and pet care, constantly seeking new opportunities to enhance the industry’s standards for animal health and welfare. This is evident in his side project The Vet Society, founded in 2015, which connects vet professionals, promotes veterinary brands, and helps pet owners care for their pets.

Links & Social Media

Tap Into Your Entrepreneurial Potential with Online Courses Australia

With pet ownership booming, the need for vet nurses and animal health experts is in increasing demand. If, like Dr Tenenbaum, you have a passion for working with animals and want to future-proof your career, get started with OCA’s Veterinary Assistant Pathway Course today.

With Dr Mark Tenenbaum and other animal experts guiding you every step of the way, here’s what you can expect from OCA’s animal care courses:

  • With Dr Mark Tenenbaum and other animal experts guiding you every step of the way, here’s what you can expect from OCA’s animal care courses:
  • Explore animal behaviour, understanding how to recognise and appropriately respond to their emotional states.
  • Master the fundamentals of animal first aid, perform routine health examinations, and manage the care of sick pets.
  • Learn about prevalent health issues in farm animals.
  • Receive a comprehensive overview of the daily operations within a veterinary clinic, focusing on safety protocols and administrative duties.
  • Plus, explore a wide range of additional topics essential for a career in animal health and care.

From essential animal first aid courses to animal welfare courses, to animal conservation courses and beyond, your dream career is closer than you think with Online Courses Australia.

Listen on:

[00:00:06.540] - Speaker 1

This episode, I'm chatting with Superstar Vet, Mark Tana Balm. We're going to talk a bit on career journey, what it actually takes to become a vet, the beautiful holistic practise that he works for, and how it works cohesively to best look after its patients and the employees. Please welcome my wonderful guest for today, Mark Tana Balm. Thank you, Mike, for joining me.

[00:00:28.710] - Speaker 2

Thank you for having me.

[00:00:30.480] - Speaker 1

I'm excited about this chat. Now, have you always wanted to be a vet?

[00:00:36.660] - Speaker 2

It's definitely a question I get quite frequently, and the answer is actually no.

[00:00:40.380] - Speaker 1

I'm not being individual?

[00:00:41.840] - Speaker 2

Definitely not.

[00:00:43.680] - Speaker 1

You're being an issue? Damn.

[00:00:46.170] - Speaker 2

But, yeah, no, to be honest, actually, the answer is no. It's not something that I've always wanted. Initially, engineering was actually a focus, and engineering was the pathway I wanted to take. And during school, Well, I even did some extracurricular activities to go down that road. And as I went through school and university, I guess my passion for animals, always loved animals, and my passion for understanding how things work. And I spoke to a career adviser and combined, I guess, those two passions into veterinary medicine. And that's where that path came about.

[00:01:23.860] - Speaker 1

Had you started down the uni route for engineering, or was it just at that pivotal moment where you got some great advice?

[00:01:31.710] - Speaker 2

Yeah, it was actually... No, I started at science at Uni, and I guess that was a good open course that could take me down a few areas. And it was when I had a meeting with the advisor, and that's where I made that decision to go down the veterinary medicine pathway.

[00:01:47.640] - Speaker 1

Do you think it's really important for people when they are working through their careers that they do ask for outside advice? Because I think some people feel like they have to do it all alone or if their parents hadn't been down that university journey and they don't have people to bounce off. You find that that was a really great moment by asking for advice to help guide you?

[00:02:10.840] - Speaker 2

Absolutely. To be honest, I like to think that I have it all together. And I thought, I don't need advice from anyone, and I can work this out myself. And I was just a bit unsure. And I thought, why not the services there? And so I went and had a meeting and it was actually eye-opening. And they take you through all the different options. And definitely something I would recommend, especially if you don't have those people in your life that you can bounce those ideas off or people have been down that path, absolutely take what's available to you.

[00:02:45.390] - Speaker 1

Yeah, I think it's really good advice. It's hearing you say that, and that made the decision so much easier. And you didn't feel, because you'd made one choice on engineering, that you had to follow that path and that you could follow what excited you. And I I think that's obviously leading you to where you are today.

[00:03:03.870] - Speaker 2


[00:03:05.440] - Speaker 1

Tell me through the studies to get to where you are as a vet, because I'm assuming it's not like you're looking at the human body, where it's one type of being. You're looking at so many different things. What do you have to go through to be at the point where you are now?

[00:03:23.720] - Speaker 2

Yeah, it's definitely a long course. You're looking about six to seven years to become a veterinarian, especially at least in Melbourne, or at least in Melbourne where I'm based. And you're looking at doing an undergraduate, which for me was science. And You do have to take a lot of the principles of science. You need to learn those fundamentals, which at times seems like it's irrelevant to what a veterinarian would need. But you got to lay those foundations to then get to the point where you can start applying it to practise. And as you pointed out, you're dealing with every animal, and it's not just one. And you're looking from anywhere from a guinea pig to a cow.

[00:04:07.870] - Speaker 1

And as you can imagine, there's an extensive- There's a big point of difference between a A big pig, which you could hold in your hand, and a cow. My parents have a cattle farm, so I get it.

[00:04:20.410] - Speaker 2

Oh, there you go. Oh, beautiful. Yeah, so absolutely. It's definitely... It's a lot. And there are... You do draw comparisons, and there's Obviously, at the end of the day, they're all animals. They all have the same systems. But learning between all those different types of animals is a lot to learn, but it's interesting.

[00:04:42.230] - Speaker 1

I have no doubt that it's interesting. Funny fact, my parents actually gave me a cow for my 21st birthday. Okay. Yeah. My friends were like, What? And it was in the '90s, so I ended up calling it after a vodka, which was So it was completely inappropriate. I was about to say, what do you do with a cow at 21 years of age? So it was a heffer. So every year, it would give birth, and then the cow would go off to where it goes and I would make a small profit. Not the most normal present for a 21st birthday, but it was a talking moment, definitely, for many of my friends for many years. Mark, back on topic. Talk me through. So once you finish vet school, are you doing placement work while student vet school? So like your vet studies. But how do you start to get into the industry from there? How do you move forward into your career?

[00:05:46.440] - Speaker 2

So where I studied, the good thing about the course is the final year is actually all clinical placements. So they put you straight into industry. And part of it is on us to find different clinics that are willing to take veterinary students to learn from many different people. And you also get put into the industry, and that's small animals. So your little dogs, cats, your little pets, pocket pets, but also dairy, horses. So they really get you in there. And that's the best part is you actually get that industry experience, and you start to build those networks of clinic owners. And in most cases, a lot of the time, if you had a good experience and that clinic is looking for a vet, you can almost have a foot in the door straight into that place.

[00:06:36.450] - Speaker 1

But that's definitely how- That you've already proven your work ethic and your skill level as well during that time. So having those doors open for you, what a great way to network when you've been given a placement, it's up to you to make that opportunity really work for you.

[00:06:51.120] - Speaker 2

Exactly right. So I think the way it was set up was definitely a good structure straight from, I guess, learning and taking all those learning foundations straight into the real world.

[00:07:02.610] - Speaker 1

Yeah, I really like that. I think that's smart business from an education standpoint, but also when you're investing so much time, and I'm assuming you're going to Uni for that many years is expensive. So to be able to know that you can start working and moving forward would be like, Okay, I've got this.

[00:07:21.080] - Speaker 2

It definitely provided a reassurance. And one thing in the animal industry, especially now, is it's a booming industry. And And where we study, they talk about employment and things like that straight from the get-go. So you're already starting to put that into play as you're going through the study about where do I want to work? What do I want to do? And there's so many opportunities in the animal industry, and not just in the veterinary, but just from so many facets of animal health. There's a really good opportunity there.

[00:07:56.570] - Speaker 1

Did you see the growth? I just noticed in my area and the people that I know who took on pets during COVID because they do live alone, and it was that real companion. Have you seen that grow exponentially over the last couple of years?

[00:08:10.860] - Speaker 2

Oh, absolutely. There's a stat is in the last, I In these two years, Australia added 1.9 million pets.

[00:08:19.970] - Speaker 1

So yeah, a big jump. I love a good stat. My mouth was just wide open. I was like, what? 1.9 million extra pets because of COVID.

[00:08:30.610] - Speaker 2

Wow. And you see it. And we've seen it in the clinic, there's just new pets, which obviously is lovely, and everyone loves a puppy. But that's puppies, that's adoption from kennels and places like that. So that's just gone up as well. So definitely seeing a massive increase in that demand and supply.

[00:08:54.870] - Speaker 1

Yes. Wow, my goodness. Can I just circling back to the education mission or through your career to where you are now, did you ever hit any roadblocks where you just thought, oh, that's not the end result that I was after. And if you did, how did you spin that around to work in your favour or learn something? People call them failures, which I don't like to call them, but I call them more of a roadblock. But was there anything that happened for you personally where you've had to shift or pivot and make something work in a different way?

[00:09:26.500] - Speaker 2

Yeah, there was. In final year of study, And literally the year before about to go into the world and the workforce, one of the units was all about radiology, which is looking at X-rays, imaging, interpreting, which obviously is a critical skill in veterinary medicine. And that's one of our main diagnostic. So I guess being a student, and I like to have balance. And this topic, I guess, I always applied myself, but obviously my focus wasn't where it needed to be at that time. And there was a time where I had a meeting with the cohort, and they wanted me to redo part of that aspect, which obviously was a bit of a setback and a bit of a crush to the confidence, but that's all part of it. I took that as actually as an opportunity to say, Okay, and I went in and reviewed X-ray after X-ray after X-ray and put in just extra hours, which obviously all worked out at the end. But the result of me having to put in extra work, I think in how that's made me a better clinician today from reading X-rays, which is one of the main things we do, even though it was a roadblock then, and it was frustrating then when it happened, I think in some way it's actually turned out to be a strength Yeah.

[00:10:46.860] - Speaker 1

Isn't it funny? I think so many people, as frustrating as something might be in the time because you're like, I'm going to get to here at this point, when something does slow you down and makes you look at whatever it is in a different way, away or putting the extra hours in or seeing something more clearly than what you were, long term, it's so much more beneficial. But if you can, I wish I could tell my younger self, release the frustration around it and take it as if everything's asking you to slow down for a minute. But easier said now that I'm nearly 45 than done. Back when I was in my 20s. But yeah, I think it's just nice for people to hear as well that the road does go up and down, and that is the journey. And I think It's really important to remember whatever you're studying or doing that if something's asking you to slow down, then that's all it's doing for the minute. It doesn't mean you're not going to get there. It's just looking at it in a way that you haven't yet before.

[00:11:42.930] - Speaker 2

Yeah, absolutely. Especially in a course It's a course that's long and there is an endpoint at the end where you know what you're looking to achieve. So when you get in that moment, it's like, okay, wait a minute. Look how far I've come and look how close I am and what I'm trying to achieve. And that That really helped me just say, Okay, relax, and then work through it. I think I'm better for it.

[00:12:05.750] - Speaker 1

The business that you're working in now, what do you think makes it successful as a business in the vet industry?

[00:12:16.120] - Speaker 2

I think certainly our clinic, as a team, we've got nearly 10 vets in our clinic, so it's quite a big one in Melbourne. I think one thing we do is we work really well with the team. So when patients come in, it's not my patient or not my client, it's ours. And I think using that collaborative mentality really works well because when we get a complex case or something that's complex, we discuss it with the team, and it becomes a team effort to work out what's next steps and how to communicate that to the client. I think that really has grown the business and made the business so successful as it is. And one thing we offer it through our clinic is something refer notes for each and every consult that someone comes in. We actually don't just communicate it verbally. We put it in writing. And as you can imagine, a 15-minute consult, someone comes in. There's a lot of information. Sometimes it's not just a simple vaccination. It's a complex case that requires step by step process. And we actually write that in a refer note, and we get somebody who are coming to us that have never had that before, and they can then read through it.

[00:13:26.290] - Speaker 2

And if something wasn't clear verbally, they've got it in written. And I think that's something that's also really growing the business significantly. I think that's the two points that I've taken away, that should I in the future ever do a clinic ownership or something like that? That's something that I think is really important in a business.

[00:13:43.250] - Speaker 1

Yeah. I like that the business as a whole looks at it holistically so you can all work. Someone might have a deeper learning on one topic or just to be able to come together and work together. And I think when you look at your own personal health and you look at it holistically rather than, oh, here's the symptom, treat it. But when you've got a team of people looking at something holistically, the end result is generally a lot better, a lot quicker. So within animals and it's so diverse, I think that really makes sense. And it's nice that I think that the ego is left at the door and you work as a team.

[00:14:19.170] - Speaker 2

Absolutely. And speaking from a new graduate, now I'm not a new graduate, but speaking from that, it can be really daunting going into a world where there's something obviously called imposter syndrome, but you're going into a world where you're meant to know everything or supposedly know everything, but the reality is you don't. And be able to go into a case and then discuss it with an experienced team Just to have your back provide you so much more confidence and really just backs you up that you know what you're doing. You've done the hard work to get here, and just having a team back you up is incredible.

[00:14:58.650] - Speaker 1

Yeah. I think that's a I really like that you see it as a team, and they do. I think it's really important. I think so many people do feel alone sometimes in work that they do. But to have that support, it just really helps you and in grow as a person as well. Absolutely. Yeah. Mark, with your vet nurses, what's the level of expectation? What do you really need from them? So someone who is studying to work, to assist you or to work with you, what is it that you really do you really require them to do on a day to day?

[00:15:34.570] - Speaker 2

It varies, and depending on the nurses' background, it varies. But the truth is, I think the nurses, they run the clinic, and I really mean that. If it wasn't for nurses, a veterinary clinic would not run.

[00:15:49.500] - Speaker 1

Yes, you need a vet, but the vet nurses, they run the entire day, and there's actually so much important in their role, and from reception to to helping with consults to surgery nurses, just to having good flow of the day.

[00:16:06.120] - Speaker 2

And expectations, some clinics, so they're running anaesthetics with the vet. They're putting catheters in. They're taking blood tests, they're helping with follow-up calls. And one thing in our clinic, again, that goes back to our discussion about what makes our clinic or our business so good is the nurses are trained to almost be mini-vets. And that's basically saying that they don't just need to listen to the vet and go by what the vet says, but they can start to assess cases on their own and not necessarily make decisions, but they can take it a step up to think more in-depth about the cases and can bounce with the vet. And look, that's sometimes not that they miss things, but things can pop out of their mind sometimes. And having a nurse that So on top of it, whether it's medications or whether it's sending a sample off to lab to make sure it's labelled correctly, I think nurses can absolutely have that role. So they play a pivotal role in the veterinary industry.

[00:17:14.460] - Speaker 1

I really like the model of the business because it sounds like you empower each other as a vet, but you're also really empowering your nursing staff because you understand the key roles that they play. So then you empower them, and then they When people feel that they have a voice and that you can work in harmony together, two heads are always better than one when you're looking at it something. So if they're working with you and they're your right-hand man, so to speak, I think it sounds like a really beautiful, cohesive working space where everyone feels respected and elevated and empowered. And I think that in business is a really nice thing to hear. Mark, one thing that really astounded me when I was doing my research for this interview is the suicide rate associated with vets. Now, you think playing with animals, farm, this is great. But the actual number of vet suicides was really quite alarming, and it's quite a high percentage. Why do you feel that that is?

[00:18:19.220] - Speaker 2

It definitely is a big part of the industry. Personally, and I guess, fortunately, I haven't known anyone that have gotten to that stage in their career, but I do know of people that have known colleagues that have gotten to that point. And I think it's a combination of a number of things. And one is compassion fatigue. It's not something that just affects fits. I think it's an issue that affects doctors and other medical professions. But you're dealing with loved ones and you're dealing with life, and that's something that can be draining on a person. And especially in our industry, you've got 15 minutes or maybe 30 minutes to deal with a medical case that has so much emotion associated with that. And you're dealing with people, and people see their pets as family members now. It's not back in the day, a pet was someone just running around. A pet is a family, and there's people that don't have kids, and that's their kid. So there's a lot of emotional weight on that. And I think that's something that plays into it. And not at our clinic as much, but I think cost and making decisions where cost is a factor and it's a big player, it can be hard because sometimes you deal with people, and I've dealt with people who come in there and they're saying, I'd love to be able to do all this, but I don't have the money.

[00:19:40.560] - Speaker 2

And that's something you've got to work into your decision making. And even though you want to offer them A, you can't even offer them B. You've got to offer them C and D. And in some cases, euthanasia is even on the cards, which has its moments and has its appropriate times. But that can be, I think, emotionally tolling. And And that's, I think, a contributing factor to, I guess, this high suicide rate in the industry.

[00:20:04.190] - Speaker 1

Mark, what do you think could be done or what would you like to see happen for this model, I guess, to change in the sense, how do you not be compassionate when you are a vet and dealing with these emotions? But where do you think the support could come from so that people don't reach the point of, I can't be here? How do you think that could be nipped in the bud a little bit earlier?

[00:20:29.730] - Speaker 2

Yeah, Yeah, I think number one is awareness, and owner awareness as well, I think is important that when owners do go to the vet, they're in the back of their mind, not that it's the forefront, but just to keep in mind that it is a tough at times. And as you pointed out, there are the puppies, there's the loving part. But sometimes we go from the euthanasia straight into a new puppy consult. And so that's a quick shift. So if owners can be just aware to that, I think that's going to be important, just how they treat pets and how things go about that. But I think in the industry is having breaks, appropriate breaks is important, allocating appropriate time to consults, which sometimes can It's really hard because sometimes an owner comes in for something they think simple and it's a lot more complex. And also providing resources, which is something that's certainly become a lot more apparent. The corporates are definitely putting that into their models now where they have those resources people can reach out to. There's Love your pet, love your vet, which are like non-profit organisations that are working towards it.

[00:21:41.200] - Speaker 2

There's another called Not One More Vet as well, which I think are much more prevalent in the US, but they're also reaching out and making awareness and providing resources to people in the industry, not just vets, but support nurses, everyone like that. I think that's going to be a big way to help and And hopefully improve those statistics.

[00:22:03.660] - Speaker 1

Kindness costs nothing. But when people are put into those fearful situations, sometimes what they'd like to project and what they actually do project are two very different scenarios.

[00:22:14.390] - Speaker 2

Absolutely. And I think that's one thing that our clinic is when I'm not in a consult or when it's not something serious, we try to create a fun, happy culture because you're dealing with tough things. But if you can just outside, when you're not with the owners and you're with everyone else and your colleagues is just obviously can't always be happy, but trying to be happy and just create funny times and happy times, I think just to combat all that is really important. Yes.

[00:22:42.820] - Speaker 1

That level of escapism that you can have within the team environment and use each other to have a distraction, so to speak, from the hard realities of what comes up in the job. Talking about fun things, what would be one of the most fun or memorable of your patient moments you had?

[00:23:02.500] - Speaker 2

Yeah, no, absolutely. This one that sticks with me, which I actually think is really cool. I had a 10-year-old little caboodle named Coco, and she came for this sudden lethargy, just not wanting to exercise, not feeling energetic. I know it sounds sad. It's getting better. And straight away, listen to the heart, and there was quite an inappropriately low heart rate. It was a bit strange. So we did an ECG. And lo and behold, we diagnose what is a third degree AV block, where basically the top part of the heart was not communicating with the bottom part of the heart. So when Coco went to be excited in exercise, she couldn't increase her heart rate. It's what humans get as well. So after a long chat with this owner, I spoke to the specialist, the cardiologist myself, and had a chat about her options. She had a cardiac pacemaker put in, which is not a- A doggy pacemaker. A doggy pacemaker That's really cool. Which I thought was incredible. And I saw Coco two weeks later, and the owner, she's 10. She was like a brand new puppy and running around. And it was just from what she was, and we got to do something really cool.

[00:24:14.320] - Speaker 2

And all of a sudden, she's bouncing back and had that high energy levels. And obviously the owner was racked. And obviously I feel satisfaction because a lot of owners don't necessarily go to that point. And she did. And to get that satisfaction, that what I call a happy ending, was incredible.

[00:24:29.190] - Speaker 1

Yeah. Oh, I love that. And a two-week turnaround to see such a big difference. But who would have thought a dog would have a pacemaker? I love that story. It would have been fun to see. Now, tell me about your social media. You've built quite a big following through what you do and your love of animals. Talk me through with your social media why it's been an important part of your business model.

[00:24:53.630] - Speaker 2

Yeah, absolutely. So when I was at Uni, I thought, why not share Why not share the journey? Why not share the journey of the veterinary experience? And that's where I started, which is the social media, the Vet Society was something that I started. Initially, just to share that and to get cool cases and just engage with other veterinary students, veterinary professionals. And over time, people started to engage with it and became interested in it. And as I then graduated, we could share more cases. It's just been growing, growing. And I think sharing authentic authentic cases and learning about cases. And it's not just people in Australia, it's all over the world. It's been a really exciting journey, and that's also provided me some extra purpose is that I can share my experiences and When you share that, you actually put down what you've learned into writing. It actually helps to reaffirm the case and reaffirm the learnings from it, which has been really interesting.

[00:25:53.450] - Speaker 1

Mark, would you put your success down to that authenticity that you portray across your social platform?

[00:26:00.170] - Speaker 2

I think so. I think if you put the real stuff out there, people want to say that. People don't want the fake or obviously every now and then you put a cute photo of a dog or you put some cute stuff because you got to balance it and you can't have the same stuff all the time. But I think that authenticity absolutely is crucial and important to building a good social presence in the veterinary industry.

[00:26:21.200] - Speaker 1

Yeah, I agree with you. I like the authenticity. If you had to give me two more, obviously, authenticity is going to be your top tip, but what would be another two top that we could add to that to make a top three?

[00:26:32.200] - Speaker 2

Yeah, absolutely. I think collaborating. So with other people in the industry, sharing not just your case. Isn't that something I've done? Is sharing other people's cases because everyone's going to see different unique things and work with different animals. So being able to share that and work with those other brands or those other accounts is, I think, important. So my third top tip is when you do post something, is number one, engage with your followers, but also work out what works and what doesn't work. And you're going to find out pretty quickly about what people engage with, what people connect with, and what people aren't interested in. I think you really got to listen to that, listen to your audience, and then you can mould it to fit what they want, not just what you want to put out. And that's a learning experience along the way.

[00:27:24.710] - Speaker 1

Well, I think, especially if you're choosing to use it as marketing material, you've got to read the audience. You If you're just doing it because that's what you want to do and you don't care about anything else, then okay, do what you want. But when you're using it as marketing material, then you have to be smart and listen to what they're needing and requiring. I like those top three. Now for Mark in the future, what's your future aspirations? Where do you see the journey moving to next?

[00:27:52.960] - Speaker 2

Yeah, I'm still working that out. I think number one is there's always more to learn. So Upskilling myself in surgery and in medical procedures is absolutely something that I see myself doing. And just yesterday, I was doing new surgical procedures with the head surgeon guiding me, which is amazing. So that's one thing. But I think either whether it's clinic ownership or even something that I find really interesting is developing products or software in the veterinary industry that can help the vets, which I know it's a It's a cool topic, but I'm still working on some things, is I think where I ideally see my future going in the veterinary industry.

[00:28:37.830] - Speaker 1

Well, I really like that. I look forward to following and seeing where you go next. Now, we're going to have a bit of fun. Nice to finish off our interview. These are the quick fire questions. I fire them off and we're going to do quick answers. I don't know why I said this. I've said this before, but I always feel like I'm on a game show, so I get really excited. It's completely filling in childlike on my end, but a nice way to finish it off. All right, are you ready?

[00:29:06.320] - Speaker 2

I'm ready.

[00:29:07.170] - Speaker 1

I'm ready. Great. And ready. All right, let's go. Three words to best describe yourself.

[00:29:13.250] - Speaker 2

Motivated, caring, and light-hearted.

[00:29:17.250] - Speaker 1

Oh, I like that. Best advice you've ever been given, and by whom?

[00:29:22.190] - Speaker 2

This one's relevant to the industry. My lecturer said to me, If there's anyone you want to be on the good side of, it's the vet nurses.

[00:29:29.920] - Speaker 1

There you go. And you've taken that information well by the sounds of it.

[00:29:35.730] - Speaker 2


[00:29:37.690] - Speaker 1

Favourite quote or mantra?

[00:29:40.950] - Speaker 2

This one is, It's not about what it is, it's what it can become. And that's actually by Dr. Seuss.

[00:29:47.980] - Speaker 1

Oh, my God, I love Dr. Seuss. I really feel I've learned more as an adult from Dr. Seuss than I ever took on board as a child. Okay, next question. Best pet name you've ever come across?

[00:30:02.720] - Speaker 2

I'm going to go with Dash and Dazzle. That was the first name.

[00:30:07.340] - Speaker 1

Dash and Dazzle. I love it.

[00:30:09.320] - Speaker 2

So not two pets, just- Just one. I don't know how you call that name. Yeah, I don't know how you call them. They're being naughty.

[00:30:15.690] - Speaker 1

A bit of a hyphenated name. Dash and Dazzle, come here. What type of animal was it?

[00:30:24.200] - Speaker 2

I think it was a Coovoodle or a little Oodlebury.

[00:30:27.470] - Speaker 1

I love it. Favourite pet patient ever. Can you have a face? Yeah, definitely.

[00:30:32.840] - Speaker 2

I actually am all for the oozles, the oodle brief. I know some people have their thoughts on them, but they're hyperallergenic, they don't moult, and I think they're adorable, great temperaments.

[00:30:45.750] - Speaker 1

I love it. Top three books of all time for you.

[00:30:49.930] - Speaker 2

This is a challenging one because I'm not a big reader. I wish I was. But one I did read is How to Influence Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. I think that's a really interesting And I don't have a lot on the list, but that's on there.

[00:31:05.140] - Speaker 1

All right. We'll take that as your number one. Apart from the Dr. Seuss that you're not going to say in a business interview. Of course. How do you How about your day?

[00:31:16.650] - Speaker 2

For me, it's wake up, shower, coffee, and if I can, sneak a snack in and then straight to work.

[00:31:23.280] - Speaker 1

Awesome. Who inspires you?

[00:31:27.560] - Speaker 2

It might be a bit cheesy, but definitely my mother. A hard working mum, been through a lot, and still says positive, optimistic, and cares for lost kids, so definitely my mother. But if I'm going to go more from a professional, I think Elon Musk might even be up there. An innovator, an interesting person. So yeah, that's what inspires me.

[00:31:50.140] - Speaker 1

I like that. And I like your mum. I think she sounds awesome.

[00:31:55.010] - Speaker 2

Always a safe answer.

[00:31:57.600] - Speaker 1

Yeah, exactly. You'll be on the Christmas list. Mike, what are three things that you'd really like to achieve over the next five years?

[00:32:08.770] - Speaker 2

I think, as I said from before, clinic ownership or creating products and services in the veter industry, and that would be definitely up there with next five years. Yeah.

[00:32:24.630] - Speaker 1

Awesome. Now, if you were to study one more time, not that you haven't studied enough, what would you study?

[00:32:33.470] - Speaker 2

Software engineering or coding. I think it's definitely a skill that I wish I had, and I think it's a really It's really important, and it adds value to... I think every person has that skill. So that's been something that I'd be looking to, if that was.

[00:32:52.000] - Speaker 1

I love it. Mark Tennerbound, you have been an absolute delight. If I ever have a pet, I'll come to Melbourne and you can look after it. But thank you so much. You've really given me a really thoughtful insight as to what it takes to do what you do. And I think so many people will benefit from hearing the different aspects. And it's not just the fun aspect, even though there is. But I think it's a really beautiful journey and definitely look forward to seeing what you're doing in the future. And extremely grateful for you sparing the time away from the pets and joining us here on our show today.

[00:33:25.380] - Speaker 2

Thank you so much for having me. It's been wonderful.


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