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  • Corporation blues

    Right now i work for one of the large pet supply companies as a grooming salon manager. I've been grooming for a little over two years and have been a manager for about 1. i am ready to leave the corporate side of things. Also i don't want to turn into a whack-n-hack groomer. i feel like i have a pretty decent foundation and i know i can excell in a healthier envoirnment...

    I was hoping i could get some pros and cons from yall, about working at a vet's office Vs. a privately owned shop... i definitely would like to keep health insurance but i'm willing to drop them if i get a good offer.

    I'm really worried that my resume will not be enough to get me an interview and if anyone has any advice i would greatly appreciate it!!

    I don't want to offend anyone working for a Corp. its not a bad deal, i've just had a rough couple months and i know its not for me anymore.

  • #2
    I would just suggest that if you went to any seminars or extra training to put that in your resume. Just to break it up a little and to not just have a petsomething on there. I have nothing at all against petsomethings, but I read in many posts that just having that on there and no other experience doesn't look favorable. Again those are not my personal feelings just a vibe I got.

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    • #3
      I went into one of the type places you are talking about when we first got back into america, I really didnt like what I was told and decided not to go for it.
      Oh this was a big fight for the past 4 months between My Husband and I.
      He wanted me to take a sure thing groom job with a place like you are describing! Bad thing for them is I do not need medical or dental as I am covered 100% by the army.

      And I just could not do it! After 5 years working for Myself and being My own boss?

      On the training site I help to Moderate everyone kept telling me to open On My own but I just felt that after living over seas for 5 years I wanted to work for someone for at least 1 year. But I was also looking for someplace laid back so I could get back into the swing of things. Didnt happen.

      And now I am moving back over seas in a couple of months. I am getting a loan from My Dad and I am going to open on My own over there.

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      • #4
        I think it depends on what's available in your area. If there is a local vet that would like to start a grooming service and would let you call the shots, it would be great. Salons differ SO much. My first boss trusted me completely and wanted me to make as many decisions as I felt comfortable. It was wonderful to be appreciated and I ended up buying the business from her after a couple of years. I've heard of many situations that were quite different and the employees were treated more like criminals! Keep your options open and don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions to find the right fit.

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        • #5
          Working at a vet's office usually means you get to groom a lot of animals that need to be sedated. But by no means are those the only animals you'll groom.

          When you work for a vet, you also have a ready made pool of clients to draw from. Lots of people like the convenience of having everything taken care of all in the same place. I used to groom a lot of dogs that also got exams, vaccinations, heartworm checks while they were in for grooming.

          It's also nice to have a vet to turn to if a pet becomes ill, is accidentally injured, or you find something you aren't sure about. Many times I'd run a dog past the vet because I found infected ears, impacted anal glands, ingrown nails. Again, owners like the convenience of having the problem addressed while the dog is already at the vets for grooming. It saves them making an appointment and taking the pet on yet another car ride.

          Another advantage of working for a vet is that most of them are more than happy to help you expand your knowledge of health issues that pets face. If you're not squeemish you might have the opportunity to stand in on surgery or help deliver puppies and kittens. If you are squeemish, you might find out that you can get over it, and stand in on surgery or delivering puppies and kittens. Either way, it's a wonderful opportunity to learn.

          Currently, I work at a private shop. And while I enjoy it a lot, it's not nearly as interesting or fun as working at a vet's office. I watch the papers all the time, and if I see an add for a groomer at a vet's office, I think I'll check it out. I miss seeing surgery. I miss being able to pick the vet's brain.

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          • #6
            As a consultant to over 2,000 independent grooming businesses my first thought was, "Do you think the politics of independent salons and shops is any better than your corporate experience?" It can be worse in some independents, terribly worse, I have the case histories that would have you running back to corporate.

            So like it has been said here you have to judge each and every employment opportunity on its own. There are well-managed businesses that will employ you, and others that will work your nerves and probably pay less, certainly some without benefits. It's a matter of investigating your area.

            Perhaps you are showing us why as many as 70% of all employed groomers dream of self-employment according to our surveys.
            Most questions regarding GroomerTALK are answered in the Board Help Talk Forum. Thanks for coming to our community a part of PetGroomer.com https://www.petgroomer.com.

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            • #7
              hm...adding to the some groomers at privately owned shops dont like just having a petsomething experience on there...well...the last shop i worked at said she wasnt ever going to hire anyone who WORKED at a petsomething because she didnt want to deal with their bad habits! she was like..i know you worked at one but only for a short time and you were kind of fresh and willing to learn new things. i found that to be sort of discriminatory because i dont really think you can tell someone im not going to hire you because you worked at Pet*** or whatever...i honestly think you can learn bad habits from working anywhere..i know i picked up bad habits working for her!
              JMO
              Hound

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              • #8
                Don't let your lack of experience get in your way. I was trained at a petsomething after being a bather with them for 2 years. I did well at their academy and came back OVERqualified (my manager's own words) for her petsomething. About 5 months later I got bored of not learning anything and went specifically looking for a groomer who had show or competition experience so I could continue learning. I found one who showed, handled and groomed and sold her immediately on the picture portfolio I had made while still in training. So if you have any before and after shots of dogs you've done (recently or not) then put them together in a nicely set up and decorated photo album and use THAT as your resume. It worked for me.
                If you're bored and want to learn more from someone, do what I did and look for someone with show or competition grooming experience who's looking for a groomer. I called all the local shops I found in superpages.com (search by distance) and asked if they were looking for anyone. I might have also asked about the show/comp experience on the phone, or that might have been in person, don't remember.
                Anyhoo. Good luck and don't be closed off by your lack of experience. Use what you have and push yourself. Good luck.

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                • #9
                  thanks for the advice, i know i am going to be very picky about the next place i go. i'm definitely not looking to be anything management like, i just want to be responsible for me, my dogs and being an asset to the business. i really don't mind receiving directions and following rules but i hate being the disciplinarian/enforcer bad guy. i don't think i would hate the corporate setting so much if i wasn't neck deep in it. its frustrating to have people who have never set foot in a groom shop,( let alone wrestle a 120lb rottweiler over a freakin nail trim) call you from their comfy hairfree cubicle in some beachfront office to tell you how you should promote a special, or handle a disgruntled customer or better manage your payroll, while you are trying to groom 6-8 madly barking dogs, answer phones and talk to walk in customers, alone,because we don't have PAYROLL to hire a bather....(typical day for me)....(sorry about the ranting...) whew...
                  i really don't want to hate my job and everyday i hate it more and more....
                  i think working for a vet would be perfect for me....i really like the icky stuff like that too...i would love to be able to ask questions when i get dogs with medical problems...also i don't like sending Cats/Dogs home because i can't finish grooming them, so it would be nice to be on the other side of that.

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                  • #10
                    My experience in an animal hospital setting has been awesome. Unlike Helly's experience, I've had relatively FEW sedated dogs to groom. I can think of 5 off the top of my head in the year I've been there, and they were dogs that were already decided beforehand that they were to be sedated. I have so few naughty dogs, it's very nice. The ones that a petSomething has sent me are not that naughty, they just bite (hard) for their toenails, and nothing else, so I just hook them up to my Groomers Helper ( www.groomershelper.com ) and keep on workin'. I have naughty ones here and there, but nothing like the naughty ones at the first shop I worked at----we had 40-60 dogs a day sometimes so it can get chaotic, maybe it does for the dogs, too? Maybe it caused them to react?

                    I am a one-woman show now, and I like it. The animal hospital gives me a lot of control over things, thankfully, and I am very happy where I am at.

                    I couldn't work in a corporate environment, I like to have a little more control over things, and that is probably the main or even the only reason. But shops with several groomers have a lot of problems with gossip, personal problems, domestic issues (of course these can happen anywhere), everybody wants control over the radio but nobody enjoys the same kind of music, competition among groomers, bosses who give Suzie 12 dogs, while Sally only gets 8, who grooms better, who doesn't, the owner doesn't want "you" to groom their dog anymore, they want that other groomer, etc. Or your boss and her groomer/friend decide to give you all the hard dogs while the other groomer/friend keeps the good dogs for herself...

                    There are ALWAYS issues. If you could work someplace where you are the only groomer, that would be a nice situation, but I am only speaking from my own experience.

                    Good luck!

                    Tammy in Utah
                    Groomers Helper Affiliate

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by kaysza View Post
                      thanks for the advice, i know i am going to be very picky about the next place i go. i'm definitely not looking to be anything management like, i just want to be responsible for me, my dogs and being an asset to the business. i really don't mind receiving directions and following rules but i hate being the disciplinarian/enforcer bad guy. i don't think i would hate the corporate setting so much if i wasn't neck deep in it. its frustrating to have people who have never set foot in a groom shop,( let alone wrestle a 120lb rottweiler over a freakin nail trim) call you from their comfy hairfree cubicle in some beachfront office to tell you how you should promote a special, or handle a disgruntled customer or better manage your payroll, while you are trying to groom 6-8 madly barking dogs, answer phones and talk to walk in customers, alone,because we don't have PAYROLL to hire a bather....(typical day for me)....(sorry about the ranting...) whew...
                      i really don't want to hate my job and everyday i hate it more and more....
                      i think working for a vet would be perfect for me....i really like the icky stuff like that too...i would love to be able to ask questions when i get dogs with medical problems...also i don't like sending Cats/Dogs home because i can't finish grooming them, so it would be nice to be on the other side of that.
                      Wow, sounds like my Petsomething experience. I was a manager there...trying to make a living and then living up to all the corporate stuff. It ended up burning me out and I quit grooming for a few years. Finally I realized it was the manager part, not the groomer part I hated. They hired groomers that couldn't groom, took drugs, etc. The Regional Manager used to pop in and check the top of the cages for dust...then you got evaluated. I always did really well, but the stress of it all combined with not making enough money (because I spent a lot of time having to manage the rather large groom shop) was too much for me.

                      I think I agree with whoever said working in a shop had issues too...like fighting and gossip. I prefer being in charge, like when you own your own shop, then I don't have to put up with the garbage.

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