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Phil's Story

I was a multi-unit manager with a national veterinary organization for 6 years. Just like so many, the winds of ownership and regime change swept me away in the late 2000's. To stay in the industry I did some M&A - Business Development work with a large group. The experience was invaluable, but the role was probably not the best fit. So I joined a small stand alone veterinary group and picked up my MBA along the way. The owners of this group had no knowledge or feel for the industry surrounding their investment, and furthermore had been sold a set of unreasonable expectations surrounding their investment. We choose to part ways and that left me to deeply soul search my career. In the interim I went back to my roots...retail as well as consulted in the veterinary industry. I still wanted to maintain a presence in companion animals, and I enjoy the people interaction as well. So, through a few connections in my network I was able to move my resume beyond the frey with a PETSMART DM. Ideally, he admitted his preference as to promote internally versus hire externally. However, our dialogue continued. Six months later, opportunity called me back. In many ways manager a PETSMART is a career reset for me. In other ways its a natural extension of my veterinary and M&A work within the companion animal industry. I do see a bigger picture coming in externally. I also have a better handle on our external services and partners based on my experiences as well. So, find and organization that appeals to you, find an entry point, even if it's below your ultimate expectations. Trust me when I say that your experiences will propel you further and faster than internal candidates once you get a grasp on the systems and vernacular. My lesson learned is that sometimes when people are drowning, and they are too arrogant, fearful, or proud to admit to this reality, then you need to listen to your EI (emotional intelligence) and move diagonally away for the situation...despite you current needs or beliefs to the contrary. Some things just cannot be fixed or repaired in their current state. Good luck to all in your search and feel free to connect via LinkedIn: phil.sproat@gmail.com

Phil,
Store Manager - PETSMART
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