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In Parts 1 and 2, we discussed the horse as your employee.  We also talked about suitability to perform the job at hand, horse behavior as a result of pain, how all of it adds up to potential risk and liability for you, and how to survey your horse to find some answers.

What do the results of the survey mean to you and your horse?  The results are going to be very specific to each individual horse and situation, but we'll evaluate the following example to gain a better understanding of what the results are telling us.  Background information: 15 year old gelding used for trail riding two to three times a week.  Rider has noticed some behavior changes in the horse over the last two months.  Sample survey was completed as follows: 

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

In Part 1, we discussed the horse as your employee.  We also talked about suitability to perform the job at hand, horse behavior as a result of pain, and how all of it adds up to potential risk and liability for you.

What can we do to reduce our risk and liability?  Simple.  Ask the horse how s/he feels about her/his job with an employee engagement survey.  Determine the key performance indicators (goals) for the horse in his/her job,  then develop a set of questions.  Start out with at least five and no more than ten questions, where the horse can be rated on a scale from one to five.  Work with the horse to complete the survey.

What are your key performance indicators?  What are the most important aspects of the horse's job?  These will vary based on the type of riding you do with your horse.  With these specific factors in mind you can develop specific questions to ask your horse(s). 

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Have you ever considered your horse as your employee?  Perhaps this seems degrading to the horse, but your horse does perform a specific job for you and therefore it makes sense to get his/her feedback on how the job is going for him/her.  Even if you are a recreational rider, your horse is performing a job for you.

Let's look at this from the corporate perspective then apply it to the horse world.  You are the boss of a small company or a manager of a division of a large company.  You have a job opening.  You write up the job description and post to the community.  You receive applications and resumes.  You interview the candidates.  You hire the best candidate for the job.  Six months later it's time for the employee's performance review.  The employee is evaluated on certain criteria on a scale from one to five.  The employee learns what s/he is doing well and areas for improvement.  Now if you're a good employer then you also care about how satisfied your employee is in his/her job.  You provide employee satisfaction surveys to find out what you're doing right and your areas of improvement.  This allows for a great two way communication system to ensure both employer and employee are happy.  Happy and content employees make for good productivity, which makes for good profit margins.  It all comes down in the end to the almighty dollar and reducing your risk and liability.  With an unhappy employee, the employer is at greater risk and liable.

So how does all this apply to the horse world? 

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