The National Commission on Veterinary Economic Issues (NCVEI) was formed in 20001 by the AVMA, the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), and the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) in response to the findings of the 1999 KPMG study2 of which the executive summary (The current and future market for veterinarians and veterinary medical services in the United States) was published in 1999. As one approach to improving the economic health of the veterinary profession, the NCVEI formed a working group to enhance the nontechnical skills, knowledge, aptitudes, and attitudes (SKAs) of veterinarians.
The need for leadership skills in the veterinary medical profession has never been greater. Although a number of very good veterinary leadership development programs exist, robust national and international dialogue on the topic has generally been lacking.
During 2002 and 2003, the NCVEI Working Group on SKAs1 conducted a needs assessment to provide a foundation for developing initiatives to enhance the leadership skills of veterinarians and veterinary students.2 Published in 2005, results of that study included both a listing of the leadership attributes that were thought likely to be critical for the future success of the