Given the current state of the economy, many veterinarians are being forced to make certain decisions, such as who to hire and fire, what products to stock, and what equipment to purchase, based on financial reasons. And it seems more important than ever that veterinarians hold on to their existing clients, because frugal pet owners may be more reluctant to spend money on their pets these days if money is tight. With these pressures, I wondered whether some successful practitioners would share their thoughts about features of their practices that they feel are essential or that truly capture what they value most in their employees. To this end, I have asked several well-respected colleagues to answer a few straightforward but telling questions about their workplaces. These individuals are Byron J. S. de la Navarre, DVM, Animal House of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA; Chris Griffin, DVM, Dipl ABVP (Avian Practice), Griffin Avian & Exotic Veterinary Hospital, Kannapolis, NC, USA; Larry Linnetz, MS, VMD, and Cara Sweet, DVM, Chippens Hill Veterinary Hospital, Bristol, CT, USA; Michael Lutz, DVM, West Meade Veterinary Clinic, Nashville, TN, USA; Robert Monaco, DVM, Dipl ABVP (Avian Practice), Old Country Animal Clinic, Plainview, NY, USA; Barry Stuart, DVM, Advanced Care Small and Exotic Veterinary Hospital, Bound Brook, NJ, USA; and James Zgoda, MS, DVM, Otterkill Animal Hospital, Cambell Hall, NY, USA. I hope that in hearing their answers, we all pick up a few practice pearls of wisdom.