COO Spotlight: Q&A With Ruth Garcia Of fear free pets
Ruth Garcia serves as the COO of Fear Free Pets. Fear Free provides online and in-person education to veterinary professionals, the pet professional community, and pet owners. Their courses are developed and written by the most respected veterinarians in the world and they have become one of the most transformative initiatives in the history of companion animal practice. Ruth’s passion for animals combined with her track record of building successful businesses and her business and academic acumen brought her to Fear Free. In her role as COO, Ruth is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Fear Free, including sponsor relations, strategic alliances, sales, strategy and CE course development. She manages a team of ten out of the Denver-based Fear Free office.
What was the original idea or pain point that inspired you to start your business?
Dr. Marty Becker, a long time practicing veterinarian, had the awakening about 10 years ago when he attended a lecture by a boarded veterinary behaviorist. She talked about “Fear being the worst thing a social species could experience” which deeply resonated with him. As a result, he decided that he had an obligation as a veterinarian to create awareness within the profession about the importance of the emotional wellbeing of pets. As a result, Fear Free, LLC, was founded.
What is Fear Free Pets?
Fear Free Pets is an education company and provides online and in-person education to veterinary professionals, pet professionals, shelter workers and pet owners on reducing fear, anxiety and stress and providing enrichment.
What aspect of your team or company culture are you most proud of?
Our team is comprised of an amazing group of passionate, dedicated, talented and fun professionals. We deeply care about each other and the members we serve, and our core values reflect that – Our passion drives us, we push industry boundaries, inspire trust, work-life balance is not optional, and lastly, we laugh.
What is the most important thing you're working on right now, and how are you making it happen?
We work on so many important things! Currently, our most important thing we are working on is to continue our growth in the veterinary channel and accelerate our practice certification program.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve received as COO?
Continue to be curious, ask questions and listen – there is so much to learn on a daily basis, be it from team members, industry partners or our members. Acknowledge that curiosity will foster creativity, and that is how challenges can we solved and businesses grow.
What has been the most meaningful aspect of your engagement with the Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network?
My engagement with the Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network has been very recent, but I have been blown away by the generosity of accomplished and successful professionals in terms of giving me their time, sharing their expertise and their genuine interest in wanting to help me be successful.