Lessons From The Medical Field
I have been reluctant to write about this because it seems so unpleasant to talk about medical conditions, yet I learned many lessons about customer service that I think are worth sharing.
This past year I went through some medical problems that taught me a tremendous amount about the service side of medicine. From the standpoint of a patient, I say that I am now an expert on what works and what doesn’t work. All I’ve learned applies to any type of business.
Let me say right up front that
my health is excellent as I write this.
Let’s start out with what works.
If you are busy, let the customer know.
When there is an appointed time to meet with a patient/customer, make every effort to meet that deadline. I went through major surgery at U Mass Memorial in Worcester, MA and at my first appointment with the specialist after my hospital stay, he was running late because he was busy with another patient who was having chemotherapy for the first time. He came into the examining room, introduced himself to me (another doctor had operated on me), shook my hand and told me that he had to help another patient and why. He then went on to reassure me that he would take as much time as I needed with him when he got to me.
My daughter was with me and when he walked out of the room we looked at one another and both remarked about how unusual it was for a doctor to respect the patient enough to inform them of delay, why there was a delay and to do it personally.
No matter what business you are in, you can pay the common courtesy to your customer to be on time or let them know if there is a delay and what is causing that delay.
Show how much you care about the patient/customer.
My operation was on the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend. Because of the long weekend many of the operating room personnel were not on duty until the following Wednesday. One of the anesthesiologists came to my room to check up on me to see how I was doing. She had worried about me all weekend and wanted to make sure I was okay. Going out of her way made me feel so good about not only her, but the hospital as well. I also felt good about myself because of how she made me feel.
I remember the first time I received a call from a dealership the day after my car was serviced to check to make sure it was properly fixed. It made me feel special.
There are so many small ways you can let a customer know you care. Send a card, give them a call, remember their names, hold the door open for them, greet them when you see them enter your establishment are some of the ways you can show how much you care. Make a list of the ways you and your staff can show, in large and small ways, how much you care. It will go a long way toward creating loyal customers.
*This article will continue throughout the year.
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