THINKING BUSINESS
a blog by Chris Barrow

The Experience

Monday’s post was about The Message and The Method.

On Tuesday we considered The Money (and I gave you a simple spreadsheet to design a marketing budget).

Today I want to muse for a few moments on The Experience that you deliver to your patients.

As I’ve often said, patients don’t chat about you to their family, friends and colleagues as follows:

You’ll never guess, my dentist has just bought a Cerec machine You’ll never guess, my dentist has just completed her MSc in implantology You’ll never guess, my dentist has a cappuccino machine and a plasma TV

What they do chat about is

The people at my dental practice are lovely My dentist really made an effort to get to know me

and, conversely

The receptionist at my dental practice is miserable The hygienist is bossy The dentist hurt me and seemed indifferent and in a rush

You get the picture.

Patients don’t know enough about microns and margins to know how good you are at the dentistry.

They do know enough about customer service to care about your behaviour towards them.

So it’s a good idea to obsess a little about each step of the patient journey and to interrogate the personal experience that every member of your team delivers.

As a side issue, last Friday I was meeting with the Shine Dental Care management team in our usual venue, the Forever Green restaurant in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire.

As always, I checked in on Facebook and commented on the meeting.

Within 20 minutes, our meeting was politely interrupted by a tall and distinguished gent in his late 40’s who thanked me for checking in and introduced himself:

My name is Charles and I am the owner – thank you for checking in

That, of course, was an experience – and here I am now sharing it with you.

I doubt that the UK dental community will beat a path to his door for working breakfasts but multi-channel social media broadcasting is about casting seed far and wide, because you never know who will be reading this.

Well done Charles for being social media savvy and for enhancing the experience of the 5 people at our table.

Add to that the experience delivered by the rest of the team at Forever Green and we return again and again.

As we approach the seasonal break – take a note over the next 2 weeks of the experiences delivered to you by the places you visit to celebrate – think about the good, the bad and (hopefully not) the ugly and apply the lessons learned to your own practice in the New Year.

Every team member has a role to play in the experience you deliver – which is why it is necessary to take regular time out and review the reality – not just turn up every morning and jump straight back into the hamster wheel.

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