Last week I mentioned the dental office where I saw and heard two receptionists talking out loud in a negative way about a third dental employee, right there in front of patients seated there awaiting transfers to the treatment rooms.
This is not a “good look” for the dental office to be showing their paying customers.
There is a time and a place for saying everything.
However, there is no place to be talking negatively or derogatively about someone else who is not present.
That is simply gossip.
In a similar vein, there is no place for oversharing negative information *with* clients and customers.
There is absolutely no point and no benefit to the business for customers to hear of the trials and tribulations of what goes on and can go awry in the day to day business of going about business.
Customers don’t want to know what has gone wrong.
For the dental customer, it’s the exact same feeling as when you are sitting onboard your aeroplane waiting for it to depart and take off, and the pilot comes over the PA with a message about a warning light that has come on, and that maintenance has been called to check on the problem.
I don’t know about you but I just want to believe that the thing [aeroplane] is airworthy and it’s going to get me safely to my destination, warning lights or no warning lights.
I don’t care. Just get me there.
Last week in England my wife and I dined at well rated restaurant in Yorkshire.
The restaurant was very well presented and looked exactly how we would expect a fine dining establishment to look.
The wait staff that attended to our table throughout the meal were in every way both professional and friendly, displaying a perfect mix and balance of each at all of the correct times.
The restaurant was housed in a small cottage. This meant that diners were accommodated in several different smaller rooms within the building, rather than in one large dining area.
On this evening, our table was located nearby to the doors of the kitchen. As is customary in a restaurant, there were two kitchen doors. One door for wait staff entering the kitchen and the other for wait staff leaving the kitchen. As each of the doors opened we were occasionally privy to the hustle and bustle going on inside this busy kitchen.
On one occasion however, one of the wait staff walked into the kitchen and exclaimed to the kitchen staff, while the door behind her was still open and yet to close, that
“The lady on table A4 said her cod is undercooked.”
My wife and I were surprised to hear these words coming from the kitchen, as was one of the wait staff out in our dining room, who immediately raced into the kitchen to speak with the waitress.
The fact that one diner was not happy with the preparation of her meal was really no business of anyone else in the restaurant, and nobody else needed to hear this.
What this waitress needed to have done in this instance was to firstly wait until the door behind her had closed, and then speak less loudly to the appropriate person rather than to the entire kitchen staff.
In dentistry we hear and see similar events to these…
“The lab work is late”
“That patient is never happy”
“The last patient won’t open her mouth wide enough”
“The doctor always runs late”
These, and other similar comments of negativity, do nothing at all to build customer loyalty.
There is no point in gossiping.
There is no point in oversharing.
No point at all….
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