Who’s Your Next Patient?

Who’s Your Next Patient?

One of the things that really bugs me about most dental practices is their failure to recognise their next arriving patient by name when that patient walks through the front door.

In fact, the aim of the practice staff should always be to greet the patient by their name before that patient announces who they are.

I call this “Beat the Greet”.

It’s not that difficult to do.

After all, you have a list of names already of who is coming in to see the dentist, and at what time they are due.

It’s called an appointment schedule.

It’s not that difficult to look at the schedule and work out who is the next patient due to arrive.

Another thing that makes it quite simple is the fact that the majority of patients visiting your dental practice each day are repeat visitors to your office.

They’ve been there before.

It shouldn’t be that difficult to put a face to a name.

After all, you’ve probably taken an ID photo of them for your dental software?

And you have their gender and their date of birth?

And if your team is really good, they’ve also taken notes about the patient that can be used for “Secret Service” activities.

“Secret Service” activities are defined as the implementation of hidden systems that enable our staff to consistently exceed the client’s expectations and to make the client feel welcome, comfortable, important, and understood.

Secret Service Information is relevant and important matters relating to that patient that they the patient mention casually [that are unrelated to their dental needs] that when raised at a later visit or at a later point in their current visit, has the patient saying to themselves, “WOW!!”

What if….

What do we do when a new patient is due?

When a new patient is due, we already have their name in our schedule, we know their gender, and we know the time they are expected to arrive.

So when someone we do not know enters our office at about the time the new patient is due, we might greet them and say:

“Welcome to Active Dental. You must be Mr Smith. I’m Jayne, I spoke with you on the phone. How’s your day been?”

If it is Mr Smith he will be super impressed with the way we warmly greet him, mainly because he has never ever been greeted in that way at any other dentist or at any other facility for that matter.

And if by chance it is not Mr Smith, whoever it actually is will be impressed by the friendliness displayed by your staff.

This is because this behaviour is so different compared to how they are usually treated at other places. It is so different when you compare it to the “usual” manner of having to arrive and having to ding a bell to attract a staff member away from their computer. 

What if someone walks in the door and they are not on the schedule?

When someone arrives who is simply not on our schedule and they arrive at a time when nobody is due, then the greeting for them is simply:

“Hello. Welcome to Active Dental. My name is Jayne. How may I help you?”

Years ago I had the need to borrow some impression material from a neighbouring dentist.

I had phoned him in advance, and asked about the material, so that when I arrived to collect it they would have it ready and waiting for me.

So here’s what happened….

When I arrived at that dental office, and walked in, the dental receptionist was standing with her back to me.

When she turned, she greeted me with one word:

“You’re?” 

Just one word.

“You’re?”

I was shocked.

She was making a noise like a donkey.

I was shocked that this was a standard greeting in this dental office.

Here’s a tip:

The way that you greet your arriving patients in your dental office can either elevate or deflate their mood for their upcoming dental appointment.

If the greeting you use deflates your patient’s mood, your patient may decide [mentally] then and there to choose not to follow your dentist’s treatment recommendations, despite his advanced case presentation skills.

If your greeting elevates the mood of your patient you may put them in a state where they are more inclined to accept your dentist’s treatment recommendations.

It doesn’t take much to swing the pendulum in your favour.

Are your team members doing everything they can to impress the arriving patient?

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Need your phones monitored?

Are you concerned about the number of calls that are not being answered as best they can be?

You need Call Tracking Excellence.

For the cost of a less than one cleaning per week, you could have your phones being answered much much better….

Convert more calls into appointments…

Call Jayne on 1300 387 044or email Jayne@theDPE.com  for more details.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

Gaining Clarity

Gaining Clarity

Last week I told you about our garden clearing and fence work that we were undertaking at our farm.

We’ve owned the farm as a second residence for six years, but after selling our big Sydney home late last year we recently moved there to live there full time [which was always the plan].

The garden around the house at the farm was always private and secluded, with the house being positioned away from the road.

But some of the fences around this garden were in need of replacement. These fences separated the cattle paddocks from the garden, but had weakened with the passing of the years, and had also been allowed to “disappear” and be absorbed into some unmown sections of grass, lawn, and pasture.

In combination, Doug [the fence guy] and Dan [the arborist] and Jayne and I discussed the replacement and repositioning of some fences, as well as the tidying up of the garden area….

In Dan’s words, we were going to:

“Lift the canopy”

“Remove unnecessary and damaged trees”

“Remove widow-makers and other dangerous limbs”

And, following this, we would then be able to reassess where exactly we wanted to reposition any fencing.

The end result:

Rationalisation of the garden area and fences then occurred. This allowed us to perform an “exchange” of sorts , returning an un-used vegetable garden back into pasture, in exchange for a small expansion of the “quiet” garden area into another area of cattle paddock.

The end result?

As owners, Jayne and I now have clarity, following the clearing and re-assessment, of exactly what we can achieve in terms of the landscaping and of the architecture possible in creating a far more beautiful garden.

The “space” created by clearing, has allowed us to “walk the grounds” and really visualize the possibilities of what was really never ever imaginable.

It’s interesting, because the whole process was really a case of “trusting the force”.

Neither Jayne nor I could have imagined what a beautiful landscape we actually had there that had been allowed to become and to stay overgrown and unmanaged.

And we had allowed that to happen primarily because of our inherent fear of change.

“What if it looks bad?”

“What if he cuts off too much?”

 We had to let go.

We had to show some faith.

And so we did.

And the change, the immediate change, is palpable.

Our garden is still a long way from being finished, but we now have a far greater understanding of what is possible, because we allowed someone with knowledge and vision to start revealing the beautiful swan that was hidden beneath our ugly duckling.

And….

How does this relate to dental?

Sometimes as practice owners, we don’t know what our practices can become because we are too “set” in our ways about what our practices have done so far.

And our opportunities then become lost.

Sometimes as practice owners, we know that we have a practice with potential, and even though we may know a “dental arborist” who can see exactly what our practice can achieve and become, we do not “listen” to our arborist and so one year from now, or two years from now, we end up with more overgrowth and more encroachment, and we feel more strangulation and entrapment.

And yet flipping the switch, and allowing the arborist to do his job, can truly be enlightening.

Is your dental practice in need of a chainsaw and a breath of fresh air?

Wasted potential is one of life’s biggest tragedies.

Opportunities not taken, and regrets of opportunities never acted upon, are two more of the real tragedies in life.

Having regrets about what might have been, or having regrets for never giving something a true go…these are feelings that can haunt our souls for long periods of time.

Sadly, some people cannot see the forest for the trees.

Letting a chance go past, without grabbing it with both hands and giving it time to truly blossom, and show… now therein lies a true tragedy.

With your practice, with your life, with your garden…. You must explore all possibilities.

And never say never. 

Not without at least trying to see the depths of opportunity  that stand in front of you.

Life is too short to not explore the opportunities of expansion and true growth…

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Need your phones monitored?

Are you concerned about the number of calls that are not being answered as best they can be?

You need Call Tracking Excellence.

For the cost of a less than one cleaning per week, you could have your phones being answered much much better….

Convert more calls into appointments…

Call Jayne on 1300 387 044or email Jayne@theDPE.com  for more details.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

How Bad Is Your Phone?

How Bad Is Your Phone?

How badly is your phone being answered?

And why is your phone being answered in such a poor manner?

Do you as the business owner know how badly your phones are being answered?

Do you as the business owner have any idea at all about how difficult it is for your customers and potential customers to do business with your organisation because your phones are being answered so poorly?

Why is this so?

Are the people you are hiring not being instructed on best practices when it comes to phone answering?

Or are they deliberately sabotaging your business?

Or do they believe that they are providing great service [when in fact they are not]?

Or is your business so busy that the people answering your phones have nowhere to put all the extra business that is calling your business?

Here’s a couple of bad ones:

Today I had the duty of coordinating some printing and publishing.

My printing is a one page insert, and my printer needs to send the completed printing to a publisher who is then inserting the printed insert into a magazine being published.

My printer sent me an email wanting to know exactly when the printed inserts needed to arrive at the publisher.

So I phoned the publisher.

The girl who answered the phone there had very little idea at all about what was going on there, and suggested I needed to call the organisation that was “their client” who was publishing the magazine.

Here’s what she did not do:

She did not try to solve my problem.

She did not solve my problem.
She did not offer to follow up with me to see if my problem ever did get solved.

She did not record my contact details nor did she record the [very specific] reason for my call.

As far as this person was concerned, she had shuffled my question off her desk and out into cyberspace.

My problem was no longer something that she needed to be involved with.

She had flick passed it.

The fact that my problem could have remained a problem and carried on as a bigger problem did not concern this woman.

She had done all that she needed to do. 

She had flick passed it.

The second poor phone manner I encountered today was when I then called the organisation who was publishing the magazine.

The woman who answered the phone there answered my call on about the sixth ring. And I think also after my call had been placed on hold.

When she did speak to me I felt as though I had been an interruption for her.

I did not feel as if I had interrupted her doing something. 

I was made to feel as if I had interrupted her doing nothing at all.

I was not made to feel welcomed on the phone.

Nor was she really able to leave me feeling confident about the answer she gave me after my call was put on hold.

I did not feel inspired.

I did not feel like a valued customer.

What should happen:

The caller should always feel inspired when they finish their call.

The caller should always feel a confidence that they are in the right place, and that they will be looked after.

The caller should always feel as though they cannot wait for their transaction [or appointment] to go ahead.

And the caller is confident they are going to be well looked after.

The caller feels important.

Every caller to your office should feel inspired and feel welcomed.

They need to know that they are in good hands, and that they are valued as a human being.

Every caller must feel a sense of anticipation as they wait for the next day that your business transacts with them.

And nothing less will do….

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Need your phones monitored?
Are you concerned about the number of calls that are not being answered as best they can be?
You need Call Tracking Excellence.
For the cost of a less than one cleaning per week, you could have your phones being answered much much better….

Convert more calls into appointments…
Call Jayne on 1300 387 044 or email Jayne@theDPE.com for more details.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

 

Sharpen Those Saws.

Sharpen Those Saws.

This week we’ve had some work done on our property.

Or better still, we’ve had some work STARTED on our property.

As you know, last December Jayne and I sold our Sydney home and relocated ourselves permanently to our rural property.

For the last six years it has been a 50:50 split, which is difficult to do.

This week we started on our paddock renovation plans.

We needed some fencing upgraded.

And we needed some tree lopping and removal.

And so it began…

Our arborist worked tirelessly for three days, each day trimming trees, removing dangerous trees and liabilities, as well as tidying up rampant useless ground bushes.

The change, or should I say, the improvement, was palpable.

It was kind of scary as it happened.

Much like getting a very severe haircut I guess.

“Will they remove too much?”

“Will it grow back?”

“What will it look like?”

After all, it’s not like moving furniture.

You can’t just go and glue a branch back on if you change your mind.

It was amazing though, because you kind of grow complacently accustomed to how things are, and it does take a “specialist” of sorts to point out the benefits of the “new look”.

To me, the thought of “lifting up canopies” was scary.

And the thought of lopping off of three metres off each of my beloved pear tries was difficult to grasp.

But “TRUSTING THE FORCE” was what I needed to do.

And open up the yard we did.

Four or five big piles of mulch were created by the chipper. A huge burn pile was assembled in the middle of an adjoining paddock for use as a bonfire at some later date… that will be fun.

But boy, does the open space look grand.

And haven’t we uncovered some grand old gums [gum trees, or eucalypts. Not periodontal gums].

As I said, the arborist crew worked tirelessly and feverishly trimming and dismantling, and gathering and collecting.

And to do the trimming, all that trimming, requires a plan and preparation.

And continued sharpening of saws.

Some of that old, old seasoned timber of trees and boughs fallen, is so dense and so “treated” by time that to attempt to chainsaw your way through it for 25 hours is a recipe for blunt blades.

And so it is prudent to stop a while, regularly, and resharpen those saws.

So that you can keep cutting at pace.

Because despite our best intentions and our work ethics, we can seriously blunt our own progress by failing to focus, and refocus, on the goals that we are seeking to achieve.

Yesterday I had the privilege and the honour of being invited to Zoom call across the world into a team training retreat held by one of my very dear dental friends.

Twice each year, Dr Robert Pick from Chicago, takes his team out of their dental office and conducts his bi-annual “Pick Business Retreat” [or “PBR”].

This twice-yearly event gets his team focused on their mission, as a business, in what they need to do.

They are sharpening their “mental saw”.

They are assessing and reassessing their business and personal game plans.

So let me ask you this:

In your business, are you taking time out to stay focused on what you need to achieve?

Or are you soldiering on, with a blunt mental attitude, just hoping for things to get better?

As I said to Dr Pick, in my life as a business owner, the one thing I felt that I needed to do more of was to regularly stop and regroup and mentally sharpen our saws.

Planning and regularly reassessing our own progress is so important.

Take a break.

Sharpen those saws.

You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference it will make to your business.

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

“I Don’t Want To Be Selling”

“I Don’t Want To Be Selling”

I often have dentists tell me they do not want to be selling to their patients.

They think it is unethical to sell.

But I say they are already selling.

All they are not doing is selling well.

Barbara Corcoran summed it up beautifully:

“Good salesmanship is nothing more than maximising the positive and minimising the negative.” 

Selling to me is the process of helping people to get what they actually need rather than allowing them to choose only what they think they need.

To me it is the duty of every person providing a good or a service that is beneficial to ensure that they get that good or service into the hands of everybody who that good or service will benefit.

Because, if that good or service is so good, and is so beneficial, then it is sinful to NOT do everything in our powers to ensure that everybody we know receive the benefit of that good or service.

And to allow someone to choose not to partake of our good or service offering is negligent on our behalf. Yes, it means we have failed our customer.

We have let them down.

If our product or service is so spectacular, for our customer to NOT partake of that good or service is an act of negligence on our part.

“Oh, they wouldn’t be interested”

“Oh, they can’t afford it”

are two phrases we can really do without hearing….

It is not for us or anybody in our dental office to decide whether or not a patient can afford what we are recommending, or whether or not the patient would be interested in the necessary treatment.

Our role is only to ensure that we do our best to ensure that the patient understands the benefits of what they need, and the consequences to them of not going ahead with their necessary treatment.

And to do that, all we need to do is maximise the positive outcomes of them going ahead with treatment, and emphasise the negative outcomes of failing to act on our treatment recommendations.

Selling it is not.

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

Who [Exactly] Is Running Your Business?

Who [Exactly] Is Running Your Business?

How do you run your business?

Are you worried about what other people say and think?

Do you worry that your customers talk about you [behind your back]?

Or that your competitors have “labelled” you?

Maybe your community has an opinion about you and your business, and you are worried about that opinion?

This quote came across my desk again yesterday:

“A man of character does not expect to be liked by everyone, nor does he worry about being liked by anyone.” – William A. Welker

It is a pertinent quote.

It is a very specific comment about the nature of society in general, along with being a comment about what one must do to succeed while operating within such a society.

Do you think that Columbus worried about what others thought?

Or Einstein?

Or da Vinci?

Of course not.

These great men of great mind thought nothing of what others thought of them, and rightly so.

They thought only of the future, and of invention.

Can you imagine what the world would have been like if these greats, and other great minds, had been pre-occupied with the social opinions of their community and colleagues?

The world would be in a totally different, and far worse state, than it is today.

In business you need to take the hard lonely line some times.

Most times.

Most times the hard decisions, the difficult decisions, are the ones that you need to make on your own.

Without opinion.

Because statistics will tell you that 95-97% of the population have opinions that matter for very little.

Why is this so?

Only three percent of the population have goals, written down, that they read and review on a daily basis.

97% of the population do not have written down goals.

And 95% of the population are unable to afford to retire at age 65 because of poor financial decisions made during their working life… mostly, they have not saved well enough along the way to have accumulated sufficient assets that generate a replacement income of relevance.

95% of the population are poor money managers.

The trouble is, the 5% who do manage to create wealth for themselves by the time they reach age 65 are expected to support the 95% who wasted their way to age 65.

If you listen to the 95-97% you will end up just like them.

It’s a given.

Seek out the opinion of those who have a proven track record and ignore ALL opinions of those without “runs on the board.”

“Before you start following someone, make sure they are headed in the right direction”.

I won two sports tipping competitions without watching a game…. all I ever did was choose an expert in that field and copy his game tips and forecasts…. and I was successful.

Because he was an authority.

If you follow the predictions of Warren Buffet then more than likely you will be more successful than someone who listens to people of less authority.

Find your mentor.

Do not sit back waiting for a miracle.

That will not happen.

Most people who hope to win the lottery never actually purchase tickets.

And as such, their lives are destined for more mediocrity and failure…

Find your sage. Seek him. And follow him.

Hoping that things will get better is not the answer.

Action is required.

Don’t be an understudy, or an “extra”.

Be the central character in the story of your own life.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt

*****

Linda Miles is coming to Australia in August.

Don’t miss this once in a life-time opportunity to see and hear Linda speak first hand…

Book your tickets HERE.

*****

Make sure you subscribe to my monthly Dental Water Cooler Podcast Series…. “The Ultimate Patient Experience”

Click on this link for all details

*****

Have you read my book , How To Build The Dental Practice of Your Dreams [Without Killing Yourself!] In Less Than Sixty Days.

You can order your copy here: Click Link To Order

*****

The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.

Email me at david@theupe.com

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