Someone sent me this post they saw in a Dental Online Chat Group.

Last week.

From the outset it looks like this practice really has everything sorted out.

They wrote:

“Let’s go 2020!!! Have you all got a plan for this year? I work in a practice with five OHTs… this creates a great atmosphere for collaboration, but can also generate some challenges… we usually try to get together at the start of the year and map out a path for 2020…. The main topics for discussion usually are:- holidays, hours, treatment plans and CPD…. Do you all try to create a roadmap for the tear ahead?”

What do you think about these plans?

Do you think they have everything covered?

Do you wonder what the practice owner would be thinking of these plans?

For a start…

Most people out there don’t even have a plan in their head, let alone a written down plan.

So these guys are ahead of about ninety seven percent of the population by ACTUALLY having a plan.

Because most dental practices run their year using the MUSAWGA Principle.

What is the MUSAWGA Principle?

The MUSAWGA Principle is a universal truth about human nature that has been around since the Romans, if not before.

It’s a principle that’s been responsible for most of the decisions made in the world that have led this great planet to the position that it is now in today.

You haven’t heard about it?

MUSAWGA stands for Make Up Stuff As We Go Along.

And that’s what most of the population does… they make their decisions on the spur of the moment without due consideration of events past, as well as possible future outcomes.

And that’s scary.

So what that means is that this dental practice mentioned above, by virtue of the fact that they indeed are having a planning meeting, are well ahead of the game.

So…

What do you think about their list?

The main topics for discussion are:

  • Holidays
  • Hours
  • Treatment Plans
  • CPD

What would you do if you were their employer and they presented you with this as a record of their meeting?

How would you respond?

Before you tell me how you would respond, can you tell me what two things are missing from this list?

They Forgot Two Very Important Things…

Here’s what they forgot:

You don’t have a business if you don’t have any customers.

And if you have customers, you won’t have them for very long if you don’t present them with a strong compelling reason to remain your customer.

The priorities of those in that meeting certainly looks like it has nothing to do with the patients of the practice, and providing those patients with outstanding service that is so great that they, [the patients] would never ever think of not returning to see that dentist.

The first two topics that these team members discussed was about themselves…

  • When could they plan their vacations?
  • When could they be absent from the practice?

And topic four was:

  • When could they be absent from the practice under the guise of learning something?

Here’s What I Would Do…

The first thing that I would do as practice owner would be to ask everybody present at that meeting to tender their resignations and then reapply for their positions.

Because the only thing that I can surmise from this list coming out of this planning meeting is that these people at the meeting have forgotten that it is customers who pay their salaries, and that without customers at their business, there really wouldn’t be a business at all.

If your business forgets about its customers and if your business and its employees start taking its customers for granted, or worse still, they ignore their customers, then those customers will soon move on to become customers at a business that recognises their value and worth, and treats them so much better.

This list makes no mention about patients and about customer service.

One of two things must be going on here…

Either this practice has an endless supply of patients that will never run out, and so they don’t need to worry about attrition affecting the practice, or

The existing patients and staff are content with the level of service they are receiving and providing.

All I know is this:

In the words of the great Will Rogers;

“When you’re though learning, you’re through.”

It’s the same with business and it’s the same with customer service.

If you think your business is at the top of its game, and you think that you know all that you need to know about what you need to do, then think again.

Because, you need to be continually refining your business game plan and trying to improve upon it.

And if you think that your customer service systems are exemplary, and that your customers will never dream of going elsewhere, then think again because if you drop the ball with your service, your customers WILL go elsewhere for their service.

This business and its employees need a wake-up call

Hopefully someone will alert these employees to the error of their ways.

The hours they work, and the vacations that they take are dictated by the wants and needs of the business that they work at and the customers of that business.

And not the other way around.

Dentistry is pretty well a twelve months a year, fifty two weeks per year business.

And your patients deserve to have the best people on the job at all times, and not fill ins and stand ups.

Same goes for teachers.

And same goes for firemen.

When teachers and firemen are employed, their leave is mapped out for them.

And it is mapped out to give the best possible outcome for that business.

For teachers and firemen, there is no negotiation.

And in dentistry, if we want the best for our patients, we need to make sure that the best people are available to serve your clients at all times.

Because we need to be focused on the customers and their experience, first and foremost.

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